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Close up of baby back ribs on a chopping board

Instant Pot Baby Back Ribs

BBQ baby back ribs that are fall-off-the-bone tender thanks to the Instant Pot. Made entirely from scratch in the Instant Pot (or with store-bought BBQ sauce and rub to make it easier), this recipe is healthier, Whole30 or paleo, or conventional. Versatile, flavorful, delicious, from a Memphian.

Course Dinner, Main Course
Cuisine American
Keyword bbq, healthy, whole30
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Time to Come to Pressure 10 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Servings 4 people
Calories 640 kcal
Author Cheryl Malik


  • 3 pounds pork baby back ribs cut in half
  • 1/4 cup BBQ rub or use recipe below for Whole30 or homemade
  • 1 cup BBQ sauce or use recipe below for Whole30 or homemade




  1. Turn ribs over so meaty side is face-down. Using a butter knife and your fingers, separate the transparent membrane from the back of the bones and meat and peel off.
  2. In a small bowl, combine all BBQ rub ingredients and sprinkle evenly all over ribs, front and back.

If making BBQ sauce homemade:

  1. Turn Instant Pot on Sauté mode. When hot, add avocado or coconut oil and sauté onion for 3-4 minutes or until softened and translucent. Add garlic and sauté until fragrant, stirring constantly, about 30 seconds. Add remaining BBQ sauce ingredients and stir until smooth.
  2. Add rib halves to Instant Pot, fitting them in a C-shape curve inside the cooking pot. Secure lid and set valve to Sealing position. Cook on Manual High Pressure for 40 minutes. Quick release.
  3. Remove ribs carefully - they will be fall-apart tender. Transfer to a baking sheet and preheat your broiler. Broil, watching carefully, until browned on top.
  4. If you made your sauce homemade: Blend the sauce, left in the Instant Pot, using an immersion blender or regular blender.
  5. Baste ribs with sauce and serve with plenty for dunking. Sprinkle with extra BBQ rub if desired.

Recipe Notes

If you're on Whole30, make absolute sure you do not use honey; use coconut aminos instead. You can also use 2 cups of my Whole BBQ sauce if you like.

You may have to squeeze the ribs in the Instant Pot so they fit - that is fine.

Nutrition Facts
Instant Pot Baby Back Ribs
Amount Per Serving
Calories 640 Calories from Fat 360
% Daily Value*
Fat 40g62%
Saturated Fat 13g81%
Cholesterol 149mg50%
Sodium 2182mg95%
Potassium 1288mg37%
Carbohydrates 25g8%
Fiber 5g21%
Sugar 9g10%
Protein 46g92%
Vitamin A 3513IU70%
Vitamin C 13mg16%
Calcium 118mg12%
Iron 5mg28%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.