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Indian ribs

Instant Pot Indian Spiced Ribs

Juicy, tender, flavorful melt in your mouth finger licking good with little hassle Indian fusion ribs served with a tangy/sweet tamarind BBQ sauce!
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Total Time 1 hr
Course Main Course
Cuisine Indian Fusion
Servings 4 people


  • 2 rack baby back ribs or spare ribs, 2-3 lbs.
  • 1 cup water or stock
  • 3 tbsp apple cider vinegar

Indian Spice Dry Rub

  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 2 tbsp brown sugar
  • 2 tsp kosher salt
  • 2 tsp onion powder
  • 2 tsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 2 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp ground corainder
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tbsp graham masala
  • 2 cups Tamarind BBQ Sauce any BBQ sauce

Tamarind BBQ Sauce

  • 1 onion diced red or white
  • 1 4 in ginger, peeled/minced or shredded or 1 tbsp store-bought ginger paste
  • 2-3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 serrano or jalapeno pepper, deseeded/minced or 1/2 tsp cayenne or chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp allspice
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika or regular paprika
  • 2 tsp garam masala
  • 1 cinnamon stick or 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar or maple syrup/honey
  • 1 tsp ground mustard
  • 1/3 cup tamarind paste, concentrated
  • 1/3 cup molasses
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste
  • 15 oz tomato sauce


  • Rinse the ribs and pat dry. Remove thin white membrane if the ribs still have it attached. See photo above. Flip the ribs over, meat-side down. Wiggle a dull knife (such as a butter knife) between the membrane and the ribs to loosen it. With a paper towel, grip the membrane and pull it away, then discard.
  • Mix rubs ingredients together in a small bowl. Rub it all over the ribs, generously coating all of the sides. Can do this step the night before or let it sit for 15-20 minutes to infuse the flavors (optional).
  • Place the trivet (or rack) in the bottom of a 6-quart or larger Instant Pot. Pour in the water, apple cider vinegar. Place the ribs inside the pot, standing them on their side.
  • Cover and seal the Instant Pot. For baby back ribs: Cook on high (manual) pressure for 30 minutes. No need to let it naturally release. It's cooked as is!
  • Towards the end of the ribs’ cook time, place a rack in the upper third of your oven and set it to broil. Line a large baking sheet with aluminum foil. Transfer the cooked ribs to the foil, then brush liberally with barbecue sauce. Place under the broiler just until the sauce begins to caramelized, about 2-3 minutes or directly on the grill. Do not walk away to make sure the ribs don’t burn.

Tamarind BBQ Sauce

  • Heat large sauce pan over medium heat. Add olive oil and saute onions until translucent. Add garlic, ginger, serrano pepper, and saute for 1-2 minutes. Add in dry spices/cinnamon stick to toast for a minute.
  • Add in tomato paste for a minute then add in tomato sauce, molasses, honey, worcestershire sauce, and apple cider vinegar. Bring to a boil and decrease heat to low and cover. Let it simmer for 30-45 minutes.
  • Adjust seasonings accordingly. Blend in blender or use immersion blender. Make sure to remove cinnamon stick before blending.


  • If you don't have time to make the tamarind BBQ sauce then use your favorite store-bought kind. 
  • Make the BBQ sauce a day or two in advance.
  • Let the ribs marinate overnight if you plan ahead and does make the meat more flavorful. 
  • Try it using chicken or even fish. Cooking times will vary. 
Keyword easy rib recipe, instant pot ribs