Columbia Gold, A South Carolina Mustard BBQ Sauce Recipe

Mustard BBQ sauce in a jar

In a swath of Mid-South Carolina, from around Columbia to the coast around Charleston, BBQ sauce is yellow, not red, a byproduct of the region’s German heritage. In Germany, pork and mustard go together like peanut butter and jelly.

It is a bit of a jolt to an outsider wandering into BBQ joints in the area and being served a pulled pork sammie mixed with a yellow sauce. Until you bite down. The flavor profile is similar to conventional red BBQ sauce, sweet tart, but the base flavor is mustard, not ketchup, and the sweetness is cane sugar, not molasses. But it works! In fact I prefer it to red sauce on pulled pork.

carolina sauces

Here’s a quick and easy classic South Carolina mustard sauce. Tangy and one of my favorites, you really need to give it a try. Try it on hot dogs or brats or anywhere that you might use bottled mustard. If you like it, try my Grownup Mustard Sauce. It’s not traditional, but mighty good.

Carolina Gold Mustard Barbecue Sauce Recipe


Mustard BBQ sauce in a jar
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4.66 from 311 votes
Here's a quick and easy recipe for classic South Carolina mustard sauce. For those who are only familiar with traditional red BBQ sauces, yellow mustard sauce can be jarring at first -- at least until that first flavorful bite.

Serve with: Your favorite BBQ and a South Carolina beer.


Course: Sauces and Condiments
Cuisine: American, Southern
Difficulty: Moderate

Makes:

Servings: 3 cups

Takes:

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Ingredients

  • 2 cups prepared yellow mustard
  • 2/3 cup cider vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1/2 teaspoon chipotle Tabasco sauce or you favorite hot sauce
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon mustard powder
  • 2 teaspoons chicken bouillon granules or 1 cube or 1 teaspoon chicken soup base
  • 2 teaspoons dried rosemary leaves
  • 1 teaspoon celery seed
  • 2 teaspoons onion powder
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 2 teaspoons Morton coarse kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground finely ground black pepper
About the mustard. To be authentic, use yellow ballpark style mustard, not Dijon. Besides, it just doesn't taste right with Dijon.
About the tomato paste. You can substitute ketchup if you wish.About the chicken bouillon. What we are looking for here is a chicken concentrate so chicken stock won't do. But there are cubes of bouillon, jars of bouillon granules, jars of bouillon paste, and jars of chicken soup stock, all of which will do the job.

Method

  • Prep. Mix the wet ingredients together in a bowl.
  • If you are using a bouillon cube, crush it with a spoon in a bowl or mortar & pestle and add it to the bowl. Crush the rosemary leaves and celery seed in a mortar & pestle or in a blender or coffee grinder and add it to the bowl. Add the rest of the dry ingredients to the bowl and mix thoroughly.
  • Cook. Simmer for 10 minutes to pasteurize it.
  • Serve. Pour into a clean jar and use as you would any BBQ sauce. Store remaining sauce in the fridge. Leftovers will keep in the fridge for months.

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Published On: 4/18/2012 Last Modified: 4/16/2021

  • Meathead - Founder and publisher of AmazingRibs.com, Meathead is known as the site's Hedonism Evangelist and BBQ Whisperer. He is also the author of the New York Times Best Seller "Meathead, The Science of Great Barbecue and Grilling", named one of the "100 Best Cookbooks of All Time" by Southern Living.


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