“Mmm good. I was eating the sauce with a spoon.” —Kayla, recipe tester, age 9
In large saucepan, heat oil over medium heat for 1 minute (oil should be hot but not smoking). Add onion and cook, stirring occasionally with rubber spatula, until onion is softened, about 5 minutes.
Stir in garlic and chili powder and cook for 1 minute. Add ketchup, molasses, Worcestershire, vinegar, mustard, and hot sauce (if using) and bring to simmer.
Reduce heat to low and cook, stirring occasionally, until flavors blend, about 5 minutes. Turn off heat. Let sauce cool slightly, 15 to 20 minutes.
Where does barbecue sauce come from? One theory is that the earliest versions were first made in the Caribbean . . . but no one REALLY knows. Wherever it comes from, this centuries-old condiment is now an American staple. Today there are many different styles of barbecue sauce. One of the most popular styles is from Kansas City, Missouri, and is a thick, sweet, and tangy tomato-based sauce—which is exactly what inspired this recipe. How do YOU use barbecue sauce? On meat? Chicken? For dipping french fries? In our opinion, anything goes!