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Sweet & Sour Spareribs

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糖醋排骨 Sweet & Sour Spareribs

American spare ribs are commonly used in Chinese cooking. This sweet and sour spareribs are my daughter's favorite too. This dish needs no oil but 5 ingredients, cooking wine, soya sauce, white sugar, Zhen Jiang vinegar and water. The quantity of them are just counting from number 1 to 5. Easy to remember! In Chinese, we have another name for it, "Number Spareribs". Isn't it funny? Above all, it's absolutely healthy and tasty too!

  • 1 tablespoon cooking wine
  • 2 tablespoons light soya sauce
  • 3 tablespoons white sugar
  • 4 tablespoons Zhen Jiang vinegar
  • 5 tablespoons water
  • 600 gm spare ribs
  1. Cut spare ribs into pieces and put them into boiling water for a few minutes to rinse away any blood.
  2. Add spare ribs into the above ingredients and bring to boil. Turn down to slow heat. Cook for about 1 hour until less sauce and spare ribs turn dark brown. Serve hot.


  1. I just tried this tonight. Hubby was very impressed. Kids liked it too. This is a crowd pleaser. Will try it out at the next family get together.

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  3. hi Christine,

    2nd dish on 'cook through your cookbook', my hubby and my girl love this ribs, this time i use your healthy version, my husband comment : make some more!

    thanks for your great recipe!

  4. Is that dark or white vineger?

    1. Zhen Jiang vinegar is dark, a kind of black rice vinegar. Please take a look at this article for details.

  5. Hi Christine,

    Thanks for sharing your great recipes with us. I liked your page so much that I bought your book when I was in HK a few months back. I have tried the above recipe and the sauce was dried up in less than half an hour. Would you recommend to add more sauce ingredients or cutting down the cooking time?

    1. The cooking time depends on the power of your stove and the design of your pot. You might increase the sauce ingredients to suit your case.
      The main point is to get your ribs cooked until they turn really tender.

  6. Hello Christine,
    I wonder how much ingredients if I use a pressure cooker to cook this?

    I have cooked this dish over stove top many times. Always delicious.