Mustard Based Carolina Gold Bbq Sauce (Tangy Flavor)

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I recommend this homemade Carolina Gold BBQ Sauce for a tangy kick. It combines mustard, honey, and a hint of spice, ensuring your grilled creations shine. It’s one of the easiest ways to elevate your barbecue. If you’re worried about complexity, this blend is straightforward. You’ll need simple pantry staples, and the process is quick. It’s best to prepare this golden delight in advance to resolve any flavor blending issues.

Embarking on a culinary journey, I discovered the allure of Carolina Gold BBQ Sauce—a treasure I first encountered at a bustling Middle-Eastern street market. 

Its tangy mustard base, starkly contrasting with European bistros’ smoky, sweet sauces, immediately piqued my curiosity. 

Yet, the golden sauce captivated me during a friend’s backyard feast as it effortlessly transformed ordinary grilled dishes into extraordinary delights. 

Carolina Gold BBQ Sauce

Grilling aficionados often find themselves in a monotonous routine, yearning for something to invigorate their palate. I suggest looking no further than the zesty Carolina Gold. 

On a whim, I introduced this sauce at a family barbecue, and the gleeful requests from both adults and children for “that incredible sauce” have been ceaseless since. 

The transformative power of its flavor has turned simple meals into memorable gatherings. Plan to embrace this sauce and watch it become the highlight of your next culinary adventure.

What Is Carolina Gold BBQ Sauce?

Carolina Gold BBQ Sauce is a tangy, mustard-based condiment hailing from South Carolina, and it stands as one of the easiest yet most effective ways to add a vibrant kick to your barbecue. 

Its rich golden hue comes from a blend of yellow mustard, sweetened by honey or brown sugar, with a zesty touch of vinegar, and a spice mix that usually includes black pepper and cayenne. 

Ideal for basting or as a dipping sauce, Carolina Gold ensures your grilled meats and vegetables boast a uniquely bold and savory flavor profile.

History Of Carolina Gold BBQ Sauce Recipe

The history of Carolina Gold BBQ sauce is as rich as its flavor, rooted in the German heritage of South Carolina’s settlers. 

These immigrants brought their love for mustard and vinegar-based sauces to the American South in the 18th century. 

I recommend a delve into this history to understand its origin: a resourceful cook known for his barbecue might have decided to blend local ingredients like mustard with the sweetness of sugar and the tartness of vinegar. 

Creating this distinctive sauce. It’s a testament to the fusion of cultural influences that birthed a regional classic revered by barbecue enthusiasts today.

Interesting Facts About Carolina Gold BBQ Sauce Recipe

Carolina Gold BBQ Sauce is a culinary masterpiece with a unique mustard base, showcasing the rich culinary influences of German traditions in South Carolina. This sauce stands out for its versatile application, offering a perfect blend of flavors that elevate various dishes.

A Mustard Masterstroke

Unlike typical BBQ sauces, Carolina Gold’s mustard base is a masterstroke that reflects German influences in South Carolina’s food culture.

Versatile Viscosity

Its consistency is carefully balanced to be thin enough for basting yet thick enough to cling to your favorite meats, ensuring a delightful coating.

Peppered Past

Black pepper plays a crucial role in Carolina Gold BBQ Sauce, adding a warm, spicy undertone that has been a staple since its creation.

Sweetness Spectrum

You’ll always find a sweet element in the sauce, ranging from honey to molasses, expertly balancing the tangy sharpness of the mustard base.

Vinegar Variety

Different vinegars can alter the sauce’s flavor profile, making homemade variations of Carolina Gold BBQ Sauce endlessly customizable to suit individual preferences.

All-Purpose Appeal

Carolina Gold BBQ Sauce is one of the easiest sauces to use, demonstrating its versatility in enhancing not just barbecue but also sandwiches, burgers, and even salads.


What Are The Regional Adaptations Of This Sauce?

  • Texan Twist: In Texas, they infuse it with a smoky chipotle to complement their robust beef dishes.
  • Kansas City Sweetness: Here, molasses is added for a thicker, sweeter finish that pairs well with the city’s rich, smoky barbecue.
  • Memphis Meld: A Memphis version might include a splash of tomato, bridging the gap between mustard and the region’s preferred vinegar-tomato bases.
  • Carolina Vinegar Kick: Eastern Carolina adaptations often boost the vinegar content, catering to local tastes that favor a sharper, more piquant profile.
  • Alabama White Wonder: Alabama’s unique take involves mayonnaise and horseradish, diverging significantly from the gold standard to create a creamy, zesty alternative.

What Will Make You Love This Carolina Gold BBQ Sauce Recipe?

  • Tangy with a Twist: The sharp mustard tang melds with a honeyed sweetness, ensuring a flavor punch that’s both bold and balanced.
  • Simplicity in a Bottle: It’s one of the easiest sauces to whip up with ingredients you’ll likely have in your pantry.
  • Grilling’s Best Friend: This sauce clings perfectly to whatever you’re grilling, infusing your cookout with unmatched flavor.
  • A Healthier Option: Mustard-based sauces usually contain fewer calories and less sugar than their ketchup-based counterparts, making them a lighter choice.
  • Versatile Virtuoso: This sauce adapts to enhance every dish, from pork to chicken, or even as a salad dressing.
  • Homemade Haven: Making it at home allows you to control the spice and sweetness levels, tailoring it to your taste buds.
  • Conversation Starter: Its unique color and taste will draw questions and compliments at any dining table.
  • Diet-friendly: It’s gluten-free and can be adjusted for vegan diets, ensuring everyone at your table can enjoy it.
Bowl and Spoon

Ingredients List

Yellow Mustard1 cup
Honey2 tablespoons
Brown Sugar¼ cup
Apple Cider Vinegar¼ cup
Fresh Cracked Pepper½ teaspoon
Worcestershire Sauce1 tablespoon
Garlic Powder¼ teaspoon
Onion Powder¼ teaspoon
Cayenne Pepper (optional)¼ teaspoon

Ingredient Tips

  • Mustard Matters: Opt for a quality yellow mustard as it’s the backbone of the sauce; its flavor sets the foundation.
  • Honey Hints: Use local honey for a more robust and unique flavor profile that complements the tanginess of the mustard.
  • Brown Sugar Balance: Light or dark brown sugar adds depth; darker varieties lend a richer molasses note.
  • Vinegar Variations: Apple cider vinegar is best for a fruity tang, but white vinegar can work in a pinch for a sharper bite.
  • Freshly Cracked: Grinding pepper fresh ensures a more potent spice kick.
  • Worcestershire Whispers: A dash of Worcestershire sauce adds a complex umami flavor that deepens the overall taste.
  • Garlic and Onion Powders: Ensure they’re fresh for the best aroma and flavor; stale spices can turn your sauce flat.
  • Salt Selection: Sea salt or kosher salt will dissolve better and add a purer flavor than table salt.
  • Cayenne for Heat: Adjust the cayenne pepper to suit your preference; a little goes a long way.
  • Consistency Check: If the sauce is too thick, thin it with a splash of water or vinegar; if it is too thin, a little extra mustard can thicken it.

What Are The Variations Of Carolina Gold BBQ Sauce Recipe?

  • Spicy Gold: Amp up the heat with additional cayenne pepper or diced jalapeños for those who crave a fiery twist.
  • Honey Mustard Fusion: Increase the honey for a sweeter, more pronounced honey mustard flavor that’s kid-friendly.
  • Bourbon Bliss: A splash of bourbon adds a woody richness, perfect for a gourmet BBQ experience.
  • Smoky Sensation: Incorporate smoked paprika or liquid smoke to introduce an irresistible subtle smokiness.
  • Herb Harmony: Fresh herbs like thyme or rosemary can infuse an aromatic quality for a more complex profile.
  • Fruity Flare: Stir in peach or apricot preserves for a fruity variation that pairs wonderfully with pork.
  • Molasses Depth: Swap out brown sugar for molasses for a thicker consistency and deeper, more caramelized sweetness.
  • Tangy Tweak: Adjust the apple cider vinegar to heighten the tanginess if you prefer a sharper sauce.
  • Creamy Dream: Blend in some mayonnaise for a creamier, milder sauce that’s great on sandwiches.
  • Beer-Infused BBQ: Use your favorite ale instead of some vinegar for a malty variation with an extra kick.

Recipe Directions

Cooking Method

  • Gather all the ingredients and prepare your cooking station.
  • In a small pot, combine 1 cup yellow mustard, 2 tablespoons honey, ¼ cup brown sugar, ¼ cup apple cider vinegar, ½ teaspoon fresh cracked pepper, 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce, ¼ teaspoon garlic powder, ¼ teaspoon onion powder, a pinch of salt, and ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional).
  • Place the pot over medium-high heat. Whisk the ingredients together until thoroughly combined.
  • Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce the heat to low.
  • Allow the sauce to simmer for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking or burning.
  • After simmering, remove the pot from the heat.

Discover the flavor magic of Carolina Gold BBQ Sauce that makes your meals go from good to tastier.

Scaling The Recipe

To Double The Recipe

  • Use 2 cups of yellow mustard.
  • Include 4 tablespoons of honey.
  • Add ½ cup of brown sugar.
  • Pour in ½ cup of apple cider vinegar.
  • Mix in 1 teaspoon of fresh cracked pepper.
  • Double the Worcestershire sauce to 2 tablespoons.
  • Use ½ teaspoon each of garlic and onion powder.
  • A couple of pinches of salt.
  • ½ teaspoon of cayenne pepper, if desired.

To Halve The Recipe

  • Reduce to ½ cup of yellow mustard.
  • Use 1 tablespoon of honey.
  • Include 2 tablespoons of brown sugar.
  • Add 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar.
  • ¼ teaspoon of fresh cracked pepper.
  • Halve the Worcestershire sauce to ½ tablespoon.
  • Use ⅛ teaspoon each of garlic and onion powder.
  • A small pinch of salt.
  • ⅛ teaspoon of cayenne pepper, if desired.
Carolina Gold BBQ Sauce

Can This Sauce Be Used As A Marinade, Dipping Sauce, Or Dressing For Salads?

Absolutely, the versatility of Carolina Gold BBQ Sauce makes it an all-around condiment. As a marinade, it tenderizes and infuses meats with its tangy-sweet flavor, perfect for grilling. 

When used as a dipping sauce, it offers a zesty alternative to traditional ketchup or mayo, ideal for finger foods and appetizers. If you’re worried about a bland salad, drizzle this sauce as a dressing for an instant flavor boost. 

The vinegar base ensures your greens stay crisp. At the same time, the other ingredients mingle to create a taste usually reserved for gourmet kitchens. It’s a homemade multi-tasker that transforms the ordinary to extraordinary.

What Are The Best Dishes To Accompany Carolina Gold Bbq Sauce Recipe?

Grilled Chicken

Its tangy flavor complements the smoky notes of barbecued poultry.

Pulled Pork Sandwiches

Slather it on for a South Carolina-style treat.


The sauce adds a zesty twist to the rich flavors of slow-cooked beef.

Burger Topping

Elevate your burgers with a dollop of this golden goodness.

Hot Dogs

A perfect mustardy kick for an American classic.


Mix it in for a barbecue slaw with a bite.

Potato Salad

A flavorful alternative to traditional dressings.

Veggie Burgers

It brings an exciting flavor to plant-based options.

Grilled Vegetables

Brush it on asparagus, zucchini, or corn for a flavor-packed side.


A tangy complement to grilled shrimp or fish filets.

Carolina Gold BBQ Sauce

What Are Some Classic Dishes That Feature Carolina Gold Bbq Sauce Recipe?

  • South Carolina Pulled Pork: Slow-cooked pork shoulder finished with a generous helping of Carolina Gold.
  • Carolina Gold Chicken Wings: Baked or fried wings basted in this tangy sauce.
  • Gold Glazed Ribs: Spare ribs slathered with the sauce and grilled to sticky perfection.
  • BBQ Chicken Pizza: A zesty twist on pizza with a Carolina Gold sauce base.
  • Gold BBQ Meatballs: Cocktail meatballs simmered in the sauce for a sweet and tangy appetizer.
  • BBQ Shrimp Skewers: Seafood gets a Southern barbecue treatment with a mustardy glaze.
  • Carolina Gold Slaw: A tangy coleslaw dressed in a vinaigrette-style Carolina Gold sauce.
  • BBQ Deviled Eggs: Classic deviled eggs with a filling accented by the bold sauce.
  • Carolina Gold Tofu: Crispy tofu cubes tossed in the sauce for a vegan-friendly dish.
  • Grilled Vegetable Platter: Assorted veggies charred and brushed with the sauce for a smoky-sweet side.

What Are The Key Flavor Profiles And Taste Sensations That Carolina Gold Bbq Sauce Recipe Offers?

  • Tangy Mustard: A sharp and vivid kick from the yellow mustard base.
  • Sweet Undertones: Honey and brown sugar provide a gentle sweetness.
  • Acidic Zest: Apple cider vinegar delivers a bright and fruity acidity.
  • Mellow Spice: Fresh cracked pepper and cayenne add warmth without overpowering.
  • Rich Umami: Worcestershire sauce contributes depth and complexity.
  • Garlicky Notes: A subtle hint of garlic powder rounds out the flavor.
  • Savory Onion: Onion powder offers a background of earthy savoriness.
  • Slight Heat: Optional cayenne pepper introduces a mild, spicy thrill.
  • Salty Edge: Just a pinch of salt enhances all other flavors.
  • Smokey Nuance: Some variations introduce a smoky element, enriching the mustard base.
Jar and Spoon

Can This Sauce Be Stored And Preserved For Future Use? What Is Its Shelf Life?

Yes, Carolina Gold BBQ Sauce can be stored and preserved for future use. To do so, ensure your sauce has cooled to room temperature after cooking. 

Then, transfer it to an airtight container or a glass jar with a tight lid. The sauce can last up to 2 weeks when stored properly in the refrigerator. Its longevity is due to the vinegar and sugar content, which act as natural preservatives. 

However, it’s usually best to consume homemade sauces within the first week for the best flavor and quality. Always check for any signs of spoilage before use.

What Are The Substitutes For Carolina Gold BBQ Sauce Recipe?

  • Honey Mustard Sauce: For a similar sweet and tangy profile with less heat.
  • Dijon Mustard Vinaigrette: For a more refined, tangy flavor with a European flair.
  • Traditional Yellow Mustard and Honey Mix: If you’re out of homemade Carolina Gold.
  • Spicy Brown Mustard Sauce: Offers a deeper, spicier kick.
  • Alabama White Sauce: A mayo-based alternative for a creamier texture.
  • Apple Cider Vinegar Dressing: For those who enjoy the tanginess without the mustard base.
  • Homemade Kansas City BBQ Sauce: Sweeter and thicker, with a tomato base.
  • Remoulade Sauce: For a French twist that’s still tangy and flavorful.
  • Russian Dressing: A sweeter option with a little heat and zest.
  • Sweet Southern BBQ Sauce: A molasses-based sauce for a sweet, smoky flavor.
Carolina Gold BBQ Sauce

How To Adjust The Consistency Of The Sauce?

  • Thicken the Sauce: Simmer the sauce over low heat, allowing excess liquid to evaporate. Stirring in a small amount of cornstarch slurry (cornstarch mixed with water) can also thicken it quickly.
  • Thin the Sauce: If it’s too thick, gently whisk in warm water, apple cider vinegar, or additional mustard until you reach the desired consistency.
  • Creamier Texture: Blend in a tablespoon of mayonnaise or Greek yogurt for a smoother, richer feel.
  • Avoid Overheating: High heat can cause separation, so moderate temperatures when adjusting.

Should We Serve The Sauce Cold Or Warm?

The serving temperature of Carolina Gold BBQ Sauce depends on personal preference and the dish it accompanies. 

It is typically served at room temperature or chilled, as it allows the flavors to meld together optimally, especially when used as a dip or salad dressing. 

However, if it’s being used as a basting sauce for grilling, it should be applied warm to adhere better to the meat and enhance its flavor. 

Ensure the sauce reaches the same temperature as the food it’s served with for the best culinary experience. Always stir the sauce before serving to redistribute any settled spices.

Carolina Gold BBQ Sauce

Nutritional Values

The Carolina Gold BBQ Sauce is relatively low in calories, with about 25 calories per tablespoon. It has minimal fat and protein but is higher in sugar due to the honey and brown sugar, contributing to its sweet taste. It also contains a moderate amount of sodium.

What Are The Total Calories In Carolina Gold BBQ Sauce Recipe?

The total calorie content of a 1-cup serving of Carolina Gold BBQ sauce can vary, but a typical recipe may have around 950-950 calories, depending on the specific ingredients and their quantities. It’s important to note that this is just a rough estimate, and the actual calorie count may vary based on the exact recipe used.

Carolina Gold BBQ Sauce

Carolina Gold BBQ Sauce makes your food taste better with its special golden touch.

Dietary Restrictions Of The Carolina Gold BBQ Sauce Recipe

  • Gluten-Free: Ensure Worcestershire sauce is labeled gluten-free, as some brands contain malt vinegar from barley.
  • Vegan: Substitute honey with maple syrup or agave nectar to avoid animal products.
  • Low-Carb: Reduce or substitute brown sugar with a low-carb sweetener like stevia or erythritol.
  • Sugar-Free: Replace honey and brown sugar with sugar-free alternatives like monk fruit sweetener or allulose.
  • Allergens: Check mustard and Worcestershire sauce for possible allergenic ingredients like soy or fish.
  • Paleo: Use raw honey and ensure mustard and vinegar are paleo-friendly, avoiding additives.
  • Keto: Swap honey and sugar for keto-approved sweeteners and use a keto-friendly mustard.

Nutrition Table

Nutrition Table

What Are The Common Mistakes While Making This Sauce?

  • Overcooking: Heating the sauce for too long can alter its taste and cause it to become too thick or even burn.
  • Insufficient Whisking: Failing to whisk the ingredients thoroughly can result in a lumpy sauce with uneven flavor.
  • Incorrect Mustard Choice: Using a different kind of mustard can significantly change the intended flavor profile.
  • Too Much Sweetener: Overdoing it with honey or sugar can overpower the tangy mustard flavor.
  • Not Adjusting Spices: Not tasting and adjusting spices according to personal preference can leave the sauce bland or overly spicy.
  • Skipping the Simmer: Not allowing the sauce to simmer appropriately can prevent the flavors from melding together.
  • Rushing the Cooling Process: Using the sauce too hot or not allowing it to cool can affect the flavor and texture when served.

What Are Some Creative Uses Of Leftover Sauce?

  • BBQ Vinaigrette: Whisk with olive oil to dress a robust green salad.
  • Spicy Mayo: Blend with mayonnaise for a kicky sandwich spread.
  • BBQ Hummus: Stir into hummus for a BBQ twist on a classic dip.
  • Tangy Stir-Fry: Use as a base in stir-fries for a quick, flavorful meal.
  • BBQ Soup Starter: Swirl into soups or stews for a tangy depth of flavor.
  • Marinade for Meats: Marinate chicken or pork for a mustard-infused zest.
  • BBQ Potato Chips: Brush on sliced potatoes before baking for homemade BBQ chips.
  • BBQ Popcorn: Drizzle over popcorn with melted butter for a movie night treat.
  • Glaze for Grilled Fruits: Brush on peaches or pineapple before grilling for a sweet and savory dessert.
  • BBQ Baked Beans: Mix into baked beans for an extra flavor boost.
Carolina Gold BBQ Sauce

Special Tools & Equipment Needed

  • Whisk: Essential for combining ingredients smoothly and preventing lumps.
  • Saucepan: A small to medium saucepan for cooking the sauce.
  • Measuring Cups and Spoons: For precise ingredient measurements.
  • Glass Jar or Airtight Container: For storing the sauce in the refrigerator.
  • Silicone Spatula: To scrape the sides of the pan and ensure even cooking.
  • Stove: Required to heat and simmer the sauce.
  • Cooking Thermometer: Optional, to monitor the sauce’s temperature if preferred.
  • Funnel: Useful for transferring the sauce into storage containers without spills.
  • Labels and Marker: To date, the sauce for storage.
  • Fine Mesh Strainer: If straining the sauce for a smoother consistency is desired.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I Make Carolina Gold BBQ Sauce Without Honey?

Yes, you can substitute honey with other sweeteners like maple syrup or molasses. These alternatives will slightly change the flavor profile but still provide the necessary sweetness.

Is This Sauce Gluten-Free?

Mostly, yes. However, some brands of Worcestershire sauce may contain gluten, so it’s best to check the label or opt for a gluten-free brand to ensure the sauce is entirely gluten-free.

How Long Can I Store Homemade Carolina Gold BBQ Sauce?

When stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator, the sauce can last up to 2 weeks. Its acidic and sugary components act as preservatives.

Can I Freeze Carolina Gold BBQ Sauce?

Freezing is possible but not recommended, as it can alter the texture and flavor. Instead, make it in smaller batches to ensure freshness.

What Can I Use If I Don’t Have Apple Cider Vinegar?

White vinegar is a good substitute, though it will taste sharper. For a milder acidity, you can use white wine vinegar or even lemon juice as an alternative.

Mustard Based Carolina Gold Bbq Sauce (Tangy Flavor)

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Carolina Gold BBQ Sauce is a unique, mustard-based sauce with a rich history in Southern cuisine. Its golden color and tangy flavor profile come from a harmonious blend of yellow mustard, sweet honey, and apple cider vinegar, with a subtle heat that can be adjusted to taste. This sauce is a standout choice for those looking to add a zesty twist to their barbecue dishes.


  • 1 cup 1 Yellow Mustard

  • 2 tablespoons 2 Honey

  • ¼ cup ¼ Brown Sugar

  • ¼ cup ¼ Apple Cider Vinegar

  • ½ teaspoon ½ Fresh Cracked Pepper

  • 1 tablespoon 1 Worcestershire Sauce

  • ¼ teaspoon ¼ Garlic Powder

  • ¼ teaspoon ¼ Onion Powder

  • Salt (Pinch)

  • ¼ teaspoon ¼ Cayenne Pepper (optional)

Step-By-Step Directions

  • Place a small pot on the stove over medium-high heat.
  • Add 1 cup of yellow mustard to the pot.
  • Measure and add 2 tablespoons of honey.
  • Add ¼ cup of brown sugar to the mixture.
  • Pour in ¼ cup of apple cider vinegar.
  • Measure ½ teaspoon of fresh cracked pepper and add it in.
  • Add 1 tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce.
  • Measure and add ¼ teaspoon each of garlic powder and onion powder.
  • Add a pinch of salt to the pot.
  • If desired, add ¼ teaspoon of cayenne pepper for heat.
  • Use a whisk to mix all the ingredients until well combined.
  • Watch for the mixture to reach a boil, then immediately reduce the heat to a low simmer.
  • Let the sauce simmer for 5 minutes. Stir occasionally to prevent sticking or burning.
  • After 5 minutes, remove the pot from the heat.
  • Allow the sauce to cool down to room temperature.
  • Once cooled, serve the sauce immediately or pour it into an airtight container.
  • If storing, place the container in the refrigerator. Use as needed.

Recipe Video


  • For best results, use fresh ingredients.
  • The sauce’s flavor develops further when allowed to rest overnight.
  • It’s versatile enough for grilling, dipping, or dressing.
  • Easily adaptable, you can tweak the sweetness or spice level.
  • Remember, the sauce thickens as it cools, so adjust accordingly.
  • Store in an airtight container to maintain freshness.

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Welcome, fellow flavor enthusiasts to the world of Sauce Chick, where every flavor tells a tale of creativity, passion, and the harmonious fusion of spices and sauces.

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