Our Favorite Recipes Featuring Barbecue Sauce

pulled chicken bbq sandwich

Whether you love this classic American condiment or want to use up a bottle you have in the fridge, let these these savory recipes featuring barbecue sauce inspire your next meal.

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Quick BBQ Sauce
Amy Neunsinger

In many refrigerators around the country, a bottle of barbecue sauce is a permanent resident of the condiment shelf: It's sweet, tangy, and generally offers just a hint of spice and heat, and though the flavor and viscosity of barbecue sauce may vary based on region, they all have big, bold flavor. For being such a heavy hitter on the taste buds, barbecue sauce is pretty dynamic in its different uses. In this collection of recipes, you'll find it brushed onto ribs, sauced on sliders, and stirred into an easy slow-cooker dish.

If you want to make barbecue sauce to keep around for grilling season, the Quick Barbecue Sauce that's pictured here is a great all-purpose recipe to try. It uses just a handful of pantry ingredients and the result is a complex, savory, finger-licking good sauce that will enhance all kinds of dishes.

As we head into the warmer months of the year (unofficially known as "grilling season"), you'll want to dust off your grill and prepare some delicious barbecue. That's a time-honored way to use barbecue sauce, and it's also one we heartily endorse. Several of these recipes though call for barbecue sauce in ways that go beyond the grill grates. For instance, you'll find a meatloaf recipe that—instead of the usual ketchup—uses barbecue sauce as a glaze for that extra zing. In a recipe for slow-cooked baked beans, a thick, tomato-based barbecue sauce joins a pot of navy beans to simmer low and slow until cooked to perfection.

We hope these recipes that use barbecue sauce will inspire you to try this favorite condiment in all kinds of new ways.

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Barbecued Chicken and Zucchini Pizza


This pizza recipe will come together faster than it takes to order delivery. What's its secret? It uses reliable store-bought items like pizza dough, rotisserie chicken, and barbecue sauce. Bonus: It will be much healthier, too.

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Barbecue Pork Burgers

Barbecue Pork Burgers

A riff on pulled pork sandwiches, this recipe uses store-bought barbecue sauce in two ways: First as the main seasoning agent in the ground pork, and then as a condiment to spread on top.

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Pulled BBQ-Chicken Sandwiches

pulled chicken bbq sandwich

The star of this delicious recipe is an easy, five-ingredient barbecue sauce that can be made from everyday pantry ingredients like ketchup, brown sugar, and Worcestershire sauce.

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Smoky Baby Back Ribs


A smoky-sweet sauce made from chipotles, honey, and chili sauce is basted onto these ribs towards the end of cooking. Whether you make this recipe in the oven or on the grill, the signature smoky flavor will remain thanks to the chipotles in adobo sauce.

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Mini BBQ Meatball Sliders


A downright adorable appetizer for game day or a backyard cookout, turkey meatballs are broiled and then sauced at the last minute before being tucked into mini potato rolls.

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Slow-Cooked Baked Beans

Slow-Cooked Baked Beans

With navy beans cooked slow and low for hours in a mixture of onions, garlic, bacon, and a piquant barbecue sauce, this recipe will be a guaranteed hit at the next potluck.

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Barbecued Chicken Kabobs with Potatoes and Summer Squash

Barbecued Chicken Kabobs with Potatoes and Summer Squash

These easy skewers show how a good store-bought barbecue sauce can make something special out of otherwise simple weeknight fare.

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Barbecue Chicken

test kitchens favorite grilled chicken
Armando Rafael

This classic recipe has you dry-brine the chicken parts for an hour in order to ensure they stay moist and juicy throughout the cooking process. While you wait, simmer the easy five-ingredient barbecue sauce that you will later use to baste the chicken until caramelized and lightly charred.

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Slow-Cooker Sweet-and-Sour Country Ribs


This recipe uses a simple homemade barbecue sauce made from ketchup, brown sugar, and various spices as the cooking liquid for these meltingly tender pork ribs. To ramp up the flavor even further, set out a bottle of your favorite store-bought barbecue sauce to drizzle on top.

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Barbecued Pork-and-Apple Kebabs


Perfect for the shoulder season between summer and fall, these pork-and-apple skewers are basted with a tangy barbecue sauce made from apricot jam, apple cider vinegar, and tomato paste.

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Braised Brisket

Braised Brisket with carrots and potatoes

While not called a barbecue sauce outright, this recipe braises beef brisket in similar flavors—a combination of tomato paste, brown sugar, cider vinegar, and spices like allspice and ground ginger. The result is a fall-apart braise perfect for fanning over a plate of mashed potatoes.

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Meatloaf and Buttermilk Mashed Potatoes


Store-bought barbecue sauce is basted onto this classic meatloaf while it bakes to create a sweet and tangy glaze on top.

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