My epic bbq sauce

Submitted - Ben
Views - 447
Serves - Lots


For the paste:

1 medium onion, peeled and quartered
10 cloves garlic, peeled
2 fresh red chillies, stalks removed
olive oil

Herbs and spices:

10 sprigs fresh thyme or lemon thyme, leaves picked
10 sprigs fresh rosemary, leaves picked
1 small bunch fresh coriander
10 bay leaves
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
2 tablespoons fennel seeds
2 tablespoons smoked paprika
6 cloves

To finish:

zest and juice of 2 oranges
200 g soft brown sugar
6 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
200 ml tomato ketchup
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
2 teaspoons English mustard
200 ml apple juice
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


Blitz the onion, garlic and chillies together in a food processor until you've got a really fine paste. Pour a lug of olive oil into a pan and gently fry this paste for 5 minutes on a low heat to really get the flavours going.

While that's happening, add all your herbs and spices to the food processor, then peel in strips of orange zest using a speed peeler (you don't want any white pith) and blitz up really well. Add this puréed mixture to the pan and cook for another minute. Add the sugar, stir in well and cook for a few more minutes, until it begins to dissolve and you get a thick brown paste. Pour in 285ml of water and cook for 2 more minutes, then squeeze in the juice of both your oranges and add all the remaining ingredients. Stir well and bring everything to the boil, then turn down the heat a touch and simmer for 5 to 10 minutes, until the mixture starts to thicken slightly.

Pour the sauce slowly through a fine sieve into a large bowl and get rid of any larger bits left behind in the sieve. Rinse the sieve and pass the sauce through the sieve again so it's really silky.

Leave to cool completely, then either divide the sauce between jars or get marinating straight away. Once it's in the fridge, you'll have about a week or so to use up the rest of the sauce. If you want to keep it for longer, you'll have to sterilize some jars. It's dead easy. Either put them in the sink along with their lids and cover them completely with boiling water from the kettle; or fill a really large pan with water, bring it to the boil, then immerse the jars and lids and continue to boil for 10 minutes; or, if you've got a good dishwasher with a really hot cycle, run them through that.

Pour the sauce into your sterilized jar, screw the lid on tightly, and immerse the jar completely in a pan of boiling water for 10 minutes. Let it cool, then put it into the fridge or a cool dark cupboard until you need it. It should keep for about 6 months, no problem.


I really love this barbecue sauce. There are loads of layers of flavours that make it truly insane. Although there are lots of ingredients it doesn't take long at all to whip up. I think if you're going to make this you may as well make a lot so that it's in the fridge and on hand when you next need a huge flavour kick. The results are incredible, so it's worth the time and effort to get it right.

Nutritional Information - Amount per serving:

Calories 80kcal
Carbs 17.0g
Sugar 15.5g
Fat 0.8g
Saturates 0.1g
Protein 0.8g