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Slow Cooker Ribs Recipe

Katie Wells Avatar

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Slow Cooker BBQ Ribs Recipe
Wellness Mama » Blog » Recipes » Beef Recipes » Slow Cooker Ribs Recipe

Ribs are one of those foods that always intimidated me, and while I liked them, I was never brave enough to cook them for the first few years I was married. Then, one day, there was a huge sale on ribs at our local store, and having no better idea for dinner, I bought them. On the drive home, I realized that I didn’t have a grill at the time or a even a recipe for ribs, so after some online research, a slow cooker recipe was born. It turned out great and we’ve been cooking these ever since!

This is one of several variations that I make, and it might be my favorite. Adjust spices and sweetener to fit your own taste…

Slow Cooker BBQ Ribs Recipe

Slow Cooker Ribs Recipe

These delicious slow cooker ribs are simple to prepare and a great meal to come home to on a busy day.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 6 hours
Total Time 6 hours 10 minutes
Calories 252kcal
Author Katie Wells


4 +



  • Cut the ribs into 3-4 rib sections so they will fit in the Crock-Pot.
  • Dice the onion and place it at the bottom of the Crock-Pot.
  • Sprinkle the ribs with chili powder, garlic powder, salt, and pepper and put them in the Crock-Pot on top of the onions.
  • Ina small bow, mix together the tomato sauce, tomato paste, vinegar, Worcestershire, liquid smoke, and sweetener if using and then pour evenly over the ribs.
  • Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours or until tender.
  • Toss in sauce before serving.


Nutrition Facts
Slow Cooker Ribs Recipe
Amount Per Serving
Calories 252 Calories from Fat 59
% Daily Value*
Fat 6.6g10%
Saturated Fat 2.5g16%
Cholesterol 38mg13%
Sodium 1252mg54%
Carbohydrates 35.4g12%
Fiber 4.3g18%
Sugar 28.5g32%
Protein 16.8g34%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.


Feel free to adjust the spiciness and sweetness levels up or down to create your ideal ribs!

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Ever barbecued in your Crock-Pot? How did it turn out? Share your recipe below!

Katie Wells Avatar

About Katie Wells

Katie Wells, CTNC, MCHC, Founder of Wellness Mama and Co-founder of Wellnesse, has a background in research, journalism, and nutrition. As a mom of six, she turned to research and took health into her own hands to find answers to her health problems. WellnessMama.com is the culmination of her thousands of hours of research and all posts are medically reviewed and verified by the Wellness Mama research team. Katie is also the author of the bestselling books The Wellness Mama Cookbook and The Wellness Mama 5-Step Lifestyle Detox.


35 responses to “Slow Cooker Ribs Recipe”

  1. Sheila Purvis Avatar
    Sheila Purvis

    Very good. I placed mine under the broiler after I took them out of the crock pot with a little homemade bbq tossed on….muy muy Bueno.

  2. Hazel Avatar

    This recipes reads “scrumptiously”, and I’ve never been completely satisfied with recipes I’ve tried.
    Love the tomato sauce and paste instead of ketchup, and pineapple and pork love each other.

  3. Robin Simons Avatar
    Robin Simons

    I have a rack of ribs and a couple of beef short ribs from the meat csa. Going to try doing them together tomorrow. Added a little extra spices to the sauce, and coconut sugar for the brown sugar flavor. Hoping forthe best. Worried that I have to put them in crockpot at 8:30 but I don’t get home til 6. Will ask hubby to turn them down to warm around 5ish.

  4. Tom Avatar

    5 stars
    That’s some killer smelling bbq sauce, it’s cooking with the ribs now. For a beginner like me, that’s exciting! I’d like to find some more of your recipes that I can do, any recommendations on where to start? Thanks for this recipe.

  5. Katie Avatar

    5 stars
    From the first time we made these last summer (2013) to their appearance on this week’s meal plan, every single person has RAVED about these ribs!!

  6. Emma Avatar

    When we travelled over to America a couple months ago we fell in love with ribs! Haven’t tried cooking them yet! It’s 100% on the ‘to cook’ list!

  7. Rose Welsh Avatar
    Rose Welsh

    I just realized I got boneless ribs. will Indeed commodify the cooking time.? Help!

  8. Heidi Avatar

    Do you think the liquid smoke is ok for us, or carcinogenic like actual smoke is?

  9. Lisa M Avatar

    5 stars
    I would love to try this recipe, but all the Worcestershire sauce I find in the store has terrible ingredients in it like MSG and/or high fructose corn syrup…can you recommend a good brand?

    1. Kirsten Avatar

      Lee and Perrins Worcestershire sauce has no weird ingredients in it (it does have a little sugar, but that’s it) and is gluten free.

  10. Kristina Avatar

    5 stars
    I made this for dinner tonight. It was amazing! The barbecue sauce was so easy to make and delicious. My family loved it, this is definitely an instant classic in our family now.

  11. Brittany Avatar

    Can you cook these on high for half the time or is the low setting better?

    1. Wellness Mama Avatar
      Wellness Mama

      They will probably be slightly more tender on low the whole time, but you could do high half the time and speed up the process…

  12. michelle Avatar

    Made these today!  They were FABULOUS!!!! So good and made the house smell great.  My husband was actually excited about dinner tonight! 

  13. Kami McFarland Noland Avatar
    Kami McFarland Noland

    5 stars
    Made these for dinner tonight.  So so easy to get everything in the crock pot this morning, then have dinner ready and waiting after running errands in the late afternoon!  They were delicious, and I can’t wait to try with a roast for some shredded bbq beef.  Thanks!

  14. Erin Avatar

    5 stars
    I can’t wait to try this for dinner this week!!  Love slow cooker recipes!! 🙂

  15. Margaret Avatar

    I never made ribs this way, but I think this weekend I’ll try it.  Thanks for the recipe and great post.  I’ve been using grass fed beef in all my dishes ever since I found out the benefits of it.  You should try it in one of your recipes.  Just check out the La Cense Beef website.  I’ll let you know how my ribs come out.

    1. Wellness Mama Avatar
      Wellness Mama

      I also cook with grass fed beef almost exclusively. We get it from a local farmer and it is wonderful! I’ve stopped adding “grassfed” to every post though, as I got some complaints from people who weren’t able to find grassfed.

  16. Anne Avatar

    I’m making these tonight!  They’ve been in the crockpot a few hours already and smell sooooo good!

  17. Annedort Avatar

    Thanks for the recipe. There must have been a sale because my husband came home with some yesterday. Instead of letting him grill them or put them in the smoker I wanted to find a recipe for the crockpot . So this comes at the perfect time. Do you know if there is a liquid smoke that does not contain MSG? I think liquid smoke is genius but my husband is highly sensitive to MSG so sadly I threw it out. Thanks 🙂

    1. Desiree Lees Avatar
      Desiree Lees

      You can make your own liquid smoke fairly easily if you’ve got a smoker. Just google it!

    2. Wellness Mama Avatar
      Wellness Mama

      I was going to suggest making it too. I’ll post a recipe on that soon!

  18. Desiree Lees Avatar
    Desiree Lees

    These sound great! I’ve been doing pork country style ribs in the crockpot adobo style. Equal parts soy sauce and rice wine vinegar (about a cup), a few cloves of minced garlic, a teaspoon of fresh minced ginger and a bay leaf. Toss it all in the crockpot over the ribs and let it cook until tender. Works with any type of  meat. You can serve it with the sauce, but I find it doesn’t need it. I also don’t like to ingest that much soy, but if you just use it to cook you eat very little of it.
    I throw the bones in my “broth bag” in the freezer and when I’ve collected enough odds and ends I make bone broth- no waste!

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