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Keeping the Fires of Tradition Burning at Baker's Ribs

By Elisha Neubauer

If there's one thing that can be said about the South, it's that they know how to do good food and good friends. And when it comes to good food, nobody does barbeque quite like Texans. Honoring time honored traditions; Texans take their barbeque seriously, putting time and effort into every meal. Baker's Ribs in Mesquite, Texas is no exception. Having been in the barbeque industry for several decades, they've had plenty of time to perfect their work.

Baker's Ribs began life in 1988 in a small location off Buckner Boulevard- a product of the Duncan family. Joe Duncan, the Founder of Baker's Ribs, started his barbeque career in 1979 after previously opening barbeque-themed restaurants in Lake Worth and East Texas prior to launching Baker's Ribs, giving him the edge on what Texans look for in a BBQ-eatery.

The newly founded restaurant took off, and in 1990 they moved to their current location downtown in the Deep Ellum neighborhood. "Baker's Ribs was known for a dining room full of suits with their ties over their shoulder," recalls Duncan. "We continue to be a staple of the Deep Ellum Neighborhood and Baker's Ribs has since grown into 9 locations throughout Texas."

It's clear that, while barbeque does appear in several Northern locations, it is much more popular in the South. But what is it exactly that draws the good ol' South to barbeque? Duncan thinks he has the answer to that. "Barbecue is a time honored Texas tradition - slow cooking brisket over hickory, oak, and pecan wood," he explains. "We guess it is a southern staple because it is just part of our Texan DNA." Of course, it's not just any barbeque that draws a crowd.

"Recognizing that the right cut of meat gets you off to a great start, Joe serves St. Louis Cut ribs seasoned with a flavor packed rib rub because that cut yields the best flavor and most bang for your buck meat per rib," Duncan states. "Baker's Ribs is serious about barbecue, smoking it low and slow in a hickory wood-fired pit at a consistent 250 degrees." In fact, Baker's Ribs keeps their fires going- all day, every day. "As Joe says, we have an eternal flame," he jokes.

Over their twenty-eight years of operation, Baker's Ribs has kept those fires busy, serving approximately 750,000 pounds of smoked barbeque across their ten locations yearly. It is this dedication and passion to keeping consistent and providing excellent barbeque that has really put Baker's Ribs on the map. Duncan tipped us off to another feature that gives the Deep Ellum staple a one-up on the competition.

"One thing that sets Baker's Ribs apart is our fabulous catering business," he boasts. "We serve the Dallas metroplex big and small, corporate and family get-togethers, ranches, weddings, et cetera." He goes on to tell us that their Mesquite location has even begun to partner with Double D Ranch, providing their delicious creations to many of the facility's events. "Of course it's not just BBQ; we have a variety of menus to choose from," Duncan says.

The well-loved eatery has also been making a name for itself with their one-of-a-kind Fried Pies. "Every good barbecue meal deserves an equally delicious dessert," Duncan declares. "I searched high and low for the best fried pies in the south and Baker's Ribs now offers this homemade fried treat in any of the their locations with bakeries inside some of the restaurants."

For those wondering, that means you can now get these melt-in-your-mouth Fried Pies in the Downtown, North West Highway, Garland, Weatherford, Caddo Mills, Canton and Grapevine locations. "At these locations, Baker's Ribs also offers barbecue stuffed fried pies- brisket and pulled pork," affirms Duncan. "Why can't you have the best of both worlds?"

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Shelby Ortega

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About The Author

Elisha Neubauer is a freelance editor, ghostwriter, book reviewer, and author. She is...

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