KFC Honey BBQ Sauce is a delicious tangy barbecue sauce served at KFC restaurants. The BBQ sauce is so easy to make at home with this copycat recipe!
Honey BBQ Sauce
I am not a huge fan of meat, but I love homemade sauces. Especially copycat sauces.
This homemade copycat KFC Honey BBQ Sauce is great on chicken, ribs, steak, whatever you like to put BBQ sauce on.
In Michigan, it was 60 degrees yesterday and we got about 5″ of snow today and it’s not done snowing yet.
Despite the weather, Bob wants to BBQ all the time. He has his new smokers (smokers plural, because one wasn’t enough…) on the back deck and has been using it all winter.
This sauce has a tomato paste base and is thick, tangy, and sweet.
Bob used the sauce on the chicken wings he grilled and I used it in the baked beans that I made. I’ve watched cooking shows make BBQ sauce before, but I must not have paid attention to how simple it is.
It’s really easy to make.
How to make KFC Honey BBQ Sauce
Making barbecue sauce is surprisingly simple and takes everyday ingredients like tomato paste, vinegar, honey, and brown sugar.
You pour them all into a saucepan, simmer until thickened, and boom. BBQ Sauce!
The only ingredient you might not have on hand is Liquid Smoke, but you should be able to find that at any grocery store.
KFC Honey BBQ Sauce Ingredients
Below is a list of the ingredients you’ll need to gather to make this recipe. Scroll all the way down for the full recipe card.
- Tomato Paste
- Dark Brown Sugar
- Apple Cider or White Vinegar
- Liquid Smoke
- Onion Powder
- Garlic Powder
- Ground Celery
- Pinch of cayenne (optional)
Tools to help you make Copycat KFC Honey BBQ Sauce
- Heavy Bottom Saucepan – This 1.5 qt saucepan will be so useful in your cupboard. I love that it has a lid!
- Liquid Smoke – As I mentioned, you should be able to find this at your local grocery store, but if you’re like me and order from Amazon multiple times per week, you can find it online, too.
- Basting & Pastry Brush – This brush has multiple uses in the kitchen. I prefer this silicone version for ease of cleaning.
What is Liquid Smoke?
Liquid Smoke can be found in the condiment/salad dressing aisle of your grocery store (or on Amazon, of course) and is a liquid that is used in place of cooking with wood smoke that gives a similar smoky flavor.
Other delicious dishes to serve at your next BBQ
- Hard Rock Cafe Twisted Mac & Cheese – another copycat recipe, this side dish is a definite crowd pleaser.
- TGI Friday’s Jack Daniels Sauce – yet another copycat recipe, I put this sauce on everything – chicken, fish, veggies, it’s great on it all.
- My Favorite Potato Salad – I make this potato salad at all of our barbecues. I think the secret ingredient is including slaw dressing.
- Pistachio Poke Cake – can’t have a BBQ without dessert! This semi-homemade pistachio cake gets requested at all our gatherings!
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KFC Honey BBQ Sauce Copycat Recipe
- 6 ounces tomato paste
- ½ cup water + 1-2 more Tablespoons (optional)
- 2 Tablespoons apple cider vinegar or white vinegar
- ¼ cup dark brown sugar
- ¼ cup honey
- 1 teaspoon hickory flavored liquid smoke
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon onion powder
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ¼ teaspoon ground celery
- ¼ teaspoon paprika
- 1 pinch cayenne pepper optional
- Combine all the ingredients in a small saucepan over medium heat. If too thick for your liking, add the additional 1-2 tablespoons of water.
- Stir until ingredients are well combined and bring to a boil.
- Once boiling, reduce heat and simmer uncovered for 15-20 minutes.
- Serve and enjoy!
Nutritional information is an estimate and provided to you as a courtesy. You should calculate the nutritional information with the actual ingredients used in your recipe using your preferred nutrition calculator.
Sharing of this recipe is both encouraged and appreciated. Copying/pasting and/or screenshots of full recipes to any social media is strictly prohibited. Content and photographs are copyright protected.
Originally published April 15, 2012