It’s finally rhubarb season! I’ve been itching to create nightshade free rhubarb barbecue sauce since watching past episodes of Great British Menu this spring and seeing a chef make rhubarb ketchup. I don’t use a lot of ketchup, but I love barbecue sauce.
I used local buckwheat honey to sweeten and flavor the rhubarb in my sauce. The flavor profile is similar to molasses so I used the more common ingredient when I wrote the recipe. If you don’t like the strong flavor of molasses, you can substitute half honey and half molasses or simply use any honey of your choice.
Smoked paprika can be substituted for liquid hickory smoke. It’s what I usually use, but I wanted this recipe to be completely nightshade free and not just tomato free like most of my fruit based barbecue sauces. I prefer Wright’s brand liquid hickory smoke as it doesn’t have extraneous ingredients.
Sweetness can be adjusted to taste after the sauce is cooked down by adding honey or sugar. I suggest adding only 1 tablespoon at a time until it reaches your desired flavor.
2 1/2 lbs rhubarb, washed, trimmed, & rough chopped
1 large yellow onion, rough chopped
6 cloves garlic, rough chopped
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
1/4 cup molasses
1 Tbs liquid hickory smoke
1 Tbs ginger, grated
1 tsp salt
In a large heavy-bottomed stockpot, add all ingredients and stir to lightly combine. On medium heat, bring to a boil. Reduce to low and allow to simmer, stirring frequently until the rhubarb and onions are cooked through, about 45-60 minutes. Remove from heat and puree the sauce with an immersion blender or in batches in an upright blender. Sauce can be canned in jars in a hot water bath or frozen for long term storage. May last for several weeks in the refrigerator. Makes approximately 8 cups.