Iga Bakar Madu: Indonesian Honey BBQ Beef Ribs

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Nunuk Sri Rahayu
Nunuk Sri Rahayu
Nunuk hails from Solo, the historic royal capital and cultural centre of Java, Indonesia. She has been cooking since the age of 12, and also performs and teaches traditional Javanese dance. Her dream is to eventually write her own Indonesian cookbook.

Iga bakar madu, or grilled beef ribs in honey sauce…..mmmmm….just thinking of it makes me drool. I’m imagining tender, tasty ribs, sizzling on my grill pan. The smell of perfectly charred meat filling my kitchen, and it makes my stomach rumble with excitement!

Ribs are one of my favourite beef parts. I love not just the texture of the meat, but also the bones, which are usually big enough for me to hold and enjoy eating with my hands. I chew the meat, bite by bite, slowly detaching it from the bone just to savour it.The sauce drips all over my fingers, but it’s so finger licking good!!

Iga bakar madu is one of my favourite ways of cooking ribs. The flavour is perfect for my Javanese palate – it’s slightly sweet, perfectly spiced, and the honey glazes the ribs when grilled. It’s hard to control myself against eating too much of it when I happen to cook it. 


This dish is perfect for a summer BBQ. There’s nothing better than involving the whole family in creating this dish and enjoying it together, fostering a deeper bond over delicious food and happy stomachs. It makes for a memorable summer!

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Iga Bakar Madu: Indonesian Honey BBQ Beef Ribs

Iga Bakar Madu: Indonesian Honey BBQ Beef Ribs

  • Author: Nunuk Sri Rahayu
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 2 hours
  • Yield: 4 1x
  • Category: Beef & Lamb
  • Method: Grilling
  • Cuisine: Indonesian
  • Diet: Halal


These Javanese-style BBQ beef ribs are slightly sweet, slightly spicy and very savoury, with a beautiful honey glaze to them. A perfect summer barbecue experience for the entirely family, with an Indonesian twist!


  • 1 kg beef ribs
  • 1 small onion, chopped 
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled, chopped 
  • 2 big red chillies, chopped 
  • 2 Indonesian bay leaves
  • 1 lemongrass, bruised, knotted
  • 3 cm galangal, bruised 
  • 2 cm ginger, sliced
  • 3 cm cinnamon stick 
  • 4 cloves
  • 0.5 tsp white pepper powder 
  • Salt to taste
  • 3 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 500 ml water
  • 2 tbsp tomato sauce
  • 3 tbsp honey
  • 2 tbsp oyster sauce 
  • 1 tbsp lime juice


  1. Blend onion, garlic and chilli into a fine paste.
  2. In a wok or pot, heat the oil over a medium high flame, and then sauté the onion chilli paste.
  3. Add the bay leaves, lemongrass, galangal and ginger, fry for about 3 minutes until fragrant.

    Fry until fragrant

  4. Add the cinnamon stick, cloves, white pepper powder and salt. Fry for another 1 minute.
  5. Add the ribs, and then add the water. Mix everything and make sure that the ribs are coated in the liquid.

    Make sure that the ribs are coated in the liquid

  6. Cook over a medium high flame until it boils, then reduce the heat to medium low.
  7. Cover the ribs and simmer for another 1 hr 20 minutes or until the ribs are tender. Add a little bit of hot water if necessary.
  8. 10 minutes before the cooking is done, add the tomato sauce, lime juice, oyster sauce and honey. Mix everything thoroughly. Turn off the flame.
  9. Before serving, grill the ribs using charcoal or on a grill pan, until slightly charred.
  10. Serve immediately.


  • The dish can be accompanied by steamed rice, bread or any style of potato.

Keywords: Barbeque, grilled, red meat, festivities

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