Sherry Braised Short Ribs with Pearl Onions are pressure cooker short ribs that cook up in about one hour and are melt in your mouth tender!

Pressure cooker short ribs on white plate

Beef short ribs are a dish that I normally order out on special occasions, and in the past I’ve rarely ever made them at home.

Before I owned a pressure cooker, it took a minimum of 3 hours to get tender, falling off the bone short ribs, and most of the time I didn’t have 3 entire hours to wait for dinner to cook.

These Pressure cooker short ribs are happening a lot more often because they cook up in about one hour or less! 

Below are some benefits of pressure cooking:

  • Food cooks faster — up to 70% faster.
  • Because food quicks quicker, less nutrients are lost.
  • Because of the high heat, foods caramelize more, and flavors become more concentrated, which results in a lot more flavor.
  • The nutrients that the food loses during cooking time are in the cooking liquid. 
  • Your produce isn’t as likely to lose its beautiful color during cooking time, because it spends less time cooking.
  • Foods like pulled pork, short ribs can be made on busy weeknights because they cook up in about an hour.

Pressure cookers have come a long way since the one my mom had when I was growing up.  I used to be so fearful that it would explode!  

Thanks to the Instant Pot and other pressure cookers on the market, pressure cooking is a lot more main stream.  I truly use mine several times a week!

Pressure cooker short ribs

Short ribs are the kind of meat that’s either melt in your mouth tender, or tough and unappetizing.  

They require low, slow cooking in the oven or slow cooker as I mentioned, but the key words there are slow cooking.

The slow cooker is a viable option when you have all day to cook the short ribs, but sometimes you won’t have that luxury.   

Most of the time, I don’t have my ducks in a row, so having the option to get my short ribs done 70% faster with my pressure cooker is worth it’s weight in gold.

Pressure cooker short ribs on white plate

The only prep I did for these ultra tender pressure cooker short ribs was to salt and pepper them and let them come to room temperature.  There’s no fancy rub or dry brining necessary as this meat has so much flavor.  

Simple, simple.

If you go the pearl onion route like I did, they take a little time to prep.  The quickest way I know to peel pearl onions is to boil them in water for just a couple of minutes, then the peel comes off easily.   

The pearl onions are worth the effort, because they were so tender and caramelized!  

I used dry sherry in this pressure cooker short ribs recipe to impart a nice layer of flavor here, but you can use red wine or madeira as well. 

The real flavor comes from the aromatics that I added to the pot.  The pearl onions, carrot, celery, garlic, thyme, parsley, and a bay leaf are what really make this dish shine. 

These are the ingredients that make soups, stews, and stocks flavorful, and they made this sherry sauce out of this world good, too.

Close up of pressure cooker short ribs on white plate

The thing that I loved about this sauce was that it was the perfect consistency when the ribs were tender, and I didn’t need to do a thing to it except add a little salt and pepper.  

If your sauce seems thin, you can remove everything from the pot except the sauce, and add a cornstarch slurry (about 1 teaspoon cornstarch mixed with a bit of water), and cook the sauce until it reaches the desired consistency for you.

I was so excited to get tender, falling off the bone short ribs in such a short time — I can’t even describe it.  Actually, I think describing it as life changing is right on target.  

This pressure cooker thing — it was money well spent. 🙂

Pressure cooker short ribs on white plate

More short rib recipes:

Short rib risotto

Short rib tacos by Café Delites 

Slow cooker beef short ribs

Serve pressure cooker short ribs with these side dishes:

Mushroom risotto

Roasted sweet potatoes

Yukon gold mashed potatoes

Yield: About 4 servings

Sherry Braised Short Ribs with Pearl Onions {Pressure Cooker}

Pressure cooker short ribs on white plate

Sherry Braised Short Ribs with Pearl Onions are pressure cooker short ribs that cook up in about one hour and are melt in your mouth tender!

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 3 lbs. beef short ribs
  • 10 ounce bag pearl onions, ends trimmed and peeled
  • 4 garlic cloves, peeled and sliced
  • 1/2 cup dry sherry
  • 1 large carrot, top removed, peeled, and cut into large chunks
  • 1 celery stalk, cut into large chunks
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 sprig thyme
  • 1 sprig flat leaf parsley
  • 2 cups beef broth
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1 teaspoon of cornstarch, if needed


  1. Season the short ribs with salt and pepper and allow to come to room temperature while you prep the other ingredients.
  2. Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in the pressure cooker with the lid off over medium heat. When hot, add the short ribs, being careful not to overcrowd the pan. Brown both sides until golden, and set aside.
  3. Degrease the pan, then add the other tablespoon of olive oil. Add the pearl onions, browning slightly, about 1-2 minutes, then add the garlic and sauté 30 seconds.
  4. Add the sherry and deglaze the pan, scraping up the brown bits. Add the ribs back to pot, along with the carrot, celery, bay leaf, thyme, parsley, and beef stock.
  5. Place the lid on the pressure cooker and lock it in place. Set the pressure cooker on high, and turn the stove top on high. When the pressure cooker releases steam and comes to pressure, turn the heat down to medium and cook about 45 minutes. Let the pressure cooker come back down to pressure naturally and check for doneness. If the ribs aren't yet tender, bring back up to pressure and cook another 10-15 minutes or until very tender.
  6. Remove the ribs and vegetables from the pot, and thicken the sauce if necessary with a mixture of 1 teaspoon cornstarch mixed with a bit of water and cook until it reaches the desired consistency. Season the sauce with salt and pepper, if needed, and serve!


  • If you don't own a pressure cooker or Instant Pot, you can still make this dish! Simply reduce the sherry by half on the stove top after browning the ribs, and cooking the onions and garlic, and place everything in the slow cooker for 2 1/2 - 3 hours, or until tender.
  • Substitute the dry sherry for red wine or madeira, or omit altogether and use beef stock.

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Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 1165Total Fat: 84gSaturated Fat: 35gTrans Fat: 5gUnsaturated Fat: 48gCholesterol: 340mgSodium: 959mgCarbohydrates: 12gFiber: 2gSugar: 4gProtein: 90g

Nutrition information is mean to be an estimate only. The numbers will vary based on the quantity consumed, brands used and substitutions that are made.


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