Sweet, tangy barbecue sauce can be a (non-ketchup!) shortcut to making meals family friendly. Whether brushed onto grilled chicken, folded into meatloaf, or set on the side for dipping, it offers big flavor in a snap. But too often the bottled stuff is overwhelmingly sweet or distractingly smoky. Striking a balance between the two flavors is key. That’s why we make it ourselves, and you can, too, using nothing but a combo of ingredients you’d already have in the pantry. Want more bite? Amp up the vinegar. Less heat? Omit the cayenne. It’s our recipe but your rules.
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 cup ketchup
¼ cup lightly packed dark brown sugar
3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon molasses
2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon onion powder
¼ - ½ teaspoon cayenne, optional
Sat fat 0.68g
How to Make It
Heat oil in a medium saucepan over medium- high. Add onion and garlic and cook, stirring often, until soft but not brown, about 5 minutes. Add ketchup, sugar, vinegar, mustard, molasses, Worcestershire, onion powder, and cayenne (if using) and stir to combine. Bring to a simmer and cook, stirring often, until slightly thickened, 5 to 7 minutes. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 weeks.
To Use: Brush onto chicken, shrimp, or pork chops during the last few minutes of grilling. Or use as a dipping sauce for potato wedges or French fries or as a topping for bacon burgers.
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