Shaker of sweet rub

Sweet Rub

Another short, sweet (HA!) post here. This is my tweaked version of the Hey Grill Hey signature sweet rub.

I changed up the ratios a bit, added a couple of things, and am really happy with it.

One of the things I added was ground sumac. It’s not a common spice around my neck of the (literal) woods, so hopefully you’re near a city where you can find it in an international food section. If you’ve never tasted it, sumac has a rich citrus vibe to it. I really love it on chicken and pork.

Sweet Rub

A simple multi-purpose sweet rub. It's great on all sorts of things, like pork, chicken, bacon, even cream cheese.
Prep Time15 mins
Total Time15 mins
Course: Versatile
Cuisine: American
Keyword: rub, spices, sweet
Author: Chris Pollard


  • Measuring cups/spoons
  • Airtight container


  • ½ cup dark brown sugar packed
  • 2 tbsp Kosher salt coarse
  • 2 tbsp black pepper coarse ground
  • 1 tbsp smoked paprika
  • 2 tbsp granulated garlic
  • 2 tbsp onion powder
  • 1 tbsp ground mustard
  • 1 tsp chipotle pepper or cayenne
  • ½ tbsp ground sumac Omit if you can't find it. I like the citrus notes it brings. Dried lemon zest could be a replacement – but it can't be fresh. The moisture would mess things up.
  • ½ tbsp ground cinnamon


  • Combine all ingredients in an airtight container.
  • Mix well and be sure to break down any clumps in the brown sugar.
  • Seal and store in a cool, dry place until needed. It may need to be stirred up, as the sugar can cause it to clump together.


I like to keep a container of this ready, and fill a shaker with some as well. Just make sure you are able to seal it up when not in use, otherwise it will attract moisture from the air and turn into a lump.

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