Jack Daniels BBQ Sauce is all about balance, flavor, and texture. And it blows your next favorite whiskey BBQ sauce out of the water! Whip up a double batch of this smoky BBQ sauce recipe, because you’ll want to slather it on everything.
Jack Daniels BBQ Sauce
Home chefs can all agree on this: making homemade sauces is more cost-effective and way tastier than anything you’ll buy at the grocery store.
Plus, you can make as much as you want, whenever you want! And, you have the flexibility to sprinkle in the spices and seasonings you like best. It’s a win-win!
Good (or great!) sauces can make or break your entire dish. Anything too runny, too tangy, too sweet, or too spicy overwhelms the whole plate.
That’s not a worry with Jack Daniels barbecue sauce! Make a boatload to throw on everything you grill all summer long, and no one will be disappointed.
Ingredients Notes and Substitutions
- Jack Daniels Whiskey – No room for swapping this guy out! It’s how we get that iconic rich, sweet, and smoky flavor.
- Ketchup and Tomato Sauce – Your favorite ketchup and plain ol’ tomato sauce are all you need to form the base of the Jack Daniels BBQ sauce.
- Sugar – I like to use granulated sugar because it reduces easily and doesn’t affect the overall flavor too much.
But, you have plenty of room for creativity with sweeteners!
Brown sugar, honey, or your sugar-free sweetener of choice will fit right in.
- Molasses – You want unsulfured molasses, which means it’s free of additives. No chemical aftertaste, no problems!
- New Mexico Chili Powder – Not too hot, but hot enough to pack a punch!
But, there’s more to this spicy seasoning than just heat: it has earthy, fruity undertones that add complexity and layers of yummy flavor.
If you want to tone it down a bit, use half New Mexico and half regular chili powder.
- Chili Pepper Paste – I use Gourmet Garden chili pepper paste, but any brand will do for this Jack Daniels recipe.
If you can’t find any, you can add some cayenne pepper to some ketchup or tomato paste for the same consistency.
- Worcestershire – Sour and sweet! It’s how we get that nice acidic tang.
For a substitute, whip up a combo of ketchup, soy sauce, and vinegar. Add a bit of white or brown sugar to taste.
Serving Suggestions for Jack Daniels Sauce
Summertime grill masters know that there’s no end to the ways that you can use Jack Daniels BBQ sauce!
It goes without saying that it’s beyond scrumptious on pulled pork, grilled chicken, bacon burgers, and pork chops.
And when you have some fries on the side, you can dip them right in! Who needs ketchup and mustard?
This smoky bbq sauce recipe is also so good on nachos! Any recipe with shredded chicken, beef, or pork can be totally doused in this stuff and come out perfect. Try it!
Storage and Best Practices
Store Jack Daniels BBQ Sauce in the fridge — I mean it!
I know there’s a debate as to whether or not you really need to refrigerate barbecue sauces, but I’m not budging here.
Sauces always last longer and retain their flavor best when refrigerated. It’ll last you a couple of weeks, unless you eat it all!
I recommend getting some squeeze bottles for easy use time and time again. It’s way less messy than spooning Jack Daniels sauce out of a jar!
Jack Daniels Barbecue Sauce FAQ
For this recipe, we use 1 cup of Jack Daniels to make 6 cups of sauce.
The whiskey makes it smoky and smooth, while the sugar and molasses add just enough sweetness to tone down the tangy Worcestershire.
A dash of New Mexico Chile Powder and some chili pepper paste add plenty of heat, making it a singularly spectacular sauce you can use on all of your go-to summertime recipes.
There are a couple of ways! The easiest way is to simmer, thicken, and reduce for a longer period of time in the pan. Now, this will also result in less sauce overall, since you’re, well, reducing it.
You can mix equal amounts of cornstarch and water to make a slurry, then whisk it right into the pan. Repeat as needed until the thickness is to your liking.
Yes, it does! While the sauce boils and simmers in the pan, the alcohol cooks off. This leaves the rich whiskey flavor behind without the boozy side effects!
With love, from our simple kitchen to yours.
Other Barbecue Sauce Recipes
Jack Daniels BBQ Sauce
- 2 1/2 cups ketchup
- 16 ounces tomato sauce, 2 8-ounce cans
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 cup Jack Daniels Whiskey
- 3/4 cup molasses, unsulfured
- 2-3 tablespoons chili pepper paste, I used Gourmet Garden
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1 tablespoon smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/2 tablespoon New Mexico chili powder
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
- In a large sauce pan over medium heat combine all ingredients. Whisk to combine well. Bring to a boil. Reduce to simmer for 1 hour, stirring occasionally.
- Serve and enjoy!
All nutritional information is based on third party calculations and is only an estimate. Each recipe’s nutritional value will vary depending on the ingredients used, measuring methods, and portion sizes.
Originally published August 2013, updated and republished July 2023
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