Martha Stewart's Favorite Recipes

Kansas City BBQ Sauce

You'll really be cooking with this sweet and spicy sauce that is perfect for your slowly cooked Kansas City-style barbecued meat. A dish with this complexity deserves a smooth and slightly bold red wine, like Merlot and Cabernet.


  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1/2 small onion, grated
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups ketchup
  • 1/2 cup packed light-brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons unsulphured molasses
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne
  • Juice of 1 lemon


  1. In a medium saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Add onion and garlic, season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until onion is soft, 2-3 minutes.
  2. Add ketchup, brown sugar, vinegar, molasses, Worcestershire, mustard, cayenne, and lemon juice. Bring to a simmer. Cook, stirring occasionally, until thick, about 5 minutes.
  3. Carefully transfer mixture to a blender and puree until smooth. Sauce can be cooled completely and refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks.

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