Divine Dinner Party

Perfect Memphis Barbeque and...
the Best Barbecue Sauce Recipe EVER

In Tennessee, Memphis barbeque is the height of regional cooking. Sweet and tangy and ultra flavorful, Memphis dry rubs and bbq sauces are some of the best in the country. And that's saying a lot, because there are some amazing barbecue sauces all over the America.

If you love a sticky, rich, flavorful sauce that is the perfect balance of tangy and sweet, you'll want to go with Memphis BBQ sauce. The height of Memphis barbeque perfection? The pulled pork sandwich smothered in tangy-spicy sauce and creamy Memphis coleslaw. There's nothing quite like it.

Original Memphis Barbeque Sauce Recipe

Memphis barbeque pulled pork sandwich with coleslaw

This is one of the most traditional Memphis barbeque sauce recipes you'll come across. Serve this rich, flavorful sauce on the side with beef, pork, and especially ribs. Then sit back and watch the drool fly.

If you don't like any chunks of onion and garlic in your bbq sauce, you'll want to pop this in the blender after it's cooled.

Though I gotta say... it's great just as is.


2 C. ketchup
2 C. chopped onion
1 C. red wine vinegar
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1/4 C. plain yellow mustard
1/2 C. brown sugar
1/2 tsp. hot sauce (such as Tabasco)
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. black pepper
1 tsp. liquid smoke

Instructions: Combine onion, vinegar, garlic, mustard, sugar, hot sauce, salt, pepper, and liquid smoke in a medium sauce pan.

Add ketchup, and bring to a simmer. Simmer over low heat 15-20 minutes. Cool and blend if desired.

Memphis's Easiest, BEST Barbecue Sauce Recipe EVER

I make or have made all of the sauces you'll find here. But this has got to be the best barbecue sauce recipe I've ever tried, hands-down. It's made with powdered spices, etc., so there's no chopping or blending. So it's super easy. But it's also the thickest, gooey-ist, most flavorful of all the barbeque sauce recipes I make. It keeps several months in the fridge, so don't be afraid to make a whole bucketful.


2. C. ketchup
1/2 C. yellow mustard
1/2 C. packed brown sugar
1/4 C. apple cider vinegar
1/2 - 1 tsp. red pepper flakes, to taste
1 tbsp. onion powder
1 tbsp. chili powder
1 tbsp. freshly ground black pepper
2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. celery salt
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tbsp. liquid smoke
3 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce

Instructions: Combine all ingredients in a medium non-reactive saucepan.

Bring to a simmer and cook over low heat about 25 minutes, stirring occasionally, til smooth and thickened. Watch out for splashing-- it's so thick that splashes are killer. It's okay to cover.

Let cool slightly, and serve. This bbq sauce gets better as it sits.

Memphis Barbeque Rub Recipe

Pork ribs made only with a rub is a Memphis barbeque staple. And this bbq rub recipe is perfect for it. This spicy Memphis rub is amazing on chicken, and (of course) out-of-this-world on ribs. It's also wonderful smothered with smokey Memphis style bbq sauce. Looking for more rib rub recipes? We've got 'em here.


Neon Sign for Memphis Style Ribs in Tennessee 1/4 C. paprika
2 tbsp. brown sugar, packed
2 tsp. kosher salt
1 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
1 tsp. chili powder
1/2 tsp. crushed red pepper (optional)
1 tsp. dry mustard
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. onion powder

Instructions: Combine all ingredients in a small bowl. Mix with a fork. Store until needed. Keeps in a cool, dry place for six months.

Memphis Style Mustard Coleslaw Recipe

This is THE most flavorful coleslaw recipe you'll ever try, I can promise you that. You've never had anything quite like this. Perfect with Memphis barbeque ribs or chicken (or whatever), you'll probably want to make this instead of your regular coleslaw for... well, forever. It's that good.

You'll want to start this a day in advance if you have time. Because while taking the time to draw the extra liquid from the veggies really makes the texture of the final slaw, it does take some time to drain, rinse, and dry them.


1 head green cabbage, shredded (or 1 16 oz. bag coleslaw mix)
2 large carrots, shredded
1 jalapeño, seeded and finely chopped
1 med. white onion, finely chopped
2 tsp. salt
1/4 C. prepared yellow mustard
2 tbsp. Dijon mustard
1/4 C. chili sauce (can use ketchup in a pinch)
1/4 C. high quality mayonnaise
1/4 C. apple cider vinegar
1/4 C. sour cream or Greek yogurt
1 tsp. celery seed
2/3 C. brown sugar

Instructions: Combine prepared vegetables (cabbage, carrot, jalepeño, and onion) and salt together in a strainer over the sink.

Let sit at least 15 minutes (1-2 hours is better) to drain. This keeps the finished slaw from being nasty and watery.

Rinse the vegetables under cold water and let dry. In a bowl or plastic bag, place in the refrigerator until ready to use, up to one day.

To make dressing, combine mustards, vinegar, chili sauce, mayonnaise, sour cream (or Greek yogurt), and sugar in a medium, non-reactive saucepan. Bring to a boil. Add celery seed. Reduce heat and simmer about 3-5 minutes, until sugar has dissolved.

Cool to room temperature. Pour over veggies in a large serving bowl. Mix well.

Refrigerate at least an hour before serving. Perfect on a Memphis barbeque pulled pork sandwich.

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