The other day a friend asked for a Mother’s Day gift…tips or recipes for cooking a rack of ribs. Not what you expected, right? I gave her a recipe for oven baked ribs, because she wanted them on the table for dinner. Well, summer time is right around the corner and for a lot of people, that means grilling coupled with time by the pool or time at the beach. That’s all in great fun, but this is recipe that can give you ribs for all seasons.
In North Carolina, we have been dealing with a lot of rainy weather. If it’s rainy in your neck of the woods, here’s to hoping and wishing and thinking and praying that this rainy weather clears up, so the remainder of the weekend can be enjoyed how it’s supposed to be enjoyed, OUTDOORS! Luckily, the rain won’t stop you from cooking a fabulous rack of ribs, while you are out enjoying your weekend. That’s right, no fancy grill or smoker necessary, just a crock pot.
You all remember that infomercial for the Ronco rotisserie? Their slogan was “set it and forget it!” In the infomercial everyone would say it together. Well that sums up this recipe in a nutshell. For the most part, the recipe is hands off and the crock pot does all of the work. You only have to be fully committed and in marital bliss with the ribs to remove the membrane from the rack of ribs, rub the rack with a spice mixture and broil the sauce coatings at the end. I usually place the ribs directly under the broiler element, then sauce and flip 2-3 times. That seems like a lot of work, but it’s nothing compared to the tender, juicy, full of flavor ribs that you get as an end result. Broiling the ribs at the end is optional; however, let me be the first to tell you, it should be a legal requirement.
These ribs are my most recent claim to Food Monster fame. When it comes to tender ribs, whether they are grilled, smoked, oven baked or cooked in the crock pot, low and slow is the name of the game. Also, the sauce is vital to the rib’s survival. When I was growing up, my parents religiously bought Kraft. Since I have moved to North Carolina and I am responsible for my own groceries, I either make my own sauce, purchase Kraft or purchase Sweet Baby Rays. There are a lot of other sauce options out there, but nothing that I swear by. Maybe you have a favorite that you are willing to share with me? You can cook additional racks; however, you will more than likely need a larger crock pot. I served theses ribs with a side of baked beans, but the side options are endless.
Barbecue Crock Pot Ribs
- 1 or 2 – 1 1/2 – 2 Pound Rack of Ribs
- 3 Tbsp Smoked Paprika
- 2 Heaping Tbsp Brown Sugar
- 1/4 tsp Cayenne Pepper
- 1 tsp Ground Mustard
- 1 Tbsp Kosher Salt
- 1 Tbsp Freshly Ground Black Pepper
- 3 Cups Barbecue Sauce, your choice
- Prepare ribs by removing the membrane from the back of the rack, set aside.
- Mix the paprika, brown sugar, cayenne pepper, ground mustard, kosher salt and pepper in a small bowl. Lightly season the ribs with salt and pepper, on both sides, then evenly rub the spice mixture all over the ribs, both sides.
- Place rack of ribs standing up in the crock pot with the meaty side facing the wall of the crock pot. See picture below Step 5.
- Pour barbecue sauce over the ribs.
- Allow ribs to cook on low for 5-7 hours – meatier ribs will need upwards of the higher end of that range.
- At this point, carefully remove the ribs with tongs, they will be tender and possibly falling apart. Slice between the bones and serve or you can proceed to step 7 and follow the remainder of the steps.
- Line a baking sheet with foil and place an oven safe wire rack on top. Place ribs, top side down, on the wire rack. Tent ribs with foil while next steps are completed.
- Allow the liquid left behind in the crock pot to sit, so that the fat will surface. Carefully skim the fat and remove remaining liquid to a pot to simmer on medium-high for 15-20 minutes. Occasionally stir, so that the sauce does not stick.
- Brush the ribs with the reduced sauce, starting with the back side, place the ribs directly under the broiler element until the ribs are browned and crispy. Flip the ribs and repeat!
- Don’t have time for step 8 and 9? Brush warm barbecue sauce over the back side of the ribs, place the ribs directly under the broiler element until the ribs are browned and crispy. Flip the ribs and repeat!
- Remove to cutting board and allow ribs to rest for 10 minutes, then slice and serve.
Recipe for Crock Pot Ribs inspired by Leite’s Culinaria.
© 2016 Biscuits & Savvy