Homemade Barbecue Sauce

Not all homemade barbecue sauce recipes are created equal. I’ve tried many, and my kids will often complain that one is too spicy! (too much pepper), too smoky! (paprika), too sweet! (seriously?)—and the list goes on.

This easy homemade barbecue sauce recipe is the one that won my kids over at my house. Finally, one recipe without refined sugars that won us all!

Of course, I like to make one sauce that will satisfy all of our preferences, so I only have to keep one jar in the fridge. I know, I know, there are dozens of brands to choose from at the grocery store, and in the past, I’ve had more than one in my refrigerator.

It all began when I made homemade ketchup. I realized that with just a few simple ingredients that I already had in my pantry, I could make my family’s favorite sauce! So then, I began experimenting with other sauces, dressings, etc.

I’ve tried quite a few barbecue sauces, but none compared to Danielle Walker’s recipe in her Against All Grain Cookbook. That was by far the best and most delicious barbecue sauce my husband and I had tried in a while. Of course, the kids had a few opinions of their own.

The sauce is spicy, tangy, and a little smoky. So, I used much of her recipe as a base and toned it down for my own kids. I also use honey instead of coconut crystals because that kills two recipes with one. Honey barbecue sauce, here I come. Right? Almost.

Homemade Barbecue Sauce

This easy homemade barbecue sauce recipe is the one that won my kids over at my house. Finally, one recipe without refined sugars that won us all!
  • Author: MOMables.com
  • Yield: 1 1/2 cups


  • 1 cup tomato puree
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup white vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 tablespoon coconut aminos*
  • 1 teaspoon fish sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon natural liquid smoke (optional)
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper


  1. In a medium saucepan over medium heat, add all the ingredients, including the liquid smoke, if using, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat, and simmer for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally, to thicken the sauce.
  2. Allow the sauce to cool to room temperature prior to transferring it to a glass jar and into the refrigerator. Refrigerate for up to a week.


If you can tolerate soy, you may use soy sauce or Bragg’s aminos.
Recipe fully adapted from Against All Grain’s Cookbook to the preferences in my family. While the measurements of some ingredients have been adapted, and I’ve omitted others, I feel it was the right thing to credit Danielle because her originality in using a combination of coconut aminos and fish sauce made this sauce tangy and delicious!


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About MOMables - Laura

Mom to 3 awesome people and MOMables CEO. I work hard in my kitchen so you don't have to. I'm obsessed with tacos and coffee -not always in that order.