Can you cook a good barbecue without adding some spicy or smoky sauce? We think not. The sauce is an indispensable ingredient in the making of any sweet-tasting barbecue. But not all BBQ sauces deliver as expected. Trust us, you’re about to find out the best BBQ sauces in this article.
We understand that identifying the best barbecue sauce can be tricky which is why we went ahead to test several bottled products. Or how best to determine the best BBQ sauces in stores other than testing them ourselves? We eventually picked the top 9 products that impressed us the most based on their excellent ingredients, exciting flavors, impressive prices, and brand quality. Our Editor’s Choice is the Traeger Grills SAU039. Ride along with us as we dissect the 9 BBQ sauces and tell you everything you need to know about the best BBQ sauces.
More features: 15 servings per bottle, contains soy
As we’ve mentioned a few times before in this review, versatility is a great feature in any BBQ sauce. Good thing that the Traeger ‘Que BBQ Sauce offers this great feature that you can rely on for many of your favorite dishes. The sauce boasts smoky hickory, tangy vinegar, and notes of brown sugar for a classic, exciting flavor. Another impressive thing about this formula is it contains only premium ingredients and is devoid of any unsafe ingredients.
Besides, the Traeger ‘Que BBQ Sauce is a natural partner of ribs thanks to its unique formula. That means you can add the sauce to any of your favorite rib barbecues and enjoy rich flavors. As if that wasn’t enough, the formula is also perfect for any other dish you can think of, underscoring its great value. Moreover, if you’re a lover of the hickory hardwood pellets and Traeger rub, you can pair the sauce with them to create a flavorful, complete taste.
More features: 6-pack, 25 servings per container
How about getting yourself some rich Korean flavor? With the Bibigo Korean BBQ sauce, you can bring all the goodness of Korean flavor to your menu. Bibi, in Korean, means to “mix”. The product got its name from combining “Bibi” and “go”, meaning the sauce is always ready to go for delicious barbecues. Plus you don’t need to worry about your safety because the formula’s ingredients are safe. Also, the sauce comes in a pack of 6 with 16.9-ounce bottles.
Moreover, the Bibigo Korean BBQ sauce is the formula to go for if you desire a flavor that is rooted in Korea’s culinary traditions because it is a precise balance of sweet and savory flavors and ingredients. Surely, that’s something you don’t want to miss out on if you’re a sucker for Korean flavors. With this sauce, you have a wide range of possibilities. You can use it to prepare several menu items such as savory BBQ ribs, baby back ribs, chicken BBQ, mac and cheese, Gochujang BBQ chicken, Korean BBQ short ribs (Galbi), and many others.
More features: 2 bottles, 13 servings per container
Some say variety is the spice of life. If you’re a fan of that popular saying, the Capital City Mambo Sauce will interest you. The product offers a variety pack of two amazing BBQ sauces; Mild Mambo sauce and Sweet Hot Mambo sauce. As you might have guessed, the two sauces are made from slightly different ingredients. The two sauces are made up of wheat, tomato ketchup, sugar, salt, distilled vinegar, spice, onion powder, & natural flavor, soy sauce, cayenne pepper hot sauce, vinegar, and paprika. But the Sweet Mambo sauce adds Habanero Pepper Extract to its formula
Besides, the City Mambo Sauce is your guy if you’re looking for a versatile option for your barbecue. Apart from being traditionally utilized (as a dipping sauce) for fried chicken wings, the formula is also great as a glaze or marinade on pork and other meats. Plus, the sauce adds a sweet and tangy flavor to any dish. In the lineup of best BBQ sauces in stores, this product is up there.
More features: 2 bottles, 14 servings per bottle
The Sweet Baby Ray’s Barbecue Sauce, as its name suggests, is the best sweet BBQ sauce on the market. You’re probably wondering how that came to be. The sauce’s mouthwatering recipe made it one of the best BBQ sauces. The formula is made up of pretty safe ingredients. Hence, you can forget about having issues with allergens. When you buy this product, you get two 40-ounce bottles to spice up your favorite barbecue.
Furthermore, the Sweet Baby Ray’s Barbecue Sauce is amazing on chicken, brisket, and ribs. If you love any of those, this sauce adds a slow-cooked tangy sweetness to them. Besides, it doesn’t matter if the meats are smoked or grilled, the sauce will still deliver spectacular sweetness. Also, the formula is fantastic on hot dogs, fries, barbecued tofu, and burgers. Hence, you get a cooking ingredient ideal for increasing your selection of condiments
More features: kosher certified, sugar free
Amongst the BBQ best sauces, we came across is the Walden Farms Barbecue Sauce. The formula offers honey barbecue and hickory smoked flavors, leaving you with two of the most tasteful flavors. A package of the sauce comes with 3 bottles that combine for a weight of 1.87 kilograms.
Moreover, the Walden Farms Barbecue Sauce is the perfect option for you if you’re very sensitive about your health. If your doctor has advised you to avoid fatty foods or calories, this delicious sauce allows you to go ahead with eating your favorite barbecue without any fear for your health because it is fat and calorie-free. The formula is also free of cholesterol and sugar, making it the healthiest choice on our list.
More features: 6 bottles, 16 servings per bottle
Another exciting option on our list is the Head Country Bar-B-Q Sauce, a product of one of the best BBQ sauce brands. It boasts a rich formula that has been keeping tongues happy since 1947. Trust us, you have nothing to worry about when it comes to the ingredients because none of them is unsafe for you. Also, the formula doesn’t contain any artificial preservatives. A package of the product comes with 6 20-ounce bottles of hot flavor for a fulfilling barbecue.
Besides, the Head Country Bar-B-Q Sauce is the ideal choice for you if you’re allergic to gluten because the formula doesn’t contain the ingredient. Also, if you want a sweet and tangy barbecue, this sauce is a great option thanks to its blend of black and red pepper. With this rich blend of flavors, creating a sweet and spicy barbecue is easy and guaranteed, making it arguably the best store-bought BBQ sauce.
More features: preservative free, 15 servings per bottle
You could call the Jack Daniel’s Old No. 7 Original BBQ Sauce the best commercial BBQ sauce, the best grocery store BBQ sauce, or the best bottled barbecue sauce, and we won’t argue with you, thanks to its impressive quality. Like other top sauces, this one is also free of unhealthy ingredients such as corn syrup, high-fructose corn syrup, and preservatives. It rather boasts premium natural ingredients that promise to make your meals more flavorful. Essentially, the sauce is a blend of great flavors.
If you love yourself some whiskey, how about adding it to your barbecue? Oh, not literally, but through the Jack Daniel’s Old No. 7 Original BBQ Sauce. The sauce adds a touch of Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Whiskey, providing your barbecue that unmistakable whiskey flavor. As we mentioned before, the sauce contains only healthy flavors, so you can confidently pick it if you’re very conscious of your health.
More features: 6 bottles, 15 servings per bottle
The final product on our list is the Heinz Carolina Mustard Style BBQ Sauce and it’s equally full of flavor. With it, you can add boldness and goodness to all of your favorite recipes and dishes. As its name suggests, this sauce is Mustard-styled to perfection with incredible ingredients. The ingredients include mustard seed, distilled white vinegar, blackstrap molasses, cane sugar, tomato paste, apple cider vinegar, spices, turmeric, corn starch, onion, powder, natural smoke flavor, and more.
Moreover, the Heinz Carolina Mustard Style barbecue sauce is a versatile BBQ ingredient that works perfectly with grill, oven, or stove. If you love the classic mustard flavor, this sauce offers you the perfect opportunity to enjoy it through chicken nuggets and ribs. Also, the formula is ideal for use as a BBQ chicken marinade or a final touch to pulled pork or baby back ribs.
More features: 126 servings per container, gluten-free
Out of the best BBQ sauces to buy, the Stubb’s Smokey Mesquite Legendary Bar-B-Q Sauce comfortably sits at the top. This is unsurprising considering the excellent composition of the sauce. It is made from premium ingredients such as Tomato Puree, sugar, brown sugar, molasses, corn starch, distilled vinegar, organic honey, spices, salt, and natural flavor. With these top ingredients, the excellence of the sauce is undisputed.
Besides, Stubb’s BBQ sauce brings amazing, authentic Texas BBQ flavor to your menu. So, if you’re anxious to taste the legendary Texas flavor, this is the product to buy. Also, if you love authentic mesquite smoky flavor, this sauce is made for you because it is formulated in such a way that you won’t get enough of it. Also, this is a sauce you can trust if you don’t want trouble with allergens thanks to its gluten-free formula.
As we mentioned at the beginning of this article, picking the best BBQ sauce is no easy feat, and reality isn’t lost on us. Good thing that we’ve taken it upon ourselves to develop a comprehensive buying guide that provides all the information you need to make the right choice.
The truth is you can’t always be available to make a homemade BBQ sauce. Whether you like it or not, a time will always come when you’re in a rush to prepare barbecue for visitors and you’ll have no choice but to rush and get one from the store. The store-bought BBQ sauces can be very good substitutes and time-saving.
Besides that, store-bought sauces’ proportions tend to be always right. Just make sure that you buy the right BBQ sauce for your recipe and you’re good.
The technique for applying BBQ sauce is different for each type of meat as you’ll find out below:
Chicken: Basting the chicken is the best way to apply BBQ sauce to it. Baste it enough to cover the whole meat, but don’t drench. A thick sauce is best for chicken so that it can stay on the meat. Firstly, spread the sauce on one side of the chicken and allow it to cook for about five minutes. Then, flip it over and coat the other side with the sauce and let it cook too.
Turkey: Applying BBQ sauce to turkey is quite similar to doing the same to chicken. Spread a thick coat of sauce on one side of the turkey and allow it to cook for about 5-15 minutes. Flip it over to the other side, apply the sauce to it, and allow it to cook too.
Beef: When it comes to beef, it’s best to apply the BBQ sauce in the early stages of the cooking process. Make thin cuts into the meat and apply sauce so that it seeps into the cuts. When the cooking is done, spread the final layer of sauce on the meat and get a foil to wrap it. This will let the last layer of the sauce stick to the meat, providing a complete flavor
Pork: For pork, add the BBQ sauce near the end of the cooking, usually about 15-20 minutes before the meat is done. Besides, you should warm the sauce before applying it so that it can cover the entire meat. Also, you should the sauce in thin layers to achieve the best flavor.
Picking the best BBQ sauces is not about how they look but about important factors such as brands, ingredients, flavor, prices, and so on. Below, we will explain the factors you must consider to be able to pick the best BBQ sauces.
Price is arguably the first factor most buyers consider because it determines whether the product is within their budget or not. Thankfully, the BBQ sauces on our list are reasonably priced. The prices are usually based on the quantity you’re getting.
For instance, the 1-gallon Stubb’s Smokey Mesquite sauce costs more than the 16-ounce Bibigo Korean BBQ sauce because their contents differ. Ultimately, the best BBQ sauces offer great value for the money.
There’s no way you don’t consider brands in your mission to pick the best BBQ sauces. The top brands are known for offering the best flavors for the best barbecues. Every brand represented on our list is tested and trusted. When it comes to making excellent BBQ sauces, you can’t take anything away from brands such as Stubb’s, Bibigo, Capital City, Sweet Baby Ray’s, Jack Daniel’s, Heinz, etc.
So, if you want the best BBQ sauce for your dishes, ensure that you go for a trusted brand.
Before picking a BBQ sauce, you’ll need to determine the type or style you want. Maybe mustard-based like the Heinz Carolina Mustard sauce or whiskey-based like the Jack Daniel’s Old No. 7 Original sauce.
Also, you’ll need to determine your preferred flavor, whether smokey like the Traeger ‘Que BBQ sauce, sweet like the Sweet Baby Ray’s barbecue sauce, or spicey like the Head Country Bar-B-Q sauce. Eventually, you should choose based on your preferred flavor because that will determine the taste of your barbecue.
As you’ve seen just above, the main ingredients of BBQ sauces determine their flavors. The most common ingredients, are tomato paste, vinegar, and spices such as black pepper or mustard. Some BBQ sauces are made from artificial ingredients (often sweetened with high-fructose corn syrup) but the best sauces are made from healthy ingredients (usually sweetened with natural sugar). Walden Farms BBQ sauce and Jack Daniel’s Old No. 7 Original BBQ sauce are examples of formulas without unhealthy ingredients.
Also, you need to pay attention to the calorie content of the BBQ sauce you’re picking. If you don’t mind calories, you can buy a formula like Sweet Baby Ray’s BBQ sauce which offers 70 calories per serving but if you can’t stand calories, the Walden Farms BBQ sauce is the ideal choice thanks to its zero-calorie content.
The pack type is another factor you should consider before buying a BBQ sauce. You should decide whether you want a pack of 6 bottles like the Heinz Carolina Mustard Style BBQ Sauce or a pack of one bottle like the Traeger ‘Que BBQ sauce.
If you’re very sensitive to allergens, then you must only buy an allergen-free BBQ sauce like the Stubb’s Smokey Mesquite sauce or the Jack Daniel’s Old No. 7 Original BBQ sauce. Additionally, you should avoid any BBQ sauce with gluten.
After trying out several barbecue sauces on chicken, the Capital City Mambo Sauce impressed us the most. Whether you’re using the Mild variety or it’s the Sweet Hot one, your chicken is in good hands.
After a thorough review of the 9 barbecue sauces on our list, there’s no doubt that they are excellent additions to any barbecue or dish.
The Traeger ‘Que BBQ earns the enviable position of our Editor’s Choice thanks to its incredible versatility at a great price. The Bibigo Korean BBQ sauce is the second, it can help you recreate the best Korean BBQ flavors in your kitchen. The Capital City Mambo Sauce offers a variety pack of two amazing BBQ sauces; Mild Mambo sauce and Sweet Hot Mambo sauce. No doubt, this article contains everything you need to know about the best BBQ sauces.