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This is how Bobby Flay makes store-bought barbecue sauce taste amazing

Make your sauce taste homemade with this easy trick

Person grilling
Z Grills Australia/Unsplash

Love him or hate him, Bobby Flay is admittedly one of the more talented and famous chefs of our time. Between his countless television shows and cookbooks, the popular chef has amassed quite a dedicated fan following, looking to him for culinary inspiration in just about any dish. This time of year, the grilling expert is well-loved and sought after for his delicious barbecue tips, tricks, and recipes, and we’ve stumbled across one that we can’t wait to try this summer.

In a YouTube video posted by The Food Network, Flay admits that while making homemade barbecue sauce is certainly a great option, not everyone has the time or desire to do so. He then goes on to explain that by simply adding a few key ingredients to a high-quality store-bought sauce, everyone’s favorite summertime condiment can be elevated to whole new levels of finger-licking deliciousness.

The secret ingredients

Barbecue sauce
Atlas/Adobe Stock

Of course, barbecue sauce additions needn’t be limited to these ingredients, but the added complexity and depth of flavor these three things bring to a sauce transform an otherwise normal bottle into something truly special.

One important note from Flay is to be sure to simmer the ingredients together for about 10-15 minutes, allowing the flavors to meld and blend.

Worcestershire sauce

Worcestershire sauce is often the hidden ingredient that makes something special. Its unique, savory flavor elevates dishes and gives them a wonderful complexity, which is especially beautiful in barbecue sauce. It would seem Flay agrees, saying of the sauce, “The thing I love about Worcestershire sauce is that it’s tart. It has a tamarind flavor and actually has anchovies in it…it gives it an umami flavor that I just love.”

Chipotle purée

Chipotles are smoked jalapenos that can easily be found in a can and added to everything from fajitas to soups to sauces. Flay isn’t shy about the use of Chipotle purée, admitting that he uses it often, especially in barbecue sauces. He says of this ingredient, “You’re going to get a smokey and fiery flavor to it. It’s not too hot, but it’s really going to pump up the flavor in a really nice, smokey way. It’s going to feel like you’ve smoked your barbecue sauce, and that’s a really good thing.

Lime juice

We all know that acid is a key ingredient in making just about every dish delicious, and barbecue sauce is no exception. Flay explains in the video that while your bottled sauce likely already has a vinegar punch, the added brightness of lime juice is a welcome addition. “There’s probably some kind of vinegar in your barbecue sauce, whether it’s white vinegar or some apple cider vinegar, but I love putting in a little fresh lime juice. It just brightens up the sauce and cuts through the richness of it as well,” he says.

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Lindsay Parrill
Lindsay is a graduate of California Culinary Academy, Le Cordon Bleu, San Francisco, from where she holds a degree in…
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