Instant Pot St. Louis style ribs - yes, you can have your ribs and eat them too - in less than an hour!

Finally, the Instant Pot ribs.  I know, I know, it seems like I’m the last one on that bandwagon.  But…but…I’m committed to my smoker, you guys know that.  

And I hate to keep on and on about it, but just as a reminder, it’s freaking hot.  I can’t bear to go out there and fire my smoker up.  So, Whole Foods was having a sale on their St. Louis ribs.  The wife picked some of them up and said, “You’re putting these in the pressure cooker tomorrow and I don’t want to hear any more about it.”  Under pressure it goes.

I gotta say, for a smoke lover, these were very, VERY surprisingly delicious. 

I’m one of those people – I like my ribs tender but not too tender.  I didn’t think the pressure cooker could handle that.  I really anticipated them just literally falling off the bone.  But at 20 minutes, I could cut them up, the meat stayed on, and there was some chew to the meat.  Not mush.

Before we get on with it, I want to talk about the beer in this recipe.  Not only am I committed to my smoker, I’m committed to my beer.  You do not, I repeat, do not, have to use beer.  I used it because it was sitting there and I have a ton of this brand that a friend brought over.

You can use beef broth, apple juice, whiskey, and even water.  You can even use, Lord help us, Budweiser, if that’s how you roll.  There was no beer flavor in these at all.  You really just want a liquid to create steam for the pressure.  

I know you ladies out there are gonna be on this like … polyester on a pimp, but you guys…dooo it!  Seriously, you don’t get the same sense of manliness that you do at a grill or smoker.  But you won’t be disappointed, trust me.

Instant Pot St. Louis style ribs - yes, you can have your ribs and eat them too - in less than an hour!
5 from 3 votes

Instant Pot St. Louis style Ribs

Just a rub and 20 minutes make these pork ribs crazy tender, but not mushy-too-tender.  Easy weeknight meal!

Course Main Course
Cuisine BBQ, Instant Pot
Keyword Instant Pot, pork, quick weeknight meal
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Grill/Broil time 10 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes


  • ribs, I used pork as many as you can fit
  • your favorite rub I used Memphis BBQ rub
  • 1 cup beer or other liquid
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon liquid smoke optional


  1. First, the ribs.  If you get your ribs from a butcher, ask him to trim it up to get that flap off (if there is one and take it home) and get the silver skin off (if it’s on). 

    If you just buy them at a store, you’ll want to do that yourself.  Costco’s ribs doesn’t have the membrane.  Others, I’m not sure, so you’ll want to remove that.  If you do have the flap on the ribs, just run your knife under it to remove it, if you want to.  (More on that below.)  

  2. Once trimmed, rub it down with your favorite rub.  Generously sprinkle the rub on and pat it in.  Season both sides.  Set in the fridge to hang out for about 30 minutes, you can go as long as overnight.

  3. In your Instant Pot or other pressure cooker, add the trivet, beer (liquid), apple cider vinegar, and liquid smoke. 

    Get your ribs out and stand them upright in the pot. Coil them around the pot.  You can fit a lot in there too, don’t be afraid.

  4. Close the lid, pressure on high for 20 minutes with a quick release.  

    Carefully remove the ribs from the pot and place on a tray or pan.  Coat them with your favorite BBQ sauce.  Now you can either toss them on a hot grill to get that sauce locked on, or if you don’t have a grill, you can throw them in the oven under the broiler.  

    If you go the broiler method, don’t stray too far from your oven.  Broiling and burning can happen really fast, so keep an eye on it.  

    When the color looks good to you, remove, cut, eat. Enjoy!

  5. ****If you want more tenderness to your ribs, increase the time to 25 minutes, quick release.

What flap are you talking about dude?

You might not have that flap, I don’t always see the flap when I buy ribs.  Actually, if I buy ribs at a place like Costco or Sams or my local, Rouses, I never get the flap.  But what I’m talking about is a flap that is about 3/4 of the way up the ribs. It goes across the body of the ribs.  

That flap is called the false lean and you can and should eat it.  Beef or pork, eat that false lean.  You can season and toss it on the grill, or just toss it in your pressure cooker with the ribs.  You can also leave it on, but it’s not as pretty to the finished product. 

Instant Pot St. Louis style ribs - yes, you can have your ribs and eat them too - in less than an hour! #instantpot #pressurecooker #ribs #instapot
Instant Pot St. Louis style ribs - yes, you can have your ribs and eat them too - in less than an hour!

Instant Pot St. Louis style ribs - yes, you can have your ribs and eat them too - in less than an hour!
Instant Pot Ribs

29 thoughts on “Instant Pot Ribs”

    1. I haven’t tried it without the trivet, but if you don’t have one, you can put onion slices on the bottom or make an aluminum foil snake and sit them on that.

      1. 5 stars
        I know that this is an older post, but just had to comment!
        I love my Instant pot, but also adore our smoker! Today we had a thawed rack of Saint Louis ribs that I had thought that I would smoke (it was raining, and my fair weather, grille master, husband said no to the bbq). Anyway, all of the smoker recipes required about 6 hours, which I didn’t have, so I googled Instant pot recipes!
        Thank you so much Bearded Hiker!
        This recipe will be my “go to” for ribs from now on! We had a really meaty rack, so I used 22 minutes of pressure and about 10 minutes of natural release. We finished them under the broiler, on low, for about 5 minutes a side. They were perfectly cooked for us, not falling off the bone but tender to the ends!
        Definitely a keeper😊

        1. Love to hear that Rita! I can’t deny, I love smoked/bbq/grilled ribs, but sometimes, life doesn’t allow that and I love how these turn out.

  1. 5 stars
    These were so, so, so good! Just made them and I have to say, they couldn’t be easier! I did add a bay leaf and about 4 cloves of crushed garlic to the liquid, plus 2 tbls of brown sugar before adding the ribs (similar to another recipe I wanted to try…) And yes, they turned out just tender enough-the way we like them too. Timing was perfect. I just wrapped them in foil with some sauce to await the grill later – but I could eat them now just as they are! Thanks for a great recipe – a real keeper for sure!

    1. Glad you enjoyed them Laura! I still love to smoke my ribs, but when you just don’t have time for that or the weather is noncompliant, the Instant Pot does a bang up job!

      1. I haven’t found that to be the case at all. It all depends how you like your meat, as in texture. The meat itself does not change if you quick release AND you account for the time. If you cook meat and then let the pressure come down naturally and it takes 30 minutes for that to happen, that meat is still cooking for that 30 minutes. If you cook for the same time and quick release, your meat may be tough, but it’s not because you quick released, it’s because it’s cooking for less time. I account for this with a bit extra cooking time, 5-10 minutes. But, I would suggest you #1, test these things out for yourself. If the meat is tough and you quick released, not a big deal, just pressure it for 10 or so more minutes… and #2, follow what the individual recipe says. Most bloggers have tested these recipes multiple times, so they know what works best as for as time and method.

        For this recipe, this is not for fall off the bones ribs. I know some people show the clean bone as a test, as it just slips out of the meat. Personally, I find that’s overcooked. I don’t want “fall off the bone” ribs, but if that is your thing, let the pressure come down naturally and the additional cook time should be spot on.

  2. No, I still haven’t gotten an Instant Pot yet, but it is on my wish list. These ribs look great, and I want to reach through my screen and grab one. Regarding the flap… I usually leave it on, unless I’m planning on taking photos. Good and tasty! Right, never toss it! Thanks for bringing this recipe to Fiesta Friday!

    1. You need a pressure cooker goats. I mean it. Your life, in terms of meat, will never be the same.

  3. I finally broke down on Prime day and got an Instant Pot. I’ve been making quite a few recipes with mine. I’ll have to try your ribs! Looks so tasty! Thanks for sharing at the Inspiration spotlight party @DearCreatives See you again soon.

    1. Yay! You’ve probably figured out, I love my pressure cooker(s). Once I got to know what the deal was, I just convert a lot of my favorite recipes that I would make on the stove or oven or just experiment with throwing stuff in there. Have fun and thanks for checking out my ribs!

  4. I will be trying these! I just recently got an Instant Pot and I love it. Thanks so much for sharing with us at the Whimsical Wednesdays Link Party!

  5. I love ribs and to have them on the table in such a short time is amazing! Hope you are having a great weekend and thanks so much for sharing with us at Full Plate Thursday!
    Miz Helen

  6. You have no idea how much I wish I had some of these ribs right now! I guess that’s the beauty of the IP – they aren’t that far off if I want to make them. Now, if only I had ribs, lol!!

  7. I love how instant pot makes delicious dishes with no much hassle. Now, I am thinking if getting my own.? Thanks for taking this with you at Fiesta Friday party!

  8. Hubby smokes our ribs on his traegger. They are delicious! These look so yummy too!! I haven’t bought an instant pot. Thanks for sharing the recipe with SYC.

    1. Thanks for having a look Jann. You can’t really beat smoked ribs can you? But these are a close second. If you haven’t, you should check out the smoked garlic sriracha burger roll post. It’s crazy good and you can basically fill it with whatever you want – sun dried tomatoes with pesto and feta cheese if that’s how you “roll”. Regardless, the smoke gets right into it.

    2. I have an instant pot and a traeger- i cook them in the instant pot, but not for the full time, and then finish them in the traeger…best of both worlds and great when you don’t have time to fully traeger them!

  9. I’m down to 18 minutes with St. Louis Ribs. Twenty-five minutes was still too soft to me. I want to chew them off the bone. I want some resistance. I don’t get that with 25 minutes. Yes, I agree the taste is great but have you tried decreasing the time? I’ve tried 22 min, 20 min and next I will try 18 minutes. I’m still looking for ribs that I can chew. What do you think about decreasing the time?

    1. Mine were pretty good on resistance. But I’ve found every rack I’ve done so far has gotten different results. I have tried to play with times, because like you, I like resistance to my ribs. Unfortunately, Mrs. Bearded Hiker and I are not completely in agreement on rib texture. So we gotta meet in the middle. If it were just for me, honestly, I would go with 15-16 minutes. But it’s meat, it’s an animal, it’s not made in a factory. You might do 15 minutes one time and it’s perfection, the next time the connective tissue hasn’t even budged.

      If you do reduce the time to 18 or even lower, I would love an update. Maybe the next time my wife is making her weird chickepea curry hempseed topped with microgreens concoction I’ll throw in some ribs!

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