Smoked Pumpkin Bourbon BBQ Sauce will quickly become your new fall favorite to slather on ribs, grilled chicken or simple wings. This homemade sauce is upgraded with smoked pumpkin purée and bourbon to make a sauce that is out of this world.
After we made the Smoked Pumpkin, we decided to create other recipes to use for the grill. The more options to continue grilling through the fall and winter, the better. We ended up with quite a bit of purée and this BBQ Sauce was first on our list. For us, there will never be enough BBQ sauce options. Variety is the spice of life, right?
Why You Will Love This Recipe
Simple – This is a really quick and easy bbq sauce that you can make right after you smoked your pumpkin.
Different – When you get tired of the ol’ normal bbq sauces, this is the one to pull out every fall and make. Slather this on a big rack of ribs, pulled pork sandwiches or double dip the sauce on a platter of wings.
Fast – This one is super fast, just about 20 minutes to make and you are able to make this ahead of time and store in the refrigerator for 7-10 days.
The two main ingredients for this recipe are Smoked Pumpkin Purée and Bourbon.
Smoked Pumpkin Purée – This is simply the inside of a pumpkin blended smooth with no other ingredients added. Use a smoked pumpkin and it will bring a fantastic flavor to all of your dishes. Learn how we smoked a pumpkin.
Bourbon – This is used to add depth, complexity and a bit of sweetness to the sauce. Bourbon often has hints of vanilla and caramel which blend nicely with the other ingredients. It is also popular for savory recipes like sauces, glazes and baking. We tend to use Bare Knuckle’s bourbon for a smooth and rich taste that isn’t quite as bitter as some other brands.
Step One: Combine the olive oil and chopped onions over a medium high heat and sauté for 7-9 minutes or until golden brown. Add in minced garlic and sauté for an additional 1-2 minutes.
Step Two: Add the remaining ingredients and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 20 minutes.
Step Three: After it cools, run the sauce through a high speed blender, like a Vitamix, for a few minutes. This will create an extremely smooth consistency which is perfect for brushing on your favorite grilled dish!
Step Four: Let it rest in the refrigerator for at least 24 hours to give the flavors a chance to meld together.
The sauce keeps for 7-10 days.
Serve this sauce over grilled ribs, chicken, chicken wings, pork chops or simply as a dipping sauce.
👨🍳 Recipe FAQs
If you don’t have bourbon or just don’t like it, you can swap it out. Just keep in mind when you make a switch it’s going to greatly alter the way it tastes. Any of your favorite alcohols will work. You could also use jam or pureed fruit.
Out of brown sugar, no problem! You can still make this sauce. You could use regular white sugar and add 1/2 teaspoon of molasses to it. Doing this shouldn’t really change the way the sauce tastes too much. Another option would be to use maple syrup, but this will change the way it tastes a fair amount.
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Smoked Pumpkin Bourbon BBQ Sauce
- ¾ cup Smoked Pumpkin Purée
- 1 ½ cups Ketchup
- ⅓ cup Cider Vinegar
- ¼ cup Worchestershire Sauce
- ¾ cup Bourbon
- 1 ½ tbsp Olive Oil
- ½ Onion chopped
- 2 cloves Garlic minced
- ½ cup Brown Sugar
- ½ tsp Salt
- ½ tsp Pepper
- Sauté onions in olive oil over medium high heat until golden brown. This should take about 7-9 minutes. Add in the minced garlic and continue stirring for 1-2 minutes.
- Add in the remaining ingredients, turn the heat on high, stir and bring it to a boil.
- Reduce heat down to low and allow it to simmer for about 20 minutes.
- Allow the sauce to cool and then blend it to incorporate the onions and garlic and smooth out the sauce.
- Place in refrigerator for 24 hours before using to allow the flavors to come together.