Smoky Barbecue Sauce Recipe

Smoky Barbecue Sauce Recipe
Smoky Barbecue Sauce Recipe

Smoky Barbecue Sauce is almost inevitably better than what you can buy, but is often close to the last thing you want to be making right before grilling. The first thing that will hit you when you taste it is the spicy smokiness followed by a vinegar tang with garlic and onion.


  • 4 Table Spoons butter or vegetable oil
  • 1/2 grated onion
  • 1 15-ounce can crushed tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup cider vinegar
  • 2 Table Spoons brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup molasses
  • 1-4 chipotle chiles in adobo (depending on how hot you want your bbq sauce)
  • 1 teaspoon liquid smoke
  • 1 Table Spoon finely chopped fresh sage
  • Salt to taste

Smoky Barbecue Sauce Recipe

  1. Heat the butter in a heavy pot over medium-high heat until if froths (or heat vegetable oil until hot), then add the grated onion. Sprinkle a little salt over the onion. Sauté until the onion just begins to color, about 4-5 minutes.
  2. While the onions are cooking, finely chop the chipotle chiles in adobo. They are hot, so start with one chile. You can add as many more as you want later.
  3. Add the chipotle to with the onions, then add the tomatoes, vinegar, molasses, sugar, liquid smoke, and chopped sage. Stir to combine and let this simmer for 5 minutes. Taste it and add salt and more chipotle if you want.
  4. Simmer the sauce gently, uncovered, for 1 hour. Before serving, taste one more time for salt and chile.
Smoky Barbecue Sauce
Smoky Barbecue Sauce