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Homemade BBQ Sauce

Homemade BBQ Sauce is a must-have for grilling and your favorite pulled pork sandwiches. This is a rich and hearty Memphis style sauce that is sweet and tangy, perfect for coating chicken, pork and beef. Of course it is also the perfect dipping sauce!

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Homemade BBQ Sauce

BBQ sauce could be it’s own food group around our house. So much so that we even owned our own barbecue sauce company back before the days of blogging! This sweet and tangy sauce just might be my all time favorite bbq sauce! 



Homemade BBQ Sauce with spoon dipping into the jar

How to Make Homemade BBQ Sauce:

Pan of homemade bbq sauce - overhead view
  • Add 2 cans of beer or ginger ale to a large sauce pan. 
  • Whisk in ketchup, apple cider vinegar, lime juice, Worcestershire sauce, soy sauce, brown sugar, molasses, and spices.
  • Cook over medium heat and bring mixture to a boil. Cook at a low boil for about 30 minutes, whisking often. 
  • Lower heat to a simmer and cook another 30 minutes, whisking often. 
  • Remove from heat and cool slightly. 
  • Store homemade bbq sauce in mason jars in refrigerator up to 3 months. 

We made our bbq sauce with a ketchup and beer base. If you don’t have beer on hand, ginger ale or club soda is a great substitute. 

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We have been purchasing spices from Spiceology. Many of their spices can be ordered through Amazon and they have a vast selection on their website. If you are looking for quality spices, check them out. 

Spices for Homemade BBQ Sauce:

Thick BBQ Sauce on a spoon from a mason jar, black and white check napkin to the side

Pro Tips:

When we made large batches of barbecue sauce for our business, I learned to mix the spices together before adding them to the liquid mixture. This will keep the spices from clumping and help the mixture blend evenly. 

Use a rubber spatula to scrape the edges and bottom of the pan as it cooks to blend as it begins to thicken. 

A whisk works best for stirring to break up any clumps of brown sugar and makes a smooth sauce. 

How to Make Smoky BBQ Sauce:

We use this sauce primarily for grilling and smoked meats. So we do not add in any liquid smoke. If you are using it for oven cooked or crockpot recipes, you can add in about 1/2 teaspoon of liquid smoke to get a smoky bbq sauce. 

Our Favorite BBQ Recipes

This thick and rich Memphis style homemade bbq sauce is a great addition to your next cookout and fantastic to have on hand for any bbq dinner. It’s so good that everyone will be wanting you to make a double batch to share!

Homemade bbq sauce in a mason jar, spoonful to the side on a white plate


Homemade BBQ Sauce in a mason jar
Yield: 48 ounces

Homemade BBQ Sauce

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes

Homemade BBQ Sauce is a must-have for grilling and your favorite pulled pork sandwiches. This is a rich and hearty sauce that is sweet and tangy, perfect for coating chicken, pork and beef. Of course it is also the perfect dipping sauce!



  1. Pour beer or ginger ale into a large sauce pan with ketchup, lime juice, apple cider vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, soy sauce and molasses.
  2. Whisk in brown sugar.
  3. In a separate bowl combine the spices: onion flakes, garlic, smoked paprika, black pepper, dry mustard, salt and chili flakes.
  4. Whisk seasonings into sauce mixture and cook over medium heat until it comes to a boil. Cook at a low boil for 30 minutes, whisking often. Use a rubber spatula to scrape bottom and side occasionally.
  5. Lower to simmer and continue to cook for 30 minutes or until sauce is thickened to your likeness. Whisk often and use a rubber spatula to scrape bottom and sides of the pan.
  6. Remove from heat and cool slightly.
  7. Store in tightly sealed mason jars in the refrigerator until ready to use, up to 3 months.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:

2 tablespoons

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 105Total Fat: 0gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 506mgCarbohydrates: 25gFiber: 1gSugar: 20gProtein: 1g

Nutritional information is estimated and may not be accurate.

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  1. Sounds great. I have a high garden and I’ve been canning tomatoes for 3-4 weeks. I make v8 juice, spaghetti sauce, Bloody Mary mix and bbq sauce. I can’t perfect the bbq but yours sounds great. I’ll be making 2 gal of thick juice into it. Not sure how much spices to add, but will taste along the way. Plus a beer! Thks for spice list