classic homemade bbq sauce

Classic Homemade BBQ Sauce Recipe

I recently inherited a 1962 version of the Joy of Cooking, and am making my way through some of the sauces they have.  I love sauces.  If vegetables are a blank canvas, sauces are the paint.  They can transform uninspired and bland food into the best dish you’ve ever tasted.  

Of course, one of the American classic sauces is barbecue sauce.  We slather it on ribs, dip chicken nuggets into it, and mix it with pulled pork, but there are some vegetarian uses for it as well.  Barbecue sauce makes a great addition to pinto beans, as a pizza sauce, and as a highlight in a barbecue portobello quesadilla

Whatever your use is for barbecue sauce, try reconsidering the bottled versions they sell at the market.  Most of them have high fructose corn syrup, and a whole host of things we really shouldn’t be eating.  The good news is that making a classic homemade BBQ sauce recipe is super easy, tasty, and quick! 

I have tried many different versions of barbecue sauce, including a 5-minute homemade barbecue sauce and a bbq sauce marinade, which are both great.  I love the flavors of this classic homemade bbq sauce recipe, since the ingredients have a little time to simmer, meld and develop.  

Classic Homemade BBQ Sauce Recipe

Makes about 2 cups of sauce in 30 minutes

  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 1/4 cup finely diced onions
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup water 
  • 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar 
  • 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce 
  • Juice from half a lemon 
  • 2 tbsp brown sugar 
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 1 cup ketchup 
  • 1/2 tsp salt 
  • 1/4 tsp paprika

In a saucepan over medium heat, melt butter and add in onions.  Cook onions until soft, about 10 minutes.  Add in remaining ingredients and allow to simmer for 20 more minutes. 

It’s so good, you might just want to grab a spoon. No meat, beans or veggies required. 

classic homemade bbq sauce from homemade for elle

Do you make your own barbecue sauce? What is your favorite way to use barbecue sauce?

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