Steven Raichlen's Barbecue! Bible


Dark Beer Barbecue Sauce

Recipe from Steven Raichlen's Barbecue! Bible Beer-Can Chicken

Use a dark beer with a lot of character for this recipe. Good candidates include Newcastle Brown Ale, Samuel Smith Oatmeal Stout, or Dragon Stout from Jamaica.


  • Yield: About 2 1/2 cups
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  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 slice bacon, minced
  • 1 medium-size onion, finely chopped
  • 1 cup dark beer
  • 1 cup ketchup
  • 1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/4 cup firmly packed dark brown sugar, or more to taste
  • 3 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1 to 3 teaspoons of your favorite hot sauce, such as Tabasco sauce
  • 1 teaspoon liquid smoke
  • Coarse salt (kosher or sea) and freshly ground black pepper

Step 1: Melt the butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the bacon and onion and cook until both are a deep golden brown, 5 to 8 minutes. If the onion starts to burn, reduce the heat.

Step 2: Add the beer and boil until reduced by half. Add the ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, brown sugar, mustard, lemon juice, hot sauce, liquid smoke, and 1/2 cup water. Let the sauce simmer until mellow, thick, and richly flavored, about 10 minutes, stirring often with a wooden spoon. Taste for seasoning, adding salt and pepper to taste; the sauce should be highly seasoned. Let the sauce cool to room temperature before serving. The sauce can be refrigerated, covered, for up to 1 week. Let return to room temperature before serving.

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