Easy BBQ Sauce

We are on the road! We made it out the door by 8:30AM, hugely impressive in my opinion, but "already late" according to my husband. Since we don't actually have a campsite reserved (on this busy holiday weekend) I can appreciate my husband's urgency. This will likely be my first camping lesson, "Make Sure You Reserve A Campsite (or you will end up sleeping in your car)". Kidding on the car part, if you pack anything like we do, there will be no room for car sleeping, either.

So, when my child asks, "We here?" just 10 minutes into our 4 hour drive, I tell him (and then myself), "It's an adventure, just sit back and relax". And then I tell my husband to take a chill pill...and I love him.

Last weekend I wanted to make my own BBQ sauce to go with a few upcoming recipes. I've never found a favorite BBQ sauce brand so I would usually buy based off the ingredient list. Then I realized that BBQ sauce really isn't that complicated to make. Unlike some of my favorite much-loved Asian sauces, BBQ sauce is made of simple, easy-to-find, ingredients. This particular BBQ sauce is about as simple and basic as it gets with ketchup as its base. Sweet, tangy and just a little spicy, it's the perfect everyday BBQ sauce. Grated yellow onion gives the sauce a lovely texture and special homemade feel (of course, you can process the sauce in a blender after cooking). 

And now that I've made this sweet BBQ sauce basic, I'm excited to try non-ketchup versions in the future, including chipotle, Sriracha, cherry and smoky BBQ. What are your favorite BBQ sauce flavors?

Now, please excuse me while I try to entertain my rear facing child as he cries, "Go home. Go hooome."

Easy BBQ Sauce

Prep Time: 5 minutes / Cook Time: 25 minutes / Total Time: 30 minutes


2 tablespoons butter
1 onion, grated
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups ketchup
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
1/2 cup apple juice
1/4 cup worcestershire sauce
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons molasses
2 tablespoons honey
2 teaspoons dijon mustard
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
salt, to taste


  1. In a medium size sauce pan heat butter over medium high heat. Add grated onion and minced garlic and mix well. Cook onion and garlic over medium heat, stirring frequently, until onions are soft, approximately 4-5 minutes.

  2. Gently mix in remaining ingredients and bring sauce to a simmer. Allow mixture to cook on low for 15-20 minutes, taste, and make any additions you see necessary (sugar, vinegar, salt).

  3. Remove from heat and allow sauce to cool slightly before serving with your favorite dishes.


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