Slow Cooker Western Ribs

My mother was a widow for 27 years and lived alone until she died at the age of 95. As many of us know, cooking for one can be a real challenge and she repeatedly told me how difficult it was to adapt. Couple this with the fact that it was getting harder and harder to figure out what to get for her birthdays, Christmas, Mother’s Day, etc., I had one of those “aha” moments and came to the realization that I could cookfor her and control ingredients so they would not adversely impact her cholesterol or diabetes. There was no turning back. I had marathon cooking days where I would prepare 3 or 4 batches of entrees. I froze them in single-size servings and took them home when I went. A few years ago, we bought her a small freezer. More space. More food. More choices. This is what we refer to in my house as “Mom Stuff”. As far as I’m concerned, these ribs were one of her favorites and a staple in her freezer. The only question I have is “Why did it take me so long to figure it out?”

Slow Cooker Western Ribs


  • Pork broth (chicken broth if pork isn’t available)
  • 5 – 6 lbs western style ribs
  • bbq seasoning of your choice (I use a locally crafted mix)
  • Minced (dehydrated) onions, a few handfuls


These are pork ribs, western style. Big and meaty.
Sprinkle liberally with your favorite BBQ-style seasoning. I use a locally made “Barnyard” seasoning. You can use a dry-rub, any pre-made seasoning, or, as always, you can make your own. A little short on time or options? A little salt, pepper, maybe paprika, onion salt….. check your pantry. You know what your favorite seasonings are.
Put them into a slow-cooker (when I was growing up, we called ‘em crock pots) and add liquid and minced onions. I like to use pork broth which is NOT to be confused with ham broth. They have totally different tastes. If you don’t have, or more likely, can’t find pork broth you can use chicken broth and maybe a little white wine. Cook them for 4 to 6 hours or until you get home from work and YUMMMMMMMMMM. They will be falling off the bones, unless you used boneless ribs. Enjoy!


These are also great for a working person’s dinner. Put them on to cook before you leave for work and when you get home, TA-DA, dinner. If you’re really rushed in the morning, do the prep the night before. Put the seasoned ribs in the slow cooker liner and refrigerate. In the a.m., drop the liner into the slow cooker, add the liquid and turn it on. You’ll be glad you did.

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