Sign up with your email address to be the first to know about new products, VIP offers, blog features & more.

Homemade Barbecue Sauce

This article may contain affiliate links which support this site at no cost to you.

I made homemade barbecue sauce one day out of necessity because I needed barbecue sauce and didn’t have any.  A quick mix of basic pantry ingredients that simmer for a few minutes and I had homemade barbecue sauce.

Homemade barbecue sauce

We are huge fans of Sweet Baby Ray’s barbecue sauce. I love it so much that I’ve never bothered trying to make my own sauce. I figured it was probably pretty easy, but I was happy with Ray.  Then I ran out of Ray and forgot to get more.  I was making pulled chicken sandwiches and I had to have barbecue sauce for them. My friend Gina from Pinch This Stretch That kindly gave me her recipe for homemade barbecue sauce and saved the day.

I have a gigantic bottle of liquid smoke for making slow cooker barbecue ribs that I’m always looking for another use for.  This recipe is yummy on it’s own, but it’s really a jumping off point. You can add honey, garlic, more liquid smoke, more brown sugar, Tabasco – whatever flavors you love in your barbecue sauce.

I would suggest doubling or tripling this recipe if you want any leftover for next time.  I ended up using one entire recipe in the pulled chicken sandwiches.

Homemade Barbecue Sauce


  • 2 Tablespoons butter
  • 1 1/2 cups ketchup
  • 1 Tablespoon liquid smoke
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
  • Splash of white vinegar


Melt butter in a small sauce pan over medium heat.
Add remaining ingredients and stir to combine.
Simmer for 5 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to cool.


This article may contain affiliate links.

Share this article

What do you think?

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

  • Alicia Ivy
    December 31, 2017

    Really good. Easy and simple recipe with only a few ingredients.
    This is a really great sauce.
    Will use this recipe again.

  • Judy
    May 13, 2013

    Homemade is always better! Your sauce sounds perfect for summer barbecues ~ Thanks for sharing on Hearth & Soul Hop. 🙂

  • Miz Helen
    May 11, 2013

    Hi Camille,
    Great Sauce! Thank you so much for sharing this awesome recipe with Full Plate Thursday. Hope you have a very special Mothers Day Weekend and come back soon!
    Miz Helen

  • Rachel Schichtl
    May 6, 2013

    Thank you! I was at the grocery store this weekend looking for some affordable BBQ sauce that wasn’t full of high fructose corn syrup.

  • Dianna
    May 4, 2013

    I’m so glad to find an alternative to Sweet Baby Ray’s!! It was always my fave until I read the ingredients…HFCS is the first thing in it…can’t wait to try this! Thanks, Cammie!

  • Gina H
    April 30, 2013

    You make my recipe look so good!!!