You’d never guess that these tender, fall-off-the-bone BBQ pork ribs can be made in under an hour. Start them in the Instant Pot and finish in the oven for the perfect balance of texture and flavor.
Oh ribs! There was a time in my life when ribs were my favorite food. They’re for sure still top 10. BBQ ribs, in particular, are so popular here in Kansas City that my family once did a rib tasting with versions from a handful of barbecue spots around town.
Until recently, I honestly thought there was no way I could make BBQ ribs at home without a smoker or lengthy time in the oven. I was so happy to be proven wrong! After developing an Asian-inspired slow cooker version for Cook Smarts earlier this year, I was hooked. Tender, juicy ribs are so easy to make at home! The slow cooker works great, but the Instant Pot makes it so fast and easy.
Instant Pot / Pressure Cooker
Step one for these Instant Pot BBQ ribs is to pressure cook them for 25 to 35 minutes. I cook them on the rack to hold them above the drippings and wrap them around the inside of the bowl to keep the full rack together. (You can also slice the ribs into small segments and stack them. Cook time is the same.)
The lower end of the range (25 minutes) will produce tender ribs that still hold to the bone and have the tiniest bit of bite to them. I like my ribs to be falling off the bone, which is what you get with 35 minutes of pressure cooking.
To complete the ribs, brush them with BBQ sauce and roast them in the oven for 15 minutes at 350 degrees F. This is just enough time to let the sauce infuse the meat with flavor and to form a glossy glaze over top.
It’s worth adding that this is a great recipe to make ahead! Pressure cook the ribs up to two days ahead and spread them out on a baking sheet. Refrigerate until you’re ready to serve and then just finish in the oven.
We’ve been serving these ribs at nearly every holiday gathering the past few months and they’re always a hit.
- 3½ lbs Baby back pork ribs (one large or two small racks of ribs; see note)
- Salt and Pepper
- Spice Rub (optional)
- 1 cup Water
- 1 cup BBQ Sauce (use your favorite)
- Remove and discard membrane from ribs, if not already removed. (A good tutorial can be found here; some places you purchase ribs may already have this removed.)
- Season the ribs with salt and pepper or use your favorite spice rub. (We use a BBQ spice rub from one of our favorite local restaurants.)
- Add the Instant Pot rack to the pot. Pour in water and then add ribs. You can spiral the rack of ribs around the inside of the pot or slice the ribs into segments and stack them.
- Lock the lid and use the manual setting to cook the ribs on high for 25 to 35 minutes (both ends of the cooking range will yield tender ribs, but in the higher timeframe the meat will be fall-off-the-bone).
- Allow the pressure to naturally release for at least 15 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
- Spread the ribs out on a foil-lined baking sheet.
- Brush the top of the ribs with BBQ sauce.
- Bake the ribs until the sauce forms a shiny glaze over the top, 15 minutes.
- Serve immediately, with extra sauce for dipping.
June is 8 weeks old and quickly growing out of her 3-month clothes. Which calls for many cute wardrobe changes on our days at home.
Fashion show, fashion show, fashion show at lunch.