We eat an awful lot of BBQ sauce in this house. I live with a man who would dip everything in BBQ if he could. We used to buy bottles of a famous name brand BBQ sauce every time we went to the store…until one day I realized just how easy it was to make our own at home. Not to pat my own back, but I’m proud to say that we both love our homemade bbq sauce a whoooole lot better. The thing I find with store bought BBQ sauce, is that it’s always awfully sweet, even if you buy a spicier version. I’ve got the biggest sweet tooth this side of the Mississippi, but do I enjoy it in my BBQ? Not really. When you make your own BBQ sauce, you can flavor it any way your heart desires, and that’s my favorite part about the whole thing. Want it super spicy? Extra garlicy? Extra honey? Make up fun spice combinations! The possibilities are endless.
Okay, here’s my real problem with store bought BBQ sauce. MOST of them, have ingredient labels that look something like this:
WHY is high fructose corn syrup the FIRST ingredient?! That means that most of that beloved bottle of BBQ sauce is HFCS. Yuck. For people like us who eat it by the spoonful, that is not good, and not okay by me.
In 20 minutes, I can make a HUGE batch of BBQ sauce, pop it in mason jars, and can them to last us months. It would take me more time to go to the store to purchase bottles of it.
So, without further ado, here is my basic recipe that I use. Feel free to taste as you go and customize it to your liking!
The Best Homemade BBQ Sauce
Makes About 5 Cups
+ 2 cups ketchup (preferably none with HFCS- Try my Homemade Version, it’s quick and easy!)
+ 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
+ 1/4 cup molasses
+ 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
+ 1/4 cup water
+ 1 teaspoon garlic powder
+ 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
+ 2 teaspoons ground mustard
+ 2 teaspoons smoked paprika
+ 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
+ 2 teaspoons salt
+ 1 teaspoon black pepper
+ 1 Tablespoon cornstarch
Add all of the ingredients (except the cornstarch) to a saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a boil, and simmer for about 5 minutes. If you’d like your sauce thicker, combine the cornstarch with 1/8 cup water and add to the sauce. Cook an additional few minutes, or until it becomes thick.
Store in an airtight container in your refrigerator.