These air fryer ribs are quick, tender, and doused with a delicious barbeque sauce. Ready in minutes; enjoy them as dinner or lunch with your favorite sides!
If you’ve tried our 3-2-1 ribs before, you are in for a treat- Make juicy fall-off-the-bone ribs in a fraction of the time, thanks to the air fryer.
It’s a convenient and hassle-free way to enjoy this classic dish!
Why this recipe works
- Quick. No need to heat up the grill or oven; these ribs cook up in minutes!
- Easy. Season the ribs, toss them in the air fryer and let it do all the work.
- Healthier. Fried or baked ribs require tons of oil or butter when cooking.
- Easy clean-up: Air fryer cooks without excessive oil splattering, making clean-up easy afterward.
What I love the most about this recipe is that the air fryer gives the ribs a nice crispy exterior while still keeping the inside tender and juicy!
Besides the ribs and some seasonings, there isn’t much else in this recipe. Here is what you’ll need:
- Pork baby rack ribs. These are specific rib cuts from the upper rib racks of pork. These include riblets, loin ribs, and back ribs. You can usually find them as a pack in the grocery store’s meat section.
- Salt and pepper. To season.
- Black pepper. To season.
- Spices. We used garlic powder, mustard powder, and smoked paprika.
- Barbeque sauce. Use any of your favorite BBQ sauces to coat the ribs with. Use a good quality barbecue sauce, as it makes all the difference.
How to cook ribs in the air fryer
Ready to make perfect ribs in the air fryer? Here are the simple instructions:
Step 1- Preheat the air fryer
Before you begin, preheat the air fryer to 380F.
Step 2- Prepare the ribs
Remove the membrane from the ribs using a kitchen knife and clean it with a paper towel. Cut the rack into three equal parts and dry the ribs with a paper towel.
Step 3- Season the ribs
In a small bowl, add all the spices and season both sides of the ribs using it.
Step 4- Cook the ribs in the air fryer
Wrap the ribs with the aluminum foil and place them in the pre-heated air fryer basket. Adjust the temperature to 380F, and air fry them for 25 minutes.
Step 5- Brush the sauce and cook again.
Remove the ribs from the air fryer and carefully remove the aluminum foil. Brush the barbeque sauce and toss it into the air fryer for 10 minutes or until it sticks to the meat.
Step 6- Rest, then Serve
Allow the ribs to rest for several minutes before serving. If desired, brush with more barbecue sauce.
Tips to make the best recipe
- Look for meaty and well-marbled ribs, as these will be the most flavorful and tender.
- Always pat ribs dry with a paper towel before seasoning them, as this will help the seasoning adhere to them and help them become crispy in the air fryer.
- Cook the ribs in batches to ensure that the ribs cook evenly and never overcrowd the air fryer basket.
To store. Leftover ribs can be stored in the refrigerator, covered, for up to 4 days.
To freeze. Once the ribs have cooled, place them in a shallow container and store them in the freezer for up to two months.
Reheating. Reheat the ribs in the air fryer for several minutes or in the microwave for 20-30 seconds.
More air fryer recipes to try
Frequently asked questions
When the temperature of the air fryer is 380F, it takes 40-45 minutes to cook in the air fryer. As the thickness of ribs increases, you’ll have to increase the cooking time.
Yes, you’ll get perfectly tender ribs in the air fryer. Make sure to remove the membrane to allow the seasonings to absorb better.
Yes, you can use foil in the air fryer to make cleanup easy.
Air Fryer Ribs
- 1 rack pork ribs
- 1 teaspoon pepper
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon mustard powder
- 1/2 cup barbecue sauce
- Preheat the air fryer to 195C/280F.
- Remove the membrane from the rack of ribs and divide them into three portions.
- Pat dry the ribs and sprinkle all the seasonings on both sides.
- Wrap each portion of ribs in tin foil and place them in the air fryer basket. Air fry for 25 minutes.
- Remove the ribs from the air fryer and discard the tin foil. Brush barbecue sauce all over the meat.
- Place the ribs back in the air fryer basket and air fry for a further 10 minutes.
- Allow the ribs to rest for 5 minutes before serving.