Slow-Cooker Red Wine-Braised Short Ribs - America's Test Kitchen

Total Time
4hrs 40mins
Prep 40 mins
Cook 4 hrs

Slicing the meat off the bones allowed the ribs to lie flat in the skillet and made it easier to trim some of the fat. The bones add a wealth of flavor to this dish. Microwaving the rib bones before adding them to the slow cooker proved to be a faster, less complicated alternative to roasting them. Because the slow cooker does not allow for evaporation, the red wine is reduced on the stovetop to concentrate the flavor before adding it to the slow cooker. Tapioca is used as a thickener in this recipe. For this recipe, English-style ribs are preferred, each of which contains a single, large rib bone and a thick piece of meat, rather than thinner, flanken-style ribs.

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. MICROWAVE BONES: Cut meat from bones and set aside. Arrange bones in 13- by 9-inch baking dish and microwave until well browned, 10 to 15 minutes. Transfer to slow cooker.
  2. BROWN MEAT: Pat meat dry with paper towels and season with salt and pepper. Heat oil in large skillet over medium-high heat until just smoking. Cook meat until well browned, about 5 minutes per side. Transfer to slow cooker.
  3. COOK AROMATICS: Cook onions, carrot, and celery in now-empty skillet over medium heat until browned, about 8 minutes. Stir in tomato paste and thyme and cook until beginning to brown, about 1 minute. Stir in wine and vinegar and simmer, scraping up any browned bits, until reduced to 1 cup, about 5 minutes. Stir in broth, tapioca, and bay leaves and return to boil. Transfer to slow cooker.
  4. BRAISE AND FINISH: Cover slow cooker and cook on low until meat is fork-tender, about 8 hours (or cook on high for 4 to 5 hours). Transfer meat to serving platter. Strain and defat cooking liquid and discard solids. Stir parsley into sauce and season with salt and pepper. Pour 1 cup sauce over meat. Serve, passing remaining sauce at table.