One of The Best Instant Pot Ribs Recipes You Need to Try!

This is one of the best delicious instant pot ribs recipes and a very easy and yummy dinner the family will love! Find out how to make ribs in the instant pot!

Hi everyone, I’m Michelle (Tiffany’s sister).

I’m hobbling around on crutches right now, so dinners need to have as few prep steps as possible while still being yummy and interesting. This instant pot rib recipe fulfills each of those requirements!

A delicious alternative would be to try these Instant Pot pork steaks, or if you don’t have an Instant Pot, then these Teriyaki Pork Bites are delicious, too.

Choosing the Best Ribs for Your Instant Pot Recipes: Fresh vs. Frozen

When it comes to making instant Pot ribs, the choice between fresh and frozen ribs can impact the overall outcome of the dish. Fresh ribs are often preferred by many chefs and home cooks for their quality and taste. They are typically more tender and have a juicier texture compared to their frozen counterparts. The freshness of the meat allows for better absorption of flavors during the cooking process, resulting in a more succulent and flavorful end product. Additionally, fresh ribs give the cook more control over the seasoning and marinating process, ensuring a personalized and well-balanced taste.

On the other hand, frozen ribs can offer convenience and a longer shelf life. Frozen ribs are readily available in most grocery stores, allowing cooks to plan and have the main ingredient on hand whenever the craving strikes. They are also a practical option for those who may not have access to fresh ribs or want to reduce food waste by storing them for longer periods. While frozen ribs may require a bit more time in the Instant Pot to achieve the desired tenderness, they can still result in a tasty and satisfying meal with proper seasoning and preparation.

Ultimately, if you’re wondering which one tastes better, it depends on personal preferences, convenience, and availability. Fresh ribs provide a superior texture and flavor, while frozen ribs offer practicality and a longer storage option.

How to Make Instant Pot Ribs

If the tantalizing Instant Pot pork ribs smothered in BBQ sauce satisfy your cravings, try equally effortless Instant Pot spaghetti and macaroni and cheese recipes. The simplicity and efficiency of the Instant Pot make cooking BBQ sauce-smothered pork ribs a breeze, ensuring delightful and quick preparation.

If you’re still without an Instant Pot to cook ribs smothered in BBQ sauce, seize the opportunity to explore deals on Amazon and elevate your cooking experience. Don’t wait any longer; join the Instant Pot revolution and discover the convenience and versatility of Instant Pot that will undoubtedly enhance your cooking endeavors.

Defrost the ribs

Some people say you don’t need to defrost them if you’re using the Instapot. That may be true, but I don’t know that I could get the ribs into my Instapot while still frozen! You can defrost it much faster by resting it in a sink of cool water.

This method accelerates the defrosting, making it more manageable to handle and prepare pressure cook the pork ribs for the Instant Pot. So, while the larger Instant Pot itself might handle frozen ribs, a swift defrost in cool water ensures a smoother cooking experience and guarantees the ribs are ready for the pot in no time.

Additionally, the defrosting process in cool water not only accelerates the timeline for cooking time but also promotes even cooking. By ensuring the ribs are uniformly thawed before entering the Instant Pot, you contribute to a more consistent and predictable outcome for cooked ribs.

This step is especially crucial for achieving that coveted tenderness and flavor infusion in every bite. So, while the Instant Pot’s capabilities are impressive, a brief stint in cool water before cooking ribs remains a reliable method to enhance the overall cooking experience, guaranteeing a delicious and well-prepared batch of ribs that will undoubtedly satisfy your culinary cravings.

Remove the lining

The next most challenging step is the Instant Pot ribs preparation, which is the second-hardest part of this process, and it’s kinda gross. At this stage of the rib recipe, you’ll encounter a thin film on the back of the ribs, akin to peeling off the backing from a sticker—albeit a rather distasteful one.

This task involves delicately removing this membrane, and while the process might not be the most aesthetically pleasing, it’s crucial for achieving optimal bone tenderness in your ribs. It’s recommended not to engage in a scratch sniff scenario while pressure cooking ribs during this step, as the focus is on ensuring the ribs are primed for a delicious bone tender, and succulent outcome in the Instant Pot.

Put in the Instant Pot

When placing the baby’s back ribs into the Instant Pot, position them vertically, with the meat side facing outwards. This orientation maximizes the surface area exposed to the BBQ sauce and heat, ensuring even cooking and flavor distribution.

Additionally, creating a coil along the ribs inside the Instant Pot, using the inner wall of the lid, facilitates optimal cooking. This technique, reminiscent of rolling a burrito in reverse, promotes efficient heat circulation and enhances the absorption of flavors into the meat.

As the Instant Pot pressure-cooks the ribs, the combination of BBQ sauce, steam, and liquid smoke penetrates the meat, rendering it bone-tender and ensuring it falls off the bone with savory goodness.

Add water

To enhance the cooking process of spare ribs, add water to the Instant Pot, filling it approximately one-third of the way. Set the Instant Pot to cook on high for one hour.

This water and cooking time combination, along with the addition of liquid smoke, ensures the whole pork spare ribs are adequately steamed, resulting in a tender and flavorful outcome.

The most challenging step in the Instant Pot ribs process arrives when dealing with the incredibly tender meat that the cooked ribs have fallen apart during the cooking time. To navigate this, I often resort to transferring it using a spatula and a wooden spoon.

To simplify the aftermath, consider lining your cookie baking sheet with grill sheets a used paper towel, or a similar non-stick surface, sparing you the effort of scrubbing the baking sheet later. Additionally, take advantage of the opportunity to use a couple of paper towels to absorb any excess water that may have been transferred from the Instant Pot along with the meat.

This extra step not only streamlines the cleanup but also ensures your ribs, now delicately separated and ready for the next phase, maintain their desired texture and flavor profile. Ultimately, while the process might present a challenge, the reward of succulent bone tender, fall-off-the-bone ribs makes overcoming this hurdle well worth the effort in your Instant Pot culinary journey.

Cover the instant pot ribs with BBQ sauce

For applying spice rub barbecue sauce as the final touch to your spare ribs, I prefer the precision of a pastry brush, although a spoon could serve as a viable alternative. Once the ribs are generously coated in your favorite BBQ sauce, the next step is to achieve that irresistible caramelization.

Place the sauced ribs in the oven under the high broil setting, allowing the heat to work its magic on the BBQ sauce. Keep a close eye on the process, as this step typically doesn’t take long. The high broil will swiftly transform brown sugar in the barbecue sauce into a tantalizing, caramelized brown sugar glaze, adding a delightful finishing touch to the ribs.

The result is a perfect balance of sweetness and smokiness, with the BBQ sauce clinging to the ribs in a flavorful embrace, ensuring they fall off the bone with savory goodness.

This crucial step not only enhances the taste of barbecue sauce but also contributes to the visual appeal of the dish, creating a glistening, golden exterior that promises a mouthwatering experience when you finally sink your teeth into the tender, full pork flavor-infused Instant Pot ribs.

And if the Instant Pot feels a bit overwhelming, give these easy Air Fryer recipes for beginners a try!

Delicious Instant Pot Ribs

One of The Best Instant Pot Ribs Recipes You Need to Try!

Yield: 4

This is one of the best instant pot ribs recipes you need to try is a very easy and yummy dinner the family will love.


  • Ribs
  • BBQ sauce
  • Water


  1. Defrost ribs if necessary
  2. Remove the lining
  3. Place in instant pot
  4. Add water to fill instant pot 1/3 full
  5. Cook on high pressure for 1 hour
  6. Transfer to a cookie sheet
  7. Brush BBQ sauce over
  8. Put in oven on high broil until sauce has carmerlized

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10 awesome side dishes that will turn your Instant Pot ribs into a delicious main meal

Classic Coleslaw: Start with a refreshing classic coleslaw to balance the richness of the ribs. The crisp and crunchy texture of shredded cabbage and carrots, combined with a tangy mayo-based dressing, adds a delightful contrast to the tender ribs.

Garlic Mashed Potatoes: Creamy garlic mashed potatoes are a timeless side dish that complements Instant Pot ribs exceptionally well. The smooth, buttery consistency of the potatoes and the hint of garlic enhance the overall dining experience.

Cornbread: A side of warm cornbread brings a delightful Southern charm to your Instant Pot ribs. The slightly sweet and crumbly texture of cornbread is an excellent companion to the savory and succulent nature of the ribs.

Baked Macaroni and Cheese: Indulge your taste buds with the gooey goodness of baked macaroni and cheese. The cheesy pasta provides a comforting contrast to the bold flavors of the ribs, creating a harmonious and satisfying meal.

Grilled or Smoked Vegetables: Lighten up the meal with a side of colorful grilled or smoked vegetables, like Smoked Corn on the Cob. The smoky char and natural sweetness of vegetables like bell peppers, zucchini, and mushrooms add a healthy and vibrant component to the dish.

Baked Beans: A classic choice for barbecue lovers, baked beans bring a sweet and savory element to the table. The slow-cooked beans complement the Instant Pot ribs with their hearty texture and flavorful, molasses-infused sauce.

Roasted Brussels Sprouts: Elevate your side dish game with roasted Brussels sprouts. The caramelized edges and nutty flavor of these vegetables provide a sophisticated touch that pairs wonderfully with the robust taste of Instant Pot ribs.

Sweet Potato Fries: Swap traditional fries for sweet potato fries to add a hint of sweetness and a crispy texture to your meal. The natural sweetness of the fries contrasts well with the savory ribs.

Caprese Salad: Refresh your palate with a light and refreshing Caprese salad. Sliced tomatoes, fresh mozzarella, and basil drizzled with balsamic glaze create a vibrant and tangy side dish that complements the richness of the ribs.

Jalapeño Cornbread Muffins: Kick up the heat with jalapeño cornbread muffins. The subtle spiciness of the jalapeños adds a layer of complexity to the meal, making these muffins a perfect pairing for Instant Pot ribs.

The key to a memorable Instant Pot baby back ribs feast lies in the thoughtful selection of side dishes. Whether you prefer classic choices like coleslaw and mashed potatoes best ribs or opt for more adventurous options like Brussels sprouts and jalapeño cornbread muffins baby back ribs, these side dishes will enhance your Instant Pot baby back ribs to a culinary experience that satisfies both the palate and the soul.

If you like these instant pot ribs, make sure you make this easy instant pot spaghetti and instant pot macaroni and cheese!

And if you don’t have an Instant Pot yet, what are you waiting for?! The best instant pot deals are on Amazon!

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