Carolina Gold BBQ Sauce is a tangy, slightly sweet and mildly spicy sauce that’s ready in minutes and delicious served over any kind of pork. Enjoy this sauce on pulled pork, pork chops, pork burgers, you name it! It’s also wonderful spooned over grilled turkey burgers or grilled chicken.
What is Carolina Gold BBQ Sauce?
Carolina Gold is a unique barbecue sauce that’s unlike any other. It’s tangy, vibrant and lusciously smooth. This vinegar and mustard-based barbecue sauce hails from South Carolina and has German roots in addition to Southern roots.
When German immigrants arrived in central South Carolina they began adding mustard to the popular vinegar-based BBQ sauce already widely used in the region. Today, it’s a hallmark sauce of central South Carolina and Georgia.
The TL;DR: this sauce is tangy, slightly sweet, and mildly spicy.
- Prepared yellow mustard: this is the bright yellow stuff (French’s, Heinz, Coleman’s). Not Dijon, not whole-grain, prepared yellow mustard is what you need!
- Apple cider vinegar: this BBQ sauce is essentially a mustard variation on the traditional vinegar-based BBQ sauces known throughout the carolinas. Apple cider vinegar is ideal for this recipe though white vinegar can also be used.
- Honey or brown sugar: either will work! But you do need some sweetness to balance out all of the tart flavors.
- Molasses: a splash of molasses adds depth and gives this true BBQ sauce vibes.
- Tomato paste: tomato paste also offers depth and duance to the sauce.
- Worcestershire sauce: a couple of teaspoons of Worcestershire bulk up the flavor of this sauce and give it ultra-savoriness.
- Frank’s hot sauce (or Tabasco if you like it spicier): either hot sauce will work, but you definitely need a dash for this recipe!
- Spices: you only need two spices for this recipe; cayenne pepper and garlic powder. If you like a spicy BBQ sauce, go a bit heavier on the cayenne. If you prefer things on the mild side, start with the amount we give (this sauce is mild as written).
How to Make Carolina Gold BBQ Sauce
Ya’ll this sauce is easy with a capital E. Combine everything in a saucepan, bring to a boil, then remove from heat and let cool. Done!
How to Store Homemade BBQ Sauce
Homemade BBQ sauce should be stored in a glass airtight container in the refrigerator. Stored this way, BBQ sauce will last about 1 month.
What to Serve Carolina Gold BBQ Sauce With
- This sauce is delicious drizzled over smoky Grilled Pork Chops. Pair it with a simple slaw and dinner is done!
- Serve Carolina Gold Sauce on the side with thick slices of Roasted Pork Tenderloin.
- Our Crispy Chicken Cutlets are the perfect vehicle for this sauce! Enjoy it as is or make the chicken into a crispy chicken sandwich!
- Enjoy a vegetarian meal al fresco by drizzling this sauce over Cauliflower Steaks.
- Our Turkey Burgers would love this sauce!
- Drizzling this over Blackened Salmon would be delicious!
Carolina gold barbecue sauce is a mild BBQ sauce. This recipe uses both Frank’s hot sauce and a dash of cayenne. But, here’s the thing with this sauce—and all barbecue sauces—you can make it as spicy or mild as you’d like.
If you like things on the mild side, start by decreasing the cayenne or leaving it out altogether. Love it fiery? Use Tabasco instead of Frank’s and increase the cayenne a pinch.
It is somewhat sweet, but we would say it’s more tart and tangy than anything. If you like a really sweet BBQ sauce, you can add more sweetener to taste.
Carolina Gold BBQ Sauce Recipe
- 1 cup prepared yellow mustard
- ½ cup apple cider vinegar
- ¼ cup honey
- 2 tablespoons molasses
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce or liquid aminos
- 1 teaspoon Frank’s hot sauce or Tabasco sauce
- ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
- ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
- Whisk all of the ingredients together in a small saucepan over medium-high heat.
- Bring sauce to a boil, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and let cool.
- Store BBQ sauce in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 1 month.