Looking for a fun summer dinner? Slow Cooker Dr. Pepper Ribs take no time to add to the slow cooker and make for a great easy dinner.
If you haven’t done ribs in the crock pot, you need to put it on your dinner menu ASAP. I’ve done ribs with other cooking methods but for me, the cooking them in the crock pot is not only is the easiest but it also always cooks the ribs to perfection. This is one of those dump and go recipes with little prep!
How to cook ribs in the slow cooker:
- Low and Slow. The low setting is the best to ensure tender ribs
- Remove sinew from the back of ribs BEFORE cooking
- Keep the lid on the entire cooking time
- Add plenty of liquid (this recipe uses Dr. Pepper as the liquid)
You will need:
- Pork Baby Back Ribs, these are packed raw and usually weigh somewhere between 3-4 pounds.
- Dr. Pepper
- Barbecue sauce
- Hickory liquid smoke, this makes the ribs taste like they’ve been in the smoker all day
- Black pepper
- Garlic Powder
Dr. Pepper adds sweetness to the ribs, notice I did not add brown sugar to the recipe, I think that would have been too much sugar.
Time to cook!
The hardest (and grossest) thing about this recipe is removing the sinew from the back of the ribs. It’s a thin piece of tissue that you would think would break down with cooking, but it doesn’t all the way and is not good eats. This piece of tissue is easily removed by taking a knife and loosening an edge of it, then grab hold of that edge and rip it off, if you are lucky it will come off in one piece.
I made ribs for my entire extended family years ago in the oven, not only did I not cook them long enough to get tender, I left that piece on the back of the ribs. I’m really surprised my family let me cook at all for family functions after that.
Add the ribs to the slow cooker. Sprinkle over the garlic powder and black pepper. Pour over the barbecue sauce, Dr. Pepper and liquid smoke.
Cook on LOW for 8 hours, do not open the lid while these cook. They will turn out moist and tender if you leave them be.
Serve these ribs with your favorite sides. My go to is mashed potatoes and a green salad, what is yours? Enjoy!
Slow Cooker Dr. Pepper Ribs
- Slow Cooker Size: 5-quart or larger
- 4 lbs. rack baby back pork ribs (1 rack is usually about 3-4 pounds, any size that will fit in the slow cooker will work fine.
- 1/4 tsp. pepper
- 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
- 1 tsp. hickory liquid smoke
- 1 cup barbecue sauce (I use Sweet Baby Rays)
- 12 oz. can Dr. Pepper
- Remove the sinew from the ribs (it’s the white slimey thing on the rounded back part of the ribs.) I do this by lifting a edge of it up with a knife, then grabbing it with 2 fingers. If your lucky the entire things will come off in one pull.
- Cut the ribs in to 4 even sections, or in half. Doesn’t matter how you slice it.
- Add to the slow cooker
- Sprinkle over the pepper, garlic powder and add the liquid smoke.
- Drizzle over the barbecue sauce.
- Pour the Dr. Pepper in.
- Cover and cook on LOW for 8 hours without opening the lid during the cooking time.
- Serve with additional barbecue sauce if desired