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Instant Pot BBQ Ribs

If you’re looking for the best Instant Pot BBQ Ribs recipe, look no further! These ribs are fall-off-the-bone tender and delicious. Plus, they’re so easy to make – you’ll be able to have a great meal on the table in no time.

platter of ribs next to beans and corn on the cob

The Instant Pot is a great way to make BBQ ribs. Not only does it speed up the cooking process, but it also produces tender and juicy ribs every time. Plus, cleanup is a breeze – simply wipe down the pot once you’re done. If you’re looking for an easy and delicious meal, be sure to try making BBQ ribs in the Instant Pot!

package of ribs

What kind of ribs to buy

When it comes to pork ribs, there are a few different types that you can buy. The most common are baby back ribs and spareribs.

  • Baby back ribs are the smaller, more tender option. They’re also the most expensive.
  • Spareribs are larger and have more fat, but they’re also cheaper.
  • Country-style ribs are a cross between the two – they’re larger than baby back ribs but not as fatty as spare ribs.
can of gluten free beer

Other ingredients you’ll need

  • spices – Dried spices rubbed on the ribs will infuse flavor as they cook. I used a blend of ancho chili powder, smoked paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, kosher salt and dried cilantro. This blend of spices gives the ribs a smoky flavor, no smoke needed!
  • beer – Beer is a great way to cook ribs because it helps to keep them moist and tender. The malt and hops in beer add flavor and help to break down the meat, making it fall-off-the-bone tender.
  • bbq sauce – One of the benefits of using BBQ sauce when making ribs is that it adds flavor and helps to keep the meat moist. It also helps to caramelize the ribs, creating a delicious crust.
  • preserves – I used apricot preserves for that sweet flavor to contrast the smoky flavor and to make the ribs sticky, flavorful and delicious
two sets of ribs on a parchment paper with a bowl of seasoning and rubbed with seasoning

How to prepare ribs before cooking

Removing the membrane from ribs can be a bit tricky, but it’s definitely worth it for the improved texture and flavor. Here’s how to do it:

  1. Start by removing the rack of ribs from the packaging.
  2. Place the rack on a cutting board, meat-side down.
  3. Look for the thin membrane on the back of the rack and use a sharp knife to slice through it.
  4. Peel back the membrane until it’s completely removed.
  5. Now that the membrane is removed, your ribs are ready to cook!
ribs ready to cook on rack in instant pot

How long do you cook ribs in an Instant Pot?

  • The actual cook time is about 25 minutes, but keep in mind…
  • It will take around 10 minutes to come to pressure
  • It will take about 10-15 minutes for the pressure to naturally release
  • Along with the 10 minutes of prep time, you should plan on this taking around an hour

Once the pressure cooking was complete, I had some amazingly tender ribs.  I then make up a little glaze of BBQ sauce and apricot preserves to brush them with and then put them in the oven for a few minutes to let it all brown up just a bit.  Craving smoky ribs and don’t want the hassle?  Problem solved!

cooked ribs on baking sheet topped with sauce

Common Questions

Are ribs better in the Instant Pot or slow cooker?

Ribs are generally better in the Instant Pot because they cook faster and more evenly. The slow cooker can produce ribs that are overcooked and dry.

What kind of beer is best in this recipe?

The type of beer that you use will affect the flavor of the ribs. A dark beer like stout or porter will add a rich flavor, while a light beer like lager or pale ale will be more subtle. Experiment with different types of beer to find the one that you like best! I used a gluten-free blonde ale.

How much liquid do you need to add to the Instant Pot?

You’ll need one cup of liquid for the Instant Pot to function properly

What if my ribs are tough?

This most likely means your ribs were not cooked long enough. If your ribs are large be sure to increase cooking time.

table set with platter of ribs, bowl of beans and corn on the cob

Swaps and Substitutions

  • I used baby back ribs but you can use any type you prefer. If you use boneless ribs you will need to adjust cooking times.
  • If you’d rather not use beer you can use apple juice or water
  • use any flavor of bbq sauce or preserves – this is a great way to mix it up

What to serve with BBQ ribs

Instant Pot Corn on the Cob

Easy Instant Pot Baked Beans

Creamy Coleslaw

platter of ribs next to beans and corn on the cob
5 from 1 vote

Instant Pot Apricot BBQ Ribs

Print Recipe
If you're looking for the best Instant Pot BBQ Ribs recipe, look no further! These ribs are fall-off-the-bone tender and delicious. Plus, they're so easy to make – you'll be able to have a great meal on the table in no time.
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Prep Time:10 minutes
Cook Time:50 minutes
Total Time:1 hour


  • 3-4 pounds pork ribs your preferred cut
  • 1 teaspoon ancho chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried cilantro
  • 1 cup beer
  • 1/2 cup BBQ sauce
  • 1/2 cup apricot preserves


  • Remove any skin from ribs
  • Mix together dried seasonings and rub all over ribs
  • Place rack in pressure cooker and pour beer in bottom
  • Place ribs on rack and close lid
  • Set for 25 minutes on high pressure (this will create “fall-off-the-bone” ribs)
  • Let pressure release naturally
  • Preheat oven to 450 and line a baking sheet with foil
  • Mix together BBQ sauce and preserves and brush onto ribs
  • Bake for 10-15 minutes or until lightly browned


Calories: 757kcal | Carbohydrates: 19g | Protein: 37g | Fat: 56g | Saturated Fat: 17g | Cholesterol: 190mg | Sodium: 863mg | Potassium: 705mg | Sugar: 12g | Vitamin A: 475IU | Vitamin C: 0.2mg | Calcium: 48mg | Iron: 2.6mg
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Servings: 4
Calories: 757kcal

One Comment

  1. 5 stars
    Sounds delicious. Do you have an adaptation for the slow cooker? I don’t have an Instant Pot, and we’re downsizing so I don’t want to purchase another small appliance!

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