DIY NC-Style Barbecue Sauce


My family makes Christmas gifts for one another. Although I usually do a little woodworking, I also like to make some consumables. Last year, I made some homemade BBQ rub. This year, I made some homemade BBQ sauce.

Although I’m in South Carolina, I’m in the foothills of the Blue Ridge mountains. My county line is the state border, so I’m surrounded by mustard-based, SC-style BBQ, as well as vinegar and pepper-based, NC-Style BBQ. I like both sauces (my mustard-based sauce recipe is here), but I thought that others would warm to the NC-style sauce a little easier.

BBQ sauce QR CodeNC-Style Barbecue Sauce (4 pints)

  • 4 cups (32 oz) cider vinegar
  • 2¼ cups (18 oz) ketchup
  • 2 cups (16 oz) white vinegar
  • ¼ cup (2 oz) light brown sugar, packed
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon BBQ rub
  • 2 teaspoons cayenne

I like to toss all of the ingredients in the stand mixer and whisk it for a while just to make sure the sugar breaks down. This recipe will fill 4 pint jars. If you’re into canning, just triple the recipe and it’ll fill a box of 12 jars.

Technically, this is western North Carolina sauce. The QR code links to this page: How To Make Perfect Pulled Pork BBQ. There’s a small-batch version of this recipe near the bottom of that post.

Cost breakdown: $11/4 = $2.75 per pint *

Not bad, right? If you’d like to make this yourself to give as gifts, you can copy the scan code above and print it onto labels for your own bottles.

* cost breakdown assumes that you already have the sugar, BBQ rub, and cayenne, and accounts for only 4 jars.

DIY NC-Style Barbecue Sauce

6 thoughts on “DIY NC-Style Barbecue Sauce

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  • June 24, 2013 at 3:47 pm

    Hi there~

    Love the recipe, would you be able to share where you got your labels?


    • June 24, 2013 at 3:56 pm

      I’m glad you liked it. I just printed the labels at home with some old stock I had laying around. I think I found the pig silhouette on Google images and then made the QR code with one of the free generators out there. I work in marketing, so this is pretty run-of-the-mill for me.

  • September 19, 2013 at 10:14 am

    Can you tell me if you actually canned these in a water bath or do you just refrigerate the jars?

    • September 19, 2013 at 11:04 am

      You certainly can can these properly, but I just refrigerated them in this instance. It’s made up of basic ingredients that will last months in a refrigerator.


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