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Cuban Mojo BBQ Sauce

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This Cuban Mojo BBQ Sauce has all the citrusy goodness of traditional mojo sauce but in a tomato-based concoction. This luscious tangy sauce works well on all cuts of pork and chicken. You can even serve it as a dipping sauce for chicken wings, fries, or burgers.

Cuban Mojo BBQ Sauce

What is Cuban Mojo?

The word mojo, loosely translated into English, means good luck. Cuban Mojo Sauce is a brightly flavored mixture used in Cuban cooking that contains bitter orange juice. Finding fresh bitter or sour oranges in the U.S. is difficult, so our sauce recipe combines regular orange juice and lime juice. If you can find bitter oranges, use 1 cup of freshly squeezed juice for this recipe. Bottled bitter orange juice is available online and in some grocery stores nationwide.

Ingredients for Cuban Mojo BBQ Sauce:

  • A Blender: You’ll need a blender or food processor to puree some ingredients before simmering the sauce.
  • Orange Juice: Fresh squeezed is preferred, but good quality orange juice is key to this recipe. 
  • Ketchup: Ketchup is a great base for barbecue sauces. It contains that tart, sugary flavor profile that helps to round out this sauce. If you are watching your sugar intake, use sugar-free or low-sugar ketchup.
  • Honey: An excellent sweetener for sauces, but again, if you are watching your sugar intake, substitute with certain fiber syrups and honey substitutes. For a vegan alternative, use agave syrup. Start with two tablespoons of honey for this recipe, then add the other tablespoon for a sweeter sauce.
  • Tomato Paste: Any store bought tomato paste will do.
  • Garlic and Cumin: These two items provide the savory and earthy elements of the mojo BBQ sauce.
  • Fresh Herbs: Fresh cilantro and oregano. You can also add flat-leaf parsley.
BBQ Mojo Sauce

How to Make It

  • Add all ingredients except ketchup and honey to a blender. Puree the mixture in the blender and pour into a medium saucepan.
  •  Add the ketchup and honey to the mixture and simmer on medium-high for 1-2 minutes, stirring often. Once the sauce starts to bubble, reduce heat to low and let the sauce continue simmering for 10-12 minutes. Stir occasionally. The sauce will reduce a bit.
  •  Once cooked, remove the saucepan from the heat, cover it, and keep it warm if you plan to use it immediately.
  •  If making ahead of time, remove the saucepan from the heat and let it cool completely before storing it in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
  •  Double or triple this recipe based on your needs.

Using a Cuban Mojo Sauce:

Baste sauce onto grilled ribs or chicken during the latter half of cook time. Aim for about 3 separate applications to help the BBQ sauce set in. If you are cooking low and slow ribs of chicken, start the application about 30-40 minutes before they come off the smoker.
Serve this Cuban sauce on the side for slow-roasted or smoked pork.

Mojo-BBQ-sauce

Make-Ahead and Store

You can make this Cuban mojo sauce up to 5 days in advance and store it in a nonreactive container in the refrigerator. Store in vacuum-sealed bags in the freezer for up to 6 months.

More BBQ Sauce Recipes!

Cuban Mojo BBQ Sauce

Cuban Mojo BBQ Sauce

A recipe for a delectable Cuban-inspired mojo barbecue sauce that works well on pork ribs, low and slow pork, and chicken.
5 from 8 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Sauces
Cuisine: American, American BBQ, Fusion
Keyword: barbecue sauce recipes, BBQ sauce recipe, bbq sauce recipes, Cuban mojo bbq sauce, Mojo BBQ sauce, mojo sauce
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Servings: 1.5 Cups
Calories: 391kcal
Author: Derrick Riches and Sabrina Baksh

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup ketchup
  • 1/2 cup orange juice the real stuff
  • 1/4 cup lime juice
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 2-3 tablespoons honey
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
  • 2 tablespoon chopped parsley optional
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh oregano
  • 1 teaspoon cumin powder
  • Pinch of salt and black pepper

Instructions

  • Gather all of your ingredients
  • Add all ingredients except ketchup and honey to a blender. Puree mixture in the blender and pour into a medium saucepan.
  • Add the ketchup and honey to the mixture and simmer on medium-high for 1-2 minutes, stirring often. Once the sauce starts to bubble, reduce heat to low and let the sauce continue simmering for an additional 10-12 minutes. Stir occasionally. Sauce will reduce a bit.
  • Once cooked, remove the saucepan from the heat, cover, and keep warm if planning to use it right away.
  • If making ahead of time, remove the saucepan from the heat and let the sauce cool completely before storing it in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
  • Double or triple this recipe based on your needs.

Nutrition

Calories: 391kcal | Carbohydrates: 75g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 1267mg | Potassium: 912mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 59g | Vitamin A: 1169IU | Vitamin C: 66mg | Calcium: 88mg | Iron: 4mg

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4 responses to “Cuban Mojo BBQ Sauce”

  1. 5 stars
    Hi Great recipe. Planning to make it today but I have a question. When do you add honey? Do you add along with ketchup & tomato paste?

5 from 8 votes (6 ratings without comment)

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