Air Fryer Tender Juicy Smoked BBQ Ribs is a quick and easy recipe that will show you how to make baby back or spare country pork ribs in the air fryer. You can use Power Air Fryer, Cooks Essential or any branded air fryer. Take your pick of boneless or bone-in ribs. Make sure to drizzle them in BBQ sauce.
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Do you live in a part of the country that has harsh winters? I do! I’m a Midwest gal. I live in Kansas City. Not only do we have harsh winters, but we are KNOWN for our BBQ here. No other city or state can compare to ours!
When it’s freezing cold and I am craving BBQ I am happy that I now have the air fryer to get me through. You can still prepare tender and juicy ribs that have that smokey taste.
What’s the secret? Liquid smoke. I have been using this stuff for years and you will definitely want to get some on hand as well.
What is the best way to grill ribs in the air fryer?
For starters, I suggest you marinate your ribs first, especially if you want the smokey taste. You don’t have to marinate them all night (though you can).
I suggest adding the liquid smoke and seasonings to the ribs. Cover them in foil and let them sit at room temperature for 30 minutes.
Then, you add them to the air fryer. Cook on both sides for 15 minutes each, for a total of 30 minutes.
When they are finished, slather them in your favorite BBQ sauce. My favorite is our local Gates BBQ sauce.
How long does it take to make BBQ ribs?
The ribs will need 30 minutes to marinate and another 30 minutes of cook time. You can complete the recipe in about an hour.
If you prefer to make your own BBQ sauce, check out this post on Homemade BBQ Sauce recipes.
Pair your ribs with these Loaded Air Fryer Baked Potatoes!
These will pair wonderfully with Air Fryer Grilled Cheese, Air Fryer Green Beans, Air Fryer Quesadillas, Air Fryer Cheeseburgers, Air Fryer Homemade Fries, Instant Pot Collard Greens, Instant Pot Cabbage, or Air Fryer Panko Breaded Bang Bang Shrimp. Be sure to check out these recipes.
Get a full list of Air Fryer Recipes here.
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Air Fryer Accessories
Get your Air Fryer Printable Cooking Charts and Cheat Sheets here! These are great to have on hand for reference. The charts include the cook time for fresh and frozen chicken, beef, seafood and vegetables.
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- 1 rack ribs (baby back or spare ribs)
- 1 tablespoon liquid smoke
- 2-3 tablespoons pork rub I used Kansas City Gate's classic BBQ rub or McCormick's Grill Mates Pork Rub is another option
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1/2 cup BBQ sauce
- Remove the membrane from the back of the ribs.This is a thin layer that can be tough to remove. Sometimes it will peel right off. You can also cut it, and pull it off. Cut the ribs in half or so the ribs are able to fit in the air fryer.
- Drizzle the liquid smoke over both sides of the ribs.
- Season both sides with the pork rub, salt and pepper.
- Cover the ribs and allow the ribs to sit at room temperature for 30 minutes.
- Add the ribs to the air fryer. It is ok to stack the ribs.
- Cook for 15 minutes on 360 degrees.
- Open the air fryer. Flip the ribs. Cook for an additional 15 minutes.
- Remove the ribs from the air fryer. Drizzle the ribs with BBQ sauce.
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Nutrition InformationYield 4 Serving Size 1
Amount Per ServingCalories 375 Total Fat 27g Carbohydrates 12 net g Protein 18g