Slow-Cooker Cranberry Glazed Ribs

I'm usually not much of a meat eater. I owe this fact largely to Michael Pollan and Jonathan Safran Foer whose books have challenged the way I always thought (or more accurately, failed to think) about the meat I was eating. The reasons I maintain as much of a vegetarian diet as possible are far and vast, from my health to that of the animals providing meat, from the environment to my own wallet. But sometimes I do crave something thick and meaty. In such rare cases, I try to make the most of my carnivorous meals and choose my meat as ethically and wisely as possible.

Recently Mike was dreaming of devouring a nice rack of ribs and he got me in the mood for some as well. I had come across an interesting recipe for cranberry barbecue ribs just a few weeks before and decided this would be the perfect way to prepare an indulgent and meaty meal. Better yet, I came up with a way to do it all in the slow cooker, leaving me with very little clean up and even less prep work.

Six hours of low heat in the crock pot made the meat tender enough to just fall right off the bone by dinnertime. The interesting combination of sweet cranberry and tomato-y barbecue made these ribs even more decadent and delectable, though maybe not the healthiest of meals.

I wasn't too precise with my measurements when throwing everything in the slow cooker, but this recipe is highly adaptable and easy to alter to your particular taste. If you don't have enough cranberry sauce on hand, strawberry jelly or blueberry jam would both make for delicious substitutions. Play around with whatever flavors you like and enjoy every last bite off the bone of these ribs!

Slow-Cooker Cranberry Glazed Ribs


  • 1 rack pork ribs
  • 3 cloves garlics, minced
  • 3/4 cup jarred cranberry sauce
  • 1/2 cup strawberry jelly
  • 1/2 cup ketchup
  • 1/2 cup barbecue sauce
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • Salt and pepper to taste

1. Cut ribs to fit in slow cooker (I cut the rack into multiple two- to three-bone sections).
2. Place ribs in bottom of slow cooker. Add remaining ingredients on top of ribs
3. Cook on low setting for 6 hours. Enjoy!

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