This easy homemade Apricot Barbecue Sauce is sweet, tangy, spicy and absolutely crave-able!
This recipe calls for fresh apricots and is perfect for all of your Summertime grilling, glazing and dipping! This simple recipe is a great way to utilize an abundance of apricots in a versatile sauce that the whole family will love! This recipe is great for Father's Day, 4th of July, Labor Day and all of your cookouts, gatherings and grilling parties!
Try this recipe on our Smoked Chicken Quarters!
Ingredients (& Substitution Suggestions)
Apricot BBQ Sauce is easily made with these ingredients:
- Apricots - Using fresh fruit (instead of a sweeter apricot jam) makes this BBQ sauce super tangy and delicious! We recommend using fresh apricots with a firm and tart flesh.
- Brown Sugar - For a flavor that is a little different, try substituting the sugar with maple syrup. (But make sure you use the real stuff and not the maple-flavored high-fructose corn syrup!)
- Cayenne - We love the spicy kick provided by cayenne pepper, but feel free to substitute some of your favorite hot sauce. Otherwise, you can omit the cayenne for a sweet and mild apricot sauce.
- Worcestershire Sauce - For a vegan alternative, substitute two tablespoons soy sauce, instead.
How To Make This Recipe (Pssst...It's So Easy!)
Whenever we have the chance, we always opt to make our sauces from scratch! This Apricot BBQ Sauce is quick and simple to make and tastes so much better than what you can buy in the grocery stores.
- First, heat a little oil in a medium sized pot. Then, add the spices and stir to toast until aromatic.
- Next add the brown sugar, Worcestershire sauce, apple cider vinegar, water and diced apricots. This combination of ingredients creates that desirable tangy flavor! Stir well.
- Cook that mixture down over medium heat until the apricots are very soft and the mixture has achieved a deep mahogany color.
- Next, stir in the ketchup and dijon and simmer briefly to let the flavors meld together. If you would like, use a standard or immersion blender to puree the barbecue sauce until smooth. (Pureeing is an optional extra step, you can leave it chunky, if preferred.)
- Finally, season with a pinch of salt and cracked black pepper. That's it! Apricot BBQ Sauce is ready to be enjoyed!
How To Use This BBQ Sauce (Hint: There's No Wrong Answers)
This Apricot BBQ Sauce recipe is so versatile, there's no limit to how many ways it can be enjoyed! Simply use this homemade sauce any time you need a little sweet and sticky barbecue action! Here are some of our favorite serving suggestions:
- Grilled Pork Chops - Glaze the chops in the last few minutes of grilling.
- Pulled Pork Sandwiches - Toss the pulled pork in Apricot BBQ Sauce and pile high on a toasted bun!
- Baby Back Ribs - Smoked or grilled pork ribs are finger-lickin' good with this yummy sauce recipe!
- Grilled Chicken - chicken thighs, breasts, or whole chickens would all be delicious!
- Chicken Wings (Fried, Air-fried, Baked or Grilled!)
- Smoked Chicken - Use this recipe to glaze our Smoked Chicken Quarters (with Easy BBQ Rub)
- BBQ Burgers - (So good with blue cheese and crispy onions!)
- Meatloaf - Give Mom's meatloaf a tangy twist by using this Apricot Barbecue Sauce in place of ketchup!
- As a Dip - for fries, chicken tenders, tater tots & more!
How Long Does Barbecue Sauce Last?
Homemade barbecue sauce can be kept in an airtight container in the refrigerator for two - three weeks. That being said, it's so tasty - ours never lasts more than a couple of days! If you would like to store this recipe for even longer, this BBQ sauce can be frozen for three or more months.
Tangy Apricot BBQ Sauce (for Grilling, Glazing & Dipping!)
- Immersion or Standard Blender (Optional)
- ½ Tablespoon cooking oil
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon dried oregano
- ¼ - ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper optional
- 12 ounces fresh apricots (about 5 medium apricots) washed, pitted and diced (See Note: a)
- ¼ Cup filtered water
- ¼ Cup brown sugar light or dark
- 3 Tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 2 Tablespoons Worcestershire sauce (See Note: b)
- 1 Cup ketchup
- 1 Tablespoon dijon mustard we like whole-grain dijon
- fine kosher salt* to taste
- Freshly-ground black pepper to taste
- Gather, measure and prepare the Apricot BBQ Sauce ingredients as listed. To view metric measurements, toggle the US Customary/Metric switch at the top of this recipe card.
- In a medium pot, heat cooking oil over medium-high heat. Add paprika, garlic powder, dried oregano and cayenne. Stir to toast for one minute, until aromatic.
- Then add diced apricots, water, brown sugar, apple cider vinegar and Worcestershire sauce. Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat and simmer for 10-15 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until the apricots are very soft and beginning to break down into the sauce.
- Add ketchup and dijon and stire to combine. Continue to simmer for an additional 5 minutes.
- Optional: For a smooth sauce, as photographed, puree the barbecue sauce with an immersion or standard blender. Process on high speed until smooth, about 90 seconds.
- Season with salt and pepper to taste. Apricot BBQ Sauce is ready and can be served warm or stored in an airtight container for later use.To save for a later, allow the sauce to cool to room-temperature before covering and refrigerating. Apricot BBQ Sauce can be kept refrigerated for 2 - 3 weeks. Enjoy!
* A Note About Salt
Unless otherwise noted, all recipes on The Sage Apron are developed using Diamond Crystal Kosher salt. It is a great all-purpose salt for cooking and baking. If using table salt, reduce quantities by about half.