Crock Pot Ribs

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Crock Pot Ribs come out melt in your mouth tender and so full of flavor. They’re perfect for busy weeknights or easy weekend dinners with the slow cooker tenderizing in baby back ribs. A quick brush of bbq sauce and a flash grill (or broil) finishes these off beautifully!

Crock Pot BBQ ribs are always a hit and perfect served alongside our favorite Coleslaw Recipe, corn on the cob and Baked French Fries

Crock Pot Ribs on a baking sheet with dipping sauce

How To Prepare Crock Pot Baby Back Ribs

I’m pretty much known for my Instant Pot Ribs and my succulent Barbecue Ribs in the Oven so it’s only natural I’d share my fave crockpot rib recipe!

For all the methods, the process is similar, allow the ribs to cook low and slow so the meat becomes buttery and tender and finish up with sauce and a grill (or broil).

  • Prep the ribs by removing the silver membrane from the back (photo below). You can just slip a knife under it and pull (a piece of paper towel can help you grip it if it’s slippery). If you’re having trouble finding the membrane in this step, your ribs may already have it removed. Once in a while you’ll buy ribs that have it already removed.
  • Inspect the rack of ribs for bone pieces/shards as they can sometimes be present from the butcher cutting the ribs.
  • Cut the racks into manageable pieces that will fit into your slow cooker. I usually do halves or thirds depending on the size.

What Kind of Ribs to Buy for Crock Pot Ribs. I use pork baby back ribs (or back ribs). They’re the most tender and flavorful, side ribs also work however they have smaller white bones towards the end that I’m not a fan of (and they may need a little bit of extra time).

Removing the silver membrane from ribs

How to Cook Ribs in a Crock Pot

  1. Combine rub mix and massage into prepared ribs.
  2. Place onion, garlic and ribs in the slow cooker with a touch of water (or broth). Close the lid and let the crock pot work its magic.
  3. Once tender, brush the ribs with sauce (or just olive oil, salt and pepper if you’d prefer) and broil (or grill) for 3 to 5 minutes to get a little bit of char.
  4. Gently remove from the pan, cut ribs apart and serve!

Overhead shot of ribs and onions in a black crockpot

How Long to Cook Ribs in a Crock Pot

Crock Pot Pork Ribs (I use pork baby back ribs) are easy to make as long as you cook them low and slow. We prefer the meat on our ribs to be fall off the bone however, if you’d like a little but more ‘chew’ to your ribs, reduce the time a little bit.

  • Slow Cooker Ribs On Low will need to cook for about 8 hours
  • Slow Cooker Ribs On High will need to cook for about 4 hours

Remember not to lift the lid and peek, this can increase the cooking time substantially.

Crock Pot Ribs served on a plate with mashed potatoes and garlic bread

Perfect Rib Side Dishes

Crock Pot Ribs on a baking sheet with dipping sauce
4.98 from 145 votes
Review Recipe

Crock Pot Ribs

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 4 hours 10 minutes
Total Time 4 hours 20 minutes
Servings 6 servings
Author Holly Nilsson
Nothing says busy weeknight or easy weekend dinners like Crock Pot ribs.


  • 2 racks baby back ribs about 3-4 lbs
  • 1 onion
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • ½ cup water

BBQ Rib Sauce

  • ¼ cup ketchup
  • ½ cup chili sauce
  • ½ cup your favorite BBQ Sauce

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  • Combine all rub ingredients (below).
  • Remove silver membrane from the back of the ribs. Rub front and back of the ribs with spice mixture.
  • Place onion, sliced garlic, water and ribs in a slow cooker.
  • Cook ribs on high 4 hours or low 8 hours or until fork tender.
  • Preheat broiler. Combine ketchup, chili sauce and barbecue sauce.
  • Brush ribs with sauce mixture and broil (or grill) 3-5 minutes or until charred.

Recipe Notes

Rib Rub 1 tablespoon paprika 1 tablespoon brown sugar 3/4 teaspoon garlic powder 3/4 teaspoon onion powder 1/2 teaspoon black pepper 1/2 teaspoon lemon pepper 1/2 teaspoon salt or to taste

Nutrition Information

Calories: 297, Carbohydrates: 19g, Protein: 19g, Fat: 15g, Saturated Fat: 5g, Cholesterol: 65mg, Sodium: 724mg, Potassium: 439mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 13g, Vitamin A: 280IU, Vitamin C: 6.2mg, Calcium: 50mg, Iron: 1.2mg

(Nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and brands of ingredients used.)

Keyword baby back ribs, Crock Pot ribs, slow cooker ribs
Course Main Course
Cuisine American

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About the author


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Holly is a wine and cheese lover, recipe creator, shopping enthusiast and self appointed foodie. Her greatest passion is creating in the kitchen and making deliciously comforting recipes for the everyday home cook!

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Recipe Rating


  1. Trying this for the first time. Do I just put the onion in the pot whole? Do I peel it? Sorry-not a crock pot person, just learning.

    Thank you.

    1. Hi Joann, we slice the onions into thicker slices and then place them in the crockpot. For an idea on a size check out the photos within the post. Hope that helps!

  2. Hi Holly,

    I love Ribs and I love your recipes I make them often.. I only can eat beef ribs, can I substitute the Pork Ribs with the Beef Ribs??

    Many thanks :)

    1. Hi Kenya, thank you so much! So glad you are enjoying them ♥️. This recipe should still work well for beef ribs. Enjoy!

  3. I’ve made these twice and they were delicious both times. The meat is “falling off the bone” tender.5 stars

  4. My boyfriend loves ribs and I was nervous for these as they’re crockpot and not grilled but I wanted something different for dinner. He LOVED them. I made them last week and now making them again tonight because he couldn’t wait to have them again. Super simple and delicious.5 stars

  5. These were great, I actually did 7+ pounds in one batch, i let them cook a bit longer in the pot. Solo guy here, making lunches for the week.
    I have questions though:
    Am I supposed to flip and broil both sides? The bottom sides seemed slimy, so I flipped them and charred that side too.
    Also, could i just dry rub them and no sauce before broiling?
    Definitely doing again!5 stars

    1. Great idea for lunches Adam! I don’t usually broil both sides, but doing so will help the sauce to carmelize and would be amazing. And yes, we often dry rub instead of sauce them. Or do a combo.

  6. These were a family hit!! They were delicious. I followed the recipe and everything came out great and also very easy! I did add brown sugar to the sauce … just for a little sweetness .

  7. Again, always a hit! This is my 100% recipe for crock pot ribs! Hubby loves and a few sides and wonderful. I make them that often! Thank You Hollie. Xo