Slow Cooker Barbecue Ribs Recipe

7 minutes read

Slow cooking is a fantastic way of getting a great meal with not a lot of effort. Slow cooking isn’t just about stews, curries, and chillies. Cooking barbecue ribs in a slow cooker gives you tender meat, that will fall off the bone. This meal is so simple, all you need to do is put everything in the pot and leave it for a few hours. Here is our slow cooker barbecue ribs recipe.

Types of Barbecue Sauce

There are four main types of barbecue sauce. They are tomato, vinegar, mustard and honey based and originate from different parts of America. In the tabs below you will see our favourite barbecue sauce recipes of each type. Any of these will be good for this slow cooker barbecue ribs recipe. Of course you can use these sauces with other meats too.

Kansas Style Tomato Based Barbecue Sauce
Vinegar Base Barbecue Sauce
Mustard Based Barbecue Sauce
Honey Based Barbecue Sauce
Kansas Style Tomato Based Barbecue Sauce

Prep Time: 5 minutes    Cook Time: 35 minutes

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 cups tomato sauce or puree
  • 1/2 cup apple juice
  • 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 5 Tbsp butter
  • 3 Tbsp paprika
  • 2 Tbsp chili powder
  • 1 Tbsp chipotle powder (optional)
  • 4 finely chopped garlic cloves
  • 1/2 medium onion, finely chopped
  • Salt to taste
  • Cayenne to taste

METHOD

1 Heat the butter in a pot over medium heat for 2-3 minutes. Add the onion and sauté until it begins to brown. Add the garlic and sauté for another 2 minutes.

2 Pour in the remaining ingredients and stir well to combine. Simmer slowly for at least 30 minutes, and up to 2 hours.

Adjust the heat, seasoning and cayenne. Salt right before you plan to use this sauce, which is great on for a slow cooked barbecue ribs recipe.

Vinegar Base Barbecue Sauce

Prep Time: 5 minutes    Cook Time: 5 minutes

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 cups apple cider vinegar
  • 1 cup ketchup, be careful of sugar content, I love using organic to avoid unnecessary added sweetness
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar, I like the brown with the touch of molasses and color it gives
  • 1/4 cup hot sauce, again use a style that complements your palate, as I find hot sauces to be either savory or sweet and I err toward savory hot sauces
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon red chili pepper flakes
  • 1 teaspoon dry mustard, like Coleman’s
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons salt
  • 2 tablespoons whole peppercorn

METHOD

  1. Combine all ingredients in a sauce pan over medium heat. Stir until sugar and spices all dissolve. Bring to a simmer and then turn off the heat. Strain the sauce to remove the chili pepper flakes and peppercorns (and discard those) into a bowl. Then when cool, place into your jar with a tight sealing lid.

Mustard Based Barbecue Sauce

Prep Time: 5 minutes    Cook Time: 5 minutes

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 Cups Vinegar Based Sauce (from above)
  • 1 Tablespoon honey
  • ¼ cup Dijon mustard (I find yellow mustard a touch acidic)

METHOD

Combine all ingredients in a saucepan and heat up, whisk to incorporate the honey and mustard until a simmer, then turn off heat. If you like it a sweeter style, just add more honey.

Honey Based Barbecue Sauce

Prep Time: 5 minutes    Cook Time: 5 minutes

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup molasses
  • 3 tablespoons ketchup
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 tablespoon seasoned salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1/4 cup steak sauce
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  •  Tablespoon mustard
  • 1 1/2 cups brown sugar

METHOD

  1. In a medium bowl, stir together the honey, molasses, ketchup, cinnamon, paprika, ginger, seasoned salt, ground black pepper, salt, oregano, garlic, steak sauce, Worcestershire sauce, mustard, and brown sugar until well blended.

You can, of course buy barbecue sauce for your slow cooker barbecue ribs recipe. There is a huge choice, from traditional sauces to hot and spicy ones. Scroll to the bottom of this page for a selection of great barbecue sauces available online.

Slow Cooker Barbecue Ribs Recipe

Now you have your sauce, it is time to make a start on your slow cooker barbecue rips recipe. There really isn’t much to it, just add a few more ingredients to your slow cooker and let it do its thing for a few hours.

INGREDIENTS

  • 1½ kg meaty pork ribs
  • Barbecue sauce (350g approx)
  • 2 pork stock cubes
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tsp coriander seed
  • 1 tsp mustard seed
  • 1 tsp peppercorn

METHOD

  1. Put 4 tbsp of barbecue sauce along with the rest of the ingredients into your slow cooker. Top up with enough water to cover (roughly 1.5l). Slow cook on Low for 8 – 9 hours until very tender but not completely falling off the bone.

  2. Heat the oven to 220C/ 200C fan/ gas mark 7. Remove the ribs from the slow cooker using a slotted spoon or tongs. Handle them carefully as the meat will be very tender and may start to fall off. Baste with the remaining barbecue sauce and lay on a foil-lined oven tray. Cook for 20 – 30 mins until starting to crisp on outside. Alternatively, cook on the barbecue, turning from time to time until piping hot throughout.

Click here to see our review of the Crock Pot 4.7L Countdown Slow Cooker
Click here to see our pick of the best portable barbecues
Click here to see top tips for using a slow cooker
Click here to see our guide to buying a barbecue grill
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