The Sauce of the Summer: Whiskey BBQ Sauce

This is absolutely the sauce of the summer -- whiskey bbq sauce! It's perfect on burgers, pulled pork sandwiches, ribs......heck you can even dip fries in it!

This sauce is thick and perfectly balanced with a little acidity from the apple cider vinegar, sweetness from the brown sugar and molasses, smoky goodness from the smoked paprika and.........drum roll........deep oak flavor from the whiskey.

I highly recommend making this a few days ahead to allow all the flavors to really develop.

And if you're looking for a perfect hostess gift for all the Summer parties you're gonna go to, save half and put it in a mason jar wrapped in a ribbon. And, VOILÁ, a super thoughtful hostess gift!

You're gonna want to make the best whiskey bbq sauce all Summer long!

Whiskey BBQ Sauce

Print Grocery List Print Recipe
Serves: Makes 1 1/2 cups Total Time: 20 minutes


  • 1 ½ cups ketchup
  • 1/4 cup whiskey or bourbon (use whatever brand you like to drink!)
  • ¼ cup packed dark brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons molasses
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • ¼ cup apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 teaspoons smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon dry mustard powder
  • Pinch of cayenne



Place all the ingredients in a small saucepan and give them a quick stir to combine.


Simmer over medium heat for about 10 -15 minutes, until the sauce thickens.


Taste for seasoning -- if you want it sweeter, add a spoonful of brown sugar. If you want it more acidic with more bite, add a splash of apple cider vinegar.

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