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Homemade Dark Cherry BBQ Sauce

This homemade BBQ sauce only requires 5 minutes of prep time and the Instant Pot takes care of the rest! Skip store-bought sauces that are laden with unnecessary ingredients and make your own version instead! Pair it with our Instant Pot ribs recipe for a flavor explosion!


homemade BBQ sauce recipe

If you haven’t already fallen in love with Instant Pot ribs then you need to give them a try! Paired with this homemade BBQ sauce recipe, you’ll have a perfect match and your family will be begging for seconds. Ribs are my favorite, right up there with these Instant Pot BBQ pork chops!


Homemade BBQ Sauce

There are a lot of reasons to make your own homemade BBQ sauce. Not only does it taste amazing, but it only contains the necessary ingredients and no unnecessary preservatives or chemicals.

I hate reading a label of BBQ sauce and seeing the first ingredient is high fructose corn syrup. Yuck! I definitely don’t need corn syrup in my BBQ sauce (or anywhere else).

Once you see how easy it is to make your own BBQ sauce you’ll be making it from scratch every time!



bbq sauce recipe homemade


This BBQ sauce recipe is a dark cherry BBQ sauce. It uses the speed of the Instant Pot to quickly produce a robust sauce that is perfect for drizzling over chicken, pork or any number of grilled eats.

Combine the flavors of onions and garlic with dark cherries and ground cinnamon to build layers of flavor that are deep and satisfying.

The sauce begins on the saute setting of the Instant Pot and finishes with a 10 minute pressure cook. After a quick release the BBQ sauce

homemade BBQ sauce recipe

Homemade Dark Cherry BBQ Sauce

Sarah | Must Have Mom
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Cuisine American, BBQ


  • 2 tbsp olive oil extra virgin
  • 1 medium shallot finely chopped
  • 3-4 cloves garlic finely minced
  • 2 1/2 cups fresh or frozen dark cherries pitted
  • 1 10 oz can diced tomatoes with green chilies with liquid
  • 3 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tsp fresh ginger finely minced
  • 1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
  • 3 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 tbsp fresh rosemary finely chopped
  • 2 tsp liquid smoke (optional)
  • sea salt and black pepper to taste


  • Add olive oil to Instant Pot and select the “Sauté” function on the high temperature setting. Add shallot and garlic and sauté until soft and slightly golden, approximately 3-4 minutes. 
  • Turn Instant Pot off and add remaining ingredients, including the liquid from the tomatoes and the liquid smoke, if using. Stir to combine and season with salt and black pepper, to taste. 
  • Add lid and lock into place. Make sure the valve is set to the “Sealing” position and set the “Manual” setting to high for 10 minutes. After a brief pause, the Instant Pot will automatically start building pressure. 
  • When finished cooking, do a quick release (QR) of the pressure according to the manufacturer’s suggestions before unlocking and removing the lid.
  • Transfer the sauce to a blender or food processor and puree until smooth. Use immediately or store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 7 to 10 days.  


Note: For a thicker sauce, return to the Instant Pot and bring to a low boil using the “Sauté” function set to high. Heat, stirring frequently, until the excess liquid is reduced and the sauce reaches the desired consistency.

Pin Dark Cherry BBQ Sauce Recipe

bbq sauce recipe

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