Are you looking for a simple and delicious way to make ribs at home? If so, you will love this easy slow cooker ribs recipe. These ribs are so tender and flavorful, and they fall right off the bone. You only need a few ingredients and a slow cooker to make this amazing dish.
The ribs are seasoned with a blend of spices and coated with barbeque sauce, then slow-cooked for 8 hours until they are melt-in-your-mouth good. You can enjoy the ribs as they are, or you can shred the meat and put it in a sandwich. Either way, you will be amazed by how easy and tasty these ribs are.
Spare ribs: You need spare ribs for this recipe, or you can use baby back ribs if you prefer. Cut them into two equal halves so they can fit in your slow cooker.
Brown sugar: Add some brown sugar to a bowl to sweeten and caramelize your ribs.
Chili powder: Add some chili powder to the bowl for some heat and smokiness.
Paprika: Add some paprika to the bowl to enhance the color and flavor of your ribs.
Garlic powder: Add some garlic powder to the bowl for some savory and aromatic notes.
Onion powder: Add some onion powder to the bowl for some depth and richness.
Dried thyme: Add some dried thyme to the bowl for some herbal and earthy tones.
Salt: Add some salt to the bowl to season your ribs and bring out their natural flavor.
Black pepper: Add some black pepper to the bowl for some spice and bite.
Barbeque sauce: Pour some barbeque sauce over your ribs in the slow cooker and spread it evenly with a brush. You can use your favorite brand or make your own.
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Remove the membrane: First, you’re going to turn your ribs over, then remove the thick membrane that’s over this side. The membrane can prevent the ribs from absorbing flavor, so it’s always a good idea to remove it.
Pat the meat dry: Once the membrane is removed, make sure you use a paper towel to pat the meat completely dry. This will help the spices stick better and create a nice crust on the ribs.
Season the ribs: Once the meat is patted dry, we’re going to season it with the spices. Mix everything together in the bowl, then season both sides of the ribs with the spices. Make sure you pat the spices into the meat that way they can stick very well.
Layer the ribs and sauce in the slow cooker: Once the ribs are very well seasoned, you’re going to place one half into your slow cooker. Then you’re going to pour some barbeque sauce all over it. Use a brush to evenly spread the barbeque sauce over the ribs. Place the other half of the ribs on top of the first one, then pour some more barbeque sauce over it. Once this is done, cover the slow cooker with the lid.
Slow cook the ribs: Then slow cook the ribs for 8 hours on low. This will make them tender, juicy, and flavorful. You don’t need to add any liquid or stir them during this time.
Enjoy your ribs: When the ribs are done slow cooking, they’re going to look so delicious and flavorful. This is going to make your house smell so divine. Be gentle when taking this out of the slow cooker because it’s so tender it might fall apart. The ribs came out extremely tender, they fall right off the bone. You can enjoy the ribs as they are, or you can take the bones out, shred the meat, then put it in a sandwich.
Tips & Variations
- To make the ribs more crispy, you can broil them in the oven for a few minutes after they are done in the slow cooker. Just transfer them to a baking sheet, brush them with more barbeque sauce, and broil them until they are charred and bubbly.
- To make the ribs more spicy, you can add some cayenne pepper, red pepper flakes, or hot sauce to the spice mixture or the barbeque sauce. Adjust the amount according to your taste and tolerance.
- To make the ribs more tangy, you can add some apple cider vinegar, lemon juice, or mustard to the barbeque sauce. This will balance out the sweetness and add some acidity to the ribs.
- You can use different types of barbeque sauce for this recipe, such as honey, hickory, mesquite, or bourbon. You can also make your own barbeque sauce by combining ketchup, brown sugar, vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, and spices in a saucepan and simmering until thickened.
- 4 pounds of spare ribs (or baby back ribs)
- 1/4 cup of brown sugar
- 2 teaspoons of chili powder
- 2 teaspoons of paprika
- 1 teaspoon of garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon of onion powder
- 1/2 teaspoon of dried thyme
- 1/2 teaspoon of salt
- 1/4 teaspoon of black pepper
- 2 cups of barbeque sauce (or more if needed)
- Remove the membrane from the back of the ribs and pat them dry with paper towels.
- In a small bowl, combine brown sugar, chili powder, paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, dried thyme, salt, and pepper. Rub the spice mixture all over the ribs, pressing it into the meat.
- Place one-half of the ribs in the slow cooker and pour 1 cup of barbeque sauce over them. Brush the sauce evenly over the ribs. Repeat with the other half of the ribs and another cup of barbeque sauce.
- Cover the slow cooker with the lid and cook on low for 8 hours or until the ribs are tender and fall off the bone.
- Carefully transfer the ribs to a cutting board or a platter. Enjoy them as they are, or shred the meat and serve it on buns with more barbeque sauce if desired.
Nutrition Information:Serving Size: 1/4 of recipe Amount Per Serving
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 836kcalTotal Fat: 46gSaturated Fat: 16gCholesterol: 208mgSodium: 1399mgCarbohydrates: 51gFiber: 2gSugar: 41gProtein: 54g