Sweet and Spicy BBQ Sauce

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This Sweet and Spicy BBQ Sauce is a 10-minute wonder that’ll elevate your grilling game. Get ready to drizzle, dip, and marinate your way to flavor paradise!

This homemade bbq sauce will be your go to homemade barbecue sauce recipe because it has it all. A little bit of sweet and a little bit of spicy.

A spoon of the sweet and spicy bbq sauce.


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Our Sweet and Spicy BBQ Sauce is here to save the day. This easy-to-follow recipe combines pantry staples and a touch of creativity to bring you a sauce that’s quick to prepare, versatile in use, and packed with flavor. Join us as we walk you through the steps to craft the perfect BBQ sauce that your family and friends will crave.

If you’re looking for more homemade sauce recipes, try these Fry Sauce, Boom Boom Sauce and Best Burger Sauce.

A glass jar of the finished sauce.

Why We Love This Homemade Barbecue Sauce Recipe

Let’s delve into the irresistible qualities that make this recipe a standout choice for your grilling and dipping needs. From its quick preparation to the harmonious blend of pantry staple ingredients, we’ll uncover what makes this homemade barbeque sauce a family favorite.

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  • Quick and Easy: With just 10 minutes of your time, you can whip up a batch of this delicious sweet and spicy sauce.
  • Easy Ingredients: You won’t need to make a special trip to the grocery store for this recipe. All the ingredients are pantry staples, making it super simple to put together.
  • So Many Uses: This versatile sauce can be used as a marinade, dipping sauce, or drizzle for a variety of dishes, from grilled chicken to pulled pork sandwiches. It adds a spicy kick. IT is a such a good bbq sauce.

Ingredient List to Make Homemade BBQ Sauce Recipe

Three of the main ingredients to make the sauce. Ketchup, vinegar and brown sugar.
  • Ketchup: Our BBQ sauce starts with a classic base of ketchup, which provides a rich and tangy flavor. You can’t go wrong with this timeless condiment.
  • Light Brown Sugar: The light brown sugar adds a hint of sweetness that balances the tanginess of the ketchup, creating the perfect sweet and spicy combination. Dark brown sugar adds a rich deeper flavor as well.
  • Worcestershire Sauce: Worcestershire sauce lends depth and umami to the sauce, enhancing its overall flavor profile. It gives the sauce a deeper flavor.
  • Apple Cider Vinegar: Apple cider vinegar adds a subtle tartness and acidity, brightening up the sauce and giving it that classic BBQ tang.

See the recipe card below for a complete list of the ingredients with measurements.

Variations and Substitutions for a Smoky Spicy bbq Sauce Recipe

These exciting variations and flavor-enhancing twists that will make your homemade sweet and spicy BBQ sauce stand out from the crowd.

  • Liquid Smoke: If you’re a fan of smoky flavors, adding a dash of liquid smoke will infuse your sauce with that irresistible barbecue essence.
  • Paprika: For a touch of warmth and color, paprika is a fantastic addition. Choose smoked paprika for a deeper, smokier flavor.
  • Honey: To enhance the sweetness and stickiness of the sauce, drizzle in some honey for a delightful twist.
  • Asian Flare: For an Asian-inspired barbecue sauce, swap the Worcestershire sauce for soy sauce and replace the apple cider vinegar with rice wine vinegar.
  • All Purpose Seasoning: A blend of salt, black pepper, garlic powder and onion powder.

How to Make Homemade Spicy and Sweet BBQ Sauce Recipe

These are the basic steps for making Spicy and Sweet BBQ Sauce Recipe. Refer to the full, printable recipe card below for detailed instructions.

Step 1: Add Wet Ingredients to Saucepan

First, begin by placing a large saucepan over medium high heat. Then add in the ketchup, brown sugar, Worcestershire sauce, and apple cider vinegar.

Step 2: Add in Seasonings

Next, add in the all purpose seasoning blend, dried mustard, and cayenne. Then give the mixture a stir. Then bring to a boil and then reduce to medium heat. This will allow the sauce to thicken.

Step 3: Simmer

Lastly, allow the sauce to simmer for about 8 minutes, stirring occasionally. Finally, remove from heat and then let the sauce completely cool. Once cooled, store in an airtight jar.

FAQs to Make you Love this Recipe for Good Homemade Sauce

This BBQ sauce can be refrigerated for up to two weeks in an airtight container. Its robust flavors tend to mellow and improve over time, making it even more delicious with age.

Absolutely! Adjust the heat level to your preference by adding more paprika, cayenne pepper, red pepper flakes, or a dash of your favorite hot sauce to the spicy homemade barbecue sauce.

While it’s best enjoyed fresh, you can freeze this sauce for up to three months. Thaw it in the refrigerator and give it a good stir before using.

If your sauce is too thick for your liking, you can easily thin it out by diluting with water, apple juice, or more apple cider vinegar. Remember to make these adjustments slowly and in small increments.

A top shot of the sweet and spicy barbecue sauce.

Expert Tips for Making This Easy BBQ Sauce Recipe

Take this easy BBQ sauce to the next level with our expert tips! Whether you’re a seasoned grill master or a kitchen novice, these pro insights will elevate your sauce game and have your guests asking for your secret recipe.

  • Smoked Paprika: If you’re a fan of smoky flavors, opt for smoked paprika. Its intense, smoldering taste will elevate your sauce for ribs or whatever.
  • Bourbon: For a hint of sophistication, add a splash of bourbon to your sauce. The flavors of bourbon pair wonderfully with the sweet and spicy elements.
  • More Sweet: To increase the sweetness of the sauce, add extra brown sugar, molasses or a dollop of honey to achieve your desired level of sweetness.

What to Serve with Sweet and Spicy BBQ Sauce

A spoon of the sweet and spicy bbq sauce.
4.96 from 43 votes

Homemade Barbecue Sauce

Yield: 8 servings
Prep: 2 minutes
Cook: 8 minutes
Total: 10 minutes
This Sweet and Spicy BBQ Sauce is a 10-minute wonder that’ll elevate your grilling game. Get ready to drizzle, dip, and marinate your way to flavor paradise!
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⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️Did you try this recipe? Please leave a star rating and review below!


  • 1 cup Ketchup
  • ¼ cup Light brown sugar
  • ¼ Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tablespoons Apple cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon House Seasoning Blend
  • 1 teaspoon Dried mustard
  • teaspoon Cayenne


  • Add ketchup, brown sugar, Worcestershire sauce and apple cider vinegar to a medium saucepan over medium heat.
  • Stir in House Seasoning Blend, dried mustard and cayenne.
  • Stir until all ingredients are combined.
  • Simmer for 8 minutes.
  • Remove from heat and serve.
  • To store, allow sauce to completely cool, then store in airtight container.

Expert Tips

  • Double the recipe: This recipe is easily doubled or tripled.   
  • Store this Homemade BBQ Sauce: Place the cooled sauce in an airtight container for up to two weeks. 
  • Change the flavor: This is a great base recipe – you can easily add other flavors such as liquid smoke or honey. 

Estimated Nutritional Information

Calories: 62kcal | Carbohydrates: 15g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 565mg | Potassium: 104mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 13g | Vitamin A: 165IU | Vitamin C: 1.2mg | Calcium: 11mg | Iron: 0.2mg
The nutritional information provided are estimates. To learn more about how I calculate this information go to www.itisakeeper.com/about-its-a-keeper/privacy-disclosure-policies/
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Course: Sauces, Seasonings, Dressings
Cuisine: American

16 thoughts on “Sweet and Spicy BBQ Sauce”

  1. This Homemade Barbecue Sauce recipe is a tantalizing blend of sweet and smoky flavors. It’s perfect for grilling and adds a mouthwatering touch to any dish. Monkey mart approves!

  2. 5 stars
    Love homemade BBQ sauce and your recipe is so easy to follow. Also I love the idea of adding liquid smoke to this recipe

  3. 5 stars
    Homemade condiments are the best! My favorite cooking is on the bbq so I’m definitely going to try this recipe. YUM


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