Slow Cooker BBQ Baby Back Ribs

Fall-Off-The-Bone Perfection: Slow Cooker BBQ Baby Back Ribs

Prepare for a journey into the realm of mouthwatering tenderness with our Slow Cooker BBQ Baby Back Ribs recipe. This no-fuss, hands-off approach to cooking ribs ensures they reach a level of succulence that’s unparalleled. The slow cooker transforms these ribs into a symphony of flavors, and when paired with a rich barbecue sauce, you’re in for a culinary delight. Let’s dive into the magic of slow-cooked perfection with these BBQ Baby Back Ribs!


For the Ribs:

  • 2 racks baby back ribs
  • 1 tablespoon smoked paprika
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • Salt and black pepper to taste

For the BBQ Sauce:

  • 1 cup ketchup
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • Salt and black pepper to taste


1. Prepare the Ribs:

  • Remove the membrane from the back of the ribs for tenderness. Pat the ribs dry with paper towels.

2. Create the Rub:

  • In a bowl, mix smoked paprika, brown sugar, chili powder, garlic powder, onion powder, cumin, salt, and black pepper to create a flavorful rub.

3. Apply the Rub:

  • Rub the spice mixture generously over both sides of the ribs, ensuring an even coating.

4. Slow Cooker Set-Up:

  • Place the ribs in the slow cooker, standing them up along the edges with the meaty side facing outward.

5. Cook Low and Slow:

  • Set the slow cooker to low heat and cook the ribs for 6-7 hours or until the meat is tender and easily pulls away from the bones.

6. Make the BBQ Sauce:

  • While the ribs are cooking, prepare the BBQ sauce. In a saucepan over medium heat, combine ketchup, brown sugar, apple cider vinegar, Dijon mustard, Worcestershire sauce, smoked paprika, garlic powder, salt, and black pepper. Simmer for 10-15 minutes, allowing the flavors to meld.

7. Grill or Broil:

  • Preheat your grill or broiler. Once the ribs are done in the slow cooker, carefully transfer them to the grill or broiler. Brush a generous amount of BBQ sauce on both sides and cook for an additional 5-7 minutes per side, basting with more sauce as needed. This step adds a delightful caramelized finish.

8. Rest and Serve:

  • Allow the ribs to rest for a few minutes before slicing. Serve with extra BBQ sauce on the side for dipping.

Cook Notes:

  • Adjust the level of spiciness by modifying the amount of chili powder in the rub.
  • For a smokier flavor, add a touch of liquid smoke to the rub or BBQ sauce.


  1. Sweet Heat Glaze:
    • Enhance the BBQ sauce with a dash of hot sauce for a sweet and spicy kick.
  2. Citrus Zing:
    • Infuse a burst of freshness by adding orange or pineapple juice to the BBQ sauce.

Keto Version:


  • Use a low-carb sweetener in place of brown sugar in both the rub and BBQ sauce.
  • Opt for a sugar-free ketchup.


  1. Customize this recipe to fit a keto lifestyle by choosing low-carb sweeteners and condiments.

Low-Carb Version:


  • Replace brown sugar with a low-carb sweetener.
  • Choose a sugar-free ketchup for the BBQ sauce.


  1. Adapt this recipe for a low-carb diet by using suitable sweeteners and condiments.

Slow Cooker BBQ Baby Back Ribs are a testament to the magic of slow cooking, producing ribs so tender they practically fall off the bone. With the perfect blend of spices in the rub and a luscious barbecue sauce, every bite is a flavor explosion. Whether you’re a BBQ enthusiast or a cooking novice, this recipe guarantees a plate full of finger-licking goodness. Get ready to savor the satisfaction of achieving rib perfection with minimal effort!

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