Skip to Content

Homemade Keto BBQ Sauce Recipe – Sugar-Free and Low Carb

This is the BEST homemade Keto BBQ Sauce recipe you can make and is absolutely sugar-free!  Goes with so many recipes, you’ll be putting it on everything!

jar of BBQ Sauce Low Carb

This is a new Keto BBQ Sauce recipe that we decided to make mainly because Stephanie just posted her recipe for oven-baked Barbecue Ribs and we figured that it would be a nice thing to be able to cover them in a Low Carb BBQ Sauce

It’s so amazing when you experiment with different foods that you have known to always have a lot of sugar or other things that make it high in carbs, and you find a way to change that so that people who  have to eat a low carb diet can have other options. It’s so nice to not feel deprived from eating so many of your loved foods. 

BBQ sauce is one of those foods. I’m not really a lover of BBQ sauce in general, but my family absolutely are, and I’m so happy to have figured out how to make a sugar-free BBQ sauce so that they will be able to use it on so many things, such as ribs, burgers, chicken and so much more.   

What Ingredients are in Low Carb Barbecue Sauce? 

Here are a few key ingredients that make up your homemade, Low Carb BBQ Sauce. My family was quite impressed that it came out so delicious!

Sugar Free BBQ Sauce ingredients

Sugar-free ketchup – If you are a ketchup user, then this is a staple to keep in your house, especially in the Summer when it’s grill season. It obviously goes well with burgers and chicken or even for breakfast with your scrambled eggs and now you can also use the low carb ketchup to make low carb BBQ sauce. 

Swerve brown sugar substitute – This is an amazing product because both the brown and white versions taste and look like real sugar but they don’t have the calories or carbs like the real sugar, so no sugar side effects. As a diabetic, I was thrilled when I found out that there were a couple of good alternatives that enabled me to have more good food options or choices. 

Liquid smoke – Now this ingredient was something that I had never heard of before making this recipe, I didn’t even know where to begin looking for it in the grocery store.

To make your hunt for it simpler, it was sold in our store in the same section as other bbq sauces are found. Now after using it in this Keto BBQ Sauce, it does give your sauce that smokey flavor that makes BBQ sauce different than ketchup. 

This is an ESSENTIAL ingredient imo, don’t skip it!

Other Variations of Barbecue Sauce:

In this recipe, we chose to use a low carb, sugar-free Ketchup but you can also use tomato paste. They both are good to use and your sauce will come out equally good using either. It’s nice to know that you have an option to be able to use whatever you have in your house. 

Maybe you are like us and you always have on hand a supply of tomato products in case you want to make an Italian Low Carb Tomato sauce, or maybe your area a ketchup lover and you, therefore, have on hand in your refrigerator a bottle of the low carb ketchup. 

Also we used the powdered type of Swerve brown sugar substitute, but you can always use the granulated version of Swerve brown sugar substitute instead because since you have to heat the mixture over the heat on the stove for a few minutes, the heating process helps dissolve and blend the ingredients more evenly so either will work.  

If you want your Homemade BBQ sauce to be spicy add some Tabasco or some Frank’s Red Hot, or even cayenne pepper or crushed red pepper flakes.

How to Make Homemade Keto BBQ Sauce:

This recipe is so simple that it doesn’t have too many instructions:

ingredients for Sugar Free BBQ Sauce Low Carb

Mix all your ingredients in a medium-size saucepan and heat over medium heat on your stove stirring constantly for 4-5 minutes to make sure the sugar is blended in and dissolved. That’s it. Enjoy.

Because this is such a quick and easy thing to make, you can make it up in just a few minutes and it’s ready to use. Then you can just store the leftover portion in the refrigerator and it’s there for you when you feel like eating something with your Low Carb BBQ Sauce.

Tips for Homemade BBQ Sauce

The Homemade Low Carb BBQ Sauce is so much better than store-bought BBQ sauce, so spend just a few minutes and make your own. It’s worth the few minutes that it takes to make it, it’s delicious!

Use smoked paprika, instead of regular paprika. The smokey flavor is what you need to give it that taste of BBQ sauce. The same with the liquid smoke. It was something I never knew existed. I wasn’t sure that I would find it in the grocery store but it was easy. Just look for it where the other BBQ sauces are and you will find the liquid smoke.

Can you Eat BBQ Sauce on a Keto Diet?  Will it kick you out of ketosis?

No it won’t kick you out of ketosis, it’s on your Keto diet, so enjoy.

This recipe is good for people who want or need to be on a low carb or Keto diet because 2 of the main ingredients are the no-sugar ketchup and the swerve brown sugar. Both these ingredients are designed to be eaten by people on Low Carb or Keto diets. 

low carb BBQ Sauce keto

For example, we found 2 good choices for no sugar ketchup, one is by Heinz which is 1 carb per Tablespoon, and the other one is by Primal and is 2 carbs per tablespoon. And the swerve products have zero net carbs so also a good choice for keeping carbs at a bare minimum. 

How to Make BBQ Sauce Sugar-Free:

When making BBQ sauce it definitely needs some form of sweetener to make it tasty. So instead of using sugar, or high fructose corn syrup as store-bought BBQ sauces use, you can choose from one of the sweeteners out there that are used in many Low Carb and Keto recipes.

For instance, here are a few choices that you can use, all of which are either 0 carbs or just a couple carbs, which bring a lot of food to your list of things that you can eat without having to worry about your numbers going up.

  • Swerve (White or Brown, Powdered or Granulated)
  • Monk fruit
  • Erythritol
  • Xylitol
  • Stevia

In this particular recipe, we used the Brown Swerve.

The Swerve and Monkfruit work well because it’s easy to figure out portions because it’s a 1-1 ratio.

What style BBQ sauce is the Best?

That’s a good question and before making BBQ sauce from scratch I never realized that there were so many styles. I think some people pick the sauce from the area that they grew up in as their favorite. I guess that’s only natural. It’s all about what you get used to. 

Only if you travel around do you realize that there may be other options out there in things for you to try! It’s easy to get hung up on one thing, especially if you like something so much, you reason to yourself, “Why should I try something different when I love something so much?” 

But you may want to try some other varieties, some are sweeter than others, like the ones from Kansas City that are thick, sweet and tangy.  Some are a hickory flavor or a smokey flavor. Some are thicker or thinner, and then there are glazes made from meat too.

Texas is known for there BBQ sauce that is called a mop sauce or a basting sauce.

North Carolina is known for a hot, tangy and peppery BBQ sauce, just to name a few.

So the bottom line is to try a variety and then see which one is your favorite! 

How do you make BBQ Sauce thinner?

Keto BBQ Sauce recipe

A thinner BBQ sauce makes for a good dipping sauce, like if you have chicken or something similar.

If you find that your Low Carb BBQ Sauce is too thick, then there are a few things that I can think of that you can use to thin it out a bit, and they are all depending on what you like as to taste. So experience tasting your BBQ sauce with different ones to find your favorite taste for each recipe.

  • Apple Cider Vinegar
  • Lemon Juice
  • Ketchup
  • Water
  • Hot Sauce
  • Chicken or Beef Stock

Add these to your BBQ Sauce drop by drop to see how it tastes and not too fast so that you don’t overdo the thinning process, otherwise, you will be trying to do the opposite and make your BBQ Sauce thicker…

How do you make BBQ sauce thicker?

To make your Low Carb BBQ sauce thicker, what you need to do is when you put it on the stove, cook it longer than you normally would. As you keep stirring your BBQ Sauce, you will see that it will start to thicken up. Just make sure you don’t let it burn or stick. 

Keep stirring and when it reaches your desired thickness take it off the burner and cool. Then when it’s cool it’s ready to be poured into your glass jar or container and then place in your refrigerator.

Another way to make your BBQ Sauce thicker is to add a little arrowroot or konjac powder, both thickening agents that are low carb, and it only takes a small amount. Once again stir while thickening so that it doesn’t stick or burn. After it’s thickened brush onto ribs or chicken and it forms a glaze while cooking, yummy!

Is this BBQ Sauce Sweet?

bowl of Sugar Free BBQ Sauce

Some people may wonder if you can make this BBQ Sauce a little sweeter or even a little more tart. Yes, you can do either.

If you don’t think that it’s sweet enough add a little more sweetener and if you think it’s too sweet, add a little more apple cider vinegar

Is this Homemade BBQ Sauce Gluten-Free?

Yes, this Low Carb BBQ Sauce is definitely gluten-free. This makes our friends who have to eat gluten-free very happy because they can have so many more foods now, that they couldn’t eat before.

What makes this homemade BBQ sauce gluten-free is that it’s made with sugar-free ketchup instead of regular ketchup and Swerve brown sugar instead of regular brown sugar.

What to serve with Barbecue Sauce:

Sugar-Free BBQ Sauce served on Baked Baby Back Ribs

BBQ is so versatile and it goes on so many things. For instance, you can serve any meat with this sauce, whatever you would put BBQ sauce on like steak, chicken, burgers, ribs, wings, pulled pork or whatever else. Then feel free to cook your meat inside the house in your oven but still the best way I like any BBQ sauce is to cook the meat on the grill outside. 

You can even make a low carb pizza crust, a cauliflower pizza crust which is low carb and then top it off with your traditional BBQ Sauce and Chicken for a great pizza. 

Here are some things you’ll love to add this BBQ to…

  • Steak
  • Chicken
  • Burgers
  • Ribs
  • Pulled Pork
  • BBQ Nachos
  • Wings
  • Meatloaf
  • BBQ Chicken Pizza

Check out our Oven-Baked BBQ Ribs recipe which will blow you away with how tender they get!

How to Properly Store your Homemade BBQ Sauce:

It’s really easy to store homemade BBQ sauce.  I prefer to put it in a small or medium-size glass Mason Jar with a screw-on lid. I think they are attractive and look nice when you have to take it out of the refrigerator and place on your table for dinner. 

If you don’t have a mason jar, you can also put it in a plastic container with a tight-fitting lid and stick it into your refrigerator, either is effective.  

How Long does it Last?

Once you make your Keto BBQ Sauce you may wonder how long it will last in your refrigerator? Well, first of all, you may use it all up the first time you make it because it’s so delicious. But if you don’t it will very easily keep in a glass jar or a tight-fitting plastic container for at least 2 weeks if not longer, in your refrigerator.

But do not freeze your sauce because it doesn’t freeze well.

Sugar Free BBQ Sauce

Other Similar Recipes:

If you’re in the mood for some other Keto Sauces then try our:

Both of them are Keto-friendly and low carb, and will have your friends raving!

clock clock iconcutlery cutlery iconflag flag iconfolder folder iconinstagram instagram iconpinterest pinterest iconfacebook facebook iconprint print iconsquares squares iconheart heart iconheart solid heart solid icon
Sugar Free BBQ Sauce Low Carb

Homemade Keto BBQ Sauce Recipe – Sugar-Free and Low Carb

  • Author: Leigh Oskwarek
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 5 minutes
  • Total Time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: 8 servings (2Tbsp per serving) 1x
Save Recipe


Yummy Homemade Low Carb BBQ Sauce which is sugar free to add to all your favorite foods. It’s the BEST so you’ll be putting it on everything from now on!


  • ½ cup sugar-free ketchup
  • 4 Tbsp Brown Sugar Swerve
  • 1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • ½ Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • ½ Tbsp liquid smoke (optional but highly recommended)
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp chipotle powder
  • 1/4 tsp paprika


  1. Combine all ingredients together in a medium saucepan 
  2. Heat on stove, stirring constantly to make sure it doesn’t stick or burn or boil over and to make sure the sweetener is completely dissolved and smooth
  3. When cooled off enough place BBQ sauce in your jar or container to store it in your refrigerator


My best suggestion would be this: While you are making your Low Carb BBQ Sauce you may as well make a double batch. It won’t take you any longer to do that and it keeps a while in your refrigerator.  Depending on how sweet or tart you like your sauce you could adjust the amount of sugar or vinegar. It won’t harm your sauce either way. It’s just your preference of taste. Don’t forget that you could use the sugar free ketchup which makes this recipe an easy one to make over and over again.  And 2 main ingredients that help turn your ketchup into BBQ sauce are the liquid smoke and the smoked paprika.

  • Category: Sauce/Dip
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: Sugar-Free BBQ Sauce, Sugar-Free BBQ Sauce recipe, Sugar-Free Barbecue Sauce, Keto BBQ Sauce, Keto BBQ Sauce Recipe, Keto Barbecue Sauce, Low Carb BBQ Sauce, Low Carb BBQ Sauce Recipe, Low Carb Barbecue Sauce, How to Make Sugar-Free BBQ Sauce, How to Make Keto BBQ Sauce, Homemade BBQ Sauce, Easy BBQ Sauce, Best BBQ Sauce

Cauliflower Mac and Cheese Recipe
← Previous
Best Low Carb Homemade Tortilla Chips
Next →
Recipe rating