We’ve reached peak cookout season, which means several of you are probably in the midst of figuring out what to bring to the next one. Here’s the answer: barbecue sauce.
Before you ask, let us answer the next question: Yes, there will probably already be store-bought sauce there. But that doesn’t mean you can’t provide a fresh alternative for more adventurous attendees. Have you ever tried a peach-habanero barbecue sauce? How about chocolate chili? Summer is the time for fun and experimental foods, after all.
Here are five easy recipes to try out, pulled from our archives.
Peach-Habanero Barbecue Sauce, above. For those of you who go overboard at the farmers market — we’ve been there! — here is a simple way to use up some extra peaches. Creative yet simple, this mildly hot sauce uses ingredients you probably already have in the pantry.
All-Purpose Barbecue Sauce. This classic rendition — courtesy of Keith Williams, who won second place in the inaugural Smoke Signals Barbecue Sauce Recipe Contest years ago — balances the sweetness of ketchup and brown sugar with spicy chili powder, paprika and cayenne pepper, rounding it all out with lemon zest.
Espresso Barbecue Sauce. Adapted from James Beard-winning chef Aaron Franklin’s recipe, this sauce pairs well with most smoked meats — especially brisket.
Smoked Beer Barbecue Sauce. Not one for coffee-flavored barbecue sauce? How about beer? This recipe uses the smoked kind, which means you can get that outdoorsy taste no matter what time of year it is.
Chocolate Chili Barbecue Sauce. Much like beer, there is often a way to incorporate chocolate in savory food. This recipe also balances its sweet, spicy and salty flavors with citrus by including a quarter-cup of fresh orange juice.
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