How to Cook Short Ribs in Air Fryer?

How to Cook Short Ribs in Air Fryer?

If you’re looking for a quick and easy way to cook short ribs, look no further than your air fryer! My air fryer short ribs recipe is simple to follow and results in tender, juicy ribs that are packed full of flavor.

Key Takeaways

  • Trim excess fat from short ribs before seasoning and cooking in air fryer.
  • Preheat air fryer to 400°F (200°C) and cook ribs for 20-25 minutes, flipping halfway through.
  • Avoid overcrowding the air fryer basket and let cooked ribs rest for a few minutes before serving to ensure maximum flavor.
  • Pair cooked ribs with your favorite barbecue sauce or glaze, along with sides like mashed potatoes or roasted vegetables.

Getting Started: Preparing the Short Ribs

Before I start cooking the short ribs in an air fryer, I need to prepare them properly. Here are the steps I take:

  1. Trim any excess fat: Using a sharp knife, I carefully trim any excess fat from the ribs. Removing the excess fat also prevents flare-ups and ensures even cooking.
  2. Season the ribs: I season the ribs with my preferred spices or a dry rub. This can include salt, pepper, paprika, garlic powder, or any other seasoning that I like. The dry rub will add extra flavor to the ribs.
  3. Marinate the ribs: If I have the time, I like to marinate the ribs for a few hours or overnight to enhance the flavors. A marinade can consist of soy sauce, Worcestershire sauce, vinegar, or any other ingredients that I like.

By following these simple steps, I ensure that my short ribs are ready for cooking in the air fryer.

Cooking the Short Ribs in the Air Fryer

Now that the short ribs are prepped and ready to go, it’s time to cook! The cooking time for short ribs in an air fryer typically ranges from 20-25 minutes, depending on your desired level of doneness. Make sure to flip the ribs halfway through the cooking process to ensure even cooking on both sides.

The ideal temperature for air fryer short ribs is around 400°F (200°C). This will ensure that the meat gets crispy on the outside, while remaining tender and juicy on the inside. It’s important not to overcrowd the air fryer basket when cooking the ribs, so they have enough space to cook evenly.

Air frying short ribs is a quick and easy cooking method that produces delicious results. Because the air fryer uses hot air to cook the food, it’s a healthier alternative to traditional deep frying methods. The result is tender ribs with a perfectly caramelized exterior, without all the added calories and grease.

Remember that the exact cooking time may vary depending on the thickness of the ribs and your preferred level of doneness. To ensure your ribs are cooked to perfection, use a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature. For medium-rare, aim for an internal temperature of 130-135°F (54-57°C), while medium should be around 140-145°F (60-63°C).

Tips for Perfectly Cooked Short Ribs

If you want to achieve tender and flavorful air fryer short ribs, here are some tips to keep in mind:

  • Avoid overcrowding: Be sure to cook the ribs in a single layer in the air fryer basket, leaving enough space between each rib for even cooking.
  • Resist the temptation to open: Keeping the air fryer closed as much as possible during the cooking process will help maintain a consistent temperature and prevent overcooking.
  • Let them rest: Once the ribs are finished cooking, let them rest for a few minutes before serving to allow the juices to redistribute and ensure maximum flavor. Covering them with foil can help keep them warm during this time.
  • Consider marinading: Marinating the short ribs for a few hours ahead of time can help enhance the flavors and tenderize the meat.
  • Keep an eye on the time: The cooking time for short ribs in the air fryer can vary based on the thickness of the ribs and your desired level of doneness. Be sure to keep an eye on the time and use a meat thermometer as needed to ensure they are cooked to your liking.

By following these tips, you’ll be able to achieve perfectly cooked, tender, and flavorful air fryer short ribs that are sure to impress your guests.

Serving and Enjoying Your Air Fryer Short Ribs

Now that your short ribs are cooked to perfection, it’s time to serve and enjoy them. You can enjoy the ribs on their own, or pair them with your preferred barbecue sauce or glaze for added flavor. Here are some serving suggestions and side dish ideas that complement the richness of the ribs.

Serving Suggestions for Short Ribs

  • Top with chopped fresh herbs, such as parsley or cilantro, for added freshness.
  • Serve alongside grilled corn for a summery twist.
  • Pair with a glass of bold red wine, such as Cabernet Sauvignon or Merlot.

Side Dishes for Air Fryer Short Ribs

  • Mashed potatoes: Creamy mashed potatoes provide a perfect canvas for sopping up the juices.
  • Roasted vegetables: Roasted vegetables, such as carrots or Brussels sprouts, provide a healthy and flavorful side dish.
  • Fresh salad: A fresh salad with a tangy vinaigrette is a refreshing balance to the richness of the ribs.

Whatever sides you choose, make sure to adjust portions based on the size of your appetites and the number of people you’re serving.

After you’ve plated your meal, take a moment to appreciate the aromas and vibrant colors of your dishes. Then, dig in and enjoy your perfectly cooked air fryer short ribs!


Cooking short ribs in an air fryer is a game-changer. It’s quick, efficient, and the result is deliciously tender ribs with a flavorful crust. I hope this guide has been helpful, and that you’re feeling confident about giving it a try!

Remember to take your time and prep the ribs properly, season them generously, and cook them in a preheated air fryer for the best results. And don’t forget to let them rest a few minutes before slicing into them.

Once you’re ready to serve, feel free to get creative with your sides and sauces. Mashed potatoes, roasted veggies, or a crisp salad all go well with short ribs. And as always, let your taste buds be your guide!

So why not try cooking short ribs in your air fryer this week? You might just find a new favorite recipe to add to your rotation. Happy cooking!


Q: Can I use frozen short ribs in the air fryer?

A: It is recommended to thaw the short ribs before cooking them in the air fryer for more even and consistent results.

Q: What is the recommended thickness for the short ribs?

A: Short ribs that are about 1 to 1.5 inches thick work best in the air fryer.

Q: Can I use a different temperature for cooking the short ribs?

A: The recommended temperature for cooking short ribs in the air fryer is 400°F (200°C), but you can adjust it slightly based on your preference.

Q: How long should I marinate the short ribs?

A: Marinating the short ribs for at least a few hours or overnight will allow the flavors to penetrate the meat and enhance its taste.

Q: Can I use a different seasoning for the short ribs?

A: Absolutely! Feel free to experiment with different spices, rubs, or marinades to customize the flavor to your liking.

Q: Can I open the air fryer during the cooking process?

A: It’s best to avoid opening the air fryer too frequently to maintain a consistent cooking temperature and prevent any disturbances.

Q: How do I know when the short ribs are done cooking?

A: The short ribs should reach an internal temperature of 145°F (63°C) for medium-rare or 160°F (71°C) for medium doneness. Use a meat thermometer to check for doneness.

Q: Can I cook other meats or vegetables alongside the short ribs in the air fryer?

A: It is recommended to cook the short ribs separately to ensure even cooking. However, you can experiment with cooking other meats or vegetables alongside the ribs if your air fryer has enough space.

June Brandt
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