Big Al's K.C. Bar-B-Q Sauce Recipe -
Big Al's K.C. Bar-B-Q Sauce Recipe
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Big Al’s KC Bar-B-Q Sauce
See how to make a sweet, smoky Kansas City-style BBQ sauce with bite. See more
  • READY IN 35 mins

Big Al's K.C. Bar-B-Q Sauce

Recipe by  

"This is a Kansas City-style sauce that I make in my restaurant. It is sweet and smoky with a little bite."

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Ingredients Edit and Save

Original recipe makes 6 cups of sauce Change Servings
  • PREP

    15 mins
  • COOK

    20 mins

    35 mins


  1. In a large saucepan over medium heat, mix together the ketchup, tomato sauce, brown sugar, wine vinegar, molasses, liquid smoke and butter. Season with garlic powder, onion powder, chili powder, paprika, celery seed, cinnamon, cayenne, salt and pepper.
  2. Reduce heat to low, and simmer for up to 20 minutes. For thicker sauce, simmer longer, and for thinner, less time is needed. Sauce can also be thinned using a bit of water if necessary. Brush sauce onto any kind of meat during the last 10 minutes of cooking.
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Reviews More Reviews

Most Helpful Positive Review
May 26, 2008

I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this sauce!!!! This will be "one and only" BBQ sauce from now on. It's thick, sweet and spicy and beautiful in color! To try it out..first I cut the servings to 12. I followed the scaled measurements except only used a pinch of cayenne and chili powder. Concern was it may be too spicy for kids. I did not have celery seed, so I had to leave it out. If you like a sweet and spicy sauce you must try this recipe. I will use this on chicken, pulled pork and ribs. UPDATE: I've made this again using the celery seed and think I like the taste without it. Also for a nice thick sauce it is necessary to simmer on low for at least 20 minutes.

Most Helpful Critical Review
Apr 04, 2011

Al must be holding something back if this is his restaurant version! This Barbeque Sauce needs some tweaking-Cut way back on the Red Wine Vinegar, double the spices (not the salt) and more Liquid Smoke. Also, use half tomato sauce and half tomato paste simmer about 10 min. longer than the recipe suggests-This will give you a thicker sauce.

Jun 11, 2007

Great! For anyone who like's sweet baby rays brand barbeque sauce, this is it! And advice to anyone wanting to make it, don't leave out the liquid smoke! I didn't have any, so I was just going to leave it out, but then my Dad offered to buy me some and when we added it it was SO much better and really added to the flavor. Only suggestions are that oil can be substituted for the butter or left out alltogether, the molasses can be reduced and it's still sweet, and the chili powder, cayenne, and pepper should probably be doubled. Red pepper is also wonderful for the flavor.

Sep 13, 2006

This is a GREAT sauce! I am catering a wedding reception the end of this month and needed a sauce I could call my own, so my kitchen was tore up from the floor up! I measured the spices and saved them for later, then I mixed up the liquids over a slow flame, I did not have any red wine vinegar, but I did have some marsala I mixed 1/4c. and the balance I used of white vinegar, I did not add the butter, I figured the fat from the meat would be enough and I wanted it to have some table time. The sauce tasted good but it had no depth, I only used 3 teaspoons of liquid smoke, and let it simmer for a while. Once I added the spices it was the bomb! This is the best sauce I have ever tasted. The spices are fantastic!! Whoever thought cinnamon would work in a bbq sauce? I told my husband, we have to go get a piece of meat to go with the sauce. Thanks for sharing, this is great!! I also simmered it for about 1 1/2 hours to thicken, Uuummm finger licken good!! I will serve it with pulled pork and baked chicken, I am sure you could serve this with fingernails, and is so goooood!

Jan 30, 2007

I grew up in South Carolina and this BBQ sauce is the closest I've come to having a "taste of home". I made it when my son and his fraternity buddies were coming to Blacksburg for a football weekend and even with a tripled recipe of pork, I didn't have a drop left. My son didn't believe everything was homemade. I used the slow cooker pork BBQ recipe with bouillon and coffee and poured this sauce over after shredding the pork. Didn't change a thing on either recipe!!

May 04, 2007

I better add my comment, since I have been using the sauce for months. After using this recipe, you can stop searching for the perfect KC BBQ sauce. You only need 2 BBQ sauce recipes, KC and Texas. This will fill your KC slot.

Jun 03, 2008

I have found THE one BBQ sauce. No more store bought awful ones here! I made just as is (but halved the recipe= 1 1/2 C) and I simmered it for about 50 minutes. The next day it was nice and thick. The liquid smoke is a great flavor in this (a must!), and mellows out by the next day. I also used a pinch of cayenne, so the kids could eat it. I used this on some pulled pork, next it'll go on grilled chicken. Next time I'll make the full batch to keep on hand.

Dec 10, 2003

I used the sauce for beef ribs. Whow! The ribs were out of this world. I braised the meat and then let it cook in a crock pot in the sauce for some hours - the ribs were fall-apart tender and oh, so delicious!


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  • Calories
  • 46 kcal
  • 2%
  • Carbohydrates
  • 9.9 g
  • 3%
  • Cholesterol
  • 1 mg
  • < 1%
  • Fat
  • 0.9 g
  • 1%
  • Fiber
  • 0.2 g
  • < 1%
  • Protein
  • 0.3 g
  • < 1%
  • Sodium
  • 219 mg
  • 9%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

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