Sweet and Spicy Barbecue Sauce and 15 Spice Dry Rub

Homemade Sweet and Spicy BBQ sauce and 15 Spice Dry Rub Recipe


What’s your favorite condiment? For me, it’s barbecue sauce. I love barbecue sauce, and use it on pretty much everything. Sadly, so many brands of it have high fructose corn syrup, and since Jack joins in my love of barbecue sauce…we had to come up with another alternative.

Sure, we could have bought the more expensive brand. But I decided I wanted to try my hand at making my own homemade barbecue sauce. Surely, it couldn’t be too hard!

It ended up being more of a fete than I initially thought…partially because it just took me forever to decide exactly how I wanted to make it! I wanted it to be full of flavor, have a little bit of spice and a little bit of sweetness, and to be similar to this kind my dad had bought over the summer. He purchased it from some BBQ stand in Colorado, and it was so good! It had tiny pieces of onions and probably peppers throughout it. It wasn’t like a salsa or anything, but just a little bit of texture. The guy claimed it had a special blend of spices (which, of course, is secret) so I decided to make my own secret dry rub. It ended up having 15 spices, and I’ve used it a ton ever since. I’m going to share it with you for this recipe…so it’s not really secret. I just like to say it is…haha! (don’t let that scare you away…I’ve included alternate ingredients in case you don’t want to make the dry rub.)

Homemade Sweet and Spicy BBQ sauce and 15 Spice Dry Rub Recipe


It turned out perfectly the first time…and even better the next time! It was easy to can (about 40 minutes in a water bath, with 1/2 inch head space…adjust for altitude.  We are about a mile above sea level) and is great for gift giving. I just bought Avery removable brown labels from Target that I printed “Sweet and Spicy BBQ Sauce” on to, and it made it look a little fancier. The sauce is definitely sweet and spicy, and I don’t ever want to go back to store bought again. It’s just too good! And if you don’t want it spicy — just omit the peppers! The thing about this recipe is that it’s so easy to adjust to your own flavor preferences.

Sweet and Spicy BBQ Sauce
  • 4 cups Tomato Sauce
  • ½ cup Onion, chopped
  • 1 habenero pepper, minced
  • ½ pasilla pepper, minced
  • 1 cup Cider Vinegar
  • 3 tablespoon Worchestire Sauce
  • 4 tablespoon Honey
  • ½ tablepsoon Liquid Smoke
  • ¼ cup + 1 tbsp cup brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • Dry Rub - 3 tablespoon
  • If not using dry rub recipe
  • 1 Tbsp chili powder
  • 1 Tbsp cayenne
  • 1 Tbsp garlic
  • 1 Tbsp dry mustard
  1. Place all ingredients into a large pot.
  2. Use immersion blender to blend up vegetables -- you don't want any big chunks.
  3. Bring to a boil and stir about 5 minutes. Taste, and adjust flavors according to personal preference.
  4. and then bring back down to a simmer for about 60 minutes. Taste again, adjust flavors if needed.
  5. Use within 3 weeks (refrigerated), unless canning.

Yields About 2.5 Pints

15 Spice Dry Rub
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  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon Chili Powder
  • 1 tsp Oregano
  • 1 tsp Cumin
  • 1 tsp Garlic Powder
  • 1/2 tsp Nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp Onion Powder
  • 1/4 tsp Cardamom
  • 1/2 tsp Cayenne
  • 1/2 tsp Sage
  • 1/4 tsp Ginger
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 1/4 tsp celery salt
  • 1/2 tsp dry mustard
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
six sisters menu plan


  1. Mix all together and store in an airtight container. May harden slightly, but can easily be broken up again with a spoon.


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