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Ancho Chile BBQ Sauce

Yield: about 3 cups

A mix of ancho, poblano, and jalapeño chiles gives this sauce a big kick. It’s a hearty sauce, tailor made for the deep flavor of beef.


  • 2 tsp. olive oil
  • 1/4 tsp. cumin seeds
  • 2 medium yellow onions, diced (3-1/3 cups)
  • 2 dried anchos, rehydrated in hot water, stemmed, seeded, and skin scraped off the flesh
  • 1 poblano, stemmed and cut into 1/2-inch pieces (1/2 cup)
  • 1 jalapeño, stemmed and halved lengthwise
  • 4 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1/2 cup whiskey
  • 1/2 cup tomato paste
  • 1/4 cup apple-cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 Tbs. sorghum syrup or dark molasses
  • 1 Tbs. raw sugar
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt

Nutritional Information

  • Nutritional Sample Size 2 Tbs.
  • Calories (kcal) : 35
  • Fat Calories (kcal): 5
  • Fat (g): .5
  • Saturated Fat (g): 0
  • Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 0
  • Monounsaturated Fat (g): 0
  • Cholesterol (mg): 0
  • Sodium (mg): 120
  • Carbohydrates (g): 5
  • Fiber (g): 1
  • Sugar (g): 3
  • Protein (g): 1


  • In a medium Dutch oven or other heavy-duty pot, heat the oil over medium heat.
  • Add the cumin seeds and cook, stirring constantly, 1 minute. Add the onions, anchos, poblano, jalapeño, and garlic; cook, stirring occasionally, until slightly reduced, 7 minutes. Remove from the heat. Stir in the whiskey, tomato paste, vinegar, Worcestershire, syrup, sugar, and salt. Return the pan to low heat, and simmer, stirring frequently, until the vegetables are tender, 5 to 7 minutes. Remove from the heat, and let stand 10 minutes.
  • Using a stand blender or immersion blender, process the sauce until smooth, scraping down the saucepan or blender once or twice, about 2 minutes. (If using a stand blender, remove the center of the blender lid to allow steam to escape and to prevent overflow; place a folded towel over the opening to prevent splashing.) For a thinner sauce, pour the mixture through a fine-mesh wire strainer, and discard the solids. Store the sauce in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 1 month.


Rate or Review

Reviews (2 reviews)

  • Krispie | 02/03/2020

    We did not love this sauce. It worked okay with the smoky BBQ pork but we threw the rest out because we didn’t think we would like it on anything else that didn’t have the pork rub on it.

  • ToddWynia | 06/02/2019

    We found this to be a delicious sauce. Not typical of a BBQ sauce in our experience, but a good depth of flavor and delicious. We'll do again

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