Sous Vide & BBQs

sous vide ribs

As we approach summer, more and more of us will be getting out our trusty barbecue. But have you ever thought about using sous vide to create intense meaty flavours, vibrant coloured vegetables, all topped off with a beautiful smoky barbecue flavour which we all love.

sous vide chicken on the BBQ

When cooking sous vide you are locking in all the important vitamins and minerals which are found in food. Adding this to cooking on a barbecue results in tender, melt-in-the-mouth results, which are full of flavour, as well retaining the char-grilled crispy barbecue skin.

Marinating your food and cooking it using your Clifton at Home water bath will also increase tenderness and will almost fall off the bone. This gives food items like ribs or chicken drumsticks an extra dimension of flavour, tenderness and most importantly keeps the meat delicious and incredibly moist.

Antony Willman, an avid sous vide user, uses his Clifton at Home sous vide water bath to cook a butterfly lamb leg and then finishes it on the barbecue. He says this about using the two methods of cooking together:

Sous vide can also be used as an adjunct. A good example of this is butterfly leg of lamb for the BBQ. Vacuum seal the lamb with aromats and put it in the bath. I do my butterfly legs for between 52 and 54 degrees for 6 to 8 hours. When ready to go, the piece of meat can be cooked on the BBQ for between 15 to 20 minutes until the outside is nicely char-grilled.  The pre-cooking means the lamb is still pink but the outside is crisp giving the contrast in textures as well as flavours.”

Experimenting with sous vide and using a barbecue can result in flavours which cannot be achieved using the water bath in conjunction with a hot pan or a smoking gun.

Using sous vide to pre-cook foods before putting on the barbecue will also allow the home chef to have more time to prepare other things without the food spoiling or overcooking. The cost of running a Clifton at Home sous vide water bath is also very minimal which means the host has nothing to worry about and knows that the results of the food will be perfect without an expensive cost.

To get you started before the summer season kicks in, we’ve got an exclusive Baby Back BBQ Rib recipe, including the homemade barbecue sauce.

Baby Back BBQ Ribs

Serves 2


  • 1lb baby back pork ribs

For the rub

Sous vide ribs

  • 30g brown sugar
  • 2 tsp smoked paprika
  • 2 tsp garlic granules
  • 2 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp chilli flakes
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 2 tsp mustard powder

For the BBQ sauce

  • 200g tomato passata
  • 1 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 50g brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 tbsp malt vinegar


  1. Set your Clifton at Home water bath to 65°C.
  2. Mix together all of the herbs and spices from the BBQ rub into a bowl; again leave this to one side.
  3. Place the ribs on a chopping board, meat side down and remove the membrane of the meat from the bones. This will look like a very thin almost clear skin which covers the back of the ribs. This is tricky and takes time; however it will improve the marinating of the ribs throughout the cooking process.
  4. Once the membrane has been removed, sprinkle half of the BBQ rub on the back of the ribs. Turn the ribs over and repeat this process.
  5. Place into a vacuum pouch and using the Clifton at Home vacuum sealer, seal the pouch.
  6. Place the ribs in your Clifton at Home sous vide water bath and leave for 12 hours. Place the immersion grid over the top of the ribs so that they stay under the water at all times.
  7. 12 hours later, gently take the ribs out of the water bath, remove from the pouch and place onto a baking tray.
  8. In a saucepan, place the BBQ sauce ingredients and cook over a medium heat for about 5 minutes. Leave this to one side.
  9. Using a silicone pastry brush, or a BBQ brush, paint the ribs with the homemade BBQ sauce; turn the ribs over and repeat this process.
  10. Take outside and gently place on the BBQ, meat down. Leave this for about 10 minutes. Turn the ribs over and repeat. Be carefully not to continue the cooking process.
  11. Serve with your favourite barbecue sides!




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