How To Make BBQ Sauce

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A flavourful, sweet & smoky bbq sauce. Great with smoked meats, burgers or as a dip.

barbecue bbq sauce

There’s a lot of different opinions in the bbq world on whether barbecued food should be served with sauce. The way I see it is that if you want to eat barbecue with sauce then you should have the option to.
And that option should be just as good as the meat you’ve spent hours cooking!

This barbecue sauce recipe ticks all of the boxes. It’s sweet, smoky & a little tangy. With just enough heat.

The good news is that your more than likely to have all the ingredients for this sauce already in your cupboard. Plus, you can make it from start to finish in as little as 15 minutes.

What Ingredients Are Used?

Take a look online & you’ll find endless combinations of ingredients for bbq sauce.
To break it down the main ingredients are;

  • Tomato Ketchup
  • Sugar
  • Vinegar
  • Honey/Molasses/Treacle
  • Dried Spices – Chilli, Cayenne, etc.

These ingredients are what make the base for this bbq sauce but I’ve also added some extra ingredients for flavour, sweetness & extra glossiness. The full ingredient list can be found in the recipe card at the bottom of this page.

How To Make BBQ Sauce

Barbecue sauce is possibly the simplest sauce to make but also the tastiest!

All you have to do to make some, is combine all of the ingredients in a saucepan & warm it gently on the stove to dissolve the sugar. It’s as simple as that!

If you want to take things a step further, making your sauce extra smoky you could cook the sauce in a smoker or barbecue, stirring it every 20 minutes or so.

What To Serve BBQ Sauce With

The most popular use for bbq sauce would have to be pulled pork. You can also use it to glaze ribs or chicken, drizzle over a burger or serve with chips & fries.

How To Store BBQ Sauce

Once you’ve made the sauce, it needs to be cooled down then stored in the fridge. Kept refrigerated, it will last for over a week.

More Recipes

How To Make Barbecue Sauce

A flavourful, sweet & smoky barbecue sauce. Great with smoked meats, burgers or as a condiment.
Prep Time10 minutes
Cook Time10 minutes
Total Time20 minutes
Course: Dinner, Lunch, Sides
Cuisine: American
Yield: 500 ml
Author: Ben Racey


  • Large Saucepan


  • 300 g Tomato Ketchup
  • 75 g Dark Brown Sugar
  • 50 ml Whiskey
  • 2 tbsp Worcestershire Sauce
  • 2 tbsp Honey
  • 2 tbsp Treacle
  • 1 tbsp Tomato Puree
  • 1 tbsp French's Mustard
  • 1 tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 1 tbsp Gherkin Juice Or An Extra tbsp Of Vinegar
  • 1 tsp Smoked Paprika
  • 1 tsp Ground Cumin
  • 1 tsp Smoked Garlic Granules
  • 1 tsp Onion Powder
  • ½ tsp Cayenne Pepper
  • ½ tsp Mustard Powder


  • Add all of the ingredients into a large saucepan.
  • Cook over a low heat, stirring often until the sugar has dissolved & the dry ingredients have been cooked out. This will take at least 10 minutes.
  • Season the sauce generously with salt & pepper then pass through a sieve into a container.
  • Leave to cool completely then store in the fridge.


If using an Aga, cook on the simmering plate.
Make sure to give the sauce enough cooking time, at least 10 minutes. This is so the dry ingredients cook out fully & the final sauce doesn’t taste powdery.
For an extra level of flavour, you can cook this sauce in a barbecue as oppose to a stove.
I’d recommend heating your barbecue to a low temperature (around 300f/150°c) & cooking the sauce for around 1 hour, stirring occasionally.

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