Slow Cooked Pork Shoulder Ribs over Creamy Polenta

My whole plan for this lazy Sunday was to slow cook some chicken, but when I got to the grocery store I found some pork shoulder ribs on sale. I’ve never cooked this type of meat before and I thought I should give it a try.

After a few Google searches for slow cooked pork shoulder ribs, I decided on this one from This sounded easy, delicious, and I happened to have all the ingredients already. I used this fellow’s recipe for his BBQ dry rub and his BBQ sauce, but with the sauce I added some liquid smoke and a dollop of Dijon mustard.

My pork shoulder ribs looked wider than the ones in his recipe and I was only able to squeeze three ribs in the bottom of the Crock Pot, which was a perfect serving for my husband and me (and lunch tomorrow). I’m sure you could stack the ribs in the Crock Pot if you were feeding more. I also used more than 1 teaspoon of the dry rub. I didn’t measure; I just coated the ribs on both sides.

Although this was a BBQ-style dish, I just knew the juices from the ribs would be scrumptious over creamy polenta, so I made some of that too. The pork was falling off the bone and super flavorful. I will definitely be making this dish a staple in our household.

Here’s how you can make it.

Ingredients:’s dry BBQ rub’s BBQ sauce, or BBQ sauce of your choice

2.5-3 lbs. pork shoulder ribs

kosher salt

2 cups water, divided

2.5 cups chicken stock

1 cup dry polenta, or cornmeal

1/2 cup parmesan cheese, grated

1/4 cup half and half

salt and pepper



Coat both sides of your ribs with kosher salt and spice rub and place the ribs in your slow cooker. Pour 1/2 cup of water into the cooker, cover, and cook on low for 6 hours or so. Add 1/2 cup of BBQ sauce and cook another hour. I turned my slow cooker to high for the last hour, but I’m sure it doesn’t make a big difference.

When you have 45 minutes left on the meat, start boiling the chicken stock in a large saucepan. In a bowl, combine the polenta with 1.5 cups of water. When the stock is boiling, slowly add the polenta sludge and stir constantly until it’s smooth. Turn heat to medium low, cover and cook for 40 minutes, stirring every 5 minutes or so. If polenta is getting too thick, add a couple of tablespoons of stock. Turn off the heat, add cheese, half and half, and salt and pepper to taste. Set aside while finishing up the meat.

Transfer the ribs to a serving platter. Pour the juices into a measuring cup and remove as much fat as possible with a ladle. Reserve 1/2 cup of the juice and add 1/2 cup of BBQ sauce to it.

Serve the ribs on a big dollop of polenta and smother it all in sauce. Green beans make a great side.


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