Food & Drink

Make This Now: Korean-Southern Ribs

Hybrid dishes on the menu at Atlanta’s Heirloom Market

Photo: Photograph courtesy of Heirloom Market BBQ

With all due respect for tradition, there’s plenty of room for growth in barbecue, as writer John T. Edge noted when he visited Heirloom Market BBQ on his recent tour of Atlanta’s Korean restaurants. The hybrid dishes on the menu at Heirloom Market—one of two Korean-Southern restaurants that chef Cody Taylor runs with his wife, former pop star Jiyeon Lee—are certainly attention-grabbing: Your grandmother probably didn’t dose her slaw with kimchi, and chances are you’ve never seasoned pork butt with gochujang paste, a fermented slurry of chiles, rice, and soy that’s popular on the Korean peninsula. Cooked with love by comfort food enthusiasts from different parts of the world, though, the fare makes perfect sense. The ribs at Heirloom Market benefit from a very literal meeting of cuisines: a Georgia-style dry rub and a sweet, Korean-style barbecue sauce flavored with gochujang and Sprite.


Korean-Southern Ribs

“You can buy gochujang at any Asian market. It acts like a glue for our classic Georgia rub, and creates awesome bark. The more you use, the more Korean your ribs—or pork shoulder, or chicken, for that matter—will taste, but even a little bit helps the rub stick.”


Georgia Rub
“This is basically what we use on all ribs, chicken, and pork.”


Heirloom Market Korean BBQ Sauce
“This is an Heirloom-only creation. It will stay good in the fridge for up to 3 weeks.”



  • Korean-Southern Ribs

    • 1 rack St. Louis–cut spare ribs

    • Gochujang paste

    • 1 1/2-2 cups Georgia Rub

    • Heirloom Market Korean BBQ Sauce

  • Georgia Rub

    • 2 cups white sugar

    • 3 cups brown sugar

    • 1/4 cup smoked paprika

    • 1/4 cup granulated garlic

    • 1/4 cup granulated onion

    • 2 tbsp. Korean red pepper flakes

    • 1/4 cup coarsely ground black pepper

    • 1/2 cup kosher salt

  • Heirloom Market Korean BBQ Sauce

    • 1 lb. brown sugar

    • 1 lb. white sugar

    • 1/2 cup soy sauce

    • 1/4 cup sesame oil

    • 1 12-oz. can Sprite

    • 4 cups gochujang paste


  1. For the ribs:

    Apply gochujang paste to both sides of ribs in a thin layer, like butter on bread. Then cover ribs completely with the desired amount of rub. At this point, you can smoke the ribs or wrap them in plastic and leave them in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours.

  2. When ready to smoke, reapply rub to any spots you might have missed.

  3. Heat a smoker to between 190 and 225 degrees.

  4. Add ribs, bone side down, and smoke in that temperature range for 5-6 hours—or until you can lift them with a set of tongs and they bend into an arc, but don’t break.

  5. Glaze lightly with Korean BBQ Sauce before serving.

  6. For the rub:

    Mix thoroughly and keep in an airtight container. (Makes enough to cover about 4 racks of ribs)

  7. For the BBQ sauce:

    Dissolve both sugars in 6 cups hot water. Add all other ingredients and mix thoroughly. (Makes about 3 quarts )

Recipes from Cody Taylor of Heirloom Market BBQ in Atlanta, Georgia