Who else is a big fan of classic Salt Lick BBQ sauce? My hand is certainly raised high in the air. Among all the BBQ sauces I have ever used, salt lick comes closest to my ideal flavor experience.

The sauce has a rich and creamy texture with a sweet and sour taste. It complements the glaze of the meat super nicely. Right after salt lick BBQ sauce came out in stores, everyone wanted to get their hands on it. However, barbeque sauce made at home is what we all desire, especially health freaks like me. So, I ventured to find a recipe for myself, and luckily I found a perfect one which is free from all the preservatives used in regularly manufactured salt lick sauce.

Back in 1967 The Salt Lick began its legacy of offering the finest delicacy in Texas, the salt lick BBQ. The barbeque chain set started a new endeavor of making BBQ sauces in Texas and became popular everywhere. Saltlick barbeque sauce from this food chain became more popular of all the salt lick recipes.

The chain offers a number of meals made out of this special sauce, ranging from briskets to ribs to pulled meat. The ready-to-go barbeque sauces from the chain are available in both the regular and spicy versions.

In the efforts of recreating an authentic salt lick BBQ sauce at home, I tried a mix of flavors neither tangy nor too light. All the spices and sauces are used in a balanced proportion. Allspice has a sharp sting in taste, so you can reduce the amount as per your preference. For better storage, use the canning recipe.

Salt Lick Barbecue Sauce Recipe

We have discussed some of the great ways to enjoy salt lick BBQ sauce, and there are still many more on the menu. I can’t possibly share all of them here. What I can give you right now is the epic salt lick barbecue sauce recipe, which is what you were waiting for all along.

It is no wonder that the distinct salt lick taste makes you want it to use it for a custom BBQ meal. Any variety of meal goes with the taste and form of the sauce, and it is readily absorbed into meat as well as makes a nice coating on top of meat after it’s cooked. I personally use this sauce to season the chicken wings I make for special occasions.

To have the rich and classic BBQ taste, you need the following salt lick BBQ sauce ingredients:

  • 1 cup finished sweet and sour dressing
  • 1/3 cup prepared mustard
  • 1/3 cup Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon hot sauce (carrot based preferred)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh cracked black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon Chinese five spice
  • 1-2 tablespoons honey
  • 1-2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1-2 tablespoons white sugar

Mix Worcestershire sauce with mustard, and all the spices and sweet and sour dressing in a large cooking pot. Let this mixture cook until it boils. When the mixture boils reduce to medium heat and cook for 30 minutes.

After this, take it off the heat then stir in brown sugar, honey, hot sauce, and white sugar. Mix well until the sugar is completely dissolved. Allow the sauce to cool down to room temperature.

The sweet and sour dressing is not readily available in the market. It is rare to find in the grocery store. So, I came up with this sweet and sour dressing recipe. The salt lick BBQ sauce is incomplete without a good sweet and sour dressing.

It is, therefore, better to keep it ready at home.

Don’t worry, it only takes 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar, 1/2 cup brown sugar, 1/3 cup pineapple juice, 1 teaspoon ginger, 1 clove fresh garlic, crushed, 1 tablespoon corn starch, 1 tablespoon water, and 1/4 cup oil to prepare one cup of the sweet and sour dressing. First, all the ingredients except the water, oil and cornstarch are mixed together, cooking over medium heat.

This mixture is cooked for 10 minutes. During the simmering, mix the water and cornstarch. Add this slurry to the sauce and mix well while cooking. Take off the heat and let the mixture cool down. Once it is cooled, blend the dressing and add a drizzle of oil.

The tricky part in making the salt lick BBQ sauce is that the recipe for canning of the sauce is entirely different in proportions and consistency. Since every sauce is eventually subject to storing, it is important to learn the method and ingredients for the canning of homemade salt lick BBQ sauce.

For canning you will require about 12 cups of sweet and sour dressing with 4 cups mustard, 4 cups Worcestershire sauce, 12 tablespoons hot sauce, 4 tablespoons salt, 2 tablespoons black pepper, 2 tablespoons paprika, 2 tablespoons cumin, 2 tablespoons onion powder, 2 tablespoons garlic powder, 2 tablespoons Chinese five spice, 1 cup brown sugar, 1 cup white sugar, and 1 cup honey.

All of these ingredients have to be cooked for 30 minutes at medium temperature until it is reduced. There is no cornstarch to add, so it is just mix and cook. Then cool it down and store the sauce in a sealable jar. Keep the container airtight to store the sauce for a longer amount of time. Use a dark and cool place for storage.

There you go!

A freshly cooked salt lick sauce is ready to infuse more flavor into all your barbecue recipes. When it comes to sauces, I rarely recommend market bought sauce as they are full of preservatives and you never know what’s inside. Always go for homemade sauce whenever you can. They are healthy, rich and delicious. Moreover, they get all your preferred flavors.

Six Treats to enjoy with Saltlick BBQ sauce

Let me open up my salt lick cookbook for you and recall all the spicy dishes I made using this super delicious sauce. As far as I remember, there was a time when every other BBQ dish of mine used some amount of salt lick sauce. That’s how crazy I was for its fine taste. But then I restricted the use to only the recipes where it paired best. Here are a dishes that you will enjoy grilling with the salt lick sauce.

1. Pork chopsEven when you are not using other spices and seasonings, using this sauce to flavor your chops is enough to spark your taste buds. What I usually do is make a marinade using this sauce, salt, and some pepper. Then I rub the chops thoroughly with this mixture and let it marinate for 30 minutes in a covered bowl.

After complete marination, I either grill them on the gas grill or charcoal grill whenever we BBQ outside, or I simply bake the chops in the oven. It tastes so amazing that my mouth just started watering while writing about it. I then serve these pork chops with extra salt lick BBQ sauce for dipping.

2. Baby Ribs: Well, it doesn’t always have to be baby ribs. Pork or beef ribs of any form can go with the sauce. Along with the salt lick sauce, I add lemon juice, salt, pepper, a little bit of red wine and a pinch of brown sugar to prepare the marinade. Then I dip the ribs in this marinade for better absorption. Sometimes I also add minced garlic to the marinade.

This mixture works like a miracle when it comes to taste. The longer the marination, the greater the flavors, so I recommend at least one hour of marination. Then simply grill the ribs while basting it with the salt lick sauce or the left-over marinade. Basting adds more flavors to the meat.

3. Meat Skewers: Usually I grill chicken skewers, and then glaze them with the salt lick sauce. However, you can also grill pork, beef or mutton skewers. It’s up to you to either marinate the meat in the sauce before grilling or pour the sauce on top before serving. I would suggest to first marinate the meat cubes in any of your favorite marinades, grill the skewer and then top it with a layer of salt lick BBQ sauce.

For chicken skewers, I toss the chicken boneless cubes with salt, pepper, and some lemon juice. Then I thread them on the skewers and grill while basting them with some oil. After it is cooked well, I brush on some salt lick BBQ sauce for a strong and irresistible taste. This sauce always tastes different when fresh from the bottle, whereas it tastes differently after some cooking.

4. Meatballs Dip: I am not sure how many of you would like the idea of dipping meatballs into a BBQ sauce gravy, but I always like the sound of it. Just like you dip and serve meatballs in tomato or cranberry sauce, you can also use salt lick BBQ sauce to flavor the meatballs. You are either grilling minced meat kebobs or searing the meatballs on a stove top.

Occasionally, to serve at parties, I stick wooden sticks into the meatballs and dip them halfway into the salt lick sauce. It not only tastes fine but looks amazing.

5. Steaks: A steak is all about good seasoning and proper marination. no steak tastes good when served without a saucy glaze or tangy dip. The salt lick BBQ sauce is a great option to baste your steak with while grilling.

Mix ¼ cup of this BBQ sauce with some olive or sesame oil, add some honey if you like, then brush it on top of the steak and flip the sides to cook. Continue basting for a few minutes until the steak is al dente. That’s how I do it, yet there is another way to enjoy this combination.

Prepare a dip by cooking the salt lick BBQ sauce with lemon juice, salt, pepper, honey or maple syrup in a small saucepan. Add some wine to dilute the mixture and cook until this sauce thickens. When the steak is ready, pour the sauce on top and serve.

6. Vegan Kebobs: These can be cauliflower or minced chickpea kebobs or diced vegetables threaded on skewers. Considering all the meat talk we just had, it’s only right to explore some of the vegan ways to enjoy the amazing salt lick taste. So I came up with this vegan option.

Just like you brush the steak with the sauce while it is grilled, you can also baste the vegetables with this sauce to infuse a distinct BBQ taste and a very strong aroma. Trust me, it will taste so different from the traditional vegan kebobs you enjoy. I use zucchini cubes or squash cubes with olives and grape tomatoes to make a skewer. The sauce complements these vegetables well. You can also use other vegetables for the kebobs, as per your preference.


I never knew salt lick BBQ sauce would be that simple to prepare at home. Now you don’t need to wait around and look for the great Salt Lick label to enjoy their authentic BBQ sauce taste. Whether it’s beef steak, pork chops or chicken drumsticks, coat them with this homemade BBQ sauce and grill to experience some seriously strong and deeply infused flavors.

This Saltlick BBQ sauce recipe is a surprising mix of sweet and sour. The consistency of the BBQ sauce is thick enough to give the meat a nice glaze. Remember that the sauce is not for marination. It is more of a basting sauce, to be applied right before cooking or while grilling. That’s the way to make the best of this BBQ sauce with it’s fine taste and aroma.


Peter's path through the culinary world has taken a number of unexpected turns. After starting out as a waiter at the age of 16, he was inspired to go to culinary school and learn the tricks of the trade. As he delved deeper, however, his career took a sudden turn when a family friend needed someone to help manage his business. Peter now scratches his culinary itch on the internet by blogging, sharing recipes, and socializing with food enthusiasts worldwide.

1 Comment

  1. Michael stack Reply

    For the Sweet and Sour dressing, check the Asian section of your local supermarket rather than the dressing section. I found one that is a really good substitute for making your own, and based on the ingredient listing, it is similar to the one here.

    I haven’t made the S&S dressing from scratch to A/B the two approaches, but it was pretty good.

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