I like my BBQ sauce sweet and spicy. If you prefer a milder sauce, leave out or reduce the cayenne. That is the beauty of homemade sauce, you can tweak it to suit your taste. Not into sweet sauces? Reduce the honey. Want it tangier? Add a little more vinegar or lemon. Want a Southwest kick? Add some cumin.
I made this for ribs, but it is equally as good on chicken or on pulled pork.
KP's Sweet and Spicy BBQ Sauce
2 cups ketchup
1 cup water
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
5 tablespoons light brown sugar
5 to 6 tablespoons honey
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1/2 tablespoon fresh ground black pepper
1/2 tablespoon onion powder
1/2 tablespoon ground mustard
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional or minimize to taste)
2 drops liquid smoke (I used Hickory, but Mesquite works too)
Combine all ingredients in a medium saucepan. Bring to boil, reduce heat to simmer. Cook uncovered for 1 hour.