Finger licking good homemade BBQ sauce made from ingredients you already have in your kitchen. Deliciously smoky, tangy, and rich, it’s the perfect sauce to use on chicken, pork, beef, baked beans, and more!
Easy homemade BBQ sauce with ketchup
Forget about the storebought stuff and learn How to Make BBQ Sauce at home! All you need are simple ingredients already in your kitchen and just 1 pot. Bottle it up and use it for weeks!
I love making homemade sauces at home, like cherry tomato sauce and gravy. Not only are they surprisingly easy to throw together, but they always taste better than the storebought version. This barbecue sauce, in particular, is made with a handful of condiments and spices so there’s no excuse NOT to throw it together when you have a spare 15 minutes.
Homemade barbecue sauce with ketchup has a delicious balance of sweet, smoky, tangy, and rich flavors. It isn’t spicy either, meaning you can serve it to the whole family. Use it on anything, from wings, grilled chicken to baked beans to ribs!
What’s in homemade barbecue sauce?
All you’ll find in this BBQ sauce recipe are simple condiments and spices. Plus, there are a number of variations you can try when you feel like mixing up the flavors. This is what you need:
- White vinegar
- Chili powder
- Garlic and onion powder
- Salt and pepper
How do you make BBQ sauce?
It’s so easy! The simple ingredients come together in 1 pot and the sauce is ready to enjoy after a quick 15 minute simmer. This is how it’s done:
Heat the ketchup, honey, vinegar, and molasses together in a saucepan over medium high heat until smooth.
Stir the cumin, salt, pepper, paprika, chili powder, onion powder, and garlic powder into the sauce.
Lower the heat and let the sauce simmer until it thickens up.
Use the sauce right away or transfer it to a mason jar to use later.
- Less sweet – Omit the honey or use half of the amount.
- Smoky – Use smoked paprika instead of regular paprika or add 2 or 3 drops of liquid smoke.
- Vegan – Use maple syrup or agave instead of honey.
- More tang – Swap white vinegar for apple cider vinegar.
- Less tang – Don’t love vinegar? Swap with water.
- Spicy – Stir in a pinch of cayenne or a splash of your favorite hot sauce.
Ways to use barbecue sauce
Homemade barbecue sauce can add layers of punchy, smoky flavors to all kinds of dishes. These are my favorite ways to use it:
- Slather it on grilled chicken wings or drumsticks, pork, and beef.
- It helps these sausage kabobs really pop!
- Drizzle it on burgers and pizza.
- Use it in baked beans.
- Pour some in a bowl and use it as a dip with quesadillas, sweet potato fries, nuggets, and more.
- Stir it into pulled pork or brush it on pork butt.
- It’s a must-have with these slow cooker spare ribs.
Storing and freezing
To store: Keep the cooled sauce in a sealed mason jar in the fridge for up to 2 weeks. Use a spoonful or a cup whenever you need it!
To freeze: The BBQ sauce can be stored in a sealed mason jar or container for up to 3 months. Let it thaw in the fridge before using.
Learn how to make more easy homemade sauces
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How to Make BBQ SaucePrint
- In a medium-sized saucepan, mix ketchup, honey, vinegar and molasses over medium high heat until well combined and smooth.
- Add cumin, salt, pepper, paprika, chili powder, onion powder and garlic powder into sauce pan, and continue to stir.
- Reduce heat to low and simmer for 15-20 minutes, or until a thickened BBQ sauce has formed.
- Slather on chicken (especially wings and drumsticks!), pork, beef or do something else with it. Store any leftovers in a mason jar in the refrigerator. Enjoy!