The best BBQ sauce is made from scratch with a few standard pantry staples and takes only 15 minutes to make. This Jim Beam BBQ Sauce is layered with flavors that meld together perfectly, ranging from sweet and tangy to a little kick-y with spice and smoke. The key is the ketchup base with extra brown sugar and a dose of bourbon for good measure. I use this homemade BBQ sauce for ribs, but it would be equally good on chicken, beef brisket or a pulled pork sandwich.
Scott and I have been devotees of Steve Raichlen for YEARS. His cookbooks break down BBQing, grilling and smoking into manageable, do-able tutorials and his expertise has a made my grill-master a more successful and confident cook. This Jim Beam BBQ sauce recipe comes straight from Steve and it’s one that we always go-to for a quick and easy BBQ sauce for ribs, briskets and chicken pieces. It got me to thinking, that you should have the best BBQ sauce in your outdoor cooking arsenal too.
Best BBQ Sauce Ingredients:
- Brown Sugar
- Cider Vinegar
- Worcestershire Sauce
- Dijon Mustard
- Liquid Smoke
- Hot Sauce
- Onion Powder
- Garlic Powder
- Black Pepper
These pantry staples come together to make the most amazing homemade bbq sauce for ribs (beef or pork), fowl or game. I’ve even been known to top a meatloaf sandwich with a spoonful…. Mmmmm… meatloaf.
Assembling Jim Beam BBQ Sauce
- Add the ingredients to a small saucepan and heat over medium high heat, stirring constantly until it comes to a boil.
- Reduce heat to simmer and cook for 5-8 minutes or until the sauce is thick and fragrant.
- Remove from heat and cool to room temperature.
- Transfer to a storage container and refrigerate overnight for the flavors to marry.
That’s it. So quick and easy, but trust me, you’ll never go back to bottled BBQ sauce again.
Every ingredient in Steve’s homemade BBQ sauce recipe adds a distinctive layer of flavor that elevates it to the sublime. It is simultaneously smoky, sweet, tangy, tingly and spicy.
This is truly the best BBQ sauce I’ve ever tried (and I’ve had my fair share). Dip your french fries in it – it’s way better than plain ketchup. Top a grilled burger with cheddar cheese and a dollop of the Jim Beam BBQ sauce – you’ll swoon! Brush some shrimp skewers with a little before grilling, it’ll create a lip-smacking lacquer that’s custom made for that seafood. Add a few teaspoons to your next Bloody Mary before you shake it for a subtle, but palpable flavor infusion. And of course, you’ll want this homemade BBQ sauce for ribs (whether smoked, grilled or oven baked).
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Tongue Tingling Jim Beam BBQ Sauce
- 1 cup ketchup
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 1/4 cup bourbon Jim Beam
- 3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 3 tablespoons molasses
- 2 tablespoons worcestershire sauce
- 1 tablespoon dijon mustard
- 1 1/2 teaspoons liquid smoke
- 1 teaspoon hot sauce Steve recommends Tabasco — I used Hank Sauce
- 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- Combine all the ingredients in a small saucepan and whisk together. Heat over medium high heat until the mixture starts to boil, stirring regularly.
- When the mixture boils reduce the heat to a simmer and continue to cook for about 6-8 minutes or until very fragrant and smooth.
- Let the sauce cool to room temperature then transfer to a storage container and refrigerate overnight for the flavors to marry.
- Sauce will keep for several weeks.