Easy Instant Pot Ribs

No ratings yet
A red circle with the letters FFA red circle with the letters GF

This post may contain affiliate links. Read my disclosure policy.

These fall-off-the-bone Instant Pot Baby Back Ribs are made with an irresistible apple honey BBQ sauce. They’re crispy on the outside, ultra tender on the inside and easier than ever to make!

A Close-Up Shot of Instant Pot Honey BBQ Ribs on a Parchment-Lined Pan

The Best Instant Pot Ribs

Baby back ribs with barbecue sauce are the ultimate game-day, potluck or weeknight comfort food! But all that yumminess tends to come with a long wait by the oven. Not anymore! With the Instant Pot, juicy and flavorful ribs are cooked to perfection in less than half the time.

The sauce comes together with ease as well. It’s simmered on the stove until it reaches your ideal consistency. Then, it’s brushed over the ribs before they’re broiled in the oven to get nice and crispy!

An Apple Honey BBQ Baby Back Rib Falling Off the Bone

What You’ll Need

Not only is the apple honey BBQ sauce full of flavor, but the ribs themselves are also rubbed with a fool-proof combination of seasonings. Let’s get into the recipe ingredients!

For the Baby Back Ribs

  • Pork Loin Back Ribs: This recipe uses 3-4 pounds.
  • Ground Ginger: For a hint of citrus flavor.
  • Onion Powder: Just a couple teaspoons.
  • Salt & Pepper: You’ll need 1 teaspoon of each.
  • Ground Mustard: For a fresh and tangy flavor with a touch of heat.
  • Apple Juice: Or water.

For the Apple Honey BBQ Sauce

  • Shallots: Or onions, finely chopped.
  • Olive Oil: Extra virgin.
  • Apple Juice: Be sure to use 100% apple juice.
  • Tomato Paste: You’ll need a 6-ounce can.
  • Honey: Raw honey is best, if available.
  • Apple Cider Vinegar: For flavor and added nutrients!
  • Brown Sugar: To sweeten things up.
  • Mustard: 2 tablespoons.
Change it up!

You can also use your favorite storebought or homemade barbecue sauce. Here are some suggestions:

Baby Back Ribs, Ground Ginger, Tomato Paste and the Rest of the Rib Ingredients on a Marble Countertop with an Instant Pot

How to Make Ribs in the Instant Pot

This recipe is super simple and straightforward. Here’s how to make delicious apple honey BBQ ribs with your Instant Pot:

Prepare the Ribs

Cut Ribs: Cut the ribs into smaller, manageable portions that will fit in your Instant Pot.

Combine Seasonings: In a small bowl, combine ginger, onion powder, salt, pepper and mustard.

A Bowl of Salt, Pepper, Ground Ginger and the Rest of the Spice Rub Ingredients on a Marble Counter

Rub Ribs: Rub the seasoning mix evenly into the ribs, distributing it on both sides with your fingers.

Add to Instant Pot: Place the rubbed ribs in the Instant Pot and add juice or water carefully around the meat without loosening the seasoning.

Uncooked, Fully Seasoned Pork Ribs Inside of an Instant Pot

Cook: Lock the lid and steam valve and set cooking to high pressure or manual (depending on the version of Instant Pot you’re using) for 25 minutes. While the ribs are cooking, prepare the sauce with the instructions below.

Release Pressure: Once cooking has completed, leave the Instant Pot untouched for another 15 minutes to allow the pressure to release naturally.

Complete Release: Turn the steam valve carefully to release any remaining pressure the rest of the way. Once the release has completed, it’s safe to open the lid.

Two Cooked Sets of Ribs in the Inner Pot of an Instant Pot

Make the Sauce

Cook Shallots: Heat a medium-sized saucepan over low heat. Add the oil and shallots (or onions) and cook for about five minutes, until translucent and tender, stirring occasionally.

Add Remaining Ingredients: Add the apple juice, tomato paste, honey, vinegar, brown sugar and mustard and mix well.

Bring to Boil: Bring the mixture to a boil, stirring often. 

Reduce Heat & Simmer: Reduce the heat and let the sauce simmer for 15 minutes, or until it’s thickened to your desired consistency.

Let Cool: Allow the sauce to cool for at least 10 minutes before glazing the ribs.

A Cup Filled with Homemade Apple Honey BBQ Sauce

Broil and Serve

Prep Workspace: Preheat the broiler and line a rimmed baking sheet with foil.

Glaze Ribs: Arrange the ribs in a single layer on the prepared baking sheet and coat them liberally with sauce using a pastry brush.

Broil: Broil the ribs about 5-8 inches from the heat for 5-7 minutes, or until they just start to reach your desired crispiness.

Enjoy! Serve your ribs with the remaining sauce.

A Helping of Apple Honey BBQ Ribs on a Plate with Another Plate of Ribs in the Background

How Long to Cook Ribs

In the pressure cooker, pork loin back ribs cook in 25 minutes. This does not include the time it takes to release the pressure from the Instant Pot. Be sure to use the manual or high pressure setting when cooking your ribs, depending on which Instant Pot model you have.

Tips for Making Instant Pot Ribs

Check out the tips and tricks below so you can make perfect ribs every time!

  • Remove Membrane: If you notice a piece of glossy white connective tissue along the back of the ribs, remove it by pulling it off. If you’re having trouble, try loosening it with a butter knife and using a small piece of paper towel to grip it.
  • Season Ribs Well: Don’t be afraid to get your hands dirty when rubbing the ribs with the seasoning mixture. You want to pack that flavor in there!
  • Always Release Pressure: It’s super important to follow the recipe directions for releasing the pressure from your Instant Pot. Opening the lid before releasing the pressure could result in a dangerous explosion.
  • Let Sauce Cool: The sauce needs to sit and cool for at least 10 minutes before it’s slathered onto the ribs.
A White Plate Holding Baby Back BBQ Ribs and a Metal Fork

How to Store and Reheat Leftovers

Place cooled ribs in an airtight container or a resealable bag with all the air squeezed out. Leftovers can be stored in the fridge for 3-4 days. 

To reheat them, line a rimmed baking sheet with foil and add the ribs, pouring all of the leftover juices over them. Heat them in a 250°F oven until their internal temperature reaches 145°F and enjoy.

Can I Freeze Instant Pot Ribs?

Ribs can be frozen in a freezer bag with all of the air squeezed out for up to 3 months. Alternatively, you can wrap them well in two layers of aluminum foil. Thaw frozen ribs overnight in the fridge before reheating.

A Fork Digging Into an Instant Pot Rib on a Plate

Best Side Dishes for Ribs

So, you’ve got the main course covered. What’s next? These side dishes are sure to impress.

  • Serve with Coleslaw: Cool things down with a fresh plate of this Classic Coleslaw. It’ll be on the table and ready to go in just 15 minutes!
  • Pair with Potato Salad: Creamy and refreshing, this Cheddar Bacon Ranch Potato Salad will be a hit at any potluck. It also keeps things healthy by using Greek yogurt in place of mayonnaise.
  • Serve with Corn Pudding: You’re in for a real treat with my Corn Pudding Casserole. A Southern classic, you don’t even need corn muffin mix to make it!
two racks of ribs on a parchment-lined baking sheet with tongs

Best Instant Pot to Buy

I’m going to refer you over to my friends at Pressure Cooking Today for all the details about the best Instant Pot to buy. They have tested out many more than I have, and I’m sure answer all of your questions. But the actual answer to the question for which is best definitely depends on your budget and the size you need based on the many people you usually cook for.

Brianne Recommends
  • The Instant Pot Duo is your best budget-friendly option.
  • You can get a mini Instant Pot if you are only cooking for one or two and need to save space.
  • A 10-quart Instant Pot is great for feeding a crowd.
  • Or you can even get a single appliance that does double-duty as a pressure cooker and an air fryer.
A Fork Digging Into an Instant Pot Rib on a Plate

Easy Instant Pot Ribs

These fall-off-the-bone Instant Pot Baby Back Ribs are made with an irresistible apple honey BBQ sauce. They're crispy on the outside, ultra tender on the inside and easier than ever to make!
Prep: 10 mins
Cook: 30 mins
Rest Time 20 mins
Total: 1 hr
Servings: 7

Equipment

  • Instant Pot
  • Stove
  • Oven

Ingredients

For the Baby Back Ribs

  • 3-4 lbs pork loin back ribs
  • 2 tsp ground ginger
  • 2 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp ground pepper
  • 1 tsp ground mustard
  • 3/4 cup apple juice or water

For the Apple Honey BBQ Sauce

  • 3 tbsp shallots or onions, finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 1/2 cups 100% apple juice
  • 6 oz can tomato paste
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp mustard

Instructions

Prepare the Ribs

  • Cut the ribs into smaller, manageable portions that will fit in your Instant Pot.
  • In a small bowl, combine ginger, onion powder, salt, pepper and mustard.
  • Rub the seasoning mix evenly into the ribs, distributing it on both sides with your fingers.
  • Place the rubbed ribs in the Instant Pot and add juice or water carefully around the meat without loosening the seasoning.
  • Lock the lid and steam valve and set cooking to high pressure or manual (depending on the version of Instant Pot you’re using) for 25 minutes. While the ribs are cooking, prepare the sauce with the instructions below.
  • Once cooking has completed, leave the Instant Pot untouched for another 15 minutes to allow the pressure to release naturally.
  • Turn the steam valve carefully to release any remaining pressure the rest of the way. Once the release has completed, it's safe to open the lid.

Make the Sauce

  • Heat a medium-sized saucepan over low heat. Add the oil and shallots (or onions) and cook for about five minutes, until translucent and tender, stirring occasionally.
  • Add the apple juice, tomato paste, honey, vinegar, brown sugar and mustard and mix well.
  • Bring the mixture to a boil, stirring often.
  • Reduce the heat and let the sauce simmer for 15 minutes, or until it's thickened to your desired consistency.
  • Allow the sauce to cool for at least 10 minutes before glazing the ribs.

Broil and Serve

  • Preheat the broiler and line a rimmed baking sheet with foil.
  • Arrange the ribs in a single layer on the prepared baking sheet and coat them liberally with sauce using a pastry brush.
  • Broil the ribs about 5-8 inches from the heat for 5-7 minutes, or until they just start to reach your desired crispiness.
  • Serve your ribs with the remaining sauce and enjoy!

Notes

Serves 6-8.
Nutrition Facts
Easy Instant Pot Ribs
Amount Per Serving
Calories 493 Calories from Fat 225
% Daily Value*
Fat 25g38%
Saturated Fat 8g40%
Trans Fat 1g
Polyunsaturated Fat 4g
Monounsaturated Fat 12g
Cholesterol 85mg28%
Sodium 688mg29%
Potassium 702mg20%
Carbohydrates 46g15%
Fiber 2g8%
Sugar 41g46%
Protein 25g50%
Vitamin A 403IU8%
Vitamin C 7mg8%
Calcium 73mg7%
Iron 2mg11%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

More Instant Pot Recipes

Want to try more easy Instant Pot recipes? The following dishes are calling your name!

1 Comment

Leave a Comment

Recipe Rating




I accept the Privacy Policy