Dijon Mustard on Ribs Before Rub: Is There Any Point?

Wondering if it worth applying mustard to your ribs before applying a rub?

When it comes to cooking mouthwatering ribs, achieving the perfect balance of flavors and tenderness is number one.

Seasoning and marinades play a crucial role in enhancing the taste and texture of the meat. So you want to ensure the rub you apply stay on. But is dijon mustard the best choice?

Ive tested all the different types of mustard so you find out exactly which ones works best.


Should You Use Dijon Mustard on Ribs Before Rub?

If you can apply Dijon mustard to your ribs before applying the rub it ensure the spices stick to the meat. 

Despite its bold taste, this process won’t significantly alter the flavor of the ribs. However, we recommend reserving the Dijon mustard for recipes where its distinctive flavor can truly shine, while opting for regular yellow mustard in this particular step.


Why Put Dijon Mustard on Ribs – What Does This Do for the Rub?

There are some key points to understand use we use a mustard binder. 

I will cover how it affects the spice rub as well as some other benefits!

Dijon Mustard Binds Dry Seasoning to the Ribs

Coating ribs with mustard (or any other wet ingredient) is commonly referred to as “slathering” or “binding” the meat. This technique involves applying moisture to prevent the spice rub from falling off during the initial smoking process. We also use mustard as a binder when applying rub to brisket, this helps to also form the bark.


Gives an Extra Layer of Flavor

Unlike plain and commercial mustard, Dijon has a unique flavor profile.

Smooth and balanced like butter, it’s easy to see why this type of mustard is gourmet.

Only made in France with exclusive rights and protected manufacturing. 

The recipe goes back to the 17th century. 

Dijon mustard is pale yellow with high acidity from white wine vinegar.

The vinegar is produced by young grapes and has a mild and tart flavor.

These types of flavor compounds pair with a bold seasoning rub commonly used on ribs.

Dijon Mustard Helps Tenderize the Rib Meat

The mustard can help to tenderize the ribs.

The ribs contain a lot of connective tissue, silver skin, and fat. Acidic ingredients in the mustard break down these down..


Are There Disadvantages to Applying Dijon Mustard Before Rub?

In all honesty, there aren’t many reasons why you should use Dijon mustard.

Below I have highlighted some food for thought based mostly on personal preference!

Can be a strong flavor

– Dijon mustard can be very expensive.


Do the Type of Ribs Matter When Applying Dijon Before a Rub?

Dijon mustard is a versatile and balanced product that complements all types of ribs.

Whether it’s delicious pork ribs smothered in bbq sauce…

Or the assertive flavor of beef ribs with an oriental glaze…it works well.

Alternatives to Mustard When Cooking Ribs

There are other types of binders you can apply to ribs if you don’t have Dijon. 

Below are my favorite mustards and ingredients to try…

– Homemade barbecue sauce

– Olive oil or types of vegetable oil

– Brown mustard

– Honey mustard (made with coarsely ground mustard grains & real honey)

– Hot sauce 

Note: Remember that these can also be applied to other cuts of meat for amazing flavors!

Think pork shoulder or chicken breasts!

Just take note of contrasting flavors in the rub and recipe ingredients.

Oh, and one last thing! Don’t over-season kosher salt levels! 


Rub Ideas & Cooking Tips for Your Rib Recipe

I hope you now know why you should use Dijon mustard before applying a rub.

Below are some quick ideas for your rub ingredients and tips when cooking.

– The key ingredients to a spice rub are salt, pepper, garlic & onion powder.

– Build the rub from those seasonings like spicy cayenne pepper or star anise.

– Bind the ribs with Dijon mustard or another common binder above.

– Low & slow is the best with indirect heat.

– Smoke or bake your ribs using the 3-3-1 method with aluminum foil.

– Brush the ribs with a glaze or spray with apple cider vinegar.

– Check the meat falls off the bone before removing them. 

Smoke On!


Hi, I’m Charlie, I have been meat-smoking and grilling for the past 15 years. I have an array of different smokers, thermometers, and have a love for finding the right wood and charcoal combo My favourite recipes are my EXTRA CRISPY smoked pork belly, juicy pulled pork, smoked brisket, duck poppers, and ANY SEAFOOD I grill).

I loves sharing his tips with beginners, helping them navigate the world of smoking. I find it’s not just about cooking; it’s a quest for that perfect smoky flavor.

You will usually find me playing with the kids, perfecting my brisket bark, or sipping beers with boys around the fire. Can’t wait to share all my delicious smoking and grilling recipes with you!

You can read more about me on our About Us page.

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