America's Only Magazine Dedicated To ALL Things Barbecue and Grilling!

With Sauce or Without Sauce?

Kell Phelps BBQ magazine PublisherKell Phelps


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Sauces galoreEver thought about where the barbecue world would be if it had not been for the invention of this wonderous condiment? Can you have “real” barbecue without sauce? These are just a few questions I want you to ask yourself as you read the few paragraphs about how lucky we are to have this invention for our pleasure!

Several years ago I gave up on trying to find the number of commercially made barbecue sauces in the USA. While chatting with the USDA about their classification of all sauces as condiments helped me realize this information would never be obtainable. They gave me a ridiculous number of currently produced condiments, which is the major classification that includes BBQ sauce, but also includes every other ketchup, mustard and mayo sauce that is being produced as well.

The truth is just about every barbecue lover alive has a different “favorite” barbecue sauce that they claim to eat on everything! I would love to know if this “favorite” sauce of yours is commercially bought or homemade in your kitchen? Also if it is homemade did you start with a commercially made sauce as a base?

Think about this question as well…How much money have you spent on ingredients to produce or buy your favorite BBQ sauce? I am going to go out on a limb and suggest that barbecue would not be nearly as popular as it is today without “The Sauce”!

On an economic impact view, I am also going to guess that barbecue sauce is the biggest single revenue generator in the BBQ industry. Do you know of any facts that can change my guess? If so please email me at [email protected] as I would love to see and hear more about your research!

I will close with this simple story that Dave “Sweet Baby Ray” Raymond told me several years ago that got me started thinking about how important BBQ actually is to us Americans. A single mom cooks a Boston Butt inside a crockpot while at work and comes home, dumps a bottle of BBQ sauce in the pot before pulling the meat apart. She then yells out to her kids that the BBQ is ready. Do you think the person who made that barbecue sauce is going to tell her they are not having BBQ for dinner?

Until Next Month…Keep It Smokin’

Kell and Crew

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