In the mood for some Thai, thinking of Chinese and looking at pork ribs had me wondering if I wanted BBQ. This mind never stops because why eat the same thing night after night, right? So what I ended up with were beautiful, hot and sweet Cinnamon Coconut Curry Pork Ribs!
I love coconut milk used to not only thicken, but sweeten up a sauce and for the rub on the pork ribs I wanted pepper, not chilis for the heat, so I used white pepper.
If you’re a reader of this blog you know I love to grill and smoke meats, and pork ribs are my favorite. I wrote a great recipe post on how to properly prep and grill your ribs here with what I think are The Best BBQ Ribs and there’s my Jamaican Jerk Pork Ribs and Curry, Five Spice Dry Rubbed Pork Ribs, or you can bake them like my Baked Asian Curried Pork Ribs. There’s even more on the site, check them all out.
Now, if I’m not going to grill or bake ribs, I love what the pressure cooker can do to them. The results took me three times to get it right, but here it is. Let’s get started.
First off I make a dry rub of brown sugar, cinnamon, curry powder, white and black pepper and kosher salt. After cleaning my pork ribs they get sliced and covered with the sugar and spices and all go in a Ziploc to marinate for an hour minimum, overnight is always better!
Next I remove the ribs from the bag and brown on all sides with a little vegetable oil in the pressure cooker – lid off for now. Don’t over crowd the pan either. Brown them in batches, turning and making sure they get a golden brown on all sides. The brown sugar and meat will caramelize giving a delicious coating to sear in the flavors. Set aside until all ribs are browned.
Add a little more oil to the pressure cooker to coat the bottom of the pan and brown the chopped onions. Next add the ribs, the coconut milk and enough chicken stock to just about cover all the ribs. Stir to pick up any of the browned bits and put the lid on.
After the pressure cooker starts to steam and rock, turn the heat to medium low and cook for 25 minutes. Serve over steamed rice and a garnish of chopped cilantro.
The cinnamon and curry mix so well with the coconut milk and the sauce is thick and coats the fall-off-the-bone pork ribs. The onions basically melt and help thicken the sauce. It took me three times to get the sauce right with the heat level and thickness to coat the ribs. I hope you enjoy!
- 2 lbs pork loin ribs
- 3/4 cup brown sugar
- 1 tbsp curry powder (See Note 1)
- 1 tbsp cinnamon
- 1 tbsp salt
- 2 tsp white pepper
- 1 tsp black pepper
- 4 tbsp vegetable oil
- 1 medium white onion diced
- 13 oz coconut milk
- chicken stock
- cilantro for garnish chopped
- In a bowl whisk together the brown sugar, curry powder, cinnamon, kosher salt and both peppers. Dice the onion and set aside.
- Remove the thin, papery membrane from the back of each rack by inserting a knife under it if your butcher hasn't already. The best place to start is on one of the middle bones. Using a paper towel, or pliers to secure a grip and peel off and discard the membrane.
- Slice the ribs and place in a large bowl. Sprinkle the dry rub over, tossing to coat each rib all over. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap or place in a Ziploc bag. Marinate for an hour (overnight is better).
- To the Instant Pot add some vegetable oil and brown the dry rubbed pork ribs on all sides. Do this in batches to brown the ribs, not steam them. You want that browned meat.
- Add a little more vegetable oil to the pressure cooker if needed and brown the onions, scraping the bottom of the pan to pick up all the tasty bits.
- Add a little more vegetable oil to the pressure cooker and brown the onions, scraping the bottom of the pan to pick up all the tasty bits.
- Add the ribs, coconut milk and enough chicken stock to cover. Place the lid on and select Manual Pressure and set timer for 20 minutes (24 minutes depending if they’re extra meaty). Once done, allow the Instant Pot to go through natural release. OR use a Slow Cooker 4 hours on High or 8 hours on Low.
- Carefully remove ribs from pot and keep warm on platter covered with foil.
- Thicken the remaining sauce by cooking on Saute for 10 minutes or pour into saucepan over medium heat and thicken using a mixture of 1 tablespoon of cornstarch with 3 tablespoons of water. Stir to thicken and cook for 5 minutes.
- Pour sauce over ribs when serving with steamed rice and garnish with chopped cilantro.
- I use Madras Curry Powder which typically is hot, but feel free to use whatever curry powder you prefer.