This sweet and tangy BBQ sauce can be used as a glaze for grilled or roasted meats, dipping sauce, or marinade. Adjust the ingredients to suit your taste!
Looking to take your BBQ experience to new heights? Our irresistible sweet and tangy BBQ sauce is the secret ingredient you’ve been searching for! With its perfect balance of sweetness and tanginess, it adds a burst of flavor to grilled and smoked meats. Elevate your taste buds with our delectable sauce and get ready to savor every bite. Don’t miss out on this flavor sensation
Each of these ingredients plays a unique role in creating a sweet and tangy BBQ sauce. Their combination creates a harmonious blend of flavors that balances sweetness, tanginess, smokiness, and spiciness, resulting in a delicious and versatile sauce for a variety of dishes.
** You can find the full recipe ingredients and instructions on the printable recipe card below.
- Ketchup: Ketchup serves as the base of the BBQ sauce, providing a rich tomato flavor and a tangy sweetness. It adds a familiar taste and helps achieve the classic BBQ sauce texture.
- Apple cider vinegar: Apple cider vinegar brings a tangy and slightly fruity flavor to the BBQ sauce. It helps balance the sweetness and adds a refreshing element to the overall taste profile.
- Molasses (unsulphured): Molasses adds depth and richness to the BBQ sauce. It offers a deep, caramelized flavor and a slight bitterness that complements the sweetness of other ingredients.
- Brown sugar: Brown sugar is a key sweetening agent in BBQ sauce. It contributes a rich, molasses-like sweetness that enhances the overall flavor profile and helps balance the tanginess of the vinegar and ketchup.
- Garlic powder: Garlic powder provides a savory and aromatic element to the BBQ sauce. It adds a subtle garlicky flavor that complements the other ingredients and gives the sauce a well-rounded taste.
- Onion powder: Similar to garlic powder, onion powder adds a savory and slightly sweet flavor to the BBQ sauce. It enhances the overall complexity of the sauce and helps create a balanced and robust taste.
- Paprika: Paprika contributes a mild, smoky flavor and a vibrant red color to the BBQ sauce. It adds a hint of earthiness and complements the other spices, creating a well-rounded and visually appealing sauce.
- Dry mustard: Dry mustard provides a subtle tang and a slightly spicy kick to the BBQ sauce. It adds depth to the flavor profile and helps enhance the overall taste experience.
- Hot sauce: Hot sauce brings heat and spiciness to the BBQ sauce. It adds a fiery kick that can be adjusted according to personal preference, making the sauce more dynamic and exciting.
- Salt: Salt is a crucial ingredient that enhances the overall flavor and helps balance the sweetness and acidity in the BBQ sauce. It brings out the natural flavors of the other ingredients and adds depth and complexity.
- Ground black pepper: Ground black pepper adds mild heat and a subtle earthiness to the BBQ sauce. It complements the other spices and adds a pleasant aromatic note, contributing to a well-rounded flavor profile.
How to Make Sweet and Tangy BBQ Sauce
This sweet and tangy BBQ sauce can be used as a glaze for grilled or roasted meats, as a dipping sauce, or as a marinade. Feel free to adjust the ingredients to suit your taste preferences. Enjoy!
** You can find the full recipe ingredients and instructions on the printable recipe card below.
- In a saucepan [paid link], combine all the ingredients and stir well to combine.
- Place the saucepan [paid link] over medium heat and bring the mixture to a simmer.
- Reduce the heat to low and let the sauce simmer for about 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking.
- After the sauce has thickened slightly, remove it from the heat and let it cool.
- Once the sauce has cooled, you can use it immediately or transfer it to a jar or container for later use.
Recipe Tips and Kitchen Tricks
- Mise en Place: Before starting a recipe, gather and prepare all ingredients in advance. This organization saves time and ensures a smooth cooking process.
- Salt in Layers: Season dishes with salt in multiple stages during the cooking process. This helps build layers of flavor, resulting in a well-balanced dish.
- Taste as You Go: Regularly taste your dish while cooking and adjust the seasoning accordingly. This allows you to fine-tune flavors and create a delicious outcome.
- Spicy Twist: Add a kick to your sweet and tangy BBQ sauce by incorporating some heat. Include ingredients like cayenne pepper, hot sauce, or red pepper flakes to give your sauce a spicy twist.
- Smoky Infusion: Enhance the flavor profile of your BBQ sauce by introducing a smoky element. Use smoked paprika, liquid smoke, or grill-roasted tomatoes to infuse a delightful smokiness into the sauce.
- Honey Glaze: For a sweeter version, substitute some or all of the brown sugar with honey. The natural sweetness of honey adds depth and richness to the BBQ sauce.
- Fruit Infusion: Experiment with different fruits to add a fruity twist to your sauce. Try incorporating ingredients like pineapple juice, mango puree, or peach preserves to create a fruity and tangy BBQ sauce.
- Asian Fusion: Give your BBQ sauce an Asian-inspired twist by incorporating ingredients like soy sauce, ginger, garlic, and a touch of sesame oil. This variation adds a savory and umami element to your sauce.
- Bourbon Infused: For a sophisticated flavor, add a splash of bourbon to your BBQ sauce. The warm and complex notes of bourbon complement the sweetness and tanginess of the sauce.
- Mustard Kick: Introduce some tanginess with the addition of Dijon or whole-grain mustard. The mustard adds a tangy and slightly spicy flavor profile, making the BBQ sauce even more vibrant.
- Grilled Chicken: Brush the sweet and tangy BBQ sauce onto grilled chicken pieces or whole chicken. Serve it as a dipping sauce or glaze for a delicious and flavorful barbecue chicken experience.
- Pulled Pork Sandwich: Slow-cook pork shoulder or pork butt until tender, then shred the meat. Toss the pulled pork in the sweet and tangy BBQ sauce and pile it on a bun for a mouthwatering pulled pork sandwich.
- BBQ Ribs: Slather the sweet and tangy BBQ sauce generously over the tender and juicy ribs. Whether grilling or baking the ribs, the sauce adds a delectable caramelized coating and enhances the smoky flavors.
- Vegetables and Tofu Skewers: Thread skewers with a variety of colorful vegetables like bell peppers, onions, zucchini, and cherry tomatoes, along with cubes of tofu. Brush the skewers with the sweet and tangy BBQ sauce before grilling or roasting for a tasty vegetarian option.
- Sweet Potato Fries: Serve sweet potato fries as a side dish or snack and pair them with the sweet and tangy BBQ sauce as a dipping sauce. Combining the slightly sweet fries and the flavorful sauce creates a delightful contrast of tastes.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Q: Is sweet and tangy BBQ sauce gluten-free? A: It depends on the specific recipe. Some BBQ sauces may contain gluten-containing ingredients like soy sauce or malt vinegar [paid link]. However, there are gluten-free options available. It’s best to check the label or recipe to ensure it meets your dietary needs.
Q: How long can I store homemade sweet and tangy BBQ sauce? A: Homemade BBQ sauce can typically be stored in the refrigerator for about 1 to 2 weeks. Make sure to keep it in an airtight container. If you want to extend the shelf life, you can also freeze the sauce for up to 3 months.
Q: Can I use sweet and tangy BBQ sauce for marinating? A: Absolutely! Sweet and tangy BBQ sauce works wonderfully as a marinade. Its combination of flavors adds depth and richness to meats, making them tender and flavorful. Simply coat the meat with the sauce, let it marinate for a few hours or overnight in the refrigerator, and then cook as desired.
Q: Can I use sweet and tangy BBQ sauce as a vegetarian/vegan option? A: Yes, you can find vegetarian and vegan versions of sweet and tangy BBQ sauce. Look for sauces that use plant-based ingredients and avoid animal-derived components like Worcestershire sauce made with anchovies. Alternatively, you can make your own vegan BBQ sauce using suitable substitutes.
Q: How can I adjust the sweetness or tanginess of the BBQ sauce to my liking? A: If you find the sauce too sweet, you can add a splash of vinegar or a squeeze of lemon or lime juice to increase the tanginess. Conversely, if you prefer a sweeter sauce, you can add more brown sugar, honey, or a sweetener of your choice. Adjusting the ratios allows you to customize the sauce to your desired taste.
Wine and Cocktail Pairings
Wine Pairings for BBQ:
- Zinfandel: The bold and fruity flavors of Zinfandel complement the smoky and rich flavors of BBQ. Its robustness pairs well with grilled meats, especially those with a sweet and tangy BBQ sauce.
- Syrah/Shiraz: Syrah or Shiraz wines have a good balance of fruitiness and spice, making them an excellent match for BBQ. The peppery and dark fruit flavors in Syrah/Shiraz wines can enhance the flavors of grilled meats.
- Rosé: A dry or off-dry rosé wine can be a refreshing and versatile choice for BBQ. Its acidity and fruit-forward character can provide a pleasant contrast to the smoky and savory flavors of BBQ dishes.
Cocktail Pairings for BBQ:
- Classic Whiskey Sour: The tartness of a whiskey sour, made with whiskey, lemon juice, and simple syrup, can cut through the richness of BBQ dishes. The citrusy notes complement the flavors of grilled meats.
- Spicy Margarita: A spicy margarita made with tequila, lime juice, agave syrup, and a touch of jalapeño can add a kick to your BBQ experience. The heat from the jalapeño pairs well with smoky and spicy BBQ flavors.
- Bourbon Smash: A bourbon smash cocktail, consisting of bourbon, muddled mint leaves, simple syrup, and lemon juice, offers a refreshing and herbaceous sip alongside BBQ dishes. The mint and citrus brighten up the palate while complementing the flavors of grilled meats.
Sweet and Tangy BBQ Sauce
- 2 cups Ketchup
- 1/4 cup Apple cider vinegar
- 3 Tbsp Molasses unsulphered
- 3/4 cup Brown sugar more or less to taste
- 1 Tbsp Garlic powder
- 1 Tbsp Onion powder
- 1 tsp Paprika more or less to taste (optional)
- 1 Tbsp Dry mustard
- 2 Tbsp Hot sauce more or less to taste (optional)
- 1/2 tsp Salt more or less to taste
- 1/4 tsp Ground black pepper more or less to taste
- To a small saucepan with a tight-fitting lid, add the ketchup.
- Add all the other ingredients and whisk together to fully combine. Adjust seasonings to taste.
- Simmer about 15 minutes.
9 thoughts on “How to make sweet and tangy BBQ sauce”
I am so impressed with this sauce, from tomato sauce!! I hate that most bbq sauce are based on bottle sauce or worse, ketchup! Ketchup is the devil if you are avoiding processed foods. This sauce was the perfect amount. I mixed it in the crockpot, then moved my rib ends from the oven to the crock pot. It cooked on high, then low for 5 hours. It was amazing and my family said it was a keeper. Thank you for this wonderful fearful sauce!
Thank you, Mary. I’m so glad you liked it.
What an easy sweet sauce. loved it.
Thanks, Jenny. So glad you enjoyed it.
Perfect easy sauce to step up my bbq game
Delighted to find you on bing, this BBQ Sauce is just what I was looking for!
Thanks, Rita! That means a lot. I do hope you like it.
I’m always looking for another way to “step away from the bottle”. Thanks for this one. How’s it going. Haven’t seen you around lately. The blog is lookin’ good.