Slow Cooker Beer Braised Short Ribs

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4.79 from 33 votes
These Slow Cooker Beer Braised Short Ribs are tender and melt in your mouth.  Plus, the sauce is pure decadence! This is seriously one of the best slow cooker recipes of all time and one of the most popular on my site.
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 8 hours
Total: 8 hours 10 minutes
Crock pot short ribs on a white platter with a red napkin
These Slow Cooker Beer Braised Short Ribs are tender and melt in your mouth.  Plus, the sauce is pure decadence! This is seriously one of the best slow cooker recipes of all time and one of the most popular on my site. Crock pot short ribs on a white platter with a red napkin Lately, I’ve been hearing a lot about short ribs. Julie Powell talked about them in her book Cleaving: A Story of Marriage, Meat, and Obsession (here’s the Kindle edition). The contestants on Top Chef are always whipping up recipes with them. The Food Network chefs have been using them a lot lately, too. Therefore, I had to try and put my own Slow Cooker spin on this delicious trend.

What Makes this Crock Pot Short Ribs Recipe Work

You will be completely amazed by how flavorful and rich these ribs are. Specifically, how decadent sauce is. I’m going to be begging my butcher for short ribs on a regular basis now! It’s definitely one of the best slow cooker recipes of all times. The slow cooker is indeed the perfect method for these Crock Pot Short Ribs. Especially, as the low and slow way of cooking makes the beef fall off the bone tender.

 Make These Slow Cooker Short Ribs – Step by Step

  • Step One:  First, combine the brown sugar, mustard, tomato paste, thyme, bouillon. (Photo 1 below)
  • Step Two: After this add the beer.  (Photo 2 below)
  • Step Three: Stir to combine.  (Photo 3 below)
step by step photos for making crock pot short ribs braised in beer
  • Step Four: Next season the short ribs with salt and pepper.  (Photo 4 below)
  • Step Five: Then add garlic to the bottom of the crock pot.  (Photo 5 below)
  • Step Six: Place the short ribs in the Crock pot and add a bay leaf.  (Photo 6 below)
  • Step Seven: Pour  sauce over the meat.   (Photo 7 below)
step by step photos for making crock pot short ribs braised in beer
  • Step Eight: Finally, cover and cook on low for 8 hours or until meat is tender. Remove short ribs and cover with foil. Skim fat from cooking juices. (Photo 8 below)
  • Step Nine: Next, place juice in a sauce pan. This fat skimmer is amazing.  (Photo 9 below)
  • Step Ten: Then, bring liquid to a boil.  (Photo 10 below)
  • Step Eleven: Combine flour and water until smooth then add to juices. Lastly, cook and stir for 2 minutes or until thickened.  Place Short Ribs back in Sauce and serve. (Photo 11 below)
step by step photos for making crock pot short ribs braised in beer

Short ribs? What Are they?

Short ribs are a cut of beef taken from the brisket, chuck, plate, or rib areas of beef cattle. They consist of a short portion of the rib bone, which is overlain by meat which varies in thickness.  You can learn more about this cut here. They are very different from traditional ribs, which are much thinner and not quite as meaty.

Raw beef short ribs on a cutting board

Can you make this braised short ribs recipe in the oven?

These short ribs can be made in a Dutch oven and baked in the oven. Just brown the short ribs first, then put on the lid and bake. Next, cook at 350 for 2 to 2 1/2 hours. Ribs should be fork-tender and falling off the bone. Finally, remove  pan from oven and allow to sit for at least 20 minutes prior to serving. slow cooker short ribs braised in beer on a white platter

Expert Tips for Making the Best Beef Short Ribs Slow Cooker

In the first place, I thought I would have to take the time to brown the Short Ribs. However, I found that they come out perfect without taking the time to do this step. Also, anyway I can save time, is a winner in my book.
  • These short ribs go perfectly over my Creamy Polenta, mashed potatoes or cauliflower rice.
  • Try different beers. Guinness is a favorite for braising ribs or similarly add a full bodied red wine, such as Cabernet.
  • These beef ribs freeze beautifully.

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Crock pot short ribs on a white platter with a red napkin

Slow Cooker Beer Braised Short Ribs

4.8 from 33 votes
These Slow Cooker Beer Braised Short Ribs are tender and melt in your mouth.  Plus, the sauce is pure decadence! This is seriously one of the best slow cooker recipes of all time and one of the most popular on my site.
Print Pin Rate
Servings: 4
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 8 hours
Total Time: 8 hours 10 minutes

Ingredients

  • 3 medium onions cut into wedges
  • 3 pounds to 3-1/2 bone-in beef short ribs
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 12 ounces bottled beer or nonalcoholic beer
  • 2 Tbsp brown sugar
  • 2 Tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 2 Tbsp tomato paste
  • 2 tsp dried thyme
  • 2 tsp beef bouillon granules
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 3 Tbsp all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup cold water

Instructions

  • Place onions in a 5-qt. slow cooker; add ribs and bay leaf.
  • Combine the beer, brown sugar, mustard, tomato paste, thyme, bouillon, salt and pepper.
  • Pour over meat.
  • Cover and cook on low for 8 hours or until meat is tender.
  • Remove meat and vegetables to a serving platter; keep warm.
  • Discard bay leaf.
  • Skim fat from cooking juices; transfer juices to a small saucepan.
  • Bring liquid to a boil.
  • Combine flour and water until smooth.
  • Gradually stir into the pan.
  • Bring to a boil; cook and stir for 2 minutes or until thickened.

Expert Tips

  • Serve over your favorite starch, mashed potatoes, rice or riced cauliflower. 
  • Try different beers. Guinness is a favorite for braising ribs or similarly add a full bodied red wine, such as Cabernet.
  • These beef ribs freeze beautifully.

Estimated Nutritional Information

Calories: 557kcal | Carbohydrates: 23g | Protein: 50g | Fat: 25g | Saturated Fat: 10g | Cholesterol: 146mg | Sodium: 1141mg | Potassium: 1121mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 10g | Vitamin A: 140IU | Vitamin C: 8.1mg | Calcium: 64mg | Iron: 6.8mg

The nutritional information provided are estimates. To learn more about how I calculate this information go to www.itisakeeper.com/about-its-a-keeper/privacy-disclosure-policies/

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79 thoughts on “Slow Cooker Beer Braised Short Ribs”

  1. 5 stars
    My dad used to make this kind of meal a lot so my husband got a treat every once in a while because I don’t know how to make regular ribs. So sad being a butcher’s daughter isn’t it? This is such a great recipe I think I can do it! I am going to surprise my husband!

    Reply
  2. 5 stars
    We LOVE these short ribs! It was so easy to throw them in the slow cooker! Also, I have never cooked them with beer before so thanks for recommending a lager, I never would have known what to use.

    Reply
  3. 5 stars
    I love the tip that we don’t need to brown first. I am planning on making this for dinner night with aclose friend and I know he’ll love this

    Reply
  4. 5 stars
    My husband LOVED these scrumptious Beer-Braised Short Ribs. And I LOVED how easy this delicious finger-licking-good recipe was to make in the slow cooker. This is one recipe I’ll be making again and again!

    Reply
  5. 5 stars
    Oh my goodness! I love short ribs and I love my slow cooker. I can’t wait to make these this weekend for my family. Everyone is sure to love them.

    Reply
  6. 5 stars
    We tried this recipe for the first time and it’s one that will go into our meals we love to cook and eat. It was so easy in the slow cooker and meant that we were able to get on with stuff whilst it cooked. Bonus was even the fussy eaters loved it.

    Reply
  7. If I don’t sear them first, do I still need to coat them in flour? Also, any info of beef broth amount as substitute for boullion would be helpful. Thanks!

    Reply
    • No you don’t need to coat them, then. If I don’t sear them, I will simply add the juices to a sauce pan right before serving and use a flour slurry to thicken it. To substitute beef broth, just swap out the water and boullion with broth.

      Reply
  8. Hi Chris, I’m a new fan and I’m so impressed with your recipes, a lot of Blue Ribbon winners for sure. Right now I’m going thru your Slow-Cooker recipes (I’m so in-love with my Crock-Pot too). Sure wish you had “Pin-It” button on them, would be a pleasure for me to share them on Pinterest. Sister From the South, LindY G

    Reply
  9. This was an incredible dish ! I used a bottle of Guiness Stout and added a 1/4 C of dark molasses to the mixture poured over the ribs before cooking !

    Reply
  10. This sounds so good, I can’t wait to try it. If I could offer a suggestion. I cook with beer quite a bit and the one thing you want to do is use a strongly flavored beer. Stouts and Porters go especially well with beef, you just want to wait to eat those the next day (to combat the bitterness).

    Reply
    • Thanks for the suggestion! I usually use lagers — since that’s what we drink. I like the fuller bodied flavor in these recipes too! 🙂

      Reply
    • Wow- this is such a timely post for me! I just got myeslf a slow cooker and am totally hooked. Throw a few things in and when it’s time to go home, dinner is ready. Brilliant!Will have to try some of these delicious recipes

      Reply
  11. These short ribs are fantastic. I add extra vegetables in the crockpot, too. A family favorite, for sure! This is my go to comfort food recipe.

    Reply

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