Bourbon BBQ Sauce Recipe

Bbq Sauce

Everything’s better with bourbon, and this bourbon bbq sauce recipe is a fine example of that! Bourbon BBQ sauce is the perfect addition to any meal. It’s slightly sweet, slightly smoky, and packed with flavor. Plus, it’s easy to make at home, only taking about 30 minutes to prepare.

Bourbon barbeque sauce is a staple in Southern cuisine, and for good reason! Its tangy sweetness and smoky hickory flavor make it the perfect complement to meats like pork, beef, chicken wings, and even fish. While bourbon is the traditional alcohol used in this sauce, you can also try experimenting with different spirits like whiskey or rum to give the sauce a unique twist.

Whether you’re looking to marinate your meat before grilling, glaze it during cooking, or simply serve it as a condiment on the side, bourbon BBQ sauce is sure to become your new favorite BBQ sauce. So fire up the grill, grab your favorite meats, and get ready to indulge in the delicious flavors of this mouth-watering sauce.

Yones Bbq Rubs

Is There Alcohol in Bourbon BBQ Sauce?

When making the bourbon BBQ sauce, the alcohol in the bourbon will evaporate as the alcohol cooks. Alcohol boils at a lower temperature than water, so as the sauce simmers and thickens, the alcohol evaporation process begins.

However, not all of the alcohol will evaporate; some will remain in the sauce. The amount of alcohol that remains in the sauce will depend on a few factors such as the amount of bourbon used and the length of the cooking time.

While the alcohol may not be completely eliminated, the alcohol content remaining in the sauce will likely be significantly reduced. Therefore, it’s safe to assume that the amount of alcohol in the final product will be minimal, while the bourbon flavor remains. Bourbon BBQ sauce is generally considered safe for consumption by people of all ages.

What To Serve With Bourbon BBQ Sauce Recipe

This Homemade BBQ sauce is a delicious addition to many different types of meat. Its sweet and tangy flavor pairs particularly well with rich, smoky meats like pork and beef. Here are some of the best types of meat to serve with bourbon BBQ sauce.


Pulled pork is a classic dish that goes perfectly with bourbon BBQ sauce. The rich, smoky flavor of pork cooking on a charcoal grill is enhanced by the sweetness of the sauce. Ribs are another great option, whether they’re slow-cooked or grilled to perfection.


Beef brisket is another classic pairing with bourbon BBQ sauce. The tender, smoky meat is the perfect canvas for the rich, tangy sauce. Steak is another option, particularly if it’s grilled or pan-seared to medium-rare or medium doneness.


Grilled chicken is a great option if you’re looking for a lighter meal that still packs a lot of flavors. Chicken thighs and drumsticks are particularly flavorful and go well with the sweet and tangy flavor of the sauce.

How To Make Bourbon BBQ Sauce

Gather Ingredients

To begin, gather all the required ingredients and place them in a medium-sized saucepan. This step is essential to ensure that all the ingredients are combined in one place and ready to be mixed together. You want to make sure to choose a saucepan that is large enough to hold all the ingredients without overflowing while you mix them.

Whisk Ingredients

Using a whisk or a spoon, stir the ingredients together until they are well combined. Make sure there are no lumps or clumps in the mixture, and all the ingredients are evenly distributed. This step is crucial to ensure that each bite of your BBQ sauce has a consistent taste and texture.


Once the ingredients are well combined, place the saucepan over medium heat. Heat the mixture until it comes to a gentle boil, known as a simmer. Keep an eye on the saucepan to ensure that it doesn’t boil over or burn, and stir the mixture occasionally to prevent the ingredients from sticking to the bottom of the saucepan.

Reduce Heat

After the sauce has come to a simmer, reduce the heat to low and let it simmer for 20-30 minutes or until it thickens to your desired consistency. During this step, the flavors in the sauce will develop and intensify as the mixture simmers. Make sure to stir the sauce occasionally to prevent it from burning or sticking to the bottom of the saucepan. The longer the sauce simmers, the thicker it will become.

Let it Cool

When the sauce has reached the desired thickness, remove the saucepan from the heat and let it cool for a few minutes. This step is essential to allow the sauce to cool down before you transfer it to a container for storage. Be careful when handling the saucepan, as the sauce will be hot.

Use or Store

When the sauce has cooled down, transfer it to an airtight container for storage. Store the container in the refrigerator for up to two weeks. This step is crucial to ensure that the sauce stays fresh and doesn’t spoil. Before serving the sauce, make sure to give it a quick stir to ensure that the ingredients are evenly distributed.

Tips & Tricks For Making Homemade Barbecue Sauce

Bourbon barbecue sauce is a versatile and delicious condiment that can be used to enhance the flavor of a variety of dishes. Whether you’re new to cooking or an experienced chef, there are a few tips and tricks you can follow to make sure your bourbon BBQ sauce turns out perfectly every time.

Selecting the Right Bourbon

If you’re whipping up a batch of bourbon BBQ sauce, the bourbon whiskey you choose can make or break the dish’s overall taste. Opt for bourbon with a smooth and rich flavor, as this will add complexity to your sauce.

As the alcohol cooks off, the distinct taste of bourbon will remain, giving your sauce a unique and irresistible flavor. We suggest avoiding inexpensive bourbon, as the taste may not be up to par with the good stuff. Trust us, using quality bourbon will take your BBQ sauce game to the next level!

Adjust the Sweetness

The sweetness of bourbon BBQ sauce can be adjusted to suit your taste. If you prefer a sweeter sauce, you can increase the amount of brown sugar or add a little honey. If you prefer a less sweet sauce, reduce the amount of brown sugar or use a sugar substitute.

Crank Up The Heat

If you like your BBQ sauce with a little kick, you can add a touch of heat to the recipe. Try adding a pinch of cayenne pepper or a few dashes of hot sauce to give the sauce a little extra heat.

Let the sauce cool before storing – To ensure that your sauce stays fresh and doesn’t spoil, it’s important to let it cool completely before storing it in an airtight container in the refrigerator. This will prevent condensation from forming inside the container, which can cause the sauce to spoil.

Experiment with Seasonings

Don’t be afraid to experiment with different spices and seasonings when making this smoky bourbon BBQ sauce. You can add herbs like rosemary or thyme for extra flavor, or try adding a little smoked paprika for a smoky taste. The possibilities are endless!

Bbq Sauce

Bourbon BBQ Sauce Recipe

East to make Bourbon BBQ Sauce.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes


  • Saucepan
  • Small bowl


  • 1 ½ cup ketchup
  • 1 cup bourbon
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • ¼ cup apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tbsp liquid smoke
  • 1 tbsp dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder


  • In a medium-sized saucepan, combine all the ingredients.
  • Whisk the ingredients together until they are well combined.
  • Place the saucepan over medium heat and bring the sauce to a simmer.
  • Reduce the heat to low and let the sauce simmer for about 20-30 minutes or until it thickens.
  • Once the sauce has thickened, remove it from the heat and let it cool.
  • Once cooled, the bourbon BBQ sauce can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to two weeks.

Bourbon BBQ Sauce FAQs

What is bourbon BBQ sauce?

Bourbon BBQ sauce is a tangy, sweet, and smoky sauce that is made with ketchup, brown sugar, apple cider vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, dijon mustard, garlic powder, onion powder, and bourbon.

Can I use a different type of alcohol in this recipe?

Yes, you can use a different type of alcohol in this recipe though the ingredients in this recipe work best in a bourbon or whiskey bbq sauce. You can try substituting rum for bourbon, though you might not get the same smoky or woody flavor.

How long does it take to make bourbon BBQ sauce?

It takes about 5 minutes to prepare the ingredients and another 20-30 minutes to simmer the sauce.

Can I freeze bourbon BBQ sauce?

Yes, bourbon BBQ sauce can be frozen for up to 3 months.

How can I make bourbon BBQ sauce spicier?

You can make bourbon BBQ sauce spicier by adding a pinch of cayenne pepper or a few dashes of hot sauce to the recipe.

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