Go Back
+ servings
A hand holding one of the baby back ribs over the plate with sauce and more ribs in the background- square

Slow Cooker Bourbon Baby Back Ribs

This bourbon baby back rib recipe is so good, the meat just falls off the bone. The beauty of this recipe is your slow cooker does all the work for you, but you can enjoy the fruits of its labor.
Course Dinner
Cuisine American
Keyword baby back ribs, bourbon baby back ribs, slow cooker ribs
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 4 hours
Total Time 4 hours 5 minutes
Servings 14 ribs
Calories 220kcal


Bar-bie sauce

  • ¾ cup ketchup
  • ½ cup bourbon (or to taste)
  • cup maple syrup
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 teaspoons garlic paste (or two cloves, crushed)
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • teaspoon pepper (or a few shakes)


  • 3 pounds baby back ribs (trimmed, and cut in half)


  • In a mixing bowl, add ketchup, bourbon, maple syrup, apple cider vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, soy sauce, garlic, onion powder, and pepper.
    ¾ cup ketchup, ½ cup bourbon, ⅛ cup maple syrup, 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar, 1 tablespoon soy sauce, 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce, 2 teaspoons garlic paste, 1 teaspoon onion powder, ⅛ teaspoon pepper
  • Mix with a whisk until incorporated.
  • To fit the ribs in my slow cooker, I divide them in two large slabs. Place ribs in the slow cooker.
    3 pounds baby back ribs
  • Pour bourbon sauce on top of ribs and make sure you cover both sides. The ribs will overlap, so make sure there is sauce where they touch.
  • Cover slow cooker and set to high and cook for 4 hours.
  • After 2 hours, open the lid, switch the bottom ribs to the top and visa versa. Baste the ribs by ladling more the sauce over them again.
  • Transfer ribs to a serving platter and pour the bourbon sauce from the crock pot to a serving bowl.
  • Plate and ladle more sauce on the ribs.
  • Eat
  • Smile
  • Enjoy


This recipe gives you a good amount of sauce so you will have leftover.
Helpful tips
  • Sometimes baby back ribs are also known as loin ribs. You can use either.
  • You can cook these ribs in your slow cooker either on high for 4 hours or on low for 8 hours. I find they come out exactly the same. I prefer getting the ribs done quicker so I can eat them sooner.
  • Cut the ribs in half so they fit in the slow cooker better.
  • Make sure to cover both sides of the ribs with the bourbon sauce, especially since they will have to overlap a little.
  • Some people put their ribs in the oven to broil for a few minutes before consuming them. This helps caramelize the sauce, but I don't find that these ribs need that. They are delicious right out of the crock pot.
  • Here's how to remove the membrane off the back of the ribs: turn the ribs over so the membrane is facing up. Take a butter knife and slide it under the silverskin a few ribs in. Lift the knife and pry the skin up until you can grab it with your fingers. To make it easy to grasp the skin, cover your fingers with a paper towel so the skin doesn't slip. Pull the skin away from the ribs and discard.
  • When making the bourbon sauce, if you don't have apple cider vinegar, you can use some apple juice.
  • There is no need to add salt to the bourbon barbecue sauce because the addition of soy sauce takes care of any need for sodium.


Serving: 4ribs | Calories: 220kcal | Carbohydrates: 6g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 216mg | Potassium: 64mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 71IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 8mg | Iron: 1mg