Barbecue Sauce and Ketchup

20130426_151344 As the spring rains slowly start to withdraw, I’ve found myself faced with summer quickly approaching. And with summer comes the inevitable barbecues. Now, I myself adore barbecues. What’s not to love? Get together with some friends, throw some vegetables on the grill, and soak up that delicious, delicious smell of barbecue sauce. Yes, if you’re like me, you crave barbecue sauce. I love the stuff! It’s addicting, really. And for now, seeing as it is not summer just yet, I’m staying inside to satisfy my cravings.

There are many recipes in which I like to use barbecue sauce. Barbecue ribz, barbecue seitan chicken sandwiches, grilled vegetables, and more. I recently made a batch of the “chicken” sandwiches and was it was super yummy. I’ll post that recipe at a later date, and when I do you can find it HERE. For now, I give you my favorite barbecue sauce recipe. It is amazingly delicious, smoky, slightly peppery, with just a hint of tang that is bound to satisfy anyone. And yes, there is a ketchup recipe included here too, because my favorite barbecue sauce recipe has a ketchup base and there is no way I’m tainting this gorgeous sauce with the high fructose corn syrup found in so many popular brands of ketchup. I’ve put the ketchup recipe first because you’ll have to make it first.

And don’t worry, it’s an incredibly simple recipe, and needs essentially the same ingredients as the barbecue sauce does, which is nicer on your wallet. Plus, it actually does make the barbecue sauce taste much better than with one of those store bought corn syrup filled brands. High fructose corn syrup is gross. This barbecue sauce, however? Freaking delicious.

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Ingredients

  • 6 oz can tomato paste
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1 tsp agave
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon Apple Cider Vinegar

Preparation

In a measuring cup (makes for easy pouring into the sauce), whisk all ingredients together. Seriously, it’s as easy as that. To make getting the tomato paste out of the can easy, just open both ends with a can opener, then push one end through to push out all the paste. No need to worry about scraping the sides, although you can if you want.

Barbecue Sauce

Ingredients

  • Ketchup (about one cup, or the whole recipe above)
  • 1/4 cup agave
  • 1/4 cup molasses
  • 2 tablespoons Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 black pepper (I use less because I don’t like much pepper. If you love to load the stuff into your food, I would use no more than 3/4 teaspoon)

Preparation

In a medium saucepan, whisk all ingredients together until smooth on medium heat. Bring to a simmer and then reduce the heat to low and simmer uncovered, whisking every few minutes for 30 minutes. At this point, you will have a thickened sauce, but if you prefer it thicker just continue to simmer and whisk occasionally until it’s the density you prefer.

And then, enjoy the heck out of your made-from-scratch barbecue sauce. If it wasn’t looked down upon by society, I would just eat the stuff by the spoonful. Yum!

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