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slow cooker baby back ribs

Today we are kicking off a week’s worth of slow cooker recipes. For this first one, I used a huge package of baby back pork ribs from Costco. It weighs between 8 and 9 pounds and I found that that was a bit too much to fit in my slow cooker.


As you can see, I cut the slabs in half and one of the halves didn’t fit in.


I could have wrapped it up and put it in the freezer, but instead, I cooked it in some beer, then grilled it and slathered it with ready-made BBQ sauce, and gave it to Connor for lunch when he stopped by. Perfect!


Also, I tell you to use diced tomatoes, for the ease of it. But if all you have are whole tomatoes (like I did) you can easily cut them right in the can by using your kitchen shears. Easy Peasy!


To begin with, all you need are these few ingredients.


Oh, and the can of tomatoes too. I almost forgot! (plus the garlic isn’t pictured, what the heck?!?)

These ribs and scrumptious beans make for a hearty bone-warming winter supper.

Balsamic-Dijon Glazed Baby Back Ribs with Great Northern Beans

slow cooker baby back ribs

  • 4 cups (1 quart) chicken broth, divided
  • 1/4 cup tomato paste
  • 2 cups (1 pound) dried Great Northern beans
  • One 28-ounce can diced tomatoes, drained
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 6 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
  • Four 4-inch fresh rosemary sprigs
  • 3 baby back rib slabs (about 8 to 9 pounds), cut in half, or smaller, if need be, to fit in slow cooker


  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons honey or agave nectar
  • 2 tablespoons whole-grain Dijon mustard
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Fresh rosemary sprigs for garnish


In a slow cooker, whisk together about 1/2 cup of the broth and the tomato paste until it is nice and smooth.


Then add the rest of the broth, the dry beans, diced tomatoes, wine, garlic, and rosemary sprigs.


Fit the ribs snugly into the beans, cover, and cook on HIGH for 4 hours.


Reduce the heat to LOW and continue to cook for 2-1/2 to 3 hours longer, or until the beans are tender.


Remove the ribs to a rimmed baking sheet along with the tough stems from the rosemary sprigs.  (Bombay photo bombed my picture!)


Discard the tough stems of the rosemary sprigs and skim off as much fat as possible from the liquid atop the beans in the slow cooker. If you aren’t ready to eat yet, cover the ribs with foil and set them aside.

When ready to serve, preheat the broiler to HIGH.


In a small bowl, mix together the balsamic vinegar, honey, and mustard for the glaze.


Turn the ribs so the meaty side is up. Season the ribs with salt and pepper and then brush with the balsamic-Dijon glaze and broil the ribs about 3 inches from the heat for about 5 minutes, until browned and heated through.

Cut into individual ribs, where necessary, the meat will most likely fall off the bones.

basamic glazed baby back ribs

Taste and generously season the beans with salt and pepper. Spoon beans into large shallow bowls, top with the glazed ribs, and serve.

Serves 8 to 10

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1 comment

1 Amy { 01.28.16 at 9:20 AM }

Wow! How fast can I get to Costco this morning for ribs to get this going for dinner! Thanks Linda, this will be another keeper, I’m sure!

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