Introduction: Ultimate (in Taste AND Versatility!) Slow Cooker Ribs

About: I am a recent physics grad who has a passion for everything science related!

Who doesn't love ribs? They come in a variety of different cuts and can be cooked to pretty well any level of tenderization, and for that reason, I have selected this particular dish as my instructable slow cooker recipe of choice. First off, the different rib types that you may want to look into using for this recipe are:

-Pork Spareribs. (These are ribs found by the belly of the pig).

-St. Louis Style ribs. (These ribs are technically the same cut as spare ribs).

-Baby Back pork ribs.

-Flanked short ribs.

-Country-style pork ribs.

In this recipe I have selected pork spareribs, however, these instructions will be viable for any other type of rib cut as well. The beauty of this cooking method (using an Instant pot), is that you are able to cook the ribs in a variety of different ways depending on your preferred meat texture and desired cook time. Using the instant pot I have listed in the ingredients/tools list below, you can select to pressure cook the meat for a faster meal prep, or specifically select the slow cook option to really let the meat get soft and reach the notorious "fall off the bone" type of texture.

In order to complete this delicious recipe, you will want to gather the ingredients and tools listed below, and then take heed of the following instructions.


Coarse Salt -

Black Pepper -

Butter -

BBQ Sauce(s) -


Green Pepper -

Onion -

Ribs -

Instant Pot -

Step 1: Chop Chop..

Gather your ingredients. From here, you will want to wash your green pepper and onion prior to chopping them up. In my personal trial of this recipe, I used only one green pepper and half of an onion in my instant pot, however, if you are cooking for more than two people I would suggest doubling this amount ( i.e. two green peppers and one whole onion for 3-4 people).

You may also choose to dice both the onion AND the green pepper, however, I only diced the onion and cut the pepper into long thin strips (shown in the accompanying photos).

Step 2: Get Saucy

Take your ribs out of the package, rinse them in the sink, and proceed to dry them off with a paper towel. Once the excess water has been removed from the meat, salt and pepper both sides of the ribs.

Mix two to three of your favorite rib sauces together in a bowl with a spoon or marinating brush. Cover your ribs (both sides) with a generous amount of your BBQ sauce and then place the ribs in the instant pot along with a tablespoon of butter. You may choose to marinate your ribs ahead of time, the night before you plan to cook this meal. If you choose this option, allow the ribs to soak up the sauce for several hours overnight in your fridge and remove them when you are ready to cook them in your instant pot the following day (this will make your ribs EXTRA saucy).

Finally, place the chopped up green peppers and onions on top of the ribs, all together in your instant pot. Secure the lid on your pot, making sure the vent valve is set to SEALED and not venting (photo provided). The last step is to choose whether or not you will be slow cooking or pressure cooking your ribs. The longer you cook the ribs, the softer/ more tender the meat will be when it's ready, so, for this reason, I choose to slow cook instead of pressure cook. However, if you are on a tighter time schedule, feel free to select the pressure cook option, which will take you approximately 45 minutes to cook as opposed to the 6.5 hrs on the slow cooker setting. A picture of the settings on the front of the instant pot has been provided in order for you to see what your display should look like if you have hit the slow cook button.

Step 3: Yum! Eat Up

The instant pot will beep and let you know when your meal has completed its cook time. At this point, you will want to let the pot sit for 10-20 minutes (post cook) until the small pressure release valve has fallen down (small metal push value to the right of the venting/sealing switch that rises with the pressure in the pot and falls when the pressure dissipates). However, if you have chosen the slow cook option, this shouldn't take very much time to occur. The small metal value is found close to the venting/sealed valve on the lid of the instant pot.

That's it! You are done and ready to plate and enjoy your fabulous, easy to personalize, delicious ribs!

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