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How To Make Homemade BBQ Sauce: St. Louis Style

Homemade bbq sauce with freshly grilled ribs

How To Make Homemade BBQ Sauce

Homemade St. Louis Style BBQ Sauce

St. Louis style sauce differs from Kansas City style sauce, despite these cities both being in Missouri. BBQ is funny that way, from one side of a state to another, flavor profiles change. In this case, you’ll find the St. Louis style sauce to be a bit more tangy and less sweet than the Kansas City style sauce. 

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The tangy profile comes from the addition of yellow mustard and a touch more vinegar. It’s excellent on spare ribs or pork steaks because the acidity matches very well with the fattiness of those meats. As much as I love this sauce on ribs, it certainly shouldn’t be limited to just those. Read on…

How to Make Your Own BBQ Sauce for Ribs

To make a good St. Louis style sauce, we start with 4 main ingredients: ketchup, brown sugar, cider vinegar, and yellow mustard. This is the foundation of the sauce, with various spices being added after the fact. I’m personally a fan of keeping it simple and balanced with my tangy BBQ sauce. I highly encourage you to follow my recipe exactly as I have it written.

Ketchup, mustard, and brown sugar are the basic ingredients of homemade BBQ sauce

After slathering this sauce on a great rack of ribs, then you can decide for yourself if you want to change it up a little. Just remember, the four base ingredients are a foundation. If you like it more tangy for example, you can add a bit more vinegar. Speaking of tangy, if that’s your jam, you should definitely try my East Carolina style BBQ sauce.

Brush homemade barbecue sauce on ribs

Would Barbecue Sauce Be Good on Pizza?

Absolutely! You can of course try this with any pizza, but it goes especially well with this Hawaiian baby back rib pizza. Again, this is a tangier sauce so it plays well with the fattiness from the rib meat and the cheese. I also use this sauce for BBQ chicken pizza, which is a bit different from other versions of this style pizza. 

Is BBQ Sauce Easy To Make?

BBQ sauce is sooo easy to make. I didn’t start making my own sauces until a few years ago because I just assumed it was super complicated. The fact is, it’s about the easiest thing you can make. You can use either a medium saucepan or a slow cooker. I prefer the slow cooking method because it’s less work, but either way the sauce is delicious.

Just like my Kansas City style sauce, I  recommend making this sauce a day before you’ll need it. I find the flavors come together better after sitting for a day or so, but you can certainly use it the same day. When you store it, be sure to keep it in a glass container because it will stain plastic.

Homemade bbq sauce and grilled ribs

How To Make Homemade BBQ Sauce

Serves: varies| Prep time: 10 min | Cook time: 1 hour

Ingredients
3 cup ketchup
½ cup brown sugar
½ cup cider vinegar
¼ cup yellow mustard
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1 tbsp onion powder
1 tbsp garlic powder
½ tsp ground allspice

How To Make Homemade BBQ Sauce

Step 1: Combine all ingredients for the sauce in a medium size mixing bowl and whisk together to combine thoroughly.

Step 2: Pour sauce into slow cooker or medium size sauce pan. If you’re using the slow cooker select low heat, place the lid on it, and you can pretty much let it go for an hour or two. If you’re using the sauce pan, place over very low heat and put the lid on to prevent splatters. Whisk every 10 minutes to prevent the sauce from burning for an hour.

Step 3: Let sauce cool to room temperature before transferring into a glass container and storing in the refrigerator.

Store homemade barbecue sauce in a jar

Homemade bbq sauce with freshly grilled ribs

How to Make Homemade BBQ Sauce: St. Louis Style

5 from 6 votes
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Course: Condiment
Cuisine: American

Ingredients

  • 3 cup ketchup
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • ½ cup cider vinegar
  • ¼ cup yellow mustard
  • 2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tbsp onion powder
  • 1 tbsp garlic powder
  • ½ tsp ground allspice

Instructions

  • Combine all ingredients for the sauce in a medium size mixing bowl and whisk together to combine thoroughly.
  • Pour sauce into slow cooker or medium size sauce pan. If you’re using the slow cooker select low heat, place the lid on it, and you can pretty much let it go for an hour or two. If you’re using the sauce pan, place over very low heat and put the lid on to prevent splatters. Whisk every 10 minutes to prevent the sauce from burning for an hour.
  • Let sauce cool to room temperature before transferring into a glass container and storing in the refrigerator.

Notes

St. Louis style sauce differs from Kansas City style sauce, despite these cities both being in Missouri. BBQ is funny that way, from one side of a state to another, flavor profiles change. In this case, you’ll find the St. Louis style sauce to be a bit more tangy and less sweet than the Kansas City style sauce. 

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