BBQ with Berries

Blackberry barbecue sauce? You bet.

Come summertime, we love taking advantage of the sweet and tart goodness of berries. That’s why we are berry excited to partner with Sara Forte of Sprouted Kitchen to share tips, insights and her favorite recipes using berries.

We know how it goes: You’re walking through the stalls at the summer farmers market and suddenly the colorful baskets of berries are calling your name. The strawberries, raspberries, blackberries … they all look fantastic, and you can’t resist buying each and every one of them. Maybe too many of them.

Looking for a way to utilize those overripe berries this summer? Why not try your hand at a scratch-made BBQ sauce or glaze? It is a great way to take advantage of those great berries while also adding a sweet flavor profile to your sauce. Paired with lots of heat from spices and chilis, berries are the perfect complement for the grill.

This recipe uses blackberries because they have a good amount of tartness to complement their sweetness. That said, blueberries would also work well here, while strawberries could work if you use about half the amount of berry yield given below (because strawberries would tend to be too sweet otherwise).

A typical barbecue sauce base is largely sweet — both tomato paste and ketchup have an acidic sweetness — and the fruit and brown sugar in this recipe contribute a unique sweetness as well. The sweet ingredients in this recipe pair well with the spice and the tang of the vinegar, making this an all-around great grilling sauce for outdoor grilling season.

Live.Love.Lux Tip: Sauté to perfection with the powerful BTU performance of the Electrolux Gas Range with a Min-2-Max® Gas Burner.

Blackberry BBQ Sauce

"As far as heat goes, I used chipotle powder for a smoky spicy flavor. I think even a fresh jalapeno in here would be nice — or cayenne, if you prefer a cleaner sort of heat." - Sara

Servings: 2 cups



3 tablespoon grapeseed oil

1 small yellow onion, roughly chopped

3 cloves garlic

1 cup blackberries

1/2 cup apple cider vinegar

2 tablespoon ketchup

2 tablespoon tomato paste

1/3 cup Muscovado or brown sugar

1 tablespoon soy sauce

1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

1/2 teaspoon chipotle powder

1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika

1 teaspoon each sea salt and fresh ground pepper, to taste


Heat the grapeseed oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the onion, garlic and sauté until translucent. About 1-2 minutes. Add the blackberries and cook another minute. Add the cider vinegar, ketchup, tomato paste, Muscovado or brown sugar, soy sauce, Dijon, chipotle powder and smoked paprika and stir to mix.

Turn the heat to low and let the mixture simmer for 20 minutes. Stir in the salt and pepper.

Use an immersion blender or food processor to blend everything together. I don’t mind the sauce with some texture, if you prefer it smooth, push it through a fine mesh sieve. Taste for seasoning.

The sauce will keep covered in the fridge for two weeks.

More Recipes