sauces are subjective.
we need to know what you are looking for to assist you better.
I have sauces I use for Ribs, Butts, that I will cook for my family and I have different sauces that I will use for larger events.
Sauces sometimes cover up the taste of the meat and sometimes compliment it.
I try layering flavors on ribs so I will use a Rub, Mop, and then build a glaze that is equal parts Cattlemans to KC Masterpiece sometimes i'll toss in some butter and Jack Daniels, some folks frown on store bought but I have found several that I like mixed together and tewaked with other ingredients.
My kids prefer Sweet Baby Rays, I will use sweet Baby Rays on ribs standalone sometimes.
What is this sauce for?
- do you want a sauce that's sweet and sits on top
- Do you want a mustard base
- vinegar base
- molasses base
- do you want a sauce that cuts into the meat.
- how about a finishing sauce to compliment the meet and use no sauce at all.
East Carolina Sauce – Can be used as a "mopping" sauce to baste the meat while it was cooking and as a dipping sauce when it is served. Thin and sharp, it penetrates the meat and cuts the fats in the mouth. There is little or no sugar in this sauce. This sauce has a very sharp taste
Lexington Dip (a.k.a. Western Carolina Dip or Piedmont Dip) – In Lexington and in the "Piedmont" hilly areas of western North Carolina, the sauce is often called a dip. It is a lot like the East Carolina Sauce (above) with tomato paste, tomato sauce, or ketchup added. The vinegar softens the tomato.
Kansas City – Thick, reddish-brown, tomato or ketchup-based with sugars, vinegar, and spices. Evolved from the Lexington Dip (above), it is significantly different in that it is thick and sweet and does not penetrate the meat as much as sit on the surface. This is the most common and popular sauce in the US and all other tomato based sauces are variations on the theme using more or less of the main ingredients.
Memphis – Similar to the Kansas City style, typically having the same ingredients, but tending to have a larger percentage of vinegar and use molasses as a sweetener.
South Carolina Mustard Sauce – Part of South Carolina is known for its yellow barbecue sauces made primarily of yellow mustard, vinegar, sugar and spices. This sauce is most common in a belt from Columbia to Charleston, an area settled by many Germans. Vinegar-based sauces with black pepper are common in the coastal plains region as in North Carolina, and thin tomato- and vinegar-based sauces are common in the hilly regions as in North Carolina
Texas – In some of the older, more traditional restaurants the sauces are heavily seasoned with cumin, chili peppers, bell peppers, chili powder or ancho powder, lots of black pepper, fresh onion, only a touch of tomato, little or no sugar, and they often contain meat drippings and smoke flavor because meats are dipped into them. They are medium thick and often resemble a thin tomato soup. They penetrate the meat easily rather than sit on top. Bottled barbecue sauces from Texas are often different from those used in the same restaurants because they do not contain meat drippings.
Alabama White Sauce – North Alabama is known for its distinctive white sauce, a mayonnaise-based sauce, which is used predominantly on chicken and pork. It is composed of mayonnaise, vinegar, sugar, salt and black pepper.
SQWIBS Favorite to date - Taken from a Robert Irvine Recipe and modified to my taste this is a nice sauce that will penetrate the meat a bit, has just enough sweetness as well as distinctive sharpness.
SQWIBS Favorite to date BBQ Sauce:
- 3 cups ketchup
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1 cup Cider Vinegar
- 3/4 cup yellow mustard
- 1/3 cup Worcestershire sauce
- 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper 1 Tablespoon for hot
- 1 tablespoon sea salt
We can narrow it down but your gonna have to find what works for whoever you are cooking for, for example I love spicy food but when I'm on the pit I'm not cooking for me so I leave the heat out, but when I'm cooking for the guys... anything goes!