Cherry Chipotle BBQ Sauce

If you’re one for smoky and sweet heat (we sure are), you’re going to love this cherry chipotle BBQ sauce. The chipotle peppers layer in that deep earthy smoked heat, and the rich sweetness of the cherries and molasses go toe-to-toe with the spice. It’s bold and oh so good.

Cherry chipotle BBQ sauce

Try it as a glaze for BBQ ribs, or simply make it as a dipping sauce for that summer BBQ party. It’s a delicious side sauce for fried foods. We love it, too, lathered on a juicy burger. 

If three chipotles sounds too spicy, feel free to lower the amount of chipotles used, though you’ll lose some smokiness along with the heat. See the note in the recipe. Or, if you want it spicier, add some cayenne pepper rather than more chipotle. That’s easier than balancing against too much smoky flavor.

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Cherry chipotle BBQ sauce

Cherry Chipotle BBQ Sauce

Sweet smoky spiciness – delicious for ribs and more
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Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Course Condiment
Servings 8 servings
Calories 176 kcal


  • 3 chipotle peppers plus 1 tablespoon adobo sauce
  • 2 cups cherries pitted and diced
  • 1 medium yellow onion chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves chopped
  • 1 can tomato sauce 15 ounce can
  • 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup orange juice
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup molasses
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 tablespoon mustard
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  • in a sauce pot over medium heat, melt the butter and then sauté the onions until translucent.
  • Add in the remaining ingredients, stir to combine, then bring the mix to a boil.
  • Once boiling, lower the heat to low, then simmer, uncovered, for 30 minutes. Stir occasionally.
  • Remove from the heat and pour into a blender or food processor, then blend to your desired consistency.
  • Add salt and pepper to taste.


Too much heat? Or like a sweeter sauce? Reduce the amount of chipotle peppers to two and increase the amount of cherries used to 2 1/2 cups.


Calories: 176kcalCarbohydrates: 37gProtein: 2gFat: 3gSaturated Fat: 2gPolyunsaturated Fat: 0.3gMonounsaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0.1gCholesterol: 8mgSodium: 457mgPotassium: 567mgFiber: 3gSugar: 32gVitamin A: 510IUVitamin C: 18mgCalcium: 60mgIron: 2mg
Keyword Chipotle Pepper
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UPDATE NOTICE: This post was updated on April 25, 2023 to include new content.
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