Don’t have BBQ sauce in your fridge or pantry? No problem – you can make it at home in about 5 minutes! The best part? This recipe is completely customizable.

5 minute BBQ sauce: Make your own delicious BBQ sauce at home in about 5 minutes.

Every resourceful cook has to have a few basic sauce recipes up their sleeve. At the top of that list is homemade BBQ sauce.

Homemade barbecue sauce is one of the easiest sauces to make.

You start out with a base of ketchup, and add sweetener, vinegar, and various spices – and voila!

An incredibly tasty, versatile sauce that can be used on chicken, ribs, sandwiches, as a dip for chicken tenders, mozzarella sticks and other appetizers, and in countless other ways!

Got 5 Minutes? Make Your Own BBQ Sauce And Move On With Life!

5-minute BBQ sauce recipe. Click through for recipe!

Five minutes is *much* faster than the time it would take you to drive to the grocery store and buy a bottle of barbecue sauce.

To make homemade BBQ sauce, you just throw all the ingredients into a saucepan, mix it all up, and cook for a few minutes, until the flavors meld and the sugar dissolves. Easy as pie.

Scroll down for complete recipe.

What Ingredients Do I Need To Make Homemade BBQ Sauce?

Ingredients you'll need to make 5-minute BBQ sauce. Click through for recipe.

Homemade BBQ sauce is made from these pantry staples:

  • Ketchup
  • Brown sugar
  • Vinegar (red wine vinegar is recommended)
  • Honey
  • Worcestershire sauce
  • Various spices
  • Soy sauce (optional, for more salty/umami flavor)
  • Liquid smoke (optional, for a smokier BBQ sauce)

Keep in mind that the ingredients are somewhat customizable. Don’t have honey? Leave it out or substitute a bit more brown sugar. Don’t have soy sauce? This sauce will taste good without.

Taste as you go – and make adjustments as necessary.

Note: These basic sauce ingredients are the building blocks for so many other kinds of homemade sauce. Some to try: Arby’s Bronco Berry sauce (copycat recipe), comeback sauce, raspberry ketchup, etc.

Customizing Your Homemade BBQ Sauce

This is a basic recipe for BBQ sauce: Plenty sweet and a little zesty. Feel free to customize it to your liking:

  • Want a spicier sauce? Add some cayenne pepper or sriracha sauce
  • Want a less sweet sauce? Add less brown sugar than what I’ve listed below
  • Want a boozy BBQ sauce? Add a splash of bourbon or whiskey

With this homemade BBQ sauce, you probably have most or all of the ingredients on hand in your fridge or pantry, if you have a well stocked kitchen.

Regional Differences In BBQ Sauce

Regional BBQ sauces vary widely in taste, reflecting local culinary preferences.

In Texas, sauces tend to be bold and smoky with a mix of chili peppers and spices.

Kansas City features a sweet and tangy profile, often with a molasses base.

Carolina sauces range from vinegar-based and tangy in the east to mustard-based and milder in the west.

Alabama favors a creamy, mayonnaise-based sauce with a zesty kick. These distinct flavors mirror the unique barbecue traditions of each region.

This particular recipe is on the sweeter/tangier side. But as mentioned before, it’s customizable! I recommend starting out with these bare minimum ingredients and tweaking to your liking: Ketchup, brown sugar, red wine vinegar, and spices.

Use Your Homemade BBQ Sauce On:

Homemade baked crispy chicken nuggets recipe. Click through for recipe!

 Every chicken nugget needs some BBQ sauce. Get the crispy baked chicken nugget recipe here

Barbecue bacon pizza: Zesty pizza with a BBQ sauce base. Repin to save!

Use this sauce on top of delicious barbecue bacon pizza

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Baked BBQ chicken thighs: This recipe is simple a full of good BBQ flavor!

Use to coat homemade BBQ chicken thighs

5-minute BBQ sauce recipe. Click through for recipe!

5-minute BBQ Sauce Recipe

Yield: 2 1/2 cups sauce
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes

Barbecue sauce is the ultimate sauce to play around with. Start with the amounts listed below, and customize to your liking. Let me know your additions and substitutions below!


  • 2 cups ketchup
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder (or shallot salt)
  • 1 teaspoon chipotle powder
  • Plenty of cracked black pepper
  • Liquid smoke (I didn't use this, but if you have it on hand, add a teaspoon or two for that smoky flavor)


  1. Pour all ingredients into a heavy bottomed saucepan. Cook for 5 minutes or so on medium-high heat, to allow flavors to meld and sugar to dissolve.
  2. Serve warm or cold.
  3. Store in fridge, sealed, for up to 2 weeks.

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