Cooking Ribs in the Slow Cooker: Tips and Tricks


Cooking Ribs in the Slow Cooker: Tips and Tricks

Cooking Ribs in the Slow Cooker Tips and Tricks

Slow cooker ribs are an exciting dish to serve for an outdoor barbecue or an indoor casual dinner. This incredibly messy dish is beloved by many. Whatever amount you choose to eat, what sticks in your memory is the tenderness of the meat and the taste of the sauce. There is an art to cooking your ribs in a slow cooker just right. Part of this art is the preparation of the meat before you even put it in the slow cooker and part of it is cooking the meat for the right amount of time to achieve the perfect tenderness.

The second important ingredient in this equation is the sauce. You need to decide if you want your ribs hot and spicy or mild and flavorful. It all depends on how you like them. Braising your slow cooker ribs with the sauce is also an important skill you need to make the perfect ribs in a slow cooker. It is not easy to make ribs exactly how you desire them. However, with some tips and tricks your ribs will get to a successful point in no time. Following some great advice will help your ribs become the star of your next party. Try some of these tips to get your ribs into the zone of perfection.

Tips for Making the Best Ribs

Here are some guidelines to follow to help make your next batch of ribs their very best. Following some of this advice will help you serve up a meal that is unforgettable. Ribs can be made easier when following our tips. 

  1. When preparing your ribs for the slow cooker, remove the tough membrane on the bottom, from the inside of the chest cavity of the pig. This helps smoke, seasoning, or sauce flavors penetrate the meat in a more effective manner.

  2. Broil your ribs in the oven for 20 minutes before putting in the slow cooker. This allows fat to render, helping the ribs become more tender in the cooking process.

  3. You want to make sure your meat is evenly distributed over the slab of ribs. Slice your rack of ribs into sections of 2 to 3 ribs each so that they can fit in your slow cooker nicely. When loading the slow cooker, put a layer of ribs, then put sauce all across the layer, then add a second layer, then put sauced across that layer, and so on. 

  4. To keep your ribs on the bottom of the slow cooker from getting mushy, you can line the bottom with some slices of onion, potatoes, carrots and apples. These vegetables will drink in the flavor from the ribs and will be nice little side food to serve on each plate.

  5. Have the meat simmering in a flavorful liquid that only covers the meat about half way. 

  6. Cook the meat on low in a closed pot for about 6 to 7 hours. 

  7. Baste the meat so it comes out very tender. Repeated basting is very important to the cooking process. 

  8. Once your ribs are at the tenderness you desire, not quite falling off the bone, you should take them out of the slow cooker and put them under your oven's broiler. This will help the exterior crisp up and give you that straight-from-the-smoker experience. Brush the ribs with leftover barbecue sauce and they are ready to serve!

Tips for Making the Best Sauce

Some like it spicy and some like it call-the-fire-department hot. You are the master of deciding exactly how hot is too hot when making your all-important sauce for your barbecue ribs. Here are some tips on cooking up the perfect sauce to add flavor and excitement to your ribs.

  1. When cooking your ribs at temperatures above 265 degrees F, hold off on putting your sauce on. Once you are able to cook the ribs at a lower temperature toward the end of the cooking process this is the time to be putting your special barbecue sauce on your ribs. Any sauce that contains sugars (which is most) will burn at temperatures above 265 degrees F. 

  2. For a rib sauce to be great, it should cook slowly on the ribs, at a low temperature. This allows it to sink into the pores of the meat and later creates a sticky crust on the surface of your ribs. 

  3. Play around with the sauce as you see fit. You can add hot pepper sauce or minced hot peppers to get your sauce to four-alarm caliber. You can also add honey or molasses to make your sauce on the sweeter side. 

  4. You may use liquid smoke to the give the sauce a smoky taste. Liquid smoke is made by catching the smoke from smoldering hardwood, concentrating it, and dissolving it in alcohol. 

  5. A more traditional barbecue sauce has some chicken stock for its base. Although this may not sound traditional, it usually has a taste most are attracted to. 

  6. Serve the remaining sauce from the bottom of your slow cooker. This will be some of the best sauce on the table. 

Bonus: 5 of Our Favorite Rib Recipes

Here are five of greatest barbecue rib recipes. Enjoy trying a variety of ribs at your upcoming game day events or casual dinner parties. Try these out soon!

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