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"BBQ" Baby Back Ribs in the Instant Pot

A quick and easy rib made in a pressure cooker, then slathered in a homemade red wine BBQ sauce. If you wish to make more than one rack, cook in the Instant Pot separately and then finish in the oven together.

Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Keyword easy dinner recipe, Instant Pot
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 5 minutes
Author Linda Spiker


For Ribs:

  • 1 rack baby back ribs, cut in half
  • 4 cups white grape juice (pear juice and apple juice work too)
  • 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
  • Your favorite BBQ sauce (see my recipe linked above)


For ribs:

  1. If your butcher hasn't already done so (mine always does) strip the membrane on the back of the ribs buy grabbing with a rag or paper towel and pulling down. The membrane should come off in one piece.Then cut ribs in half by turning meat side down and cutting between the two ribs in the center of rack.

  2. Pour grape juice and apple cider vinegar into Instant Pot and press "sauté". The cooker will beep and turn 'on'. After several minutes the juice will start to steam.
  3. Add ribs to pot, meat side down (bone side up).
  4. Seal cooker and be sure the release valve is turned to the 'sealed' position.
  5. Press "cancel", then "manual", then press + or the minus - button to set the time for 30 minutes, press "pressure cook" and make sure it's on high. You will hear a beep and the machine will say "on". Walk away! After several minutes the timer will turn to "30" and the countdown will begin.
  6. It will take a few minutes for the the pressure cooker to build pressure.
  7. When it does the little plunger on the top may release a little steam. That is ok.
  8. When pressure cooker is done you will hear some beeps. Then the cooker will move into "keep warm" mode. You can let ribs sit for 10 minutes then use a wooden spoon or oven mitt to turn the pressure release valve to the vent position. Steam will shoot out of the top of cooker. When steam has been released open lid. Turn on your broiler and place oven rack in center position. (If preferred you can finish on the grill. Set temp at 425 and grill for six minutes or until sauce is caramelized)

  9. Have a rimmed cookie sheet covered with parchment paper ready.
  10. Very carefully remove ribs from cooker, the meat very easily falls off the bone! I use tongs to grab and a spatula for support. These ribs are really tender.

  11. Place meat side up on parchment covered cookie sheet, brush with BBQ sauce and place under the broiler for 6 minutes. Remove and eat!