BBQ meat, especially BBQ chicken, is incredibly popular in T&T. The meat is often seasoned with fresh Caribbean flavors, which are also added to the BBQ sauce.
For this sauce recipe, store-bought BBQ sauce is mixed with fresh herbs and spices to make it more Trini and tasty. Everyone has their own unique blend and this one is mine.
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Ingredients for Trini BBQ sauce
For this recipe, I used:
- BBQ sauce: I had Kraft slow simmered original BBQ sauce so that’s what I used here. My favorite and the one I use the most is the Kraft slow simmered sweet honey BBQ which is a lot sweeter. But, you can use your favorite BBQ sauce to start with and adjust the flavors as you go.
- ketchup: Caribbean ketchup brands are a lot sweeter than most US versions. So the ketchup adds sweetness to the BBQ sauce and makes it thinner and runnier.
- beer: I usually use Blue Moon Belgian white wheat ale as it adds a great depth of flavor. Feel free to use any beer you like and, for non-alcoholic versions, you can use water instead.
- Caribbean green seasoning: this seasoning is widely used in Caribbean cuisine and is made with fresh chadon beni (culantro), garlic, pepper and other herbs like thyme, cilantro, and more. You can pick some up on Amazon or make your own homemade green seasoning.
- chadon beni leaves: fresh chadon beni leaves add a nice, sharp, herbaceous taste to the sauce.
- garlic: this also adds to the sharpness of the sauce and balances the sweeter flavors.
- ginger: I love ginger in my BBQ sauce. It adds a great, homemade flavor to the BBQ.
- pepper: what’s Caribbean BBQ without pepper? I usually use chopped pimento pepper but you can use chillis, scotch bonnet, and any of your favorite fresh peppers. Ground black pepper, cayenne and paprika can also be added.
- sugar: this helps to sweeten and balance the sauce out so it is a perfect blend of sweet, spicy and tart. I like to add honey as well.
- optional ingredients: you can add other herbs and spices like thyme, rosemary, bay leaves, cinnamon, clove, cumin powder and more. You can also add tropical fruits like pineapple for a unique flavor.
How to make Trini BBQ sauce
Prep the ingredients
Step 1: Wash, peel and grate the ginger and garlic. Wash and chop the chadon beni leaves and pimento pepper.
Make the sauce
Step 2: Add a large pot to the stove on low heat.
Step 3: To the pot, add the water, salt, sugar, Caribbean green seasoning, and the prepped garlic, ginger, chadon beni and pepper. Give everything a good stir.
Step 4: Mix in the BBQ sauce and ketchup.
Step 5: Allow to simmer on low heat for 15 to 20 minutes.
Step 6: Add the beer and mix thoroughly or add water if you aren’t using beer.
Step 7: Leave for about 15 minutes for the alcohol to boil off.
Step 8: Taste test and adjust your flavors. Sometimes, I may add extra ginger or herbs at this point.
Step 9: Turn off the heat.
Step 10: Use immediately for grilling. My BBQ chicken and lamb always taste great with this sauce. If you aren’t planning to use the sauce immediately then leave it to cool down and store in the fridge for later. It can stay one to two weeks in the fridge.
BBQ sauce recipe
Trini BBQ sauce recipe
- 1200 grams BBQ sauce (Kraft slow simmered original BBQ sauce) (approx. 4⅓ cups)
- 150 grams ketchup (approx. ⅔ cup)
- 100 mL beer (like Blue Moon Belgian white wheat ale)
- 40 grams Caribbean green seasoning
- 35 grams ginger (grated)
- 10 grams chadon beni leaves (chopped)
- 5 cloves garlic (grated)
- 1 pimento pepper (chopped)
- 2 tbsps brown sugar
- ½ tsp salt
- ¾ cup water
- Grate the ginger and garlic. Chop the chadon beni leaves and pimento pepper.
- Place a large pot on low heat.
- Add water, salt, brown sugar, chopped pepper, grated garlic, chopped chadon beni leaves, grated ginger and Caribbean green seasoning.
- Mix in BBQ sauce and ketchup.
- Leave on low heat for 15 to 20 minutes.
- Pour in the beer.
- Leave to simmer for 15 minutes.
- Taste test and adjust flavors.
- Turn off the heat.
- Use immediately for grilling. Or allow to cool and refrigerate for later (can last for weeks in the fridge).