bbq sauce recipe - bbq sauce on brush with rubs in background

Loquaci Family’s Secret Ingredient BBQ Sauce Recipe

This incredibly flavorful BBQ sauce recipe makes a perfect complement to virtually anything you put it on. The deep flavor comes from a not-so-secret ingredient. At least it’s not a secret to those who know grilling enthusiasts and California farmers Dave and Joan Loquaci – anyone who eats at their home knows prunes could be on the menu, since their family grows lots of them. (Pro tip if you’re invited over: they grow winegrapes too.)

The California prune puree adds a deep, sweet richness to the barbeque sauce that has everyone asking for the “secret recipe” – which they shared with us, so we can share it with you.

bbq sauce recipe ingredients laid out

Here’s what you need to make this easy homemade BBQ sauce recipe:

  • olive oil
  • tomato puree
  • tomato paste
  • brown sugar
  • prune puree
  • balsamic vinegar
  • cider vinegar
  • Worcestershire sauce
  • yellow mustard
  • onion powder
  • garlic powder
  • cumin
  • salt
  • water
  • butter
  • a medium-sized sauce pan

Don’t have prune puree on hand? No worries. Just blend 16oz of prunes with 1/2 cup of hot water, and there you go. The puree is perfect for adding flavor, sweetness and nutrition to all kinds of foods, including smoothies, baked goods, chili, and sauces – including this BBQ sauce recipe.

ribs coated in an easy bbq sauce recipe

What should you serve this homemade BBQ sauce with?

The Loquacis serve this sauce most often on barbeque pork ribs or pulled pork, but it’s also perfectly at home on grilled or pulled chicken, as a dipping sauce, or over meatballs for a next-level appetizer. Looking for a sauce for BBQ Chicken Pizza or Brunswick Stew? This easy BBQ Sauce recipe can do that too.

Do you need to use a rub with this easy Barbeque Sauce recipe?

Most meats benefit from a spice rub prior to hitting the smoker or grill. While just a healthy dose of salt & pepper will do, the Loquaci family goes a step further, particularly with ribs. Joan makes a blend of salt, pepper, onion and garlic powder, paprika and oregano, similar to Emeril Lagasse’s famous “Essence” spice blend, and coats the ribs in the spice mixture prior to cooking.

caramelizing homemade bbq sauce on ribs

When should you add BBQ sauce to the meat?

Any good grill master will tell you that the sauce needs a little caramelization! Any sauce with sugar in it, like this BBQ sauce recipe, should be brushed onto the meat for the final few minutes of cooking, usually after the meat has reached within 5 degrees of the final cooking temperature. You can always add more sauce when serving, but you’ll want to be certain the sauce is only caramelizing – not burning.

How do prunes make BBQ better?

Prune juice and prune puree make a great base for marinades and glazes for meats or roasted vegetables. The natural sweetness and tanginess of prunes and prune juice can add depth and flavor to your dishes. Plus, prune juice and prunes contain natural phosphates – the very thing competitive BBQ folks inject into their meat to retain moisture and create a tender product.

easy BBQ sauce homemade on brush with ribs

Loquaci Family’s Secret Ingredient BBQ Sauce Recipe

Loquaci Family
This incredibly flavorful BBQ sauce recipe makes a perfect complement to virtually anything you put it on. The deep flavor comes from a not-so-secret ingredient. At least it’s not a secret to those who know grilling enthusiasts and California farmers Dave and Joan Loquaci – anyone who eats at their home knows California prunes could be on the menu, since their family grows lots of them. 
This easy BBQ Sauce recipe is perfect for grilled meats, on pulled chicken or pork, as a dipping sauce, or anything you'd use barbeque sauce for!
5 from 2 votes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Course Condiment
Cuisine American
Servings 12 servings
Calories 121 kcal

Ingredients
 
 

  • 1 TBSP olive oil
  • 1 cup tomato puree
  • 1/4 cup tomato paste
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup prune puree
  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4 cup cider vinegar
  • 3 TBSP Worcestershire
  • 1 TBSP yellow mustard
  • 2 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 4 TBSP butter ½ cube

Instructions
 

  • In a medium saucepan, add all ingredients (except butter) and mix well.
    stirring ingredients together for an easy BBQ sauce recipe
  • Start at medium heat for about 5 minutes, then reduce heat to low until it thickens – about 45 minutes to an hour.
    adding butter to homemade barbeque sauce recipe
  • Stir in the butter, remove from heat and allow to cool.
    adding a homemade BBQ sauce to ribs
  • Serve and enjoy!

Video

Notes

Store sealed in the refrigerator for up to 10 days. 

Nutrition

Calories: 121kcalCarbohydrates: 19gProtein: 1gFat: 5gSaturated Fat: 3gPolyunsaturated Fat: 0.3gMonounsaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0.2gCholesterol: 10mgSodium: 348mgPotassium: 272mgFiber: 1gSugar: 15gVitamin A: 374IUVitamin C: 4mgCalcium: 28mgIron: 1mg
Keyword BBQ Sauce, Heritage Recipes
Tried this recipe? Want to save it for later?Share it on social and tag @CAPrunes or #CAPrunes!

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Given that the Loquacis grow winegrapes too, this cake would be the perfect dessert to follow ribs coated in their homemade Secret Ingredient BBQ sauce recipe!