Just like we cracked the code with our Tomato Free Pasta Sauce, we set out to create the world’s best Tomato Free BBQ Sauce. And friends… we have done it!! This sauce is off-the-charts good, with a beautiful texture that’s perfect for dipping or glazing.
Is there anything more comforting than great barbecue? Think about it, how many memories do you have of summer nights, tailgating at football games, or holidays with family that include smoky, delicious barbecue? It’s a classic American tradition for good reason.
Unfortunately, the two primary ingredients of most barbecue sauces, tomatoes and vinegar, are a top concern for those fighting heartburn and GERD.
Our tomato free bbq sauce is not only tomato-free but free of any added acids. We do use applesauce which gives it a slight acidic tang, but at a far far lower level than if we added any vinegar.
The bulk of the sauce base is made up of butternut squash for consistency and a bit of added sweetness. It also gives just a little bit of the vegetable notes you’d expect from the absent tomatoes. And bonus… this sauce is both gluten and dairy free!
The real secret is liquid smoke, which is SUCH a polarizing ingredient, and we understand that. Generally said, liquid smoke just doesn’t taste great… but if you use it in the right proportions alongside the right ingredients, you get… barbecue sauce. We promise! Alternatively, you could substitute 1 tablespoon of smoked paprika but that amount of smoked paprika could trigger people with GERD.
It’s all about balance with a good barbecue sauce and this sauce has that balance. It’s not too smoky, it’s not too spicy, it’s not too salty, it’s not too sweet… though it is pretty sweet… think of it like a good honey barbecue sauce and you’re sure to love it. The lack of acid brings out the sweetness so that will be front and center.
Here’s what you’ll need to get started:
Ingredients for Tomato Free BBQ Sauce
Butternut Squash- Makes up the base of this beautiful sauce. Sweet and earthy notes and a silky blended texture.
Unsweetened Applesauce- Adds just the right amount of zip and tang
Molasses- Brings a deep and complex sweetness
Coconut Aminos- for that umami hit every sauce needs
Hickory Liquid Smoke- A tiny bit is all it takes.
Onion Powder- This savory herb offsets the sweetness
Ground Mustard and Ginger- Add a delicious “bite” that feels acidic but isn’t
Ground Cumin- Warm, earthy, and just a little citrus-y
How To Make Tomato Free BBQ Sauce
First, steam or boil the butternut squash until fork-tender. Drain well.
Then, transfer the cooked butternut squash to a blender or food processor and add all remaining ingredients. Blend until smooth.
Now, transfer the sauce to a saucepan over medium-low heat. Cover and bring up to a simmer.
Next, while stirring occasionally, let simmer 15 minutes. It is best to remove from the heat every few minutes to stir and then re-cover before returning to the heat, as the sauce will splatter.
Finally, rinse out blender or food processor before transferring the cooked sauce back into it. Blend until entirely smooth. Store covered and refrigerated for up to 5 days.
The final sauce is great for dipping but also great for glazing low-fat meats such as chicken breasts or pork tenderloin. You can add it straight to raw chicken or pork before cooking as it usually does not burn before the meat has finished cooking. For more flavor, we recommend spooning more over top after cooking.
Now, get back to making great barbecue memories without worrying about reflux!
Check out more of our tasty, reflux-friendly recipes!
This tomato-free BBQ sauce is tailor-made for GERD and reflux sufferers. Low acid and big flavor make this perfect for a dipping sauce or a cooking glaze. You’ll want to use this smoky, sweet sauce on just about everything!