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Q-talk *ON TOPIC ONLY* QUALITY ON TOPIC discussion of Backyard BBQ, grilling, Equipment and just outdoor cookin' in general, hints, tips, tricks & techniques, success, failures... but stay on topic. And watch for that hijacking.


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Unread 07-01-2005, 12:45 PM   #1
ddog27
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Default Sugar in rubs

I have read several posts about sugar in rubs. While there are a lot of people who like and put sugar in their rubs, I have also read where some people do not like sugar in rubs at all. One of the main complaints I have read is that it burns when you are cooking. Sugar will burn at 220 degrees, so if you are cooking with a sugar rub and keep the temp under 220 this shouldn’t be an issue. So what am I missing? Are there other pros and cons to putting sugar in a rub that I am missing? Does a non-sugar rub just taste better? I guess I am just confused since I am a sugar rub user. Please educate me!
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Unread 07-01-2005, 12:50 PM   #2
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Default RE: Sugar in rubs

I think that one of the main reasons people use sugar in the rub is to promote the formation of the bark that we like.
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Unread 07-01-2005, 12:53 PM   #3
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Default Re: RE: Sugar in rubs

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bigdog
I think that one of the main reasons people use sugar in the rub is to promote the formation of the bark that we like.
Bingo!

I will use brown sugar at times, just to increase bark formation.
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Unread 07-01-2005, 01:33 PM   #4
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Default RE: Re: RE: Sugar in rubs

I use brown sugar (still haven't tried the turbinado - it's sitting in the pantry waiting) in most of my rubs. Even on chicken when I cook at 275-300. Never had it burn.
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Unread 07-01-2005, 01:51 PM   #5
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Default RE: Re: RE: Sugar in rubs

My take on sugar in a rub, from what I have read and my own experience is that sweet goes better with chicken and pork than it does with beef. I like a little sugar in my beef rub though as I think a little brings out more flavors. Depends on what you are cookin'.
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Unread 07-01-2005, 02:37 PM   #6
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Default RE: Re: RE: Sugar in rubs

Rub and sauce are about balance, either where you cut the sugar way back leaves you too heavy in other areas.
White sugar works fine in most rubs we use low and slow but if you are going to take the pit temps towards 275º then using turbinado will help keep the sugars from scorching.
You need sugar to offset salt and peppers in your rub and create the balance.
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Unread 07-01-2005, 02:41 PM   #7
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Default RE: Re: RE: Sugar in rubs

I've got sort of an "all-purpose" rub I use on pork and brisket. I use white and brown sugar, and have never had a problem wilth burning. I use a lot of pepper (red and black) and paprika, so it balances nicely. I don't think I'd like it too much sans sugar.
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Unread 07-01-2005, 02:50 PM   #8
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Default Re: RE: Re: RE: Sugar in rubs

Quote:
Originally Posted by jminion
Rub and sauce are about balance, either where you cut the sugar way back leaves you too heavy in other areas.
White sugar works fine in most rubs we use low and slow but if you are going to take the pit temps towards 275º then using turbinado will help keep the sugars from scorching.
You need sugar to offset salt and peppers in your rub and create the balance.
Good info Jim (as always).

This begs the question:
Is there any advantage (taste or otherwise, not the scorching) to using white sugar over Turbinado?

If so, I can build rubs according to the cook temps.
If not, I would be inclined just to use Turbinado at all temps.

Thanks,
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Unread 07-01-2005, 03:01 PM   #9
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Default RE: Re: RE: Re: RE: Sugar in rubs

Turbinado is from the first pressing of the cane so there is a lot of molasses still in the sugar. Brown sugar still has molasses but the burn point os lower than turbinados.

If your building a rub and don't want molasses in the flavor print then white sugar will be your choice.
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Unread 07-01-2005, 03:34 PM   #10
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For all my sugar additions in rubs....I use half brown sugar, half turbinado sugar. Nice sweet bark on brisket as well as shoulder. It's all about the bark, baby!
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Unread 07-01-2005, 03:45 PM   #11
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If you normaly use 1 cup of white sugar and decide to substitute brown sugar or turbinado would the amount stay the same?
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Unread 07-01-2005, 03:52 PM   #12
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MrSmoker
I use the same amount with brown sugar but will increase turbinado because of the fact it is shaped like kosher salt and has more volume.
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Unread 07-02-2005, 08:10 AM   #13
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Default

Quote:
You need sugar to offset salt and peppers in your rub and create the balance.
That's the ticket........when I make up rub, it's all about the balance of flavors to my taste buds. some just sprinkle on some of this and some of that, and that's OK.
I prefer to mix it up ahead, and look for that delicate mix of salty, heat, and sweet........
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