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Easy Slow Cooker BBQ Ribs are seasoned with dry rub, cooked in the Crock-Pot, slathered with sauce and finished off on the grill. It’s the perfect summer dinner!

easy slow cooker bbq ribs on platter outside

Is there anything better than a big old platter of fall-off-the-bone ribs slathered in barbecue sauce? Well, other than chocolate, that is!

I absolutely love ribs — always have. It wouldn’t be summer without them! Growing up, my grandmother made the best ever ribs on the charcoal grill. She was in charge of grilling ribs, and my dad was in charge of steaks, which worked out perfectly.

The only problem with grilling ribs on the barbecue is that it’s so darn hot outside, especially here in AZ. Nobody wants to stand over a hot grill in triple-digit temperatures! So, the Hubs and I experimented with different ways to cook ribs, and I think we finally found the perfect method.

We like to cook the ribs in the slow cooker first and then finish them off on the grill or oven. I know so many people who use this method, and it’s super easy. We tried baking ribs in the oven, low and slow, but this made the house way too hot. So, these easy slow cooker BBQ ribs brushed with a tangy honey BBQ sauce are much, much better.

Here are some of our favorite summer side dishes to round out the meal:

easy slow cooker bbq ribs with dry rub

The first few times we tried making the ribs in the Crock-Pot, the Hubs covered them in barbecue sauce and let them cook for a few hours until they just fell off the bone. He loved them, but I felt something was missing. Personally, I like to use a dry rub to season the ribs before cooking them. I just think they taste better this way.

So, that’s what we do now.  After the meat has a rub down with brown sugar and spices, it goes into the slow cooker for a few hours. When the ribs are done, we brush some barbecue sauce all over them and then either bake the ribs or grill them for a few minutes.

easy slow cooker bbq ribs in crock-pot

And friends, these slow cooker barbecue ribs are the best ribs ever. They’re absolutely delicious! And best of all, you don’t have to work up a sweat while they’re cooking because the slow cooker does most of the work!

I whipped up my own honey barbecue sauce, but you can use your favorite homemade sauce or one from the store.

slow cooker bbq ribs with sauce on platter

How to Make Easy Slow Cooker BBQ Ribs

5 from 1 vote

Easy Slow Cooker BBQ Ribs

By: Dee
Spare ribs are rubbed with a homemade seasoning mix then slow cooked in the Crock-Pot before being finished of on the grill and slathered with honey bbq sauce
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 4 hours 10 minutes
Total Time: 4 hours 20 minutes
Servings: 8


  • 3 pounds pork spare ribs
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
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  • Cut the ribs into smaller pieces, mix brown sugar and spices together, and season ribs with dry rub 
  • Place ribs in slow cooker, and cook on high for 4 to 6 hours or low for 8 to 10 hours. They fall off the bone easier the longer they cook 
  • Remover from slow cooker, brush with BBQ sauce, and finish on grill over medium heat. Or, place on baking sheet and broil for about 5 minutes


Calories: 335kcal, Carbohydrates: 3g, Protein: 33g, Fat: 20g, Saturated Fat: 4g, Cholesterol: 125mg, Sodium: 689mg, Potassium: 551mg, Sugar: 2g, Vitamin A: 135IU, Calcium: 40mg, Iron: 1.5mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Main
Cuisine: American
Like this? Leave a comment below!

I hope you enjoy these easy slow cooker BBQ ribs as much as we do!

Happy Cooking,

Shared at Weekend Potluck

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Recipe Rating


  1. Sandi G says:

    Those ribs look so moist and tender. Totally yummy!

  2. Miz Helen says:

    I just pinned your amazing ribs! Thanks so much for sharing with us at Full Plate Thursday. Have a great week and come back soon!
    Miz Helen5 stars

  3. Cathy @ Lemon Tree Dwelling says:

    Nothing beats bbq ribs in the slow cooker!

  4. Valerie | Valerie's Kitchen says:

    I love this method! I bet they are just so tender. Looks wonderful!

    1. Dee says:

      They were perfect this way! Thanks, Valerie. 🙂

  5. Katerina @ diethood .com says:

    I love that these are made in the slow cooker! They look fantastic!!

    1. Dee says:

      Thanks so much, Katerina. It’s my favorite way to cook ribs!

  6. Janice says:

    Think this would work on Baby-back Ribs ? Sound delish – I’m also a fan of dry rubs on ribs….

    1. Dee says:

      Hi, Janice! It should work for baby back ribs, too.

  7. Jen says:

    I love utilizing my slow cooker during the summer. So easy to set it and have dinner ready with little effort. These looks so good! I’ll put this on the list to try this summer.

  8. Des @ Life's Ambrosia says:

    I don’t use my slow cooker that much in the summer, I need to try it this year!

    1. Dee says:

      I used to think the slow cooker was for fall and winter, but I’m using it more and more when it’s hot out. 🙂

  9. Ginny McMeans says:

    I like using the slow cooker all year long! My bro-in-law will be wanting this recipe too!