Vodka and Honey Braised Ribs

Well, the summer (ahem, excusing the miserable weather) of sport has begun with the start of the Euro 2012 football contest hosted by Poland and Ukraine. Eight matches have already taken place and tonight, the vodka is at the ready for Poland’s game against Russia. If you are watching any of the games and fancy making some Eastern European-style snacks, here’s my tasty recipe for Vodka and Honey Braised Ribs. In Poland, spare ribs are called Żeberka and it’s very common to have Żeberka w miodzie, or Ribs in Honey. My twist is to add a little shot of vodka (or two) to the mix. The method comes from my brother, who makes the best ribs in town. His trick is to simmer them slowly in some stock or water first before braising them in the oven. Try them, and then say ‘Nazdrowie!’ with a shot or two of the liquid ingredient! Oh, and don’t throw anything away; use the stock that you’ve simmered your ribs in to make a flavourful soup. 

Vodka and Honey Braised Ribs
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Recipe type: Appetizer
Serves: 2-3
  • 500 g baby back ribs or individual pork ribs
  • 1.5 l chicken or beef stock
  • 4 tablespoon honey
  • 3 tablespoon vodka
  • 3 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon tomato ketchup
  1. Pre-heat your oven to 190 degrees celsius/375 degrees farenheit. Place the ribs in a sauce pan big enough to fit the rack or all the ribs. Make up 1.5 litres of hot chicken or beef stock and pour over the ribs. Place the pan with the ribs on the hob/stove top and very gently simmer (don't boil) the ribs in the stock for 30 minutes.
  2. While the ribs are simmering in the stock, make the honey vodka sauce by puttin the rest of the ingredients into a bowl or jug and whisking together well.
  3. After 30 minutes, carefully lift the ribs out of the stock and put them into a baking tray or tin. Pour the vodka honey sauce over the ribs and cover the tin with tin/aluminium foil. You can strain the stock and use it to make soup later.
  4. Place the covered ribs into the pre-heated oven and bake for 30 minutes. After thirty minutes, take the ribs out of the oven and put the tin foil to one side. Carefully baste the ribs/spoon the sauce over the ribs. Put the ribs back in the oven, uncovered, for a further 15 minutes to get some colour. Keep an eye on the sauce to make sure it doesn't burn. If it looks to be burning, turn down the oven temperature.
  5. Take the ribs out of the oven. Cover the tin again with the tin foil and leave them to stand for at least 15 minutes before you serve. If you have used a rack of ribs, carefully cut or separate the ribs to serve.

Enjoy the football!

Which sporting event are you looking forward to the most this summer? 




  1. says

    the sauce sounds amazing…we have a small Polish community here in NY in the Greenpoint section which I eat at sometimes, but now with all of your delicious recipes I am tempted to try myself at Polish cuisine.

  2. says

    Wow vodka and honey sounds just fantastic. Blogged about and made sticky coffee pork ribs for a supperclub recently, and now am a bit sick of ribs, but I’m sure I’m going to come back to this a week later! the flavours sound brilliant! perfect for father’s day too.

    • Ren says

      OOh yes good idea, vodka ribs for Father’s Day! That’s the starter sorted :-)) Hope your supperclub went well!

    • Ren says

      Thanks Laura, someone once told me that marinading in pineapple juice works well so I might try that, too…when the vodka runs out!!!

  3. says

    These look fantastic Ren, my other half is a HUGE fan of ribs and is always badgering me to make them, though I haven’t yet. I’m not a major fan of sport on TV. Well, I’m not a major fan of sport full stop but it makes me smile how excited people get!

    • Ren says

      Thanks Sian, we love ribs. My youngest chews every single bit of meat off the bones and leaves them shiny! x

  4. says

    Mmmmm they look great – ribs are such a treat! Just settling down to watch the match with Sam – he is SO into Euro 2012!

  5. says

    I really don’t do sport so I’m not looking forward to either the football or most of the Olympics.
    Sometimes I watch a little F1 but haven’t followed it for last few years.
    And sometimes a little Wimbledon tennis.
    That’s about my lot, really.
    Football, rugby, rowing, running and most other sports leave me cold.

    BUT your ribs look MARVELLOUS so I may have to try those regardless of whether I’ll be watching the sport or not!

    • Ren says

      Aah thanks Kavey. I’m looking to Wimbledon too and although I don’t follow football regularly I do like the Euro and the World Cup! Enjoy xx