Kansas City Style Barbecue Sauce for Pulled Pork or Other BBQ

Kansas City BBQ Sauce for Pulled Pork
We are big barbecue lovers over here, ribs, pulled pork and brisket make for an amazing meal. But the sauce has to be right. Like perfection. Sometimes I crave my tangy-vinegar based Eastern Carolina Barbecue Sauce. But lately I've been wanting something sweet with a little bit of smoke on the side.

Kansas City Style Barbecue Sauce is known for its balanced sweet-smoky-spicy flavor. It can be hard to achieve since the sweetness can easily overpower the other flavors. However, I've been playing and tweaking and I think I've finally gotten it. Practice makes perfect!

The sauce is thick and somewhat dark brown. It's powerful and ornery with lots of attitude. I love this sauce on pulled pork and all kinds of other barbecue.

 Kansas City BBQ Sauce for Pulled Pork so yummy
I have been spending a lot of time learning about all the different regional styles of barbecue, it's fascinating and it's not just about the sauce.

There are rubs, the way meat is cut and how it's smoked. I hope I get to visit all the different barbecue regions one day and figure out which one I like best. For now I will stick with this sauce and see where it takes me. Next stop...St. Louis style.
Kansas City BBQ Sauce for Pulled Pork so yummy and good
Drips are a good thing.

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Print Recipe

Kansas City Style Barbecue Sauce for Pulled Pork or Other BBQ

Recipe from: Created by Cathy Pollak for NoblePig.com | Serves: Makes 4 cups


  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 1/2 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 medium cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 Tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 1 can (15 ounce) tomato sauce
  • 1/2 cup cider vinegar
  • 1/3 cup tomato paste
  • 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 Tablespoons dark molasses
  • 2 Tablespoons steak sauce
  • 2 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 2 Tablespoons honey
  • 2 teaspoons liquid smoke
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons prepared yellow mustard
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons table salt
  • 1 teaspoon hot sauce
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper


  • Place raisins in a small bowl and cover with 1 cup boiling water. Let sit for 15 minutes while they plump up. Drain.
  • In a large saucepan, saute onion in 1 Tablespoon olive oil until soft, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and continue sauteing for about 30 seconds more or until fragrant.
  • Place drained raisins, onion-garlic mixture, balsamic vinegar and remaining one Tablespoon olive oil into blender. Puree until smooth.
  • In the same saucepan you sauteed onions in (you don't have to clean it), add pureed mixture and the rest of all the ingredients. Bring to a simmer over low-medium heat and reduce by half, leaving sauce uncovered; about 30 minutes.
  • Serve with your favorite barbecue. I have found sauce tastes best when it has sat for a day and the flavors have melded together. Keep refrigerated.
Post a Comment

6 Comments and 1 Reply

  1. Wendi,Abeberry 1

    Oh how fun! Yeah! Please go,ahead and do us a whole “Trip across,America” BBQ themed tour!.Great idea.

  2. That is my kinda bbq sauce. I’ve only made bbq sauce once and it was really easy but more of my husband’s style. I like mine thick, sweet and smokey.

  3. Karly 3

    I am a total sucker for homemade barbecue sauces! I usually go for a tangy Carolina sauce, too, but I’m totally trying this one! It looks so thick and tasty!

  4. I prefer to make my own BBQ sauces. My husband is from Kansas City, and we’ve pretty much perfected the art of slow grilling our own ribs, pulled pork and brisket. Now, I can make our own sauce. Thank you!

  5. JoanJ 5

    Do you have a preference for liquid smoke flavor? I have chicory or mesquite. Thanks.

  6. I have those little dishes, too, what are the odds?! I never thought to use them for individual condiments, LOVE!!


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