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Instant Pot Baby Back Ribs

Love the taste of BBQ baby back ribs but don’t love the wait? These babies are ready in under an hour making them perfect for weekday meals.

  • Author: The Real Food Dietitians
  • Prep Time: 10 mins
  • Cook Time: 40 mins
  • Total Time: 50 mins
  • Yield: 4 1x
  • Cuisine: Whole30, Paleo, Grain-free

Ingredients

  • 22 ½ lb. baby back ribs, cut into 3 equal sections
  • 1 cup water or broth
  • BBQ sauce of choice (Try Primal Kitchen Classic BBQ Sauce for a Whole30-friendly option)

For the Spice Rub:

  • ½ tsp. chili powder
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • ½ tsp. onion powder
  • ¼ tsp. cumin
  • ½ tsp. smoked paprika
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • ¼ tsp. black pepper

Instructions

Instant Pot Directions

  1. Combine the ingredients for the spice rub.
  2. Cut the rack of ribs into 3 equal sections then rub each section with the spice rub.
  3. Place the metal rack into the bottom of the Instant Pot. Add the broth or water.
  4. Place the ribs on the rack and arrange the ribs into a pyramid by standing each section up on its end and leaning them against one another.
  5. Place the lid on the Instant Pot and lock it into place. Flip the valve to the ‘Sealing’ position.
  6. Select the high-pressure setting and set the cooking time to 30 minutes.
  7. As soon as the cooking time is up, quickly release the pressure by flipping the valve to the ‘Venting’ position.
  8. Remove the ribs from Instant Pot and place them on a rimmed baking sheet (line the baking sheet with foil for easy clean up).
  9. Preheat the broiler to medium-high heat. Brush the ribs with barbecue sauce on both sides.
  10. Broil for 3-5 minutes or until the sauce is bubbly and slightly caramelized.
  11. Cut into individual ribs for serving.

Slow Cooker Directions

  1. Combine the ingredients for the spice rub.
  2. Cut the rack of ribs into 2 or 3 equal sections (whatever you need to do to get them to fit into your slow cooker) then rub each section with the spice rub.
  3. Place the ribs in the bottom of a slow cooker with ½ cup of water.
  4. Cover and cook on LOW for 8 hours (or HIGH for 8 hours) or until tender, then proceed with the saucing, broiling, or grilling to finish them.
  5. Remove the ribs from the slow cooker and place them on a rimmed baking sheet (line the baking sheet with foil for easy clean up).
  6. Preheat the broiler to medium-high heat. Brush the ribs with barbecue sauce on both sides.
  7. Broil for 3-5 minutes or until the sauce is bubbly and slightly caramelized.
  8. Cut into individual ribs for serving.

Notes

To finish the ribs on the grill, preheat the grill to low-medium and place them directly on the rack over indirect heat and cook for 10-15 minutes or until the sauce ‘tightens’ and becomes thick and sticky.

If using a Traeger Grill, preheat the grill to 185℉ using your favorite pellets (we love the hickory, mesquite, or Traeger Signature Blend pellets for ribs). Place the ribs directly on the grill grates and cook for 10-15 minutes or until the sauce tightens.

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1/4th recipe
  • Calories: 514
  • Sugar: 2g
  • Sodium: 563mg
  • Fat: 26g
  • Saturated Fat: 17g
  • Carbohydrates: 17g
  • Protein: 30g