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Instant Pot ribs fresh off smoker on wooden cutting board.

Instant Pot Baby Back Ribs

Steven Pennington
Ribs cooked in the Instant Pot, the perfect weeknight dinner meal. From start to finish, all done within one hour.
4.64 from 11 votes
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 40 mins
Total Time 45 mins
Course Instant Pot
Cuisine American Quick
Servings 4 People
Calories 784 kcal

Suggested Equipment

Instant Pot
Cookie Sheet
Roasting Rack


Ingredients: Method #1 - Low Liquid /

  • 1 rack Baby Back Ribs
  • 2 cups Orange Juice
  • 4 Tablespoon BBQ Dry Rub
  • BBQ Sauce

Ingredients: Method #2 - High Liquid

  • 8 cups Water
  • 1 rack Baby Back Ribs
  • 12 oz Orange Juice - Concentrated / or apple juice
  • 6 Tablespoon BBQ Dry Rub

BBQ Sauce

  • cup BBQ Sauce - Recipe in the Notes section below


Preparing The Ribs

  • Remove the ribs from the package and rinse the ribs off under cold water and pat dry.
  • Membrane: if you choose to remove it, now would be the time. See directions in the article above for the technique.
    Yet, you might not want to remove it with pressure-cooked ribs. Read why in the post.
  • Sprinkle a small amount of sea salt on both sides of the ribs.
    Next cover the ribs with honey. Pour enough to cover. This will act as glue to help the dry rub stick. Then sprinkle on 4 Tablespoons of BBQ dry rub. Work it into the ribs.
  • The ribs need to sit for at least 10 minutes with the dry rub. This will act like a quick cure allowing the dry rub to penetrate the meat. Longer is better, up to 8 hours or overnight.

Method #1 - Low liquid

  • Place the included wire rack into the bottom of the Instant Pot.
    Add 2 cups of orange juice or apple juice.
    Add the ribs on top of the wire rack.
    Inspect the Instant Pot lid. Make sure the plastic sealing ring is installed.
    Secure the lid.
    Set the exhaust valve on the lid to "Sealing"

Cooking & Settings: Method #1 - Low Liquid

  • Control Settings:
    Use the "Meat/Stew" setting.
    Temperature setting: "Normal". Explanation on the temperature settings in the post above.
    Pressure setting: "High Pressure".
    Timer Setting:
    Normal sized ribs = 25 minutes.
    Large sized ribs = 30 minutes.
    Thin sized ribs = 15-20 minutes.
    e expires switch over to "Venting" and allow the remaining pressure to escape.

Pressure Release Setting: Method #1 - Low Liquid

  • Use natural release.
    After 15 minutes of natural release, then switch to "Venting" on the exhaust valve on the lid.
    Tip: Using natural release requires you to do nothing once the timer goes off. Look at the front display panel and you'll see a new clock timer appear and starts to count upward. This is your timer for how long you are using natural release. Once the 15 minutes expires switch over to "Venting" and allow the remaining pressure to escape.
    Once the pressure pin in the lid drops back down into the lid it will then be safe to open the lid.

Cooking & Settings: Method #2 - High Liquid

  • Control Settings:
    Use the "Meat/Stew" setting.
    Temperature setting: "Normal".
    Pressure setting: "High Pressure".
    Timer Setting:
    Normal sized ribs = 40 minutes.
    Large sized ribs = 45 minutes.
    Thin sized ribs = 30-35 minutes.
    Pressure Release Setting:
    The method to use is Quick Release.
    On the lid, move the exhaust valve from "Sealing" to "Venting" to use the Quick Release.
    WARNING: the steam inside wants to escape. You could get burnt. To protect yourself, use a tool like a knife to move the exhaust valve to "Venting".
    Allow all the steam to leave the Instant Pot.
    Note: You will know it is safe to open when all the steam was escaped. Look for the pressure pin located on the top of the Instant Pot lid to drop back into the lid.

Finishing The Ribs

  • Remove the lid and pour out all the cooking liquid and place the ribs back into the Instant Pot or a cookie sheet for a few minutes to cool down.
    Once cool enough add a roasting rack to the cookie sheet.
    Cover the ribs with BBQ sauce.

Presentation Finishing

  • House/Oven:
    Under the broiler for 5 minutes or so. The key is to make sure your oven rack isn’t too close to the broiler or the sugars in the BBQ sauce could burn. 
    Backyard Smoker: 
    Have the smoker going at 225 degrees. Place the ribs on the smoker using a wire rack. This will make sure moving the ribs will be easy. 




Special Texas BBQ Sauce with a KICK...
  • 1 cup Ketchup Hunts Brand – No High Fructose Corn Syrup Helpful with controlling the sweet level yourself.
  • 2 Tablespoon Brown Sugar
  • 2 teaspoon Honey Mustard - Use what you like
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon Favorite hot sauce -  add all ingredients first then taste season and adjust before adding more hot sauce
    TOP Secret Ingredient:
    Wasabi Sauce – Wasabi is not HOT but is spicy with a floral and fragrant similar to horseradish. Making this a secret flavor weapon. The hot side of Wasabi is upfront then quickly calms down. Not like spicy peppers that have capsaicin, which is an oil. Once the oil from a pepper touches your tongue that spiciness isn’t going away quickly as Wasabi does.
  • 1 Tablespoon Wasabi paste
  • 1 Tablespoon Honey
  • 1 Tablespoon Apple Cider Vinegar
  • Salt & Cracked Black Pepper - to taste
  • Texas Style Ingredient: ½ teaspoon Liquid Smoke
Start with the tomatoes, then add the remaining ingredients. I like to cook the sauce on the stovetop at a low temperature to develop a deep flavor profile.


Serving: 3RibsCalories: 784kcalCarbohydrates: 27.4gProtein: 21.5gFat: 16.8gSaturated Fat: 7gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2.8gMonounsaturated Fat: 7gCholesterol: 117mgSodium: 110mgPotassium: 410mgFiber: 0.07gSugar: 14.3gVitamin A: 247IUIron: 5mg
Keyword Instant Post Baby Back Ribs
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