Homemade BBQ Sauce Recipe – Ready in 15 minutes, you’ll have the best Homemade Barbecue Sauce that is sweet and tangy and made from scratch!

Homemade BBQ Sauce Recipe - Ready in 15 minutes, you'll have the best Homemade Barbecue Sauce that is sweet and tangy and made from scratch! // addapinch.com

BBQ sauce is one of those topics that people can become really, really passionate about. There are the regional camps of North Carolina style BBQ sauce, Kansas City style BBQ sauce, white Alabama BBQ sauce, and then the Memphis style with no sauce at all (well, maybe just a smidge). Everyone has their personal favorites.

And you know, I really love them all.

I’ve shared my Mama’s Coca Cola BBQ Sauce with you that is the one that I personally grew up with. I’ve shared our Spicy Mustard BBQ Sauce that we use from time to time, and I’ve also shared my Peach BBQ Sauce that makes everything taste heavenly.

I’ve also included our favorite molasses based Sweet and Spicy BBQ Sauce in my cookbook which just takes ribs to a whole new level!

But today friends, I want to share with you this quick and easy, 15 minute BBQ sauce that takes just a handful of ingredients to make and comes out perfect every single time.

We’ve had friends who call this the best BBQ Sauce they’ve ever tasted and it’s pretty easy to see why!

Homemade BBQ Sauce Recipe

Homemade BBQ Sauce Recipe - Ready in 15 minutes, you'll have the best Homemade Barbecue Sauce that is sweet and tangy and made from scratch! // addapinch.com

This BBQ Sauce comes together quickly with just a handful of ingredients that I generally have in my refrigerator or my pantry and is one that I think you all will fall in love with as well. I’ve had friends ask me to please make extra for them to take home and if I’d bottle it, they’d surely buy it. They are the best. 🙂

How to Make the Best BBQ Sauce

For this quick and easy homemade BBQ sauce, I start with ketchup. You can use your favorite ketchup as the base. I generally go for one that includes the fewest ingredients and doesn’t include high-fructose corn syrup.

To my BBQ sauce, I whisk in apple cider vinegar, brown sugar, honey, Worcestershire sauce (or coconut aminos if you are sensitive to soy or gluten-free), my favorite Stone House Seasoning, lemon juice, and a dash of hot sauce.

Then, I let my BBQ sauce simmer on low heat for about 10 minutes to deepen the flavors and thicken the sauce.

Then, I remove it from the heat and use it immediately or allow it cool slightly and pour into large jar with tight fitting lids and store in the refrigerator to use on ribs, chicken, pork, salads, and so much more!

Homemade BBQ Sauce Recipe - Ready in 15 minutes, you'll have the best Homemade Barbecue Sauce that is sweet and tangy and made from scratch! // addapinch.com

Here’s my best Homemade BBQ Sauce recipe. I hope you love it as much as we do!

Homemade BBQ Sauce Recipe - Ready in 15 minutes, you'll have the best Homemade Barbecue Sauce that is sweet and tangy and made from scratch! // addapinch.com

Homemade BBQ Sauce Recipe

Homemade BBQ Sauce Recipe - Ready in 15 minutes, you'll have the best Homemade Barbecue Sauce that is sweet and tangy and made from scratch! 
4.97 from 30 votes

Review Recipe

Print Recipe

Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time10 mins
Total Time15 mins
Servings: 8 servings (about 2 cups)
Course Sauce
Calories: 114kcal
Serving Size 2tablespoons
Cuisine American
Author: Robyn Stone


  • 2 cups ketchup
  • 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce or coconut aminos
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon Stone House Seasoning
  • 1/4 teaspoon hot sauce optional


  • Whisk together all ingredients in a medium saucepan situated over medium heat. Allow to come to a bubble and then reduce the heat to low. Allow to simmer until thickened, about 10 minutes. 
  • Serve immediately or allow to cool slightly and store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a week. 


Nutrition Information

Serving: 2tablespoons | Calories: 114kcal | Carbohydrates: 27g | Sodium: 571mg | Potassium: 226mg | Sugar: 24g | Vitamin A: 310IU | Vitamin C: 2.7mg | Calcium: 18mg | Iron: 0.4mg
Have you made this recipe?Tag @addapinch on Instagram or hashtag it #addapinch

Robyn xo

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Robyn Stone

..where I share sweet, savory and southern recipes, as well as home and garden tips and tidbits of travel.

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83 Comments Leave a comment or review

  1. I have tried many bbq sauce recipes across the board. I have a pretty decent vinegar based sauce, an ok Carolina mustard sauce but I’ve just never been happy with the bbq sauces I have made in the past. I always end up scrapping them and then buying a local sauce. However I stumbled upon this recipe and gave it a shot. We loved it. It’s simple. It’s quick. And it’s very tasty. This sauce has become my go to favorite for my pork shoulders and even for some brisket I whipped up last week. Thanks for sharing you finally gave me the last piece of my bbq sauce trio. 

    1. Such a great sauce! I had everything I needed except lemon. I used lime I had on hand. Turned out great! Thank you for a quick, delicious recipe.

  2. Very easy to make ,used on pork ribs a lot of  great complements  plus I entered in our fall Fair and got  1 st. Prize 

  3. Having dinner late tonight — making BBQ chicken sandwiches but have no BBQ sauce – found your recipe, just made this (took 10 minutes) — PERFECT!! Thank you SO much – will be using your sauce as my goto BBQ sauce from now on. Can’t wait to use this on my chicken sandwiches 🙂 Have a wonderful weekend!

  4. Novice vegetarian chef who loves BBQ sauce on pizza. I believe I followed the recipe exactly, but my sauce… too saucy, in an uncool way. The consistency of the sauce wasn’t thick, but the taste! Spectacular!!! Where did I go wrong with consistency?!?!

    1. Hi Antonio,
      I’m thrilled you liked the taste of the sauce – isn’t it delicious?!
      I find that my bbq sauce thickens to consistency we like for our sauce after the simmering as directed in step 1. Make sure you allow it to come to a bubble first, then reduce heat to simmer. If you want it a bit thicker, you could simmer for a few more minutes longer than noted in the recipe. Hope this helps! Thanks!

  5. I realized on Christmas that I had no bbq sauce. I was skeptical about making it myself bc I’m from NC and bbq sauce is sacred. But Lord have mercy, this is good!! I added a bit of extra coarse ground black pepper, some ground chipotle for smokiness and subbed OJ for lemon juice, which I didn’t have. THANK YOU!

  6. I live an hour to any store and needed sauce.  I made this one and it was pretty good.  I did add a little mustard powder and a garlic.  My new bbq staple. Thanks 

  7. A+, I was worried about the amount of ketchup being noticeable but nope, perfect. I’ll be making this again. Great on drumsticks!!

  8. I consider myself a “pretty good” cook… I could never have come up with something like this. The combination of spices is perfect. Thank you from the husband of, and father of picky eaters.

  9. I work in a nursing home and made bbq chicken for the residents today. Everyone was raving about this bbq sauce. It was the talk of the facility today. I made this for 150 people and it turned out great! Thank you for sharing! 

  10. I’ve never made a BBQ sauce before but the simplicity of this one made me give it a shot. I was worried that the ketchup would be too much (the smell also carries heavily from the ketchup) but the taste is a pleasantly sweet and spiced balance. Looking forward to trying this with some meats.

  11. This sauce was superb – and not too ketchup-y as I had feared. The apple cider vinegar provides a nice kick and counter balance. And no high fructose corn syrup – like many of the store-bought sauces. Also, your Stone House Seasoning is fantastic – it made Saturday’s hamburger even better!

  12. Love this recipe! Very easy. Made it twice now, as my bf loved it. I add @ 1tsp liquid smoke, plus a little bit of cinnamon and chili powder (I just kind of eyeball the extras), and he says it tastes just like Open Pit, but better!

  13. Wanted bbq chicken drumsticks but to my dismay we’re out of sauce! First sauce on google and it is phenomenal! I did tweak it a bit though. I halved the recipe since it’s only 2 people eating and I added a some paprika. 

    Turns out home made bbq is A LOT CHEAPER! I definitely will be making this rather buying store bought junk with tons of ingredients I can’t pronounce! 

    This was great and so simple! Thanks so much!

    1. I’m so glad you found this recipe and gave it a try, Katie! I’m with you on simple ingredients with lots of flavor! I am happy to have you here and hope that you find many other recipes here that you enjoy too! Thanks! xo

  14. Ps.. there is no soy or gluten in a real Worstershire sauce. Lea and Perrins, for instance. Dont ever skimp on Worstershire as some do have soy and gluten, and are not worth saving a few cents. I hope they never change their recipe!

    The coconut aminos will change this drastically as its sweet, more like a teriyaki sauce so it”s not imo an alternative to Worcestershire, but yes in place of Soy sauce with a bit of sea salt added to it

    This is a terrific recipe, thanks!!

    1. Hi Vicki,
      Since some brands of Worcestershire sauce do contain soy and gluten and MSG, I gave an option for people who have allergies to these ingredients. I have family members who are highly allergic to these ingredients so I have made this sauce with coconut aminos numerous times and we all loved the flavor. So glad you like this recipe! Thanks!

  15. Do you think this recipe can be canned to be able to be stored in the pantry so that I have more on hand when I need it?

  16. Made your sauce on Friday and used it on St Louis Ribs. Wow. So good.

    Used it again tonight for some grilled chicken. OMG. The best.

    Thank you for sharing the recipe.

  17. Made it this weekend for fathers day grilling and it was a hit! I doubled the recipe so I had a bunch leftover. Have you ever tried to can it? I may try with a small jar and see how it goes. 

  18. This recipe was very good. I used ghost pepper Infused honey by Akron Honey Co. And it was really good. I could’ve added cayenne pepper instead of black pepper for a little more heat because it’s not that spicy. But the flavor with the little heat on the tongue was great. This was easy better than any BBQ I’ve purchased.

  19. Hi Robyn, as a South African, I tried for years making a good BBQ sauce.I bought so called American sauces at supermarkets,only to be disapointed.I grilled some steaks for a few friends and everybody loved your sauce.Thank you for this great sauce.Now to find the best Southern style fried chicken herbs and spices.

  20. This looks delicious and I want to make it for my family with boneless chicken breasts. Would you marinate the chicken in the sauce and then grill or would you slice the chicken with a little salt and pepper and while
    grilling brush on the bbq sauce?

  21. I needed something last minute on a whim (vs. a trip to the store) and stumbled across this – seemed reasonable and I had everything. I am from Texas and if there are two things I’m picky about, it’s BBQ sauce and salsa, but this was simply awesome. I will never buy BBQ sauce at a store – even specialty – again. There’s no point!!! Love some of the ideas on the modifications people have posted. I “heated” it with Frank’s and it was just delicious. Thank you so much for posting!!!

  22. I’m making this today for ribs. I also mix in crushed pineapple and mangos and let it simmer a while then strain it. MmmmmMmmm good. The whole family loves it

  23. Hi,
    I’d like to try to make your sauce and I’m wondering how long it can last for if I’ve contained it in air tight sterilised bottles.

  24. Used this to sauce up 8 pounds of pulled pork and the family loved it. My wife says this is her favorite sauce we’ve made.

    Easy peasy and so yummy. Thanks for the recipe.

  25. Dear Robyn,

    Appreciate your generosity in sharing recipes. This is the first recipe I tried and my brother loves it so much (he’s a hard to please fussy eater). I substituted kosher for himalayan salt as I couldn’t find Diamond Crystal kosher salt in any physical store in Melaka, Malaysia. However, I’ll be ordering it online since you insisted that the bbq sauce will taste so much better with kosher salt. Again, thank you.


  26. Thanks Robyn. I used your recipe in a pinch . It was fast and easy to whip up without too many ingredients .We loved the results and will make it again.

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