Why Instant Pot Ribs Are The Best
While I love smoked or barbecued ribs, I have to say that the Instant Pot makes the MOST tender ribs ever.
I was skeptical at first that the instant pot would be able to rival smoked ribs, but Instant Pot Ribs are incredible! We are talking, fall-off-the-bone tender meat that is perfectly seasoned.
My secret for making the best ribs without a smoker comes down to using the Instant Pot and the cooking liquid.
The Instant Pot makes quick work of cooking the ribs, while the cooking liquid infuses the ribs with flavor. I opt to use a combination of apple juice and liquid smoke, which mimics the results of smoking on applewood. That coupled with the slightly sweet dry rub, these ribs are out of this world delicious!
Instant Pot Ribs rival those that are smoked all day long–without the effort or expense that comes along with smoking ribs.
Best Way To Reheat Ribs
Now that weve covered the basics of storing your soon-to-be-reheated ribs, whats actually the best way to reheat ribs after theyve been in the refrigerator?
The truth is: there are lots of good ways to reheat ribs.
Each option has its pros and cons and depends a lot on how much time or patience you have, what resources you have available, and personal preference.
The most important thing to remember is this: there are a lot more ways to reheat food than by popping it in the microwave . So before you reach for the microwave door, consider trying one of the options found below.
Crock Pot Baked Potatoes A Better Cooking Method
Here is how the idea of baking potatoes in the crock pot came to be. My sister told me about a build-your-own-baked potato bar at a party shed attended. Each guest grabbed a baked potato, then loaded it up at a DIY topping bar the host had provided.
It sounded like a brilliantly easy, delicious way to entertain. I have yet to encounter a single person who doesnt enjoy a loaded baked potato every now and then.
Plus Ive learned the hard way that, when Im hosting a party, its integral to my sanity to prep as much as possible in advance. This baked potato party would be a snap to do ahead of time, with the exception of one small detail.
Baking the potatoes.
I didnt like the idea of having my oven tied up for the full hour plus it would take to bake the potatoes the traditional way immediately before the party started. If the oven was full, how would I heat the Skinny Chicken Enchilada Dip and Shrimp Guacamole Bites? Important details.
Thats when it hit me: what if I could roast the potatoes in the crock pot instead?
I was a genius.
As, it turns out, so are the folks at Cooks Illustrated, the magazine put out by the wonderfully obsessive recipe testers at Americas Test Kitchen.
Long before Id come up with the idea, theyd devised a crock pot baked potato method of their own.
The potatoes could not have been easier to prep, the cooking process was completely hands-off, and making the potatoes in the slow cooker left my oven free for greater endeavors .
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The Best Baby Back Ribs
Barbecue ribs are a finger-licking good, easy summer meal. If you usually cook your ribs low and slow with my slow cooker ribs or in the oven, you are going to go crazy for this Instant Pot ribs recipe!
Cooking pork ribs in your Instant Pot is not only much faster than cooking them in the oven, but it also makes the best tender, meaty ribs. Plus, you wont heat up your house by having your oven on for hours. Nobody wants a scorching kitchen on a hot summer day!
These Instant Pot ribs are pretty perfect as is, and even better when you serve them with your favorite BBQ sauce. Try my homemade BBQ sauce recipe, or use your favorite store-bought brand. I try to look for one with a clean ingredient list, but I will admit that a drizzle of Sweet Baby Rays is a real treat with this baby back ribs recipe.
Instant Pot Ribs Recipe
Instant Pot Ribs is the easiest way to achieve tender, juicy ribs. Whether youre using baby back ribs or pork loin ribs, pressure cooking tenderizes the meat in a fraction of the time so you can enjoy homemade ribs even on busy weeknights.
Our Smoked Ribs take about 7 hours from start to finish and Baked BBQ Ribs take more than 2 1/2 hours, cooked low and slow in the oven. This recipe requires no marinating time and is done in around 45 minutes. P.S. you can even use frozen ribs!
This post may contain affiliate links. Read my disclosure policy.
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Can I Use Spare Ribs Instead Of Baby Back Ribs
You can definitely use spare ribs for this Instant Pot recipe. Since spare ribs are bigger than baby back ribs , youll need to pressure cook longer at around 25-30 minutes.
I typically prefer baby back ribs because they are generally more tender and less bones than spare ribs. But spare ribs are bigger and more marbled so it really depends on preference.
In terms of the cut, back ribs are located right above the spare ribs and below the loin.
How To Make Instant Pot Ribs
The best Instant Pot ribs start with baby back ribs as theyre so tender.
PREPARE THE RIBS
I always rinse the ribs and then remove the membrane. The membrane very thin and located on the back of the ribs. Simply slide your knife under it to get ahold of it and then pull it off. If you cant seem to find it, ribs sometimes come with the membrane already removed and some people leave it on .
Once youve pulled it off, cut your slabs of ribs into two or 3 pieces as theyll need to fit into the Instant Pot. Combine your spice rub and massage it into the ribs on both sides.
ADD TO THE INSTANT POT
A trivet ensures the ribs are not sitting in the liquid if you dont have one you can prop them up on the onion slices.
Finally add the liquid to the bottom of the slow cooker and the ribs, seal, and cook .
FINISH THE RIBS
Once the ribs are nice and tender, allow them to naturally release for a little bit.
Add salt & pepper or bbq sauce and either broil or grill them for a few minutes to crisp up a bit.
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You’ll Love These Instant Pot Pork Ribs
Instant Pot pork ribs
- They turn out so tender and juicy, falling right off the bone.
- You can use your favorite dry rubs and barbeque sauces to tweak it to your own tastes and preferences.
- No more boiling the old fashioned way because that’s lame.
- Can cook the ribs right from frozen – perfect for those of us who forget to take out the meat ahead of time
- Less stink from boiled meat, which is a good thing because the smell of boiling meat is . Instead, the smell is contained to the Instant Pot until you unseal it and open it up.
Tips From The Betty Crocker Kitchens
- tip 1 No broiler? No problem. While broiling adds nice flavor and color, the ribs will still be delicious if you need to skip that step.
- tip 2 Dont substitute larger ribs for the baby back ribs. This recipe was designed for the smaller racks, and larger ribs will not get tender in the same amount of time.
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Cooking Time For Instant Pot Ribs
Once the seasoning has been added, the ribs are arranged in the pressure cooker. Then, the lid is placed and sealed along with the vent. The timer is set, and the instant pot is programmed to HIGH. Then, we watch the pin rise, indicating pressure build as the cooker prepares to speed-cook the ribs.
All ribs are cooked on HIGH pressure in the instant pot, but the timing is different. But well use the two most commonly cooked ribs as guidelines.
Baby back ribs cook for 23 minutes in the instant pot, after which an additional five minutes is allowed for natural release. Afterwards, the vent can be unsealed to release the remaining pressure.
Spare ribs need longer, taking up to 35 minutes to cook fully. After that, the instant pot is left to release pressure on its own completely. This waiting time is needed as spare ribs are tough-textured, so the natural steam release aids tenderization.
More Amazing Rib Recipes
Remove ribs from the Instant Pot and spread them out on a baking sheet. Brush liberally with barbecue sauce and broil on high heat for 5 minutes. Slice ribs and serve with sides and extra sauce.
Nick Evans Nick Evans
To reheat leftover ribs, wrap them tightly in foil and heat them in a 350 F oven until heated through, about 15 minutes. You can also grill them for 10-15 minutes over medium heat. Serve with extra sauce!
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How Do You Make Them
These ribs are so easy to make! Heres how:
Brown Ribs Under The Broiler
I know this is an Instant Pot recipe, but dont skip this last step as it is critical for the best Instant Pot ribs! When you take your ribs out of the Instant Pot, put them on a foil-lined baking sheet. Brush barbecue sauce over the ribs and put them under the broiler for a few minutes. Broiling the ribs in the oven allows them to brown and starts to caramelize the BBQ sauce > more flavor!
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Continuing To Cook The Ribs Using The Smoker And The Oven
- Smoke flavor is something many people want to have present in their barbeque, and if you are one of them, you can take the pre-cooked meat and place them inside a smoker. What you can do at this point is to put the ribs in a smoker and then finish them off in the oven. Smoke the ribs for 3 hours, but because you have already pre-cooked them, you can cut down on that time.
- When you are finishing the ribs in the oven, dont let them stay in there for too long as well. At this point, you only want to create that crust on your meat because the ribs are probably cooked. Just make sure to keep a close eye on your ribs here because the risk of overcooking them is quite high.
Easy Instant Pot Ribs Recipe
When it comes to summer barbecues, I am always excited for BBQ Pork Ribs, because they are just among the best thing on this Earth. You see, I am a pork and beef girl at heart, and I just cant say no to a delicious rack of ribs.
These homemade pressure-cooker ribs are so good, I honestly dont think I will ever cook ribs any other way. They fall off the bone tender, meaty, and finger-licking good. Also, because they are cooked much faster under pressure, I really doubt there is any other better and quicker way to cook them.
They taste like they have been slowly cooked and smoked at a fancy North Carolina restaurant. Making them in the pressure cooker will save you so much time, as you only have to cook the ribs for 40 minutes. Covered in a sweet, spicy and flavorful homemade rub, and coated in a hickory brown sugar barbecue sauce, you will lick your fingers clean!
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How To Make Bbq Ribs
The video really does make it simple. Quickly throw together the spices in a bowl and rub them all over your spare ribs. Or use your favorite meat rub.
Then load up these ribs into the Instant Pot and pour about 10 oz of your favorite soda.
For me, that is Dr. Pepper. But you can use Coke, Rootbeer, or even a traditional Beer if you like.
Go ahead and just dump it in. The flavor will be wonderful.
Then set the Instant Pot on Pressure Cook High for 25 minutes and let it cook. It will take about 10-15 minutes to pressure up.
But no worries, you now have time to clean up the kitchen or whip up a batch of cookies.
I like to let my meat NR for about 15-20 minutes before I release the rest of the pressure through the QR method.
Then place your ribs onto a cookie sheet. Dont they look delicious?
What Are Country Style Ribs
Country style ribs are pork rib chops from the shoulder end of the loin. They are meatier and cheaper than baby back ribs perfect for meat lovers.
Sometimes, the cut of country style ribs you buy can have more meat from the loin, while other times you might end up with more meat from the blade . So cooking country style ribs can be a bit tricky its important not to overcook them!
*Pro Tip: As always, try your best to find country style ribs that have nice marbling.
Check out how juicy & tender our Country Style Ribs came out!
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How To Make Baby Back Ribs In The Instant Pot
- Start with the best-quality pork baby back ribs you can find. Youll need about a 2 2 ½ lb. rack to feed 4 people. Anything more than 3 lbs. and you wont be able to get them into a 6-quart Instant Pot and still close the lid. Our go-to for high-quality, heritage breed pork is ButcherBox. They seriously have the BEST baby back ribs!
- Cut your rack of ribs into 3 equal-ish sections. Sprinkle each section with the spice dry rub, focusing more on the meaty front side of the rack than the backside. Now give each section a good rub. At this point, you can wrap them up and return them to the fridge if youre just prepping ahead then cook them at a later point. This can be done up to 2 days in advance.
- Place the wire rack into the Instant Pot insert then add 1 cup of water or broth to the pot. Select the Saute function. This will essentially pre-heat the Instant Pot and decrease the amount of time it takes to get up to full pressure.
- Now creatively arrange the 3 sections of ribs in a teepee or pyramid formation so that theyre not lying on top of one another. Standing them rather than stacking means they cook faster and more evenly.
How Long Do You Pressure Cook Ribs
With these beef ribs. I like to cook them for 22-25 minutes in the Instant Pot. You can do a natural pressure release for 10 minutes or you can let it fully depressurize by itself. I havent seen much of a difference in the texture/tenderness of the beef ribs.
Now pork ribs take less time to cook in the instant pot than beef ribs do. Pork ribs tend to only take around 18 minutes to cook in a pressure cooker. I once tried to cook them for the 22 minutes like the beef ribs and it was a disaster.
It basically turned into pulled pork because they were so tender they were falling apart when I tried to recipe the pork ribs from the instant pot.
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Instant Pot Beef Ribs Vs Baby Back Ribs
To start off, beef ribs as the name states, are from a cow. These ribs are typically the ribs that come from a rib roast. These are the ribs labeled beef ribs in the grocery store. When you have a boneless ribeye, these are the bones that have been removed.
Baby back ribs are pork and are from a pig, not a cow. These ribs tend to cook much quicker and are smaller than the beef ribs. If you love baby back ribs, check out my post where I teach you how to Instant Pot baby back ribs.
Ingredients You Will Need
Pork Dry Rub Now I used my own pork dry rib rub. You are welcome to buy a rub or make mine. My homemade pork rub has brown sugar, salt, pepper, chili powder, dry mustard, etc. Full ingredient list and measurements are below.
Ribs I used spare pork ribs. You can swap with any cut of ribs you have.
Apple Cider Vinegar Here is what will help tenderize your ribs but also add a nice tangy flavor to the meat.
Liquid Smoke Liquid smoke is going to help give the ribs a smoky flavor without tossing it on the grill.
BBQ Sauce We used a Kansas City blend BBQ sauce, but feel free to use any flavor of sauce you want.
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