Smoked Chili Sauce

This image courtesy of Joseph DeLeo

This sauce is so versatile. You can use it as a barbecue sauce. 

NotesSauce keeps well, covered and refrigerated, for up to 3 weeks.

Using two types of vinegars here prevents a bitter aftertaste.



Total Timeunder 2 hours

Make Ahead RecipeYes

Kid FriendlyYes

OccasionCasual Dinner Party, Family Get-together, game day

Dietary Considerationegg-free, gluten-free, halal, kosher, lactose-free, peanut free, soy free, tree nut free, vegan, vegetarian

Equipmentfood processor

Taste and Texturesavory, smoky, spiced, sweet, tangy

Type of Dishbarbecue sauce, sauces


  • 1 cup (250 mL) rice vinegar
  • 1 cup (250 mL) cider vinegar
  • 2 tsp (10 mL) ground cloves
  • 1 tsp (5 mL) ground allspice
  • 1 onion, cut into quarters
  • 10 cloves garlic
  • 1 cup (250 mL) lightly packed brown sugar
  • 1½ cups (375 mL) Homemade Ketchup or store-bought
  • 1 can (7 oz/215 g) chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, drained
  • 2 tbsp (25 mL) fresh cilantro leaves
  • 1 tbsp (15 mL) Worcestershire sauce


  1. In a deep saucepan over medium heat, combine rice vinegar, cider vinegar, cloves and allspice. Bring to a low boil. Set aside.

  2. In work bowl fitted with metal blade, process onion, garlic, brown sugar, ketchup, chipotle peppers, cilantro and Worcestershire sauce until finely chopped, about 30 seconds. Add to cider mixture and bring to a gentle boil over medium heat. Reduce heat and boil gently, stirring often, until reduced to a thick sauce, about 1 hour. Let cool.

  3. Variation: Omit the chipotle peppers for a basic chili sauce.


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