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Instant Pot Ribs with Mango Chipotle BBQ Sauce - Paleo + Whole30 Recipe!

Instant Pot Baby Back Ribs

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If you’re unsure of the Instant Pot, I think you’d better try making baby back ribs. Now don’t get me wrong, slowly smoked ribs are obviously the best, but for those days when you can’t get to a Ribfest or your local BBQ joint – these are a fantastic option. These Instant Pot baby back ribs basically cook themselves in only 35 minutes of passive time which give you just enough time to make some side dishes, whip up a homemade mango chipotle BBQ sauce,  or you know, catch up on your latest Netflix show.

What the heck are baby back ribs?

Baby back ribs have a strange name that makes me think of both Austin Powers and well, babies. Probably not the best associations when thinking about your next delectable meal! So you’re not confused at the butcher counter, it’s good to know that baby back ribs are also known as pork loin back ribs, loin ribs or simply, back ribs. Never fear, back ribs aren’t from tiny pigs, they are from the lower back rib section and are referred to as ‘baby’ because of their size!

Can I substitute St. Louis Style Spareribs?

Yep, you can! St. Louis style spareribs are generally larger and meatier (and amazingly, cheaper!) than baby back ribs. If your ribs are on the large side, increase the cook-time by 5 minutes.

What BBQ Sauce can I use? for Whole30? For Paleo? 

I’ll let you in on a little secret…making BBQ sauce isn’t very hard. But I totally appreciate why you wouldn’t want to make it all the time (or ever!). The mango chipotle BBQ sauce I make takes 20 minutes to cook and lasts for a week in the fridge. It’s a great option if you’re on the Whole30.

When I’m not doing a Whole30,  I look for a BBQ sauce that uses natural sweeteners like honey, dates or maple. Store-bought options like the KC Naturals Paleo AIP Barbecue Sauce, Tessamae Organic BBQ Sauce (in the US) or the Wellbee’s Honey BBQ Sauce (in Canada) are good choices.

If you’re doing a round of the Whole30, the Tessamae Organic BBQ Sauce is officially Whole30 approved and available easily in-store throughout the USA. In Canada, Tessamae BBQ Sauce, and so many other awesome paleo and Whole30 products are available on Lucky Vitamin.

Print Recipe
Instant Pot Baby Back Ribs
The Instant Pot makes tender, moist baby back ribs in only 35 minutes!
Instant Pot Ribs with Mango Chipotle BBQ Sauce - Paleo + Whole30 Recipe!
Votes: 4
Rating: 5
You:
Rate this recipe!
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Passive Time 35 minutes
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Instant Pot Baby Back Ribs
BBQ Sauce
  • 1/2 cup BBQ sauce Mango Chipotle BBQ Sauce or other Whole30/Compliant Sauce
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Passive Time 35 minutes
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Instant Pot Baby Back Ribs
BBQ Sauce
  • 1/2 cup BBQ sauce Mango Chipotle BBQ Sauce or other Whole30/Compliant Sauce
Instant Pot Ribs with Mango Chipotle BBQ Sauce - Paleo + Whole30 Recipe!
Votes: 4
Rating: 5
You:
Rate this recipe!
Instructions
  1. Cut the ribs into manageable pieces - about 3-4 ribs per piece. Season with salt, pepper, smoked paprika and garlic powder.
  2. Arrange the ribs inside the Instant Pot, standing on their side, in a circle filling the outer edge of the pot. When the outer edge is full, continue on working adding the ribs, standing up, in the centre of the circle.
  3. Add one cup of water. Close the lid, close the pressure valve, and set the manual pressure to High for 35 minutes.
  4. Once the Instant Pot has finished, allow the steam to naturally release for 5 minutes before quick releasing the pressure. Preheat your oven's broiler.
  5. Cover a baking sheet with foil. Carefully remove the ribs from the Instant Pot (they are hot!) and place on the baking sheet. Using a silicone or pastry brush, cover the ribs with BBQ sauce - carefully turning the ribs to add the sauce to both sides.
  6. Put the ribs under the broiler for 5 minutes to crisp them up.
  7. Sprinkle with cilantro and serve!
Slow Cooker Instructions
  1. Prepare the ribs as listed above. Add 1.5 cups of water to a slow cooker and cook for 4-5 hours on high or 6-8 hours on low. Broil as directed above.
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MORE RECIPES TO ENJOY

Mango Chicken Curry – Instant Pot + Slow Cooker 
Mango Chipotle BBQ Sauce – Whole30 Approved
Instant Pot Paleo Chicken Cacciatore
Instant Pot Tomatillo Pork Soup

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26 comments

  1. I love baby back ribs! Good idea making them in the Instant Pot. I justt got one and love it so far, not ideal for things like rice and eggs i found,( you may as well do them on the stove) but for recipes like ribs that normally take 2+ hours the IP is AWESOME! Can’t wait to try this recipe!

    • Totally agree – some IP recipes seem a bit strange for things that are quicker stovetop! Ribs and long braising dishes are so excellent for IP if you can often get the same depth of flavour with creative uses of ingredients.

  2. I am looking forward to getting one of these popular appliances one day so that I can try your recipe for Instant Pot Baby Back Ribs, Leslie-Anne. My favourite cooking method is braising so I wondered how it would all work in an instant pot. The ribs look delectable and finger-licking good! Thank you so much for sharing. I will pin it also.

    • Hi Denise! My favourite method is also braising and I find the IP a good way to speed up the process for weekday cooking but doesn’t have quite the intense caramelization and depth of flavour that braising imparts on food.

  3. I’m a rib lover — and usually, I send my husband out to tend a low-slow smoker and I’m in charge of the sides, but having a quick option is a great idea. I’ve been resisting the instant pot simply because I already have a slow cooker and pressure cooker — does that make me a curmudgeon? I’m feeling the peer pressure.

    • The peer pressure is real, right?!? I’ve had mine for years but they have definitely become WAY more popular in the past six months! I also love to send my husband out to a smoker, but in the frigid cold winter, this recipe works perfectly!

  4. Tina says:

    Oh that’s funny, I actually DID think baby back ribs are from baby pigs. This makes so much more sense now. Thanks for clarifying. I am on the fence about the Instant Pot, if I change my mind I will definitely try these.

  5. What great tips about the different cuts! Sometimes those butcher counters can be daunting and it’s good to know a sub when you need one. And I LOVE making homemade BBQ sauce – I will definitely check yours out!

  6. Amanda says:

    This is exactly the post I needed to read! I recently got an Instant Pot and have been wondering how ribs would come in it. 35 minutes plus a broil sounds so great, especially for a busy night dinner or for entertaining. I bet they come really tender.

  7. michele says:

    I have got to bite the bullet and buy an instantpot– Recipes like this make me wish I already had one! I especially liked your whole 30 approved option for sauce….for when I don’t have time to make my own! Pinned to my instantpot board!!

    • Awesome, Michele! I hope you get an instant pot soon – they are so easy and fun to incorporate into meal prep. And I mean, anything that makes ribs quickly throughout the week makes me VERY happy!.

  8. Leah says:

    These ribs sound so delicious! I just got an instant pot for Christmas and am still learning so much, so this would definitely be a recipe I want to tackle. Also, that mango bbq sauce sounds absolutely amazing, and a must make! Thanks for the great inspiration with this recipe.

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