Homemade BBQ Sauce

Easy homemade BBQ sauce that you can easily adjust to your own liking! Add more sugar for a sweeter taste, or more vinegar for tart, the choice is up to you!

Homemade BBQ Sauce on a spoon dripping into the pot
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Easy homemade BBQ sauce that you can easily adjust to your own liking! Add more sugar for a sweeter taste, or more vinegar for tartness, the choice is up to you!

In the spirit of this sauce being homemade why not also make Homemade Worcestershire Sauce to use in this recipe? Not sure how to use your BBQ Sauce, try these Amazing BBQ Ribs or these Instant Pot Ribs!

Homemade BBQ Sauce on a spoon dripping into the pot

Homemade BBQ Sauce

BBQ sauce is one of those staple sauces that every household should keep on hand.

The trouble is, a lot of them just don’t taste very good.

While you could spend countless hours researching and finding the very best barbecue sauce for your preferences, it would be a lot easier to learn how to make your own instead.

Homemade BBQ Sauce ingredients in small white and clear bowls

Are There Alternatives To Using Ketchup?

No matter how hard you try, it is almost impossible to escape the presence of ketchup in barbecue sauce.

While most people will like ketchup in any application, there are some few that find the famous red sauce utterly detestable and don’t want a trace of it in their homemade barbecue sauce.

The problem, however, is that ketchup adds so much to any BBQ sauce.

Ketchup not only adds a good tomato base, but it adds sweetness, acidity, and a surprising depth of flavor all at once.

However, if you really want to find a way to replace ketchup, you could consider adding a can of tomato sauce or whole tomatoes and crush them down yourself.

You will need to really cook the sauce down properly, though, as otherwise, it will just taste like tomato soup.

You want to cook it down and evaporate it fully, and maybe even add a bit more sugar to the total recipe as well.

If you don’t, the whole might add end up too bitter and acidic to be really enjoyable.

Homemade BBQ Sauce spices in a pot

How Long Will Your BBQ Sauce Last In The Fridge?

Homemade sauces have a bit of a reputation for not lasting particularly long in the fridge, but this sauce is a little bit different.

Seeing as how the main ingredients are acidic or sweet, it can actually last quite a long time if you treat it right.

After using it the first time, make sure to completely cover it with plastic wrap, or store it in an airtight container; the key thing is to keep air from touching any part of your sauce.

Stored properly, your homemade BBQ sauce can easily last up to around a month – just keep checking it for any signs of mold or gross separation, which would be a sure sign of it starting to expire.

Homemade BBQ Sauce  on a spoon overflowed onto a cutting board

Dishes To Pair With Your Homemade BBQ Sauce

Homemade BBQ sauce is a great thing to make at home primarily because of its incredible diversity in how you can use it.

You could just eat it on its own, but it is far better to combine it with something crispy and salty to really help show off its unique flavors.

  • Homemade Fries

An obvious choice, some homemade French fries are the best way to show off the naturally sweet and tangy flavors of your homemade BBQ sauce.

If you don’t feel like putting in all that effort, no one would mind if you used some frozen ones out of the bag – they’re not as good as homemade, but they’re still fries!

  • Chicken Wings

Chicken wings are not just a great option at takeout places; they are also a good source of protein, and more importantly, excellent for dipping in homemade sauces.

Instead of coating them in buffalo sauce, get them plain and just dip them into your homemade BBQ sauce.

  • In A Burger

Burgers are great, but they do often need that little bit of extra something to truly become delicious. A little bit of homemade BBQ sauce smeared onto your buns before building your burger should result in a super intense, acidic, and sweet burger with just the tiniest amount of effort.

  • On Ribs

Ribs are amazing, but they are practically begging to be served with a tasty, sweet, and rich BBQ sauce.

Without a good sauce, ribs are basically just flaky meat – they need that tang, something that only your newfound homemade BBQ sauce could possibly provide.

Looking for more delicious Marinade and Sauce recipes? Try these out:

Homemade Teriyaki Sauce

Tartar Sauce Recipe

Horseradish Sauce

Happy Cooking




Homemade BBQ Sauce

Easy homemade BBQ sauce that you can easily adjust to your own liking! Add more sugar for a sweeter taste, or more vinegar for tart, the choice is up to you!
5 from 8 votes
Homemade BBQ Sauce on a spoon dripping into the pot
Prep Time
5 minutes
Cook Time
8 minutes
Karlynn Johnston


  • 1 ½ cups ketchup
  • 1 ½ cups brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup white vinegar
  • ½ cup water
  • 1 tablespoon yellow mustard
  • 1 Tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 teaspoons paprika
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper


  • Combine all ingredients together in a medium heavy bottomed sauce pan.
  • Bring to a low simmer over medium heat.
  • Cook until thickened, then cool a portion and taste test. Add any ingredients to taste at this point if needed, then cook another 3-4 minutes to let the flavors blend.
  • Remove from the heat and let cool.

Nutrition Information

Calories: 1674kcal, Carbohydrates: 431g, Protein: 6g, Fat: 1g, Saturated Fat: 0.2g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 1g, Sodium: 6081mg, Potassium: 1748mg, Fiber: 4g, Sugar: 399g, Vitamin A: 3852IU, Vitamin C: 18mg, Calcium: 390mg, Iron: 6mg

All calories and info are based on a third party calculator and are only an estimate. Actual nutritional info will vary with brands used, your measuring methods, portion sizes and more.

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Karlynn Johnston

I’m a busy mom of two, wife & cookbook author who loves creating fast, fresh meals for my little family on the Canadian prairies. Karlynn Facts: I'm allergic to broccoli. I've never met a cocktail that I didn't like. I would rather burn down my house than clean it. Most of all, I love helping YOU get dinner ready because there's nothing more important than connecting with our loved ones around the dinner table!

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Site Index Bbq sauce Sauce Sauces

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  1. Barbara Johnson says

    Excellent sauce . We loved it on our chicken.5 stars

  2. Susan says

    Excellent sauce. We do not like hot sauces and this one fits the bill. It could be easily made with heat with the addition of cayenne pepper, etc.

  3. Katherine Brobst says

    Your recipe is easy and delicious! I will definitely save this recipe ! Thank you5 stars

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