Slow Cooker Pork Ribs

I’ve been meaning to post my recipe for braised spicy pork ribs for a while. It’s finally ready! I find myself making Korean braised dishes mostly in the slow cooker these days.

What can I say – it’s so much easier! You throw the ingredients in the slow cooker and forget about it until the meat is fork-tender and ready to be served.

Maeun galbijjim (spicy braised ribs) is a popular braised dish in Korea. You can use beef short ribs, but it’s more commonly made with pork ribs. I personally think the red spicy seasoning works better with pork ribs. And pork is much cheaper. I like to use baby back ribs from Costco. They are tender and very meaty.

This recipe is spicy, but you can certainly make it spicier by adding more gochugaru, some dried whole red chili peppers, or fresh chili peppers. On the other hand, if you want to make a mild version of the braised pork ribs, you can use my slow cooker galbijjim recipe for beef short ribs and adjust the time for pork ribs as necessary. I’d also suggest adding more ginger because pork tastes great with lots of ginger.

You can sear the ribs to add that rich browned meat flavor and remove some fat, but I skipped that process in this recipe. For those of you who are wondering how to make this dish on a stove top, I will post the stove top method soon. You may also like my BBQ pork ribs.

Slow Cooker Pork Ribs


  • 3 pounds pork baby back ribs
  • 1 medium onion cut into big chunks
  • 1 large potato cut into big chunks
  • 2 scallions cut into big chunks
  • 6 to 7 garlic cloves roughly chopped
  • 1-1/2 inch ginger thinly sliced


  • 3 tablespoons gochugaru 고추가루, Korean red chili pepper flakes
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 3 tablespoons rice wine or mirin
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 2 tablespoons gochujang 고추장, Korean red chili pepper paste
  • 1 teaspoon doenjang 된장, Korean fermented soybean paste
  • 1/2 apple grated
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon sesame seeds


Separate the ribs by cutting through the meat between the bones. Rinse the ribs, and let them sit in cold water for about 30 minutes to draw out excess blood. Drain well or pat dry with paper towels.

Place the ribs in the slow cooker. Mix all the sauce ingredients (except the sesame oil and seeds) in a small bowl. Add to the ribs, and stir well to coat evenly. Drop the vegetables in.

Turn the slow cooker on high heat. Cover, and cook for about 4 to 5 hours until the ribs reach the desired tenderness (you can cook on low heat if you’ll be out longer, about 6 to 8 hours). Stir in sesame oil and sesame seeds. Skim off excess fat before serving, if desired. Serve with a bowl of rice.

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