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The first time I made this barbeque sauce, we fell head-over-heels in love with it. It is tart and tangy with a hint of sweetness, and we have added it to everything from salmon to nachos to salads.
Barbeque sauce is one obsession that my husband is still going strong with. We used to buy it by the gallon, but now that we make it at home it is much more cost effective and, I must say, tasty. It is a good thing, too. At the rate we were going, we would be old, poor and living only in a pile of barbeque sauce and my shoes.

The recipe came from a combination of The Neely’s sauce and Mother Lovett‘s. When I went through Mother Lovett’s recipes, I found one for barbeque sauce. It shocked me, because she used to use runny, watery tomato soup and call it spaghetti sauce.
Yes, we obviously are not Italian. I’m sure those of you that are Italian are crying tears of misery and gagging at the thought of runny tomato soup on pasta. Don’t worry, I haven’t been deprived. My mom makes a spaghetti sauce that is much more substantial than tomato soup. :)

Try this out today! It is super simple once everything is combined. All you need to do is give it a stir once in a while. It can easily be made while dusting, doing dishes, washing clothes, or cleaning bathrooms.
I wouldn’t personally know since I don’t do any of those, but I hear it can be done. Thank goodness I have an OCD husband.


Homemade Barbeque Sauce

adapted from The Neely’s

2 cups ketchup

1 cup water

1/2 cup apple cider vinegar

5 tablespoons light brown sugar

4 tablespoons sugar

1/2 tablespoon molasses

1 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper

1/2 tablespoon onion powder

1/2 tablespoon ground mustard

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

Combine all ingredients in a saucepan and let come to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and cook uncovered for approximately 2 hours, stirring occasionally. The mixture will thicken and reduce a bit.
Make it today! Let me know what you think. It will make me happy. :)

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46 Responses to “Homemade Barbeque Sauce.”

  1. #
    Katrina (gluten free gidget) — January 9, 2010 @ 7:07 am

    We have an economy size BBQ sauce in our frige right now. I can’t even think about making my own until that is gone. Yours sounds like an awesome recipe though. When we finally make a dent in our supply I will turn to you for BBQ guidance!


  2. #
    Mara @ What's For Dinner? — January 9, 2010 @ 7:16 am

    Thank you for the reminder to make BBQ sauce… I have my grandpa’s recipe which features bacon, thought you might like it:


  3. #
    Nicole — January 9, 2010 @ 7:19 am

    I have to say Mother Lovett’s tomato sauce did make me gag and cry a little bit, but I’m glad you weren’t totally deprived! :)

    And I have an OCD husband but only in the kitchen – I wish I could get him to be OCD in the bathroom or with laundry…any tips you want to share? haha This barbeque sauce looks SO good – I’ll have to share it with my husbands fam because they are obsessed with it!


  4. #
    Estela @ Weekly Bite — January 9, 2010 @ 7:24 am

    My husband LOVES homemade BBQ sauce! He makes his own and won’t let me do anything to his “secret” recipe ;)


  5. #
    Katie — January 9, 2010 @ 8:27 am

    I’ve never made my own BBQ sauce…I had no idea it was so simple! I’ll let you know when I try it!


  6. #
    katie — January 9, 2010 @ 9:04 am

    ooo ive never tried this home made!!! ive been seriously craving bbq sauce lately..its weird


  7. #
    Jolene ( — January 9, 2010 @ 9:20 am

    Mmmm, sounds great! I just bought ink for my printer yesterday specifically so I could print off all of your recipes! I am afraid I might lose them if I just book mark them … hehe. I don’t trust technology all the time.

    I can’t wait to start making your different creations!!!


  8. #
    Kelly B. — January 9, 2010 @ 9:50 am

    Oh I love to make my own condiments because you can control the flavors and the sugar and sodium amounts. Plus you can control the ingredients and you don’t have to eat a lot of processed chemicals that are typically found in my store brands! This one looks great…can’t wait to try!


  9. #
    Stef — January 9, 2010 @ 9:57 am

    i love bbq sauce, haven’t had it in forever!


  10. #
    That Kind of Girl — January 9, 2010 @ 11:23 am

    Ooooh, that looks yummy! Although I used bottled barbecue sauce if it’s only one component of an involved recipe, whenever I’m just grilling meat then saucin’ it up, I always go homemade. My favorite recipe is a smoky adobo bbq sauce with raspberry preserves in it. Nice balance of spicy and sweet.


  11. #
    The Candid RD — January 9, 2010 @ 12:19 pm

    Nick is obsessed with BBQ sauce. Because of that, his family seriously buys him a new brand of BBQ sauce every year for Christmas. I need to tell them to STOP because I want to make my own now! I think it would taste better, although Nick would probably argue that nothing beats Stick Fingers’ bbq sauce. I should just make it one day without telling him, then put it in a Sticky Fingers bottle!! haha, tricky.

    Great recipe, and thanks so much for your kind note on my blog :)


  12. #
    Naomi(onefitfoodie) — January 9, 2010 @ 12:20 pm

    looks SO good! I love bbq sauce but avoid getting it becuase of the high sugar content but I LOVE the idae of making your own so you can control how much of each ingredient goes in!

    craving some turkey burgers right now with that!


  13. #
    Karla — January 9, 2010 @ 12:30 pm

    Yum! I love the Neely’s! I think they’re so cute!


  14. #
    Diana @ frontyardfoodie — January 9, 2010 @ 12:38 pm

    Now I just need a recipe for ketchup so I can have even purer ingredients! Please!!!

    I love me some bbq sauce though for reals. This looks amazing


  15. #
    Shelley — January 9, 2010 @ 12:55 pm

    i love bbq sauce :)


  16. #
    Nicole — January 9, 2010 @ 1:13 pm

    I brought home some brisket last night, and it needs BBQ sauce! : )


  17. #
    Barbara — January 9, 2010 @ 1:42 pm

    I like your recipe better than the one I’ve been using for years! Can’t wait to try it…..I can think of a thousand things to slosh that sauce on! I love BBQ anything!


  18. #
    The Cookie Girl — January 9, 2010 @ 1:53 pm

    My mind started drifting as soon as you said you had an OCD husband who cleans. I had such a lovely moment dreaming of a life where all I did was pamper myself and bake when I wanted to without having to clean up. I was quickly jolted back to reality by my 4 year old. LOL:)
    The BBQ sauce sounds yummy. We use a lot of it during Summer. The best I have ever had was from a guy who used Jack Daniels in it. Wish I had that recipe too.


  19. #
    Cheryl — January 9, 2010 @ 1:58 pm

    I love making BBQ Sauce! It’s so easy! When I made it for the first time on chicken wings the husband said they were the best ever! Rock on at-home BBQ sauce!


  20. #
    janetha b — January 9, 2010 @ 4:15 pm

    mmmm. i could slather bbq sauce on anything!


  21. #
    Abby (Abby's VeGaN Eats) — January 9, 2010 @ 4:27 pm

    Seth would freak out at this recipe.. he love BBQ sauce. Maybe I should treat him and make it?!?

    PS.. I see you adapted it from the Neely’s.. I LOVE watching They are soo happy and cute!


  22. #
    Eliza — January 9, 2010 @ 5:19 pm

    mmm that looks delicious :)


  23. #
    Erika from The Pastry Chef At Home — January 9, 2010 @ 5:23 pm

    Barbecue sauce and shoes! All a girl needs to make it through an end of the world scenario :) I married an Italian and the thought of watery tomato soup masquerading as pasta sauce terrifies me!


  24. #
    Erika from The Pastry Chef At Home — January 9, 2010 @ 5:24 pm

    ps: there’s a little smiley face way at the bottom of your blog. Is that on purpose? I heart it :)


    • Jessica — January 9th, 2010 @ 6:25 pm

      I’ve never noticed it! Maybe it’s a WordPress thing??


  25. #
    Anna @ Newlywed, Newly Veg — January 9, 2010 @ 5:59 pm

    Mmmmm…I LOVE BBQ sauce :-) Looks awesome!


  26. #
    Averie (LoveVeggiesAndYoga) — January 9, 2010 @ 6:25 pm

    this recipe is actually great b/c there isn’t a pound of SALT in it!!!! yay!!!!

    most commercial bbq sauces are half sodium and i cant do salt. at all. so this is great and i bet it’s lightly sweet and i bet i would love it to dip like, oh, broccoli in! LOL


  27. #
    Gliding Calm — January 9, 2010 @ 8:48 pm

    i had bbq chicken tonight!!! it was yummmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmy


  28. #
    Paige (Running Around Normal) — January 9, 2010 @ 8:55 pm

    Ooh, we’re actually out of BBQ sauce, so this will be a great oppo to try it!


  29. #
    sophia — January 9, 2010 @ 9:58 pm

    nicE! Mimi would love this, she’s from texas so she loves her Bar-Be-QUE.
    I usually just mix ketchup with soy sauce, but this must taste so much more intense and complex!


  30. #
    chrysta — January 9, 2010 @ 10:10 pm

    Home made bbq sauce is the best. It can pretty much go with anything i think. From salads to fruit! Delish! Thanks for another great recipe. I hope you are having a great weekend! Take care!


  31. #
    Simply Life — January 10, 2010 @ 5:30 am

    wow, way to go – impressive!


  32. #
    Christina — January 10, 2010 @ 7:24 am

    I don’t think I’ve ever had homemade bbq sauce. Does it last long? I’d make it but I just don’t use bbq sauce that much and wouldn’t want it to go bad!


  33. #
    Heather @ Side of Sneakers — January 10, 2010 @ 8:03 am

    Sounds like a reallllly good recipe!!


  34. #
    Sara — January 10, 2010 @ 1:44 pm

    Sounds really good! My boyfriend is a HUGE BBQ sauce fan and I already wrote this down to try later in the week! Thanks!!


  35. #
    Jenny — January 10, 2010 @ 7:29 pm

    I love those Neelys. And I love BBQ sauce, but I don’t ever have any! Now I have no excuse ;)


  36. #
    LC @ Let Them Eat Lentils — January 11, 2010 @ 9:04 am

    Great idea to make BBQ sauce at home! I’m a sucker for Dinosaur BBQ brand myself.


  37. #
    Seth @ Boy Meets Food — January 11, 2010 @ 9:41 am

    I love making my own BBQ sauce. it’s so easy, and you can tailor it to exactly the way you like it. The kind I have made in the past was not as thick as yours. I will have to get my recipe back out and compare to see which I like best.


  38. #
    Megan Wallingford — September 27, 2011 @ 12:14 pm

    This looks amazing! I am a newcomer to this blog but i love to cook and am always looking for things i havent made yet. Being in college it is kind of hard to make stuff like this all the time, especially since college kids are broke :) But i am dying to try pretty much all of your recipes! I actually have made a bbq sauce before, its apricot bbq sauce and its amazing with a pulled pork sandwich!


  39. #
    ksing — May 27, 2012 @ 4:20 pm

    I am currently making it and I must say it is very easy to make!! I am confident I will have a tasty sauce! :) Thank you



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