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Crock Pot Chipotle Pork Ribs

Slow Cooker Chipotle Pork Ribs {Honey-Lime Glaze}

Tender ribs seasoned with a dry rub, cooked in a slow cooker, topped with honey-lime glaze and finished off with a quick broil in the oven.
5 from 2 votes

Ingredients

Chipotle Dry Rub

  • 2 tablespoons Chipotle chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons granulated garlic
  • 2 teaspoons salt* *If marinating the ribs longer than 2 hours, omit salt from the dry rub mixture and add the salt to the ribs separately just before the ribs go into the slow cooker.
  • 2 teaspoons ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons brown sugar (packed) (dark or light)

Slow Cooker (Crockpot) Ribs

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil (or non-stick cooking spray) for the bottom and sides inside the slow cooker pot
  • 3 pounds pork loin rack of ribs (baby back pork ribs)
  • Chipotle dry rub

Honey-Lime Glaze

  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1 juiced lime (medium size)

Broiled Ribs

  • Slow cooker ribs
  • Honey-lime glaze

Equipment

  • 5 quart slow cooker (crockpot) or larger
  • Large sheet pan
  • Foil or parchment paper

Instructions

Slow Cooker Pot:

  • To the inside of the slow cooker pot, add olive oil (or non-stick cooking spray). Using a cooking or pastry brush spread the olive oil evenly on the bottom and sides inside the pot. Set aside.

Chipotle Dry Rub:

  • In a small bowl, add Chipotle chili powder, granulated garlic, salt, ground black pepper and brown sugar. Whisk together and set aside.

Pork Loin Back Ribs (Baby Back Ribs):

  • Remove the Membrane (Silverskin) on the Back Side of Ribs:
    1. Remove the ribs from the package and pat them dry with a paper towelThen discard the paper towel.
    2. On a large sheet pan, lay the rack of ribs curved side-downThe side with the white membrane should be facing up.
    3. On either end of the rack, lift and loosen the edge of the membrane. If the silverskin won't loosen, try using a blunt knife to get it started.
    4. Using a paper towel, grab and pull the end of the loosened membrane until it starts to separate from the meat.
    5. Continue to pull the membrane towards the opposite side of the rack of ribs until it comes completely off in one piece.  It may also come off in pieces.
    6. Discard the membrane.

Apply the Dry Rub to All Sides of the Meat:

  • While the rack of ribs is still on the baking sheet, sprinkle half of the dry rub on one side and around the edges.
  • Rub the spices evenly onto the meat. Then turn the rack of ribs over and sprinkle the remaining dry rub on the top side and edges of the meat.
    Rub the spices evenly onto all sides of the meat.
  • Let the dry rub sit on the ribs for at least 15 minutes before adding them to the slow cooker pot.
  • If marinating the ribs with the dry rub longer than 2 hours, omit the salt from the dry rub mix and add it separately on the ribs just before putting them in the slow cooker pot. Leaving salt on the ribs for too long may dry them out.

Cook the Ribs in the Slow Cooker (Crockpot):

  • Stand the rack of ribs up on one side in the slow cooker pot. So that the rack of ribs doesn't soak in its own juices and fat when cooking.
  • Cover the slow cooker pot and cook on the low setting for 3 hours.
    Don't cook the ribs any longer than 3 hours or they may not stay on the bone when cutting them.

Honey-Lime Glazed Chipotle Pork Ribs:

  • In the oven, move one of the racks to top position that's for broiling. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
    Line a large baking sheet (sheet pan) with foil (or parchment paper) and set aside.
  • Honey-Lime Glaze - In a small bowl, add honey and fresh squeezed lime juice. Whisk and set aside for a moment.
  • Ribs Cooked in Slow Cooker - When the ribs are done cooking in the slow cooker (after 3 hours of cooking on the low setting), carefully transfer the rack of ribs onto the foil or parchment paper-lined baking sheet.

Add Honey-Lime Glaze on Ribs:

  • Using a cooking or pastry brush, apply the honey-lime glaze on each side of the rack of ribs.
    Reserve the remaining honey-lime glaze for a second coating on the rack of ribs, and some for serving.

Broil the Ribs:

  • On the foil-lined baking sheet, position the rack of ribs so that the meat side (curved side) is facing up.
    Broil for about 10 minutes and then carefully remove the pan with the rack of ribs from the oven onto a heat-proof surface.
    Keep a close eye on the ribs in the oven because it's very easy to burn them when broiling.
  • Brush a second coating of the honey-lime glaze on both sides of the rack of ribs and reserve the remaining glaze for serving.
    Place the rack of ribs back in the oven (curved side up) to broil for about 5 more minutes or until the top of the rack of ribs has a slight char to it.

Let the Ribs Rest:

  • Remove the ribs from the oven and let them rest for about 10 minutes so that the juices will redistribute.

Cut the Rack of Ribs:

  • After the broiled ribs rest and are cool enough to handle, transfer them onto a cutting board with the meat side up.
    Carefully cut each rib cleanly between the bones.
    The ribs should be very tender but still stay on the bone.
  • When cutting the ribs, try to avoid "sawing" with the knife.  Instead, a sharp knife should cut cleanly through the meat between the bones.
    If the meat is pulling away from the bone too much when cutting the ribs with the meat side (curved side) up, try turning the rack of ribs over so that the meat side (curved side) is facing down. 
    Then cut each rib evenly between the bones. 

Serve:

  • Drizzle the remaining honey-lime glaze on top of the cut ribs and serve.

Notes

TIPS:

  1. If marinating the ribs with the dry rub longer than 2 hours, omit the salt from the dry rub mixture and add it separately on the ribs just before putting them in the slow cooker pot.
  2. Don't cook the ribs in the slow cooker any longer than 3 hours or they may not stay on the bone when cutting them.  And cook on the low setting.
  3. Keep a close eye on the ribs in the oven because it's very easy to burn them when broiling.
  4. When cutting the ribs, try to avoid "sawing" with the knife.  Instead, a sharp knife should cut cleanly through the meat between the bones.
  5. If the meat is pulling away from the bone too much when cutting the ribs with the meat side (curved side) up, try turning the rack of ribs over so that the meat side (curved side) is facing down.  Then cut each rib evenly between the bones.