Apple Bourbon BBQ Sauce

Yield: 16 servings.


  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • ½ onion, minced
  • 1 dried ancho chile or 2 tsp. ground ancho chili powder
  • ½ tsp. allspice
  • ½ tsp. ground cumin
  • 1 tsp. paprika
  • Coarse salt and freshly cracked black pepper, to taste
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • ¼ cup tomato juice
  • ¼ cup ketchup
  • ¼ cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tbsp. Dijon mustard
  • 1 tbsp. brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp. maple syrup
  • ¼ cup apple butter
  • 1 tbsp. bourbon whiskey, or to taste


  1. Hot sauce, to taste (optional)
  2. Squeeze of lemon or lime juice, if needed
  3. Heat olive oil in small pot over medium heat. Add onion and cook until soft, about 3 to 5 minutes. Add chili, allspice, cumin and paprika. Stir. Add garlic and cook until soft, about 2 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
  4. Add tomato juice, ketchup, apple cider vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, Dijon mustard, brown sugar, maple syrup, apple butter and bourbon. Increase heat to high and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and allow sauce to simmer for 20 to 25 minutes. Taste for seasoning. Finish with dash of hot sauce and lemon juice for extra kick. Makes about 1 cup.