Recipe: Sweet and Tangy Homemade BBQ Sauce

We moved on from bottled vinaigrette to our own homemade versions years ago, but for some reason, BBQ sauce still came from Kraft or K.C. Masterpiece. And there's no reason for that, when it's so easy to make from scratch. Here's the version we've tweaked over the past few months. It's going on a homemade pizza tonight...We're partial to sweet bbq sauce, so this has plenty of brown sugar and molasses in it. Originally we started with a bbq sauce from Emeril Lagasse, which used a bottle of ketchup as its base.

Emeril's Sweet BBQ Sauce, from Food Network

We weren't so keen on the ketchup, so ours uses tomato paste and sauce, and there are a few other changes as well. This recipe makes enough for a couple of bbq chicken pizzas (what we'll be using it for tonight) or for several pulled pork sandwiches. If you want to marinate a bunch of chicken breasts, you may want to double it.

Sweet and Tangy Homemade BBQ Sauce

makes about 1 1/2 cups

olive oil
1/4 of a red onion, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1 8-ounce can tomato sauce
1/4 cup water
1 tablespoon molasses
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 teaspoons worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon dijon or brown mustard
1 teaspoon salt
a few dashes of hot sauce
freshly ground pepper

Heat a splash of olive oil in a medium sauce pan over medium heat. Add the onions and cook until soft, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for another minute or two. Reduce the heat to low and add the tomato paste and cumin; mix in with the onion and garlic.

Add the tomato sauce and all remaining ingredients. Stir until combined and heated through. Taste and adjust salt, pepper, or other seasonings as you see fit. Transfer to a blender or use an immersion blender to blend until smooth. Add more water, a tablespoon or two at a time, if you prefer a thinner sauce.

Related: Recipe Recommendation: Coca Cola Barbecue Sauce

(Image: Elizabeth Passarella)