Cherry-Zinfandel Barbecue Sauce

Cherry-Zinfandel Barbecue Sauce Recipe
Photo: Annabelle Breakey; Styling: Karen Shinto

We've shamelessly put the flavors of Zinfandel into this sauce: dried cherries, anise seeds (Zin often has faint licorice flavors), black pepper, and lots of the wine itself. Prep and Cook Time: about 40 minutes. Notes: You can make this sauce up to 3 days ahead of time; chill airtight, then bring to room temperature before using.


Makes 3 1/2 cups

Recipe from


Nutritional Information

Calories 70
Caloriesfromfat 14 %
Protein 0.8 g
Fat 1.1 g
Satfat 0.1 g
Carbohydrate 15 g
Fiber 0.5 g
Sodium 294 mg
Cholesterol 0.0 mg


1 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
2 tablespoons chopped garlic
1 1/2 cups dry red Zinfandel
1 cup ketchup
2/3 cup dried tart cherries
3 tablespoons cider vinegar
3 tablespoons Worcestershire
3 tablespoons lightly packed light brown sugar
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons chopped fresh ginger
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon anise seeds
1/4 teaspoon cayenne
About 3 tbsp. lemon juice


1. Pour olive oil into a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Add onion and garlic and cook, stirring often, until limp, 3 to 4 minutes. Add Zinfandel, ketchup, cherries, vinegar, Worcestershire, brown sugar, mustard, ginger, black pepper, anise seeds, and cayenne. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, until liquid begins to thicken slightly, about 20 minutes. Let cool slightly.

2. Pour mixture into a blender and add 2 tbsp. lemon juice; whirl until very smooth. Taste and add more lemon juice if desired. Use warm or at room temperature.

Note: Nutritional analysis is per 1/4 cup.