BBQ Sauce With Molasses And Apple Cider Vinegar

This homemade BBQ sauce recipe is an enticing blend of sweet, sour, spicy, and smoky, and it’s available in less than 20 minutes – 15 of which are hands-free simmering! Simple pantry ingredients, including ketchup, molasses, liquid smoke, apple cider vinegar, brown sugar, seasonings, and my secret ingredient, are simmered to produce the best barbecue sauce you’ve ever tasted! This recipe for BBQ Sauce is the ideal condiment for grilled poultry, brisket, ribs, burgers, sandwiches, nachos, and even pizza! 

BBQ Sauce With Molasses And Apple Cider Vinegar

To create this homemade BBQ sauce, combine all the ingredients in a single saucepan and simmer for 15 minutes. Simple to prepare, simple to clean up, and superior to store-bought dressings!


  • Total Time: 17 minutes 
  • Preparation time: 2 minutes
  • Cook time: 15 minutes
  • Servings: 3 cup

Ingredients Of BBQ Sauce:

This homemade BBQ sauce recipe calls for only a handful of ingredients and can be assembled rapidly. Needed (measurements included in the complete recipe below):

  • Ketchup: 2 cups of your preferred ketchup will serve as the base for this barbecue sauce recipe. If possible, seek out organic ketchup or one that is not sweetened with high-fructose corn syrup.
  • Apple cider vinegar: Apple cider vinegar balances the flavor with a tartness.
  • Molasses: Molasses provides rich, thick, smoky-sweet undertones and is an essential component of BBQ sauce. Be sure to use unsulfured molasses and NOT blackstrap molasses. Unsulfured molasses are of the highest quality, and They remove only a tiny quantity of sugar during the first boiling (around 70% sugar content). Blackstrap, on the other hand, has been further boiled, resulting in a viscous, bitter, salty sludge with only 45% sugar content. Blackstrap molasses is never a suitable replacement for genuine molasses.
  • Brown Sugar: sweetens the sauce and serves to intensify the flavor of molasses. This barbecue sauce concoction is sweeter than Sweet Baby Rays. Use less sugar if you prefer your barbecue sauce to be less syrupy. You can always add more flavor after the simmering process. 
  • Liquid smoke: if you’re unfamiliar with liquid smoke (it is liquid smoke! ), it imparts a deliciously smoky flavor that elevates the BBQ Sauce to an entirely new level. It is produced by capturing smoke as it rises to a condenser from a combustion chamber containing wood particles. In the condenser, smoke cools and condenses to produce liquid smoke. (many thanks to Wikipedia). It is a common ingredient that should be easily accessible near the barbecue condiments in the supermarket.
  • Seasonings: Smoked paprika, chili powder, garlic powder, powdered chipotle pepper, salt, ground mustard, dried thyme, onion powder, and pepper impart a classic flavor with hints of smokiness and heat to the barbecue sauce. Use more or less chipotle chile powder based on your preference for heat.

How To Make BBQ Sauce Recipe?

Homemade BBQ Sauce made from scratch is effortless, as tasty as sauces from authentic barbecue joints – if not more so – and immensely tastier than any store-bought sauce. This recipe for BBQ Sauce couldn’t be more straightforward to prepare; combine the ingredients in a pot, let it simmer, and you’re done!

  • Combine components. Measure ingredients and add them to a saucepan, then agitate the mixture.
  • Slowly simmer. Bring the sauce to a gentle simmer; continue simulating for 15 minutes, stirring intermittently.
  • To serve. Use right away, or refrigerate or freeze for later consumption.

Ingredients Substitutions

Readers have reported using strawberry preserves, raspberry preserves, fig preserves, and apple marmalade with success instead of blackberry preserves. 

You may use any light, medium, or dark brown sugar you have on hand. 

If you only have granulated sugar or honey on hand, you can substitute them, but in this instance, I would reduce the sugar by two tablespoons and increase the molasses. You may also employ a combination of sweeteners.

If you do not have chipotle chile powder, add a pinch-one-fourth teaspoon of cayenne pepper. Cayenne pepper is significantly more pungent than black pepper. You may also need to add liquid smoke to compensate for the absence of smokey chipotle flavor. In the future, you should stock up on chipotle chile powder, as it imparts a sublime smokey heat.

If you are out of ketchup, you could use tomato sauce as a substitute, but you must add vinegar and sugar to compensate for the ketchup’s flavor.

Tips For Homemade BBQ Sauce

  • Use smoked paprika. The subtle distinction between smoked and regular paprika has a significant impact on flavor. Normal paprika is made from dried chilies that have been crushed, whereas smoked paprika is made from chilies that have been smoked with oak before being dried and pulverized. It imparts a smoky, woody, outdoorsy flavor that gives your handmade barbecue sauce something extra. You can find smoky pepper in the seasoning section of every grocery store.
  • Simmer gently. Simmering the BBQ Sauce blends the flavors and slightly thickens the sauce; however, only a moderate simmer is required. Due to its tendency to splatter, you should simmer the sauce on medium heat.
  • Splatter screen. If you have a splatter screen, consider placing it over the barbecue sauce between whisking.
  • Stir sauce. Stirring the sauce prevents burning and reduces splashing.
  • Adjust as taste. To test the sauce, dip a spoon, position it on a plate, and refrigerate it for five to ten minutes. Taste the sauce and modify it according to YOUR preferences.

BBQ Sauce Recipe Variations:

The adaptability of homemade barbecue sauce is the most essential (and best!) aspect of its preparation from scratch. As with a marinade, add more sugar. Like a more acidic sauce? Use extra! If you prefer a piquant barbecue sauce, add more chipotle. You can refine your homemade barbecue sauce to your liking. It is how:

  • Make it sweeter: Increase the sweetness by adding more brown sugar. I recommend simmering the sauce for 10 minutes, tasting and adding additional sugar if preferred (rather than immediately), and then simmering for 5 minutes.  
  • Make it tangier: Add apple cider vinegar after simmering to increase the tartness.
  • Make it smokier: Add additional liquid smoke, 12 teaspoons at a time, to make it smoky.  
  • Make it spicier: Put additional chipotle chile powder or cayenne pepper for a smoky or penetrating spice respectively. 
  • Make your seasonings. Like garlic more? Employ more garlic. More mustard, please? Increase the mustard. You can alter the seasonings and add herbs, such as oregano and parsley.
  • Make it thicker: Make it wider by simmering the sauce for up to 15 minutes or until it reaches the desired consistency; however, it is already gorgeously viscous after simmering for 15 minutes, so I don’t believe this step is necessary. 
  • Make it gluten-free: Make it gluten-free by confirming that your ingredients are gluten-free.

How To Use Homemade BBQ Sauce?

Homemade barbecue sauce has numerous delectable applications, including basting, smothering, and dipping! It is incredibly delicious on grilled meats like poultry and pork, as well as slow cooker-pulled meats. Essentially, you can incorporate homemade barbecue sauce into any dish that calls for barbeque sauce or anything that requires additional flavor. Among our fave applications of barbecue sauce are:

  • The chicken. Pour BBQ Sauce over baked or grilled chicken, chicken wings, or chicken kebabs for a quick and delicious supper. Chipotle chicken smothered in barbecue marinade is incredibly delicious.
  • Pork. Use barbecue sauce to smother ribs, burnt ends, and brisket, then salivate.    
  • Sandwiches with Pulled Meat. BBQ Pulled Chicken, BBQ Pulled Pork, and BBQ Brisket smothered in the BEST BBQ Sauce are delicious or create the best sandwiches with or without your preferred coleslaw.
  • Burgers: Add barbecue sauce directly to the ground beef before forming patties, and then distribute barbecue sauce on top of the cooked burgers.
  • Sloppy Joe sandwiches. Instead of sloppy Joe sauce, use homemade BBQ sauce!
  • There are sandwiches. In addition to pulled sandwiches, the sauce can be used as a spread for immediate flavor explosions on burgers like these BBQ Chicken Sandwiches.
  • Pizzas and Stromboli are available. For BBQ Chicken Pizza/Stromboli, substitute barbecue sauce prepared from scratch for pizza sauce. I’ve also incorporated it into these Mini Hawaiian Deep Dish Pizzas and BBQ Chicken Pizza Dip.
  • A salad. One of my favorite chicken dishes is BBQ Chicken Salad with Tomatillo Ranch, prepared by smothering chopped grilled chipotle chicken in barbecue sauce – to die for! Therefore, any protein can be smothered in BBQ sauce and added to a salad. As with my Cowboy Pasta Salad, the sauce can also be used as a condiment.  

How To Store Homemade BBQ Sauce?

Transfer the BBQ Sauce to a mason jar or airtight container after it settles to room temperature. Keep in the refrigerator for up to two weeks. Now, it’s prepared for any of the weekdays above applications!

How To Freeze BBQ Sauce?

Place the barbecue sauce in an opaque, freezer-safe container for up to three months in the freezer. Before using, allow it to thaw overnight in the refrigerator.

The molasses and apple cider vinegar in the barbecue sauce create a delectable balance of sweet and sour flavors. Molasses adds depth and sweetness, while apple cider vinegar imparts a delightful tang, resulting in a versatile sauce ideal for marinating, basting, and glazing meats, thereby enhancing the flavor of barbecued dishes.

Thank you for reading…..

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