We demonstrate optical unlocking of a cavity resonance in a mid-infrared (MIR) quantum cascade laser (QCL) cavity ring-down spectrometer using a low-power multimode near-infrared (NIR) laser diode. A NIR laser with a center wavelength of 1310 nm is injected into a QCL whose amplitude and frequency are modulated as a result. The shift in frequency leads to a rapid interruption of the cavity resonance. The optical method is compared to cavity interruption with a current step by measuring ring-down times in a high-finesse optical cavity, coupled with a QCL with a center wavelength of 4.5 μm. The results indicate the comparable performance of the all-optical method with the more conventional current modulation, but with significantly reduced bandwidth requirements for the QCL driver, opening the way to other potential applications in MIR laser spectroscopy.