Southwestern BBQ Sauce

The simple addition of a few chipotles in adobo sauce to what is normally just a great regular-ole tomato-based BBQ sauce really makes for a totally different, utterly fantastic sauce for ribs, chicken, pulled pork… you name it. Chipotles (smoke-dried jalapenos) are one of my favorite things. I love the combination of heat and smokiness. They’re perfect for things like this southwestern BBQ sauce.
southwestern-bbq-sauceI rubbed down a rack of St. Louis-style ribs with homemade Cajun seasoning then smoked it for 6 hours until the meat was nice and tender.  I then brushed on some of this great southwestern BBQ sauce let the ribs smoke for another 15 minutes, just long enough to set the sauce up just a bit. It’s not a thin sauce, and it’s not a thick sauce. I’d call it just the right consistency for things like ribs. You know you’re going to get messy eating them, but there’s no reason to drown in the sauce or to have it all just roll off the ribs and down your arms.

Southwestern BBQ Sauce
Author: 
Recipe type: Sauce
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4 cups
 
Ingredients
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 cup chopped yellow onion
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 3 tablespoons chopped chipotle chiles in adobo sauce
  • 1/2 cup red wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
  • Adobo sauce, from the chipotles
  • 4 cups tomato sauce
  • 1/2 cup molasses
  • 2 teaspoons dry mustard
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
Instructions
  1. Heat the oil in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat.
  2. Add the onions and saute until starting to soften, about 5 minutes.
  3. Add the garlic and the chipotles and cook for 1 minute.
  4. Deglaze the pan with the vinegar and lime juice.
  5. Reduce heat and simmer until the liquid is reduced by half.
  6. Add the adobo sauce, tomato sauce, molasses, mustard, bay leaves and salt.
  7. Increase heat and bring to a boil then reduce to a simmer and continue simmering, stirring often, for 15-20 minutes or until the sauce is the desired thickness.
  8. Remove from heat and let cool slightly before straining through a fine-mesh strainer.

 

 

Coffee Rub for Beef

Coffee and beef go together like…. uh… well all other things that go together great. The coffee flavor mellows and enriches the beefy taste. My favorite way to use this rub in on smoked beef brisket. I give the meat a nice generous coating of the rub and let it sit overnight before smoking it until nice and incredibly tender. Perfect. And that’s not the only great use of this rub, either. A little sprinkle on burgers just before grilling them really gives them a fantastic rich different flavor.
coffee-rub-for-beefYou can use whatever coffee suits your fancy, but for me, the best is the coffee from Cafe du Monde. It has a wonderful chicory flavor that is incredibly rich and compliments beef perfectly. You can now find Cafe du Monde coffee in most grocery stores, thankfully, so you don’t have to go to New Orleans to get it. However, going to New Orleans is never a bad idea, so next time you go, bring back some coffee.

Coffee Rub for Beef
Author: 
Recipe type: Spice Rub
Cuisine: American
Serves: 6 cups
 
Ingredients
  • 2 cup light brown sugar
  • 2 cups freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup chili powder
  • 1/2 cup garlic powder
  • 1/2 cup onion powder
  • 1/3 cup ground coffee
Instructions
  1. Combine all ingredients.
  2. Store in an air-tight container.
For smoking beef cuts
  1. Rub all sides of the beef with prepared yellow mustard.
  2. Apply the rub liberally. Wrap in foil or place in a resealable container and refrigerate for at least 4 hours, up to 12 hours, before smokng.
For burgers
  1. Sprinkle the rub on both sides of the burger patties before cooking.

Jalapeno Onion Steak and Burger Topping

Ok, I admit it. I sometimes buy cheap steaks on sale. They make for a quick lunch. Since I work from home I can just toss them on the grill and in no time I’m chowing down. But let’s face it. Cheap steaks aren’t the same as not-cheap-steaks so I often add a bit of something to kick them up a bit. This jalapeno onion steak topping was so good I ended up making another batch to top some hamburgers later in the week. Sweet lightly-caramelized onions in a creamy sauce with just a little beat of jalapeno heat.
jalapeno-onion-steak-and-burger-toppingNext time I cook up some hot dogs I’m going to make another batch of this jalapeno onion steak and burger (and hot dog!) topping. It’ll really crank up any grilled hot dog or smoked sausage. There’s not a tremendous amount of heat (the jalapenos mellow while they cook), so don’t be afraid that the topping is too hot. It’s quite mellow and packed with great flavor.

Jalapeno Onion Steak and Burger Topping
Recipe type: Sauce
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 2 cups
 
Ingredients
  • 2 teaspoon unsalted butter
  • 2 medium sweet onions, sliced thin
  • 2 jalapenos, sliced thin, seeds removed if desired
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 teaspoon sugar
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 2 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
Instructions
  1. Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat.
  2. Add the onions, jalapenos, garlic, Worcestershire sauce, sugar and salt and pepper to taste.
  3. Cover and cook 15-20 minutes until the onions are softened and golden in color. Stir often.
  4. Add the heave cream and stir. Cook for 2 more minutes.
  5. Add the apple cider vinegar and season with salt and pepper to taste.
  6. Stir and serve.

 

 

Jalapeno Ranch Dressing

I could’ve gone the smooth, creamy, mellow Ranch dressing route. But no, I wanted a salad dressing that would sneak up on me and then hit me with a little kick. This jalapeno Ranch dressing has that bit of kick, but also a great pepper flavor. I’m not a big fan of jalapeno-infused flavors where I can’t still taste the fact that the jalapeno is a pepper. This jalapeno Ranch dressing has that and more.
Jalapeno Ranch DressingThe dressing thickens a bit as it sits. If it gets too thick for your liking just add a bit more buttermilk, stir, and serve. This jalapeno Ranch dressing is also great as a dip for vegetables or chips. Use less buttermilk to make a thick, spicy dressing for hamburgers, wraps, or sandwiches.

Jalapeno Ranch Dressing
Author: 
Recipe type: Salad Dressing
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 1 cup
 
Ingredients
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 2 jalapenos, stemmed, seeded, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 green onion, chopped
  • Juice of 1 lime (approximately 2 tablespoons)
  • 1 large handful cilantro, stems removed
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Instructions
  1. Place all ingredients into a food processor or blender and process until smooth.

 

Atomic BBQ Sauce

I’ve made mustard-based BBQ sauces before, but nothing even comes close to this Atomic BBQ sauce. It takes mustardy sauces to a whole new place, thanks mostly to the addition of pickled banana peppers. Of course, there’s a pretty good kick to the sauce. It is called Atomic BBQ sauce for a reason. Perfect on a rack of smoked St. Louis-style ribs, and outstanding on a pulled pork sandwich.
atomic-bbq-sauceFor a little extra kick, substitute spicy banana peppers. Don’t want the heat? Substitute jalapenos for the habaneros. You’ll still get a kick, but it’ll be tame enough for just about anyone.

Atomic BBQ sauce is a great thing. Definitely my new favorite when it comes to non-ketchup-based BBQ sauces.

5 from 1 reviews
Atomic BBQ Sauce
Author: 
Recipe type: Sauce
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 1 cup
 
Ingredients
  • 1/4 cup pickled banana peppers, chopped fine plus 2 tablespoons of the pickling liquid
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/4 cup prepared yellow mustard
  • 4 scallions, sliced thin
  • 3 tablespoons dry mustard
  • 2 tablespoons chili sauce
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 habanero chiles, stemmed and minced
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Instructions
  1. Whisk all ingredients except salt and pepper together in a bowl.
  2. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  3. For a less chunky sauce process in a blender until smooth before using.

 

Roasted Garlic Salad Dressing

I can’t even begin to say just how much I love this dressing. Great roasted garlic flavor tamed by Dijon and honey. And not overly mustardy, either. That’s a good thing because for me, there is a such thing as too much mustard. The perfect consistency, not too thick that you need to cut it with a knife, and not too runny so that it just rolls right off your salad.
Roasted Garlic Salad DressingThis roasted garlic salad dressing would also be outstanding as a poultry marinade, specially for chicken destined for the grill. It is packed with flavor.

Roasted Garlic Salad Dressing
Author: 
Recipe type: Dressing
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 1/2 cup
 
Ingredients
  • 8 cloves garlic, roasted, and peeled (I roasted my garlic in the oven or in the slow cooker)
  • 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
Instructions
  1. Place all ingredients except for the olive oil into a blender and process until smooth.
  2. Keep the blender running while slowly adding the oil. Process until smooth and incorporated.

 

Peach BBQ Sauce

I was wandering around the produce section at the grocery store when I came across a really nice basket of fresh-picked ripe peaches. I knew exactly what I was going to make with them. Peach BBQ sauce, the perfect sauce for a rack of St. Louis-style smoked ribs. Although I’d be partial to using this tasty sauce on anything, it really complements anything pork the best.
Peach BBQ SauceThis peach BBQ sauce isn’t too ‘peachy’. You can taste the fresh peaches, sure, but they don’t over-power the sauce. The peaches add a nice sweetness too.

Peach BBQ Sauce
Author: 
Recipe type: Sauce
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4 cups
 
Ingredients
For the sauce
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 small shallot, diced
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon your favorite rub (I used my no-burn rib rub)
  • 2 cups ketchup
  • 2 cups peach nectar (see below)
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 lemon, juiced
For the peach nectar (may make more than you need for the sauce)
  • 4-6 fresh, ripe peaches (you need to end up with about 2 cups of sliced peaches in the end)
  • Water
Instructions
For the sauce
  1. Melt the butter in a large saucepan.
  2. Add garlic and shallot and saute for 3 minutes.
  3. Add salt, pepper and rub. Stir.
  4. Stir in the ketchup, peach nectar, vinegar, mustard, Worcestershire sauce and lemon juice.
  5. Bring to a boil then reduce heat to a simmer and let simmer until thick, about 30 minutes.
For the peach nectar
  1. Bring a pot with enough water in it to cover the peaches to a boil.
  2. Add the peaches and boil just 2-3 minutes until the skin is softened.
  3. Remove peaches and place in an ice bath to cool.
  4. Peel the peaches. Remove the pit and slice.
  5. Place 2 cups of peaches along with 1 cup of water into a blender or food processor. Liquefy until smooth.
  6. Store any unused nectar in the fridge.

 

Asian Steak Marinade

Our local grocery store had cheap steak on sale even cheaper, so I picked up one for lunch. Working from home has its advantages, and one is being able to toss a steak onto the charcoal grill during the day. As much as I love just salt and pepper on a steak, sometimes I want something a little different. I had Asian flavors on the brain, so well, you can guess what happened next. An Asian steak marinade combining salty soy with a little sweetness and a little heat.
Asian Steak MarinadeI loved the combination of heat and sweet in the Asian steak marinade. I would not be afraid to add more chili paste, though. That’s just me. I like a bit of spicy in all of my dishes.

You do want to be careful cooking the steaks over high heat. Too long and they’ll char. Sear them quickly and then move them to indirect heat to let them finish cooking.

Asian Steak Marinade
Author: 
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 2 servings
 
Ingredients
  • 1 1/2 - 2 pound steak
  • 1/4 cup low salt soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 tablespoon chili paste
Instructions
  1. Place the steak into a resealable bag or container.
  2. In a small bowl whisk together the remaining ingredients.
  3. Pour over the steak and flip to coat both sides.
  4. Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  5. Fire up your grill for direct and indirect cooking.
  6. Discard marinade.
  7. Sear the steak on both sides, quickly. The honey in the marinade can tend to caramelize over high heat, so you don't want to leave it there for long.
  8. Transfer to indirect heat and continue cooking until done.