How to cook short ribs in the Instant Pot with simple step by step instructions. The basic rules for cooking short ribs in a fraction of the time ~ you can adapt this to any short rib recipe!
how to cook short ribs in the Instant Pot ~ the basics.
I adore short ribs, and this is by far my favorite way to cook them. Today I’m sharing the basic rules for how to cook short ribs in the Instant Pot. Once you know the formula, you can adapt it to many different recipes and flavor profiles. If you want to go Italian, add red wine and tomato paste to the cooking liquid. Maybe some fresh thyme or rosemary, too. If you’re making tacos, add beer to the pot and maybe some dried chiles. The possibilities are endless 🙂
short ribs on a weeknight? why not!
The Instant Pot allows you to be spontaneous with this long-cooking cut of meat ~ imagine, short ribs after a long hard day of work. It can happen!
how to cook short ribs in the Instant Pot
Note: If you’ve got a traditional oven or stove top braised short rib recipe you can adapt it to the Instant Pot, just reduce the liquids and follow these guidelines. I am using the best selling 6 qt Instant Pot Duo.
STEP 1: season your short ribs
Just a little salt and pepper on all sides of your ribs.
STEP 2: brown the short ribs
This is the all important step. Heat a little oil in the pot, then brown the ribs in batches, so as not to crowd the pot. Brown the ribs on all sides, turning as needed. Tip ~ ribs have more than 2 sides! There are 6 sides that can be seared for tons of flavor. Long tongs come in handy here because there will be splattering.
step 3: add liquid
After all the ribs are browned, add them back to the pan and add your liquid. This can be water, broth, wine, whiskey, beer, or a combination, depending on your recipe. Optional flavorings include fresh or dried herbs or garlic.
STEP 4: pressure cook
Set the machine to PRESSURE COOK and set the timer to 45 minutes. When the machine is done cooking and beeps, do nothing for 15 minutes to let the pressure come down naturally. Then release the pressure valve, and when the pressure has come down completely and the lid has unlocked, you can open the lid. Be careful, there will be hot steam.
STEP 5: serve whole, or shred
The meat will be fall-off-the-bone tender, and ready to serve as is, over polenta, mashed potatoes, or whatever your recipe specifies. You can also shred the meat for chili, tacos, etc.
make sauce or gravy with the liquid
There will be thin liquid left in the pot that is full of flavor. You can leave it as is, and add the shredded meat back into it for dishes like tacos. But you can also thicken it into a gravy or sauce. After removing the meat you can thicken it with cornstarch, or press the SAUTE button to MORE and boil to reduce it down. To thicken with cornstarch, mix 1 or 2 teaspoons with some of the liquid to make a slurry, then whisk it into the pot and cook with the SAUTE button until it comes to a boil and thickens. Season to taste.
why cook short ribs in the Instant Pot?
Short ribs are one of the best cuts of beef to cook in a pressure cooker like the Instant Pot ~ it cooks ribs to fall off the bone tender in about 1/3 the time you’d need in a conventional oven. It does this because the trapped steam in the sealed machine raises the boiling point of water from 212F to 250F, effectively cooking foods that much faster. And with traditional low and slow braising you need quite a lot of liquid to cover the meat, but in the Instant Pot you only need a minimal amount, ensuring an extra flavorful sauce or gravy at the end. Did you ever dream you could have delicious short ribs on a weeknight?
get creative with quick cooking short ribs
If you want to level up a recipe, say chili, beef barley soup, or mac and cheese, with short ribs, this is the perfect way to cook them. Likewise if you need shredded meat for a recipe like tacos. Why not put them on nachos or fries? With this easy recipe you can afford to get creative!
more Instant Pot short rib recipes
- Irish Whiskey Braised Short Ribs (Instant Pot Recipe)
- Instant Pot Short Ribs with Rosemary and Polenta
oven braised short rib recipes
- Wine Braised Short Ribs
- Braised Short Ribs over Turnip Puree
- Short Rib Fries
- Irish Whiskey Short Rib Stew with Brussels Sprouts
- Mexican Short Rib Tacos
How to Cook Short Ribs in the Instant Pot
- Instant Pot Pressure Cooker This is the one I use.
for a thicker sauce or gravy (optional)
- 3 tsp cornstarch, or more as needed for a thicker sauce. You can also use flour.
- Worcestershire sauce, balsamic or sherry vinegar
- Season your short ribs on all sides with salt.
- Turn your Instant Pot on and press SAUTE. Press again until it reads 'More', which is its highest setting. Add the oil to the pot.
- Working in batches so you don't crowd the pot, brown the short ribs on all sides. Take your time with this and allow each side to get nice and caramelized. The two batches should take anywhere from 15-20 minutes total.
- With all the short ribs back in the pot, add the wine, beer, or any alcohol you're using. Then add the broth. Close the lid and set the vent to SEALING.
- Press PRESSURE COOK and then the + button to get to 45 minutes. That's it. Just wait until the machine beeps, indicating that it's done. Now don't do anything ~ wait a further 15 minutes for the pressure to release naturally.
- Switch the pressure value to VENTING and allow the pressure to release. When the lid has unlocked you can open the machine. Be careful, there will be hot steam.
- Remove the ribs from the pan. You can serve them whole, or shredded.
- Remove the liquid from the pot to a gravy separator. Carefully remove the fat from the top. (You can also refrigerate the liquid overnight and simply lift off the solidified fat the next day.) Put the liquid back in the Instant Pot and press SAUTE then the + button to 'More'. Mix a slurry of cornstach with a little of the liquid and whisk or stir into the pot. Stir often while the mixture comes to a boil and thickens. If it's not thick enough for you, make another slurry and repeat.
- Season your sauce to taste with salt and pepper, Worcestershire sauce, or a little balsamic or sherry vinegar.
- Serve your short ribs over mashed potatoes, polenta, or pasta. Keep it low carb with quinoa, or mashed cauliflower.