Homemade barbecue sauce is easy to make (and so is barbecue rub) and they taste GREAT! Making my own also saves me money!

Homemade Barbecue Sauce Recipe (and Barbecue Rub)

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Homemade barbecue sauce is easy to make (and so is barbecue rub) and they taste GREAT! Making my own also saves me money! For all the best homemade dressing, dip, and sauce recipes check this out.

Ribs rubbed with barbecue sauce and barbecue seasoning in a jar

I love making my own seasoning blends and flavorings!

I have multiple chemical sensitivity, so many preservatives, especially MSG and sulfites cause me to have an uncomfortable reaction. I like to avoid them as much as possible. Even if you don’t have sensitivities or allergies to things, they are just plain not good for you to consume! Making your own homemade barbecue sauce will help you avoid a lot of unnecessary ingredients you’ll find in store-bought sauce.

You can even grow your own spices to make mixes.

Barbecue rub

mason jar with homemade barbecue rub

When cooking at home, I make chemical-free mixes such as this barbecue rub that my sister gave me the recipe for. When you make your own spice mixes, you can also tailor them to your needs and desires, such as gluten-free, Paleo, or other eating plans you may be on. Click here to see how to make homemade taco seasoning mix here to make Italian seasoning, and here to see how to make homemade ranch dip mix.

Barbeque Rub Seasoning Recipe

This barbeque rub is not very spicy, it just has a mild kick. If you want a spicier rub, feel free to add more cayenne pepper. 

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Barbecue Rub

BBQ spice rub
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time0 mins
Total Time10 mins
Course: Seasoning Mix
Cuisine: American
Keyword: barbecue, bbq
Servings: 16
Author: Christina Kamp


  • 1/4 C. raw sugar
  • 1/4 C. paprika
  • 2 T. black pepper
  • 3 T. sea salt
  • 2 tsp. garlic powder
  • 2 tsp. smoke flavoring
  • 2 tsp. onion powder
  • 2 tsp. celery seed
  • 1/4 tsp. dried cayenne


  • Mix ingredients.
  • Rub meat generously with spices, using 1 T. per pound of meat


Adapted from recipe by Lisa Haddock

You can also turn this rub into homemade barbecue sauce. When I’m cooking meat with BBQ flavors in my crock pot or oven, I can just make the sauce right while the meat is cooking. If not, you can use the rub to make your own barbeque sauce in a pan by adding a few simple ingredients and boiling it down until it’s the thickness you prefer.

pulled pork with bbq rub
pile of shredded barbecue pork roast

Homemade BBQ Sauce


  • 1 T. BBQ rub mix
  • 1 C. tomato sauce
  • 1/2 C. honey
  • 3 T. molasses
  • 2 T. apple cider vinegar


  1. All ingredients can be dumped into slow cooker with 1 pound of meat and cooked on low for 6-8 hours.
  2. or
  3. Sauce can be made in a saucepan and cooked until thickness desired.
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(This delicious BBQ pork roast or these succulent chicken breasts without breading are great ways to use it!)

This leftover pulled pork mac and cheese is so creamy and good, it’s going to blow your mind!

For the recipe for homemade hamburger buns for your pulled pork sandwiches, click here. Knowing what you are feeding yourself and your family is a great feeling. Making your own flavorings is a great way to eliminate a lot of unwanted ingredients. It’s hard to find store-bought flavorings without them.

And meatloaf freezes great too! This bbq meatloaf is a crowd pleaser at our house.

To make your bbq sauce spicy, just add more cayenne or crushed red pepper flakes until you it’s spicy enough for you. I would start with an extra tablespoon of spice and add from there. You can take a pinch of the rub on your finger and see if it has the bite you want before you turn it into spicy bbq sauce. 

For more homemade spices and seasonings, check this out.

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  1. How long do you cook the pork in a crock pot? I’ve been trying to find a good rub and this one sounds perfect. So does the BBQ sauce.

    1. About 6 hours on high or 8-10 on low, it depends on the size of your roast. Those are averages, but you will know it’s done when it shreds easily with a fork. Thanks for asking!

  2. I’ve been noticing my own sensitivities to certain foods as well. I think it’s a great idea to make your own. I’ll be pinning this and using your other homemade spice mixes as well. Thanks for sharing!

  3. A couple of wonderful recipes that you have there. I have recently gotten into using rubs on ribs. I like to use brown sugar as my base. Gives the ribs a sweeter flavor (in my opinion). Let the ribs bake on 250 for a couple of hours, then brush them with some BBQ sauce and finish on the grill for about a couple of minutes on each side.

    Great stuff! I will definitely give both of your recipes a try.

  4. I steer clear of BBQ sauce largely because of the reason you said. I had no idea it was that easy to make. I make my own rubs often and will definitely use this recipe!

  5. I love this, Christina! Thanks for sharing. We also need to make our own sauces and mixes so that we can keep them gluten free, plus we can lessen the sugar and other high-carb ingredients to make them more blood-sugar friendly. These look fantastic! Love the gift idea, too!