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BBQ sauce relies on brown sugar, molasses, and other high carb sweeteners, making it a no-go for a sugar-free, keto, or low-carb way of eating. But, it only takes a few modifications and simple ingredients to have the flavor you’re used to minus the carbs. This easy homemade keto bbq sauce takes 15 minutes to make and tastes great on my keto pulled pork, air fryer bbq wings, keto ribs, and bacon wrapped chicken kabobs.
Why Make Homemade BBQ Sauce:
- Have BBQ minus the sugar: Most barbecue sauce that you will find in a store or out to eat is loaded with sugary ingredients. By making your own sauce, you can have the flavor minus the sugar.
- Easy: though it might seem that making keto bbq sauce is difficult, it’s actually pretty simple. You just need a whisk and a sauce pan.
- Control ingredients in your BBQ: BBQ foods taste great because the sauce and even the dry rubs are mostly brown sugar. By making sauce and learning the quick & easy swaps (like using keto brown sugar), you can control what you eat
If you’ve made traditional bbq sauce, you’ll notice that this recipe requires slightly fewer ingredients and takes just a few minutes. Plus, there are several short cuts.
The ingredients you’ll need to make keto BBQ sauce include:
- No Sugar Added Ketchup
- Better than Bouillon Chicken: this is a paste. I find it more flavorful than regular bouillon or chicken broth.
- Liquid Smoke: I’m using Wright’s hickory-flavored (you can pick it up at the market or click to get it online). You can also use mesquite or any other liquid smoke you enjoy.
- Keto Brown Sugar Replacement
- Sriracha: this could be substituted with your favorite Hot Sauce
- Garlic Powder
Once those are gathered, you can head to the recipe card for amounts.
How to Make Sugar-free BBQ Sauce
Once you gather all of the ingredients, sugar-free bbq sauce is a one-pot recipe that requires about 10 minutes of cook time.
To make Keto BBQ sauce:
- Gather all the ingredients and put them into a small pot
- Whisk the ingredients together until they are smooth
- Heat the BBQ sauce on medium-low for 8 to 10 minutes
The BBQ sauce will thicken as it cooks and again once it cools.
Top Cooking Tips & FAQs
- Use sugar-free ketchup as a flavor packed substitute for tomato paste
- Add a “straight from the grill smoked-flavor” with liquid smoke
Is BBQ Sauce Keto?
BBQ sauce is typically made with a lot of sugar. Some recipes use brown sugar. Others rely on molasses or fruit compotes. Since a lot of sugar, especially refined sugar, impacts ketosis, BBQ is not usually keto-friendly.
But, my easy homemade barbecue gives you a low carb way to enjoy sticky, saucy barbecue without added sugar.
Where Can I Find Keto BBQ Sauce Online & In Stores?
With keto and low carb diets gaining more attention in recent years, it is becoming easier to find keto-friendly BBQ sauces both in stores and online.
In stores, you can find low-carb BBQ sauce in the condiment aisle.
If you are looking online, I suggest trying this stevia-sweetened BBQ sauce (use DRDAVINAHS to save on it).
Recipes Using Keto BBQ Sauce
Keto BBQ sauce pairs well with a lot of different grilled food recipes. Some of my favorites include:
- Air Fryer BBQ Chicken Wings
- Keto Ninja Foodi Pressure Cooker Pulled Pork
- Keto BBQ Ribs Recipe
- Bacon-Wrapped Cola BBQ Chicken Kabobs
- Keto Chicken Tenders (use the sauce as a dip)
Easy Homemade Keto BBQ Sauce Recipe
Use DRDAVINAHS at checkout to save on some equipment & ingredients!
- Add all the ingredients for the bbq sauce to a small sauce pan on medium heat
- Use a silicone bottom whisk to combine the ingredients
- Cook the sauce for 8-10 minutes – it should be slightly looser than bottled bbq sauce since it will continue to thicken as it cools. I stir it intermittently.
- Remove the pan from the heat and allow to cool
The nutrition facts come from entering the recipe ingredients into Spoonacular API, a database of food ingredients. They may vary for any recipe based on the exact product used. The keto sweeteners I use have 0g net carbs & are not included because sugar alcohols do not impact most people. This is provided as a courtesy, but you can do your own calculations if you wish!