Instant Pot: Whiskey Baby Back Ribs

Well here we are at the start of the work week once again. This past weekend was a busy one with lots of activities, however my family cherishes our Sunday family dinners. We enjoyed BBQ ribs in a spectacular way using our Instant Pot. I will say that although these Whiskey Baby Back Ribs were tender, flavorful and so easy to do, it does not compare to traditional low and slow ribs found at our favorite BBQ rib joint. But for ribs at home, these will now be my go to way to prepare them!

This recipe has three specific parts - the BBQ sauce, the BBQ rub and broiling the ribs for a nice char. For these ribs, I combined whiskey, apple juice and our favorite BBQ sauce. The sauce not only is used in cooking but doubles as a sauce to glaze the ribs and for serving. The second part is the BBQ rub to ensure the ribs have flavor all on its on and doesn't have to depend on any sauce.  And lastly, after the Instant Pot does it magic, the ribs are glazed with the sauce and broiled for a great presentation!

Instant Pot: Whiskey Baby Back Ribs
original Joelen recipe

baking sheet


1/4 cup whiskey (I used Jack Daniels)
1/2 cups apple juice
1 1/2 cup BBQ sauce (I used Sweet Baby Ray's)
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon paprika
1 tablespoon white sugar
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon onion powder
3-4 pounds baby back ribs, membrane removed

In your Instant Pot:

Plug in the IP and a
dd the whiskey, apple juice and BBQ sauce to the IP and whisk to combine. 

Place the trivet inside the pot.

In a small bowl, combine all the spices (salt, pepper, paprika, white sugar, garlic powder, and onion powder) to create the rub; set aside.

Cut the rack into sections of 3-4 ribs. Season each section generously with the spice mixture.

Add your reasoned ribs into the IP, standing up vertically on its side on the trivet.

Secure the lid of the IP and ensure the valve is set to SEALING.

Press MANUAL and adjust the time to 30 minutes on HIGH pressure.

The display will reflect ON while the IP comes to pressure. Allow a few minutes for your IP to come to pressure.

Once at pressure, the display will reflect 30 (the number of minutes you initially set) and will begin to countdown to 0 minutes.

When the IP beeps after pressure cooking for 30 minutes, allow your IP to naturally release pressure for 10 minutes. While naturally releasing pressure (also known as NRP or NR), the display will reflect numbers counting up from 1. The numbers indicate how many minutes the IP has stopped cooking since it beeped (or how many minutes it has been naturally releasing pressure).  No need to touch your IP while it naturally releases pressure.

When the display reflects 10 (which is 10 minutes since the IP has beeped), turn the setting on top of your IP to VENTING. Doing so allows the IP to quickly release pressure (also known as QRP or QR). I use a wooden spoon to carefully turn the setting to avoid close contact with the potential steam. You may also want to turn your IP away from cabinets to allow the released steam to escape freely. The pin at the top of your IP will drop when all pressure has been released and it's safe to open.

Preheat your broiler as you wait for all the pressure to be released.

Open up your IP when the pin has dropped (allow a few minutes for this to happen).

Using tongs, remove the ribs from the IP and transfer them onto a baking sheet.

Glaze ribs with BBQ sauce from the IP and broil for 2-3 minutes or until desired char is reached. 

Serve with more BBQ ribs as desired.

1 comment

  1. I got busy and didn't start my 250-degree-4-hour ribs, now it is four o'clock! I asked google if I could use my instant pot for ribs without being struck down by lightning, and your post came up! I really appreciate your candor, and will try your recipe tonight! Thanks!!! '