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Classic Barbecue Rib Sauce Recipe

Classic Barbecue Rib Sauce

This sauce certainly produces a delicious rack of BBQ Ribs. Whether they are smoked low and slow or baked in the oven, this classic barbecue rib sauce will add a touch of sweet and heat to the final product. As always, adjust the amount of cayenne used in this recipe to suit your tastes.
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Course: Sauces
Cuisine: American BBQ
Keyword: barbecue sauce, rib sauce
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Servings: 3 Cups


  • 2 cups ketchup
  • 1/3 cup dark brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup minced onion
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons water
  • 2-3 cloves garlic crushed
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon liquid smoke
  • 1 teaspoon dry mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne use less if preferred
  • pinch of salt
  • ground black pepper to taste


  • In food processor or blender, blend onion and water into a puree. Heat a medium saucepan over a medium heat. Add olive oil. Once the oil is warm, add onion puree. Simmer for 2-3 minutes. Add remaining ingredients. Mix thoroughly and simmer on low for 10-12 minutes.
  • Once cooked, allow the sauce to cool to room temperature before using, about 20-30 minutes. If making ahead, place in an airtight container and store in the refrigerator for up to five days after.


Photo by: Sabrina Baksh