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Down-Home Barbecue Sauce


This tangy sauce is the key to making our Oven-Roasted Ribs with Barbecue Sauce. You'll use about two cups for brushing the ribs and for dipping, so save the rest for another use.

  • Yield: Makes 1 quart

Source: Martha Stewart Living, May 2005


  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 (6-ounce) can tomato paste
  • 1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 (12-ounce) jar apple butter or applesauce
  • 1/2 cup cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons packed dark-brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons coarse salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 cups apple juice


  1. Heat oil in a medium saucepan over medium-low heat. Add onion and garlic; cook until onion is translucent, about 1 minute. Add cumin and cayenne; cook 1 minute. Add tomato paste; cook 1 minute.

  2. Stir remaining ingredients into onion mixture; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low. Partially cover; simmer, stirring occasionally, about 2 hours. If sauce becomes too thick, add water, a little at a time. Let cool. Puree sauce in batches in a blender until smooth.

Cook's Notes

Sauce can be refrigerated in an airtight container up to 3 weeks.

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