This 5 minute homemade BBQ sauce is made from a blend of ketchup, brown sugar, water, red wine vinegar, ground mustard, Worcestershire sauce, salt, and paprika.

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Homemade BBQ sauce in a mason jar.

About Homemade BBQ Sauce

I have a few store-bought BBQ sauces that I absolutely love, but there have been times when I’ve “somehow” managed to run out right when I need it the most. And by “somehow” I mean I routinely spend whole weeks putting BBQ sauce on everything I possibly can so of course all the sauce is gone because I’ve eaten all of it.

Because, why not drizzle BBQ sauce on everything? It’s one of the best sauces out there!

So, seeing as this tasty red blend tends to be an endangered sauce in my house, I had to get my hands on a homemade version that no only 1) tasted just as good as my favorite store-bought and 2) didn’t include extra cooking time.

And out of all the need-it-now BBQ sauce recipes I’ve tried, this one was by far the winner.

You can whip it up in a blender in less than five minutes!

Close up of BBQ sauce in a mason jar.

Is it BBQ, barbecue, barbeque, bar-B-Q, or bar-b-cue?

I was surprised to discover there are some strong opinions on how to spell the name of this tasty red sauce, so I did a little digging to determine what the “proper” moniker was.

And no matter what method you prefer, I have some good news for you:

All of the above spellings are acceptable.

Most dictionaries will use either “barbecue” or “barbeque” as the root word, but the slang forms (meaning BBQ, bar-b-q, and bar-b-cue) have become so common practice that they’re accepted by most spellchecks and grammar fans.

Being from the south, I grew up knowing and reading this sauce as “BBQ”, and it’s still what I prefer to this day.

What’s in homemade BBQ sauce?

In order to make this recipe, you’ll have to collect the following ingredients:

  • Ketchup – Use your favorite brand (or even homemade) to give this sauce a base you’ll love.
  • Light brown sugar – Adds a bit of sweetness. Plus, the molasses deepends the favor.
  • Red wine vinegar – Give the sauce some tang.
  • Ground mustard – Another addition of subtle tang, balancing out the sweetness of the brown sugar.
  • Worcestershire sauce – Adds a tash of unami flavor, similar to soy sauce.
  • Paprika – Adds a fruity, smoky flavor with a touch of heat.
  • Salt & Water

Do you have to cook this sauce?

Nope! This sauce does not need to be cooked and comes together by thoroughly blending it in a food processor.

What can you make with BBQ sauce?

I think the easier question here is what can’t you make with BBQ sauce. It’s just one of those garnishes that manage to make everything better.

Here are a few of my favorites:

Should you refrigerate homemade BBQ sauce?

For best results, this sauce should be stored in a sealed container and kept chilled.

It should stay good in the refrigerator for one to two weeks.

Basting brush dipping into prepared homemade BBQ sauce.

Can you freeze BBQ sauce?

Yes, you can freeze BBQ sauce, but the quality may vary once thawed. I have only ever made this sauce using “mainstream” brand ingredients (Heinz, etc) and the sauce was still good once thawed. I have not tried other brands or substitutions to know how they would perform. If you have any doubts, be sure to research any of your preferred ingredients.

Once you’re ready to freeze, transfer the BBQ sauce to a freezer bag, taking care to remove as much air as possible. BBQ sauce can be frozen for up to three months.

Notes & tips for BBQ sauce

  • You’ll need a trusty food processor for this recipe. A hand mixer on high speed should also work, but I’ve personally never tried it.

More great sauce recipes

How to make BBQ sauce

This next part is only a photo tutorial of the recipe steps. If you’re looking for the full recipe measurements and instructions, scroll down to Recipe Details.

Step 1 – In your favorite food processor, add ketchup, brown sugar, water, red wine vinegar, ground mustard, Worcestershire sauce, salt, and paprika.

Step 2 – Blend everything together until creamy and incorporated, about two to three minutes.

Step 3 – Serve as desired!

Recipe Details

Homemade BBQ sauce in a mason jar.
4.88 from 8 votes

Homemade BBQ Sauce

5 mins prep
192 kcal
Yields: 7 servings (1/2 cup per)
This 5 minute homemade BBQ sauce is made from a blend of ketchup, brown sugar, water, red wine vinegar, ground mustard, Worcestershire sauce, salt, and paprika.

Ingredients 

Instructions

  • In a food processor, add ketchup, brown sugar, water, red wine vinegar, ground mustard, Worcestershire sauce, salt, and paprika. Cover and blend until smooth, about 2-3 minutes.
  • Serve immediately as desired.

Notes

This recipe makes about 3 1/2 cups homemade BBQ sauce.

Nutrition

Serving: 1serving | Calories: 192kcal | Carbohydrates: 46g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 1165mg | Potassium: 248mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 42g | Vitamin A: 407IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 44mg | Iron: 1mg

I do my best to provide nutrition information, but please keep in mind that I’m not a certified nutritionist. Any nutritional information discussed or disclosed in this post should only be seen as my best amateur estimates of the correct values.

Author: Chrisy

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4 comments

    • Gail
    • 5 stars

    I love barbecue sauce. Shopping for the ingredients. Going to make it as soon I get home. Gail

    • Sandra Marie Kelly

    taste fair added some dry bbq rub to make it better

    • Jim Mascioli
    • 4 stars

    Going to make it for sure

    • Mimi

    Looks like a great recipe. I personally don’t like BBQ sauces that are overly sweet or overly vinegary. But home made is always better!