These mouth-watering Instant Pot Baby Back Ribs will be the star of your next get-together with family and friends. The exquisite flavors are created by mixing a dry rub using an array of exotic herbs and spices including garlic, chili, rosemary, cumin, cinnamon, cayenne, and paprika. Complete the dish with a dark cherry barbecue sauce – and the whole masterpiece is ready in under an hour!
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Instant Pot Baby Back Ribs
The full ingredients list and instructions are found in the printable recipe card at the end of this post. I highly recommend reading all the way through for any tips or substitute suggestions, to ensure that you have any specialized ingredients and equipment required and that you understand the steps and timings involved.
Baby back ribs are taken from around the loin, which is the muscle that runs along the pig’s back on either side of the spine. They get their name because of their size – just 3 to 6-inches – compared with the longer spare ribs which are taken from around the belly area.
With tender meat that falls off the bone, ribs are always a popular choice at barbecues and cook outs!
These quick and easy Instant Pot baby back ribs are really tender and delicious. The cinnamon and rosemary in the dry rub complement the flavors in the accompanying savory Dark Cherry Barbecue Sauce, but the flavors pair well with just about any barbeque sauce you prefer.
Get the ribs cooked in advance, and finish them off on the grill over charcoals for extra smokiness and flavor. Or when the weather is inclement, pop them under a hot broiler/grill for a mouth-watering, caramelized crust.
These baby back ribs are cooked in an Instant Pot, however, they can be cooked in a slow cooker too. The instructions for that are included in the recipe card too.
Ingredients & Equipment Used In This Recipe
While most ingredients can be bought in grocery stores, for your convenience, any specialized or notable ingredients (and equipment) needed for this recipe have been listed below and linked to Amazon or other stores if available online.
It does not include staple ingredients such as oil, salt, and pepper, as you’re likely to have those in your kitchen already. The complete list of ingredients with measurements is found in the recipe card.
- Protein – Baby Back Ribs
- Garlic Powder
- Chili Powder – use mild or hot depending on your personal tastes and spicy heat preference!
- Dried Rosemary
- Ground Cumin
- Ground Cinnamon
- Cayenne Pepper
- Smoked Paprika
- Beef Broth/Stock
- Dark Cherry Barbecue Sauce – one of our recipes on The Purple Pumpkin Blog, or use a BBQ sauce of choice
Recipes on The Purple Pumpkin Blog use both cup measurements and/or weighted measurements. American cups and kitchen food scales are handy pieces of equipment to have in your kitchen as it means you’ll be able to make all of the different recipes on my blog. I try to give American, imperial, and metric measurements in my recipes. Please note, you can mix cup measurements with weighted measurements, but never mix imperial (pounds, ounces, pints, etc.,) with metric (kilograms, grams, litres, etc.,).
More Recipes Using Pork
One of the hero ingredients in this dish is pork, so here are some more recipes using the same:
- Cuban Mojo Pork – Perfect For Making Cubano Sandwiches!
- Maple-Balsamic Pork Chops in 20 Minutes!
- How to Make Instant Pot Pork Carnitas (Mexican Pulled Porked)
Looking for more barbecue dishes to make? Check these recipes out next:
- Cypriot Souvlaki, Tzatziki + Pitta Bread
- Bacon & Cheese Stuffed Burgers
- Chickpea & Cannellini Bean Burgers
- Place the ribs under a hot broiler/grill after cooking in the Instant Pot for a mouth-watering, caramelized crust. Alternatively, you could cook on a grill over charcoals, or on a gas grill.
How Do I Make Instant Pot Baby Back Ribs?
Check out the printable recipe card below with full ingredients and instructions. Any demonstration photos do not print out to save your ink.
- For the Dry Rub
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp chili powder
- 1 tsp dried rosemary
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- ½ tsp cinnamon
- ¼ tsp cayenne pepper
- ½ tsp smoked paprika
- Salt and black pepper, to taste
- 2½ - 3 lbs (1.1kg - 1.3kg) baby back ribs
- 1 cup beef stock (or water)
- Dark Cherry BBQ Sauce*
- Combine ingredients for the dry rub in a small bowl and stir to combine. Set aside.
- Carefully remove membrane from back of baby back ribs with a sharp knife, if necessary. Cut the ribs into 3 or 4 equal-sized parts and work the dry rub into each section on both sides. Set aside.
- Add beef broth or water to Instant Pot and insert the metal rack. Place the seasoned ribs on their sides on top of the insert. (Do not stack them flat on top of each other).
- Lock the Instant Pot lid into place and flip the pressure valve to “Sealing.” Set the “Manual” setting to high for 30 minutes.
- Meanwhile, line a large, rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil and set aside.
- Once cooking time is complete, do a quick release (QR) by flipping the sealing valve to the “Venting” position. Unlock and remove the Instant Pot lid and carefully transfer ribs to prepared baking sheet. Brush ribs with a generous amount of BBQ sauce on each side.
- Pre-heat broiler/grill to high and broil/grill the ribs for 3-5 minutes or until nicely browned. Remove from oven and cool slightly before cutting into individual portions. Serve immediately with extra BBQ sauce for dipping.
*This is one of our previous recipes. Or you could use any BBQ sauce of your choice.
This recipe can also be prepared in a SLOW COOKER:
- Prepare the ribs with the dry rub as in the recipe and place inside the slow cooker pot - trimming as required to fit.
- Add half a cup of beef stock or water to the pot.
- Cook on low for 4 hours or on high for 8 hours until the meat is cooked and tender.
- Proceed to broil/grill if desired.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 129Total Fat: 9gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 4gCholesterol: 28mgSodium: 397mgCarbohydrates: 7gFiber: 1gSugar: 4gProtein: 7g
This site uses Nutritionix to provide estimated nutrition. Nutritional information is always approximate and will depend on the quality of ingredients used and serving sizes. If you need exact calories and macros, please do your own calculations.
Make It A Full Meal
You’ve made the main dish, but what about the rest of the courses?
Here are additional recipes to make a full meal for a dinner party or special occasion:
- Appetizer: Feta Cucumber Cups
- Side Dish: Fresh & Fruity Rice Salad (Empire Rice Salad) – A Real Crowd-Pleaser!
- Beverage: Texas Margaritas with Raspberry Liqueur & Jalapeños!
- Dessert: Instant Pot Cheesecake with Fresh Strawberries & Blueberries
There are 500+ Recipes on The Purple Pumpkin Blog for you to enjoy – please feel free to check them out too.