How To Make A Handmade Tasty BBQ Sauce That Gets Rave Review At Your Backyard BBQ’s This Year

Making a tasty handmade bbq sauce is a surefire way to get rave reviews on your backyard bbq offerings this year! AND bbq season is here. So, it’s time to get a recipe you love filed in your recipe box for safe keeping.

woman holding a jar of handmade bbq sauce

I promise if you give this one a try it will deliver lip-licking results! There’s no doubt about it! Everybody is going to want your recipe. Will you give it up?

I hope you do. Just send them straight here to Sustainable Slow Living Blog to find it. I’d love to meet them!

Ways To Use BBQ Sauce

At my house I never have to look for ways to use handmade BBQ sauce. I make it. I blink my eyes. And it’s gone.

ingredients for a recipe laid out on a table

STILL, I do usually make it with a specific purpose in mind. And here’s a quick list of some of those, in case you want to diversify the way you’re using BBQ sauce at your house.

bbq sauce ingredients on a table

Try all 7 this summer …

  1. BBQ SANDWICHES – Slow cook chicken breasts, chicken thighs, pork ribs, port butt roast, or beef ribs in this sauce and then shred them with two forks. Place a generous portion of this sticky bbq goodness on your favorite roll, top with some coleslaw, and ENJOY!
  2. CHICKEN, PORK, STEAK, BURGERS, AND DOGS ON THE GRILL – Use a basting brush to slather this tasty handmade bbq sauce over your favorite meat on the grill. The more the better. Serve with extra napkins!
  3. BBQ MEATBALLS – Make a batch of homemade meatballs and roll them in bbq sauce. Then serve them as they are or place them on a toasted sub roll with toppings of your choice. Might I suggest grilled onions, jalapeno slices, and/or cheddar cheese?!?!
  4. CHICKEN WINGS – Deep fry a batch of chicken wings, and roll them in this handmade bbq sauce until they are thouroughly coated. Serve with a side of homemade ranch dressing and some celery sticks.
  5. BBQ CHICKEN PIZZA – Top your go-to pizza crust with a layer of bbq sauce. Cover with a mozzarella and cheddar cheese blend, some chopped grilled chicken, and sauteed onions. Add just a little crumbled bacon as well to put this dish over the top!
  6. BAKED BEANS – Stir some of this bbq sauce deliciousness into a batch of baked beans and serve. So simple. So YUMMY!
  7. DIP FOR FRENCH FRIES OR ONION RINGS – Use this sauce to dip crispy french fries or onion rings. It’s great just as it is. Or if you prefer you can tone it down a notch by blending it with a little mayo or ranch dressing first!

Can This Sauce Be Used As A Marinade

This sauce makes a fantastic marinade. More often than not, this is the way it gets used in my house. And it’s just so easy to do.

spices and sauces in bowls on a table

Simply whip up a batch of sauce, allow it to cool, and then pour it over the meat of your choice. Cover the container and place it in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours. If you are able, leave it in there overnight. All the better!

handmade bbq sauce being poured from a pot into a mason jar

PRO TIP: If you have some free time on a weekend make a double batch of sauce and roll the meat(s) of your choice in it. Place portions large enough to feed your family in individual freezer bags and toss them in the freezer. Pull them out the day before a bbq and your meat is marinated and ready to go!

How BBQ Sauce Is Made

Handmade BBQ sauce cooked from scratch is one of the easiest things you’ll ever make in your kitchen.

recipe ingredients and a towel on a table

It’s as simple as combining all of your ingredients in a medium saucepan and then allowing them to simmer over low heat for just 10 minutes.

The flavors blend beautifully right in the pot and you can use this sauce straight from the stove. But, I’m not gonna lie, if you allow it to cool and let it sit in the fridge for 24 hours it’s just a bit better.

Make This Sauce Vegan

The only ingredient in this handmade bbq sauce recipe that isn’t vegan is the worcestershire sauce. Most worcestershire sauces contain anchovies.

spices in bowls on a table

However, there are vegan options of worcestershire sauce available. Simply swap the traditional worcestershire out for a vegan option and you’re ready to go!

Alternatively, you can substitute vegetable broth or amino acids for the worcestershire sauce to create a vegan version of this sauce.

How To Store Homemade BBQ Sauce

Storing this sauce is as easy as it gets. All you have to do is place it in an airtight container and put it in the refrigerator.

It will keep refrigerated for at least 10 days. However, as I said at the start of this post, it’s never around my kitchen very long. I’m lucky if it lasts 4 or 5 days.

handmade bbq sauce in a mason jar on a table

If you think it will stick around your house for longer than that, you can halve the recipe. The recipe as it is makes about 3 cups of sauce. So, cutting it in half will leave you with 1 1/2 cups of bbq sauce. I’m willing to bet you can eat that in a week!

Personally, I have never frozen bbq sauce. I have read in many other recipes that they freeze rather nicely. If you give it a shot, I’d love to know how it goes.

I’d also love to know if you have any tips or tricks for making/using handmade bbq sauce that I can add to my repertoire.

So, let’s meet in the comments and chat all about it!

pinnable image for handmade bbq sauce

If you try this recipe and love it, please give it 5 stars! It supports my work more than you may realize, and I appreciate that a great deal!

You can also show your support by tagging me on Facebook @sustainableslowliving and/or Instagram @slowlivingbydianegail when you post a pic of your finished dish.

handmade bbq sauce being poured from a pot into a mason jar
Yield: 3 cups


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

This tasty handmade bbq sauce will get you rave reviews at your backyard bbq's this year. Make a batch in under 15 minutes today!


  • 1 1/2 cups tomato sauce
  • 3/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 3/4 cup white wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup molasses
  • 2 tbls worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tbls ground mustard
  • 2 tsp black pepper, coarse grind
  • 2 tsp smoked paprika


  1. Combine all ingredients in a medium saucepan
  2. Bring to a simmer, stirring regularly
  3. Simmer for 10 minutes, stirring every minute or so
  4. Serve immediately or allow to cool and refrigerate


** To make this recipe vegan swap out the traditional worcestershire sauce for a vegan version

** Alternatively, to make this recipe vegan switch out the traditional worcestershire sauce for vegetable broth or amino acids

** If you are able to pick up whole mustard seeds and grind them yourself, instead of using a pre-ground spice purchased at the store it makes a striking difference in the end result of this recipe

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 40Total Fat: 0gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 90mgCarbohydrates: 10gFiber: 0gSugar: 9gProtein: 0g

This data was provided and calculated by Nutritionix on 5/12/2021. Nutrition information is not always correct.


  1. Looks and sound good Diane, thinking we might make it today and put it on some ribs or chicken. I’ll let you know how we make out.

    1. Yes. Please do let me know what you think. Charlie was waving the jar at me last night asking for more, LOL! Hope you feel the same way about it that he does!

  2. Looks delicious! I always buy my BBQ sauce but this time I’m going to make it. Thank you for the recipe!

  3. Looks and sounds delicious. Very easy to make and I appreciate tips for how to make it vegan and/or mustard seed alternatives. Going to share this recipe with my mom!

  4. This is literally exactly what I have been looking for! I have some family members with sensitivities so I wanted to learn to make my own… great info!

    1. Hope you enjoy it! One of the nice things about it is that the ingredients are usually in most kitchens. Makes it easy to throw together last minute.

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