Living legend pitmaster Mike Mills of Murphysboro’s 17th St. Bar & Grill has been quoted as saying “Life’s too short for a half rack.” He also says that his famous Magic Dust goes great on anything except ice cream. While there are arguments to be made about different rubs for different meats, it’s hard to argue with this powerhouse blend of bold spices. Give it a try and wait for the magic to happen!

YIELD: About 2 ½ cups

  • ½ cup paprika
  • ¼ cup kosher salt
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • 2 Tbsps. mustard powder
  • ¼ cup chili powder
  • ¼ cup ground cumin
  • 2 Tbsps. ground black pepper
  • ¼ cup granulated garlic
  • 2 Tbsps. cayenne
  1. Mix all ingredients and store in tightly covered container. To make it hotter, increase mustard powder and black pepper to ½ cup each.

Recipe: Peace, Love & Barbecue: Recipes, Secrets, Tall Tales and Outright Lies from the Legends of Barbecue by Mike Mills and Amy Mills Tunnicliffe (Rodale Books, May 2005)