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Mason jar full of homemade BBQ sauce next to an empty saucepan

Homemade BBQ Sauce

An easy homemade BBQ sauce that is both quick to make and better than store-bought sauce. It is sweet, sour, and sticky, with a hint of spice, and pairs perfectly with ribs or chicken.
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Barbecue
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes
Servings 4 cups
Calories 611kcal
Author Gary White


  • 2 cups ketchup
  • 1 cup dark brown sugar
  • cup molasses
  • ½ cup apricot preserves
  • cup Dijon mustard
  • ¼ cup apple cider vinegar
  • ¼ cup vegetable oil
  • 2 Tbsp. garlic minced
  • 2 Tbsp. hot sauce
  • 4 tsp. chili powder
  • 1 tsp. ground black pepper
  • ½ tsp. ground cloves
  • ½ tsp. ground allspice
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt


  • Add all ingredients (except the salt) to a medium saucepan, then turn the heat to medium. Don't turn the heat too high too quickly or you will have a splattery mess everywhere.
  • Begin stirring frequently to prevent sticking and splatters.
  • When the sauce begins to simmer, turn off the heat, set the saucepan to the side, and allow it to cool.
  • Once the sauce is cool enough to taste, add the salt and mix.



Expert Tips

  1. Do not turn on the heat while still adding ingredients. All of the thick liquids will begin to splatter if not stirred frequently.
  2. I recommend making a double batch at the beginning of summer. Place half in an airtight container and freeze for up to 3 months. Then thaw overnight before your next cookout.


  1. What if I can't find apricot preserves? Most grocery stores carry them in the jelly section. However, if your store doesn't carry them, there are several available on Amazon.com, or if you're feeling ambitious you can make your own
  2. Why do you add the salt at the end? There is a decent amount of salt in some of the other ingredients, so I find it best to season to taste in this case. The amount of salt listed in the recipe is to my taste, but you may want to reduce it.


Serving: 1cup | Calories: 611kcal | Carbohydrates: 155g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 2g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Trans Fat: 1g | Sodium: 2121mg | Potassium: 1454mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 135g | Vitamin A: 2175IU | Vitamin C: 16mg | Calcium: 239mg | Iron: 5mg