Slow Cooker Asian Short Ribs

This savory crockpot meal comes together in minutes and features tender, fall-off-the-bone Asian Short Ribs in a flavorful cooking liquid of soy sauce, beef broth, garlic, fresh ginger, and sesame oil!

Slow Cooker Asian Short Ribs with text overlay.

Life can get crazy. And now more than ever, I've been relying on my slow cooker to churn out dinner and keep me out of the drive-through lane come 5 p.m. However, since the weather has turned warmer, I've stowed away some of our favorite crock pot soup recipes in favor of slow cooked sandwich toppings, taco fillings, and savory meals like succulent, tender beef short ribs with an Asian flair...AKA, Asian Short Ribs!

Asian Short Ribs over rice on a plate.

This is another one of those recipes that resulted in effusive praise from the 4-year-old. I only wish you all knew him to hear the intonation and enthusiasm in his cute little voice when he makes these types of statements. And if you knew him, you also would soon figure out that 'sure' is his favorite word and he finds a way to work it into every other sentence.

"Mama, I suuuuure like this beef. Make it again, okay?"

Yes, sir. It took me all of five minutes to throw it in the crock pot and everyone is now wolfing it down. That I can do.

Asian Short Ribs garnished with chives over rice.

How to Make Asian Short Ribs

If you've never tried short ribs before, might I suggest this recipe as a great place to start?!

After a stint in the crock pot with a cooking liquid of soy sauce, beef broth, honey, fresh ginger, and garlic, the beef is juicy and falling off the bone.

The sauce gets finished off with sesame oil and the short ribs get sprinkled with toasted sesame seeds (which I forgot to add before taking pictures, dangit) and green onions (although I actually used chives because that's what I already had on hand...and I picked them all off before ingesting any because I loathe every member of the onion family).

And then everything is served over rice (or rice noodles would also be yummy).

(Okay, I'll stop all of the parenthetical asides now.) (Sorry.)

Plate and fork on table in front of window.

Ingredient Notes

As with most crockpot recipes that I make, I use minced garlic from one of those big, refrigerated jars. After cooking in the slow cooker for so many hours, I just don't think you can tell the difference between refrigerated minced garlic and freshly peeled/minced garlic.

On the other hand, I do think that it's important to use fresh ginger in this recipe, as opposed to ground ginger. Fresh ginger has such an amazing flavor and aroma that the powdered stuff just doesn't compare when it comes to a savory Asian-inspired dish like this.

I don't use fresh ginger all that often, so when I buy a hunk of ginger root, I freeze whatever I don't use. Then when I need a little bit for a recipe like this, I take my piece of ginger out of the freezer, use the side of a spoon to peel a small section of it, and then grate that peeled piece (still frozen) until I have enough measured out for my recipe. Easy as pie and SO worth the minimal effort.

The other tasty layer of flavor in this recipe comes from the sesame oil. Again, it's not an ingredient that you'll find yourself using all of the time, but it makes such a difference when a recipe does call for it. Since beef short ribs can be kind of fatty, once they are done, I remove them from the cooking liquid and skim the fat off the top of the sauce before finishing it off with the sesame oil.

Aerial view of plate.

Skimming the Fat

And would you like to know my super fancy, high-tech way of skimming the fat from the sauce of these Asian Short Ribs?

I always feel like I can't get it all with a spoon, or I end up scooping too much of the good sauce at the same time.

So instead, I carefully lay a sheet of paper towel right on top of the surface of the cooking liquid. The paper towel absorbs a layer of clear oil/melted fat. Then I remove that paper towel, do the same with another paper towel, and continue repeating until all of the clear oil/fat has been absorbed. When my paper towel starts absorbing dark brown sauce, that tells me that the fat is all gone and it's time to add the sesame oil.

Asian Short Ribs served over rice on a plate.

If you're looking for a slow cooker recipe that branches out from your standard crock pot fare, Asian Short Ribs might be just the recipe for you! I don't make it as often as I should based on the rave reviews it gets each time I do. But at the request of the middle child, that suuuuure is going to change. 😉

More Asian-Inspired Favorites

Plate and fork on table in front of window.

Slow Cooker Asian Short Ribs

This savory crockpot meal of Asian Short Ribs comes together in minutes and features tender, fall-off-the-bone beef short ribs in a flavorful cooking liquid of soy sauce, beef broth, garlic, fresh ginger, and sesame oil!
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Asian
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 8 hours
Total Time: 8 hours 10 minutes
Servings: 6 servings
Calories: 425kcal
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  • 4 pounds beef short ribs
  • ¼ cup low-sodium soy sauce
  • ¼ cup low-sodium beef broth, OR water
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 tablespoon fresh minced ginger
  • 1 tablespoon fresh minced garlic
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons Asian sesame oil
  • Hot cooked rice, OR Asian rice noodles
  • chopped green onions, optional
  • sesame seeds, plain or toasted, optional


  • Place short ribs at the bottom of the slow cooker. In a medium bowl, whisk together soy sauce, beef broth, honey, ginger, garlic, and black pepper. Pour over ribs. Cover and cook on low for 8 hours (or high for 4 hours), or until beef is tender.
  • Remove ribs from cooking liquid. Skim and discard oil/melted fat from the top of the cooking liquid. Stir sesame oil into the cooking liquid and return ribs (*or rib meat; see notes below) to the slow cooker, reheating for a few minutes until warm.
  • Serve beef ribs and sauce over hot cooked rice or rice noodles. Garnish with chopped green onions and/or toasted sesame seeds, if desired.


  • If desired, instead of serving ribs whole, you may trim fat from ribs, remove meat from bone, cut into bite-sized pieces, and reheat in the cooking liquid before serving.
  • If you prefer a thickened sauce, you may pour cooking liquid in a small pot, bring to a simmer, stir a tablespoon of corn starch into a tablespoon of cool water to make a slurry, and then whisk slurry into simmering liquid and cook until just thickened.


Serving: 4g | Calories: 425kcal | Carbohydrates: 7g | Protein: 43g | Fat: 24g | Saturated Fat: 10g | Cholesterol: 130mg | Sodium: 517mg | Potassium: 827mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin C: 0.4mg | Calcium: 22mg | Iron: 5mg
Made this recipe? I'd love to see on IG!Mention @FiveHeartHome or tag #FiveHeartHome!


Adapted from 3 Books in 1: Rival Crock Pot

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  1. One of my family's favorite recipes - thank you!!! Do you think it would work to double it? I use boneless short ribs so I know there will be room in the slow cooker. I just don't know if it's ok to double slow cooker recipes. Please let me know what you think. Thanks!

    1. Hi Julie! Yes, as long as everything fits in your slow cooker, you should be able to successfully double this recipe. 🙂 So happy your family enjoys it!

  2. Samantha-just put everything into the crock pot but realized I added the sesame oil now instead of waiting until after cooking as your recipe indicates. Any suggestions on how to fix or what will happen to the sauce?

    1. Hi Kia! I apologize for my delayed reply. I don't think that adding the sesame oil at the beginning would hurt anything...the flavor just might get lost and, if so, you might want to add another splash at the end before serving. Hope the recipe turned out well for you!

  3. Made this a couple weeks ago. My tastebuds LOVED it, my gut… not so much. Finally noticed today that my sesame oil is - oh I don't know - just about TWO YEARS past expiration. So, yeah… I'll definitely be making this again with FRESH oil.

    1. Oh no, Suzy! I'm glad you're going to give this recipe another try with fresh sesame oil sometime. I've actually noticed that my sesame oil goes rancid as well when I haven't used it in awhile. I don't know if it has a shorter shelf life than other oils, but I've learned to buy small bottles and always smell it before I use it! Anyway, hope you enjoy if you try this again. 🙂

  4. These ribs look delicious. I plan to make them this week. Should you brown the ribs before putting them in the slow cooker?

    1. Hi Debbie! You certainly can, but I'm rather of the philosophy that if I make something in the slow cooker, I don't want to have to dirty up another pot first! Ha. If you prefer browning your slow cooked meats before putting them in the crock pot, feel free to do so with this recipe. But I don't take that step and the short ribs still turn out great. 🙂 Hope you enjoy!

  5. I can't wait to try this recipe! I love all asian flavoring and my hubs love Short RIbs, its a recipes match made in heaven at our house. Thank you! Pinned - Nichole @Or So She Says

    1. I'm glad to hear this is up your alley, Nichole! Hope you enjoy it...thanks for the pin! 🙂

  6. These look SOOO good! Definitely not your typical crock pot meal... which is a good thing 🙂 Pinned to try!

    1. Thanks, Jill! That's what I love about this's different than our usual crock pot fare. 🙂 Hope you enjoy it and thanks for the pin!

  7. Wow. This looks delicious, Samantha. I'm pinning it to try soon. Thanks for sharing -- and have a GREAT time at the blogging conference!

    1. Thank you so much, Carrie! I hope you enjoy this recipe, and I'm very excited about the conference! 🙂

      1. We tried it today, Samantha! And it was every bit as delicious as I'd hoped after seeing your pictures. We used 2 1/2 lbs of boneless short ribs - worked great. My husband said to add it into our regular meal rotation. Have a great week!

        1. I'm so glad to hear that y'all enjoyed this, Carrie...thanks for stopping back by to let me know! 🙂 Hope you're having a wonderful week as well!

  8. You are killing me here, Samantha! These look SO ridiculously good. I've never tried making short ribs in the crock pot but I am loving the idea. I bet these would be amazing in tacos, too. Can't wait to try these!

    1. Ooooo, tacos! I like the way you think, Amy. 😉 Thanks for stopping by with your sweet comment...hope you have a happy Easter!