Ancho BBQ Sauce

Some of the links in this post may be affiliate links. This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, we will receive a commission at no extra cost to you.

A little sweet, a little smoky…

Ancho BBQ sauce provides just a little simmering heat, but really that’s not what makes the sauce. Ancho pepperswhile not the spiciest chili around, pack a lot of flavor – a little sweet, a little smoky, and most definitely earthy. Combined with ingredients that accentuate all three things, and you have a real winner here. With grilled pork or chicken it’s especially good. Or use it as a BBQ sauce side perfect for fry dipping.

Ancho BBQ Sauce

Ancho BBQ Sauce

4 from 4 votes
Prep Time 50 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 5 minutes
Servings 3 cups



Rehydrate the Ancho Pepper

  • Heat 2 cups of water until boiling.
  • Place the ancho peppers in a medium mixing bowl, then pour the boiling water over the anchos until the chilies are fully covered. 
  • Let the chilies sit for 30 to 45 minutes, or until the ancho peppers soften. Drain the liquid and keep it to the side. 

Make The Ancho BBQ Sauce

  • In a saucepan over medium, sauté the onion in the vegetable oil until translucent (4- to 5 minutes). 
  • Add the tomato paste and garlic and continue to cook, stirring often, for 1 to 2 minutes. 
  • Add the ancho peppers, red wine, and 2 tablespoons of the reserved ancho pepper liquid, then lower the heat to low and allow the mix to simmer for 2 to 3 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Add the ketchup (or chili sauce), apple cider vinegar, brown sugar, Worcestershire sauce, ground cumin, salt, and pepper. Continue simmering and stirring for 2 to 3 minutes. 
  • Remove the mix from the heat and allow it to cool for 5 minutes. Then transfer the mix into a blender (or use a food processor). Process the sauce until you reach a smooth consistency. Add ancho water as needed to thin the sauce.
  • Use immediately, or for best flavor place the ancho BBQ sauce in a covered airtight container and chill overnight to allow the flavors to meld. The sauce will also keep for 1 to 2 weeks if prepping in advance.
Did you make this?Mention @PepperScale or tag #PepperScale so we can see what you made!

UPDATE NOTICE: This post was updated on March 17, 2021 to include new content.
Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments