Under 30 Minutes: Spicy Barbecue Sauce

Mop this sauce on everything you grill
44 Ratings
100% would make again
Barbecue Sauce

We love a basic barbecue sauce as much as the next (wannabe) pitmaster, but we came up with a sauce so intriguing, we're shelving traditional vinegar-based versions—for now.

Ours is made with a traditional tomato base, but a heady dose of Indian spices (coriander, cumin, brown mustard), as well as grated ginger, honey and chopped shallot, give it a depth of flavor that works wonders on steak, chicken and even grilled tofu kebabs.

And, it follows the rule of thumb for all great barbecue sauces: It's not too thick, not too thin. You don't want too goopy of a sauce—but at the same time, you want one that can stick to those ribs.

Make the sauce, then mop it on everything you throw on the grill this season.

Barbecue Sauce with Cumin and Ginger

Recipe from the Tasting Table Test Kitchen

Yield: 3/4 cup

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 25 minutes


½ teaspoon brown mustard seeds

½ teaspoon cumin seeds

½ teaspoon dried red pepper flakes

¼ teaspoon coriander seeds

¼ teaspoon black peppercorns

1 tablespoon grapeseed oil

2 garlic cloves, minced

1-inch piece of ginger, peeled  and grated

½ medium shallot, very finely chopped

¼ cup tomato paste

½ cup water

1 tablespoon honey

2 teaspoons kosher salt


1. In a spice grinder add the mustard seeds, cumin seeds, red pepper flakes, coriander seeds and peppercorns. Cover and pulse briefly for a coarse powder.

2. In a small nonstick skillet set over medium heat, add the oil and heat until it shimmers, about 1 minute. Add the spice mixture and cook until the spices are toasted and fragrant, about 1 minute. Stir in the garlic, ginger and shallot and cook until fragrant, stirring often, for about 1 minute. Add the tomato paste and cook until its color deepens, about 2 minutes. Pour in the water, then add the honey and salt and stir to combine. Reduce the heat to low and cook until the sauce thickens slightly, 3 to 5 minutes. Transfer the barbecue sauce to a non-reactive container. Allow to cool before transferring to the refrigerator.  

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