This Carolina gold BBQ sauce has tangy, peppery and earthy flavors that work perfectly with grilled chicken or any grilled meat for that matter.
If you haven’t tried a combination of mustard and barbecue sauce, your taste buds are up for a treat.
The earthy, spicy flavors of mustard get beautifully balanced with a hint of sweetness from the ketchup and brown sugar, and a nice depth of umami from the Worcestershire sauce in this wicked concoction.
This mustard BBQ sauce is actually a wonderful tradition from South Carolina, and is quite unique, unlike most other tomato-based BBQ sauces out there.
While I did try a nice Chinese style hot mustard recipe recently, I was itching to experience this unique twist too, and that’s when I tried out this recipe.
And honestly, I’m so happy I did, because it turned out to be one of my favorite sauces of all time.
What's So Great About the Recipe?
My favorite part about this mustard barbecue sauce is how versatile it is.
I love teaming it up with chicken wings and using it as a dipping sauce for my grilled and fried foods.
Plus, you can adjust the seasonings and ingredients that go into the sauce, and tweak them to your liking too!
A Brief History of Carolina Mustard BBQ Sauce
This sweet and tangy Carolina BBQ sauce has a honey mustard base, and has its roots in South Carolina. You’re most likely to find this sweet BBQ sauce served at most BBQ joints in and around South Carolina.
Unlike the vinegar-based BBQ sauce that you’re most likely to find in North Carolina, this sauce is tangy, spicy and full of umami goodness.
Ingredients For the Carolina Gold BBQ Sauce Recipe
Ready to try this Carolina gold barbecue sauce recipe? Here’s all you’ll need.
Yellow mustard: You’ll need to start off with some good quality classic yellow mustard for the mustard base. I wouldn’t recommend using Dijon mustard- just regular yellow mustard should work fine.
Honey: Honey is added in to lend the Carolina mustard sauce some sweetness.
Worcestershire sauce: Worcestershire sauce lends some beautiful complexity of flavors to this golden BBQ sauce.
Apple cider vinegar: Apple cider vinegar is traditionally used for this Carolina gold sauce recipe. It adds a nice bit of tanginess with a hint of sweetness.
Ketchup: I also like to add a bit of ketchup to this rather tangy sauce.
Brown sugar: Brown sugar is again, added to balance out the intense flavors from the other ingredients with its sweetness.
Seasonings: I also added some garlic powder, onion powder and chili powder to season the sauce.
See recipe card for quantities.
How to Make Carolina Gold BBQ Sauce
Once you have all the ingredients ready, here’s what you’ll need to do to make this mustard-based BBQ sauce.
Whisk all the ingredients together in a medium bowl.
Serve immediately or transfer to a glass jar or an airtight container and refrigerate for later.
Substitutions & Variations
- If you want the mustard sauce to have a bit of heat, you can add some cayenne pepper or smoked paprika into the mix.
- Sugar and honey are meant to add sweetness to this sauce. If you don’t want the sweetness, you can skip adding them.
I would also recommend refrigerating the sauce for a few hours to allow the flavors to deepen further.
How to Store Carolina Gold BBQ Sauce
This brilliant yellow colored Carolina mustard BBQ sauce can be stored for weeks in an airtight container in the refrigerator, and slathered on your grilled meats or used as a dipping sauce whenever you need to.
Tips & Tricks to Nail the Recipe
- My homemade Carolina BBQ sauce recipe is a simple, no-cook recipe that doesn’t need any prep time. You can also try cooking the sauce down for around 5 minutes or so on low heat in a non-stick pan.
- If you’re cooking down the sauce, remember to let the sauce cool down before you transfer it to a container.
- Keep tasting and adjusting the sauce ingredients as you put it together. If you find the sauce is mild, you can add some more classic mustard and Worcestershire sauce into it.
How to Use the Carolina Gold BBQ Sauce
This mustard-based barbecue sauce packs in a nice punch of flavor, which makes it a great versatile condiment to have at hand.
With Grilled Meats
This earthy and spicy gold mustard sauce can be the perfect teammate to your grilled meats, especially chicken.
You’ll also find that many BBQ restaurants serve this delicious sauce with pulled pork too!
As a Dip
This golden mustard sauce can be a wonderful dip for any of your favorite fried foods too! I love serving them with chicken nuggets, chicken wings, jalapeno poppers and even some pretzels and chips.
It has truly made its way into my party dip favorites!
You can use almost any type of mustard for this Carolina barbecue sauce. I used yellow mustard, which tends to be less pungent, but you can also choose to use brown mustard or any other kind of mustard, and adjust the other ingredients accordingly to get the perfect flavor you’re looking for.
I wouldn’t recommend using Dijon mustard though.
In addition to everything that we’ve added, you can also add some hot sauce of your choice to add an extra kick of heat to this mustard based barbecue sauce.
Looking for other recipes like this? Try these:
Carolina Gold BBQ Sauce
- ¾ cup yellow mustard
- ¼ cup honey
- ¼ cup brown sugar
- ⅓ cup apple cider vinegar
- 1 tablespoon ketchup
- 2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- ¼ teaspoon chili powder
- Whisk all the ingredients together in a medium bowl.
- Serve immediately or transfer to a glass jar or an airtight container and refrigerate for later.
- Don't leave food sitting out at room temperature for extended periods
- Never leave cooking food unattended
- Use oils with high smoking point to avoid harmful compounds
- Always have good ventilation when using a gas stove