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Baker's Ribs

Real Texas Barbecue – Available for Catering!

Barbecue isn’t a food for special occasions. Barbecue is a special occasion. Whether you’re planning a big party or an intimate gathering this summer, it can only be improved by the addition of juicy brisket, ribs, pulled pork and other mouthwatering treats pulled fresh out of the smoker.

You are in luck. You live in Eden Prairie, right next to Baker’s Ribs!

Baker’s Ribs is owned and operated by Al Killion, a Texas native who traded the Lone Star State for L'Étoile du Nord 29 years ago. Al learned the secret to authentic Texas barbecue from renowned pitmaster Joe Duncan, the founder of the original Baker's Ribs down in Dallas. Joe, as you might imagine, is particular about the way he likes his barbecue cooked. It took some time before Al appreciated every subtle trick to his mentor’s craft. It took even longer before Joe was confident enough in Al to let him open the inaugural Baker’s Ribs franchise in Eden Prairie.

“Traditional Texas barbecue reflects the limited resources that were available on the frontier,” said Al. “All people had were a cut of meat, a little bit of dry rub, and a whole lot of smoke. I believe that’s why it’s the purest form of barbecue – Texans have no room for error when they cook because we don’t cover up the meat’s flavor with sauces. 

“Texas barbecue traditionally calls for hickory wood, but that’s difficult to ship this far north. Fortunately Minnesota has oak, which is far from a compromise. Oak has a rich, mellow flavor that compliments everything – beef, pork, chicken, and even our baked beans which we cook in the pit right alongside everything else.

“One log is all it takes to smoke whole briskets and pork butts. When we’re serving lunch, those cuts went in at 5pm the day before. Eighteen hours in the smoker makes pulled pork its juiciest and brisket practically fall apart in your mouth. We put our St. Louis cut spare ribs in the smoker for the last four hours, and everything comes out perfect every time. It’s one percent science, 99 percent pitmaster’s intuition.

“When I first moved to Eden Prairie to establish Baker’s Ribs, I was a little apprehensive that Minnesotans would be slow to embrace my home state’s flavors. But I’m happy to say our food became an immediate hit, and I couldn’t be more proud to serve as ambassador to the best style of barbecue in the world.”

Baker’s Ribs has a delightful location by Eden Prairie Center. The authentic restaurant looks like it could have been plucked out of Mesquite and planted down in Eden Prairie, and it’s worth visiting just to see Al’s impressive collection of pig decor. I needn’t tell you why restaurants like Al’s have weathered hard times lately. But just like we are all lucky to have Baker’s Ribs, Baker’s Ribs is fortunate to have the good people of Eden Prairie.

“I can’t tell you how grateful I am to the Eden Prairie community,” said Al. “A lot of locals started coming in more often during the pandemic just to help us stay afloat. Many others have started relying on us more often for catering, which we’re very well set up to provide. 

“We offer a drop-off service to help keep things easy and affordable for our customers. We can keep our food nice and warm for four hours if its destination is out of town. We have wireframes and sternos you can borrow to set up a buffet for your guests, or we can set it up for you.

“Great barbecue is real simple – all flavor, no pretension. That actually makes it the perfect food for COVID-safe gatherings, where people don’t all sit down together for a full-blown plated dinner. Baker’s has always been a casual restaurant. I tell people if they’re looking for something fancy, then they need to go find a fancy place!”

Are you celebrating a wedding, graduation, retirement, birthday, or company event this summer? Whatever the occasion, Al and his team are going to thrill your guests. No work of art stirs more emotions than barbecue.

Baker’s Ribs is located at 8019 Glen Lane in Eden Prairie. You can see their menu at bakersribsmn.com, and you can order catering by calling (952) 942-5337 or emailing Al directly at bakersribsmn@aol.com.

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