Step 2: Pepper
Dry rubs need to be balanced not only in
flavor but also in heat. Add ground pepper to the salt-sugar mix in small increments until your ideal blend of heat and flavor is reached. Adding more pepper is always an option, but you can’t remove it, so go slow.
Cayenne pepper―Also called ground red pepper. This hot powder provides instant, or front-end, heat.
White pepper―With a lighter color and a milder flavor, it provides gentle heat and background warmth.
Black pepper―It has a stronger flavor than white or cayenne. Fine- or course-ground, both work great.
Chile pepper―Not to be confused with chili (with an “i”) powder. Flavors vary from very hot to mild. Smoked chile powders such as ground chipotle are also widely available.
pictured: Pork Butt Dry Rub