Slow Cooker Asian Spare Ribs

Alright, let’s talk ribs. When done right, they are so tender and juicy they yield that fall-off-the-bone goodness that everyone strives for when cooking this cut of pork. And to get this level of praise-worthiness they need to cook for a long time. But who has time to stand over a grill or smoker for 8 hours when you want your ribs done right on a weeknight? No one. That’s why I decided to try ribs in the crockpot to keep them cooking low and slow all day long. And man, let me tell you. What a good decision that was!

After cooking in the crockpot all day, these ribs get basted in extra sauce and then broiled in the oven for a few minutes to get those crispy edges that we all love on grilled meat. And to twist up the recipe even more – I ditched traditional barbecue sauce for a sticky, sweet, slightly spicy Asian-inspired sauce.

The result is the the most tender rack of ribs with a thick layer of tangy sauce on top. Get ready, because you are going to fall in love with these magical ribs.

img_1023Serve: 4-6


3 pounds pork spare ribs
1/2 cup reduced-sodium soy sauce
1/4 cup fresh orange juice
4 tablespoons hoisin sauce
4 tablespoons honey
2 tablespoons rice vinegar
1 tablespoon chili paste
1 and 1/2 teaspoons grated ginger
4 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 tablespoon corn starch
2 tablespoons cold water


  1. Season ribs with salt and place them in the slow cooker.
  2. In a bowl, whisk together soy sauce, orange juice, hoisin, honey, rice vinegar, chili pasta, ginger and garlic. Pour about three quarters of the sauce over the ribs and leave one fourth of the sauce in a bowl. Cover the remaining sauce in the bowl and place in the fridge for later use.
  3. Cover the slow cooker and cook on low for 8 hours.
  4. When the ribs are done, pour remaining sauce into a small sauce pan on the stove. Heat pan over medium-high heat and bring to a boil.
  5. Whisk together corn starch and water in a small bowl. Pour corn starch slurry into pan with the boiling sauce and stir together. Allow the sauce to boil for 3-4 more minutes until thickened. Remove from heat.
  6. Preheat broiler and put ribs on a baking sheet. Baste ribs in thickened sauce and place under broiler for about 5-7 minutes to get the edges crispy.
  7. Cut individual ribs with a sharp knife. Top with sesame seeds and green onion, and serve with any remaining sauce.

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