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  7. 7 Healthiest BBQ Sauces in 2022 (Nutritionist-Reviewed)
  • 7 Healthiest BBQ Sauces in 2022 (Nutritionist-Reviewed) 1
  • 7 Healthiest BBQ Sauces in 2022 (Nutritionist-Reviewed) 2
  • 7 Healthiest BBQ Sauces in 2022 (Nutritionist-Reviewed) 3
  • 7 Healthiest BBQ Sauces in 2022 (Nutritionist-Reviewed) 4
  • 7 Healthiest BBQ Sauces in 2022 (Nutritionist-Reviewed) 5

7 Healthiest BBQ Sauces in 2022 (Nutritionist-Reviewed)

Barbecue sauce has a history that stretches as far back as the 1800s and is a common ingredient in many American foods today. From Sweet Chuck’s All Natural Barbecue Sauce to Annie’s Original BBQ Sauce, choosing the right sauce that’s healthy and that also complements your food can be a tough choice.

In this article, and with insight from a certified nutritionist, we’ll show you how to choose the right healthy barbecue sauce, tell you which ingredients to avoid, and recommend some delicious, healthy barbecue sauces. Whether you’re looking for something sweet and subtle or something bold and spicy, there’s a healthy barbecue sauce out there for you. Read on to see our healthy choices below.
Last updated 2023/01/11
Expert
Nutritionist
Kara Swanson

Kara Swanson is a certified nutritionist and the founder of Life Well Lived. She is married to her best friend and the proud mother of three. Her passion is to make nutrition simple+easy+delicious!

Kara Swanson's Profile
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Products or services listed have been independently ranked by the mybest Editorial Team based on 7 Healthiest BBQ Sauces as of 11-04-2022. Experts featured in this article did not participate in the selection and ranking process.

How to Choose a Healthy BBQ Sauce - Buying Guide

It can be difficult to decipher what sauces are healthy and which are not. A healthy barbecue sauce is going to have low sugar and low sodium, ingredients you will recognize, and still provide substantial flavor. Let’s break down what exactly you should be looking for in a healthy barbecue sauce.

① Check Labels; Go for Low Sugar and Low Sodium

Check Labels; Go for Low Sugar and Low Sodium

A barbecue sauce with a lot of sugar and salt is a telltale sign that it isn’t healthy. If it’s sugar intake you’re worried about, look for sauces with less than 5 grams of sugar per serving. Eating too much sugar on a regular basis can lead to health complications, including heart disease and diabetes. Remember, the ideal daily sugar intake is between 25 and 38 grams!


Sodium is another nutrient that you should watch when shopping around for the right barbecue sauce. Some sauces have 300 to 400 milligrams of sodium per serving. However, an ideal diet allows between 1,500 and 2,000 grams a day; if you’re worried about your blood pressure, try to go for a sauce with no more than 250 mg per 2 tbsp serving.


While there are plenty of barbecue sauces that have high amounts of sugar and sodium, there are some that provide good nutritional value to your diet. Some barbecue sauces have Vitamin A and calcium, both vital to your overall health.

Kara Swanson
Nutritionist
Kara Swanson's Comment

It's important to always read labels before buying food, especially when it comes to sauces. Sugar, sodium, and chemicals can easily be added to BBQ sauces without you even realizing it. 


Make it a habit to read labels and be aware of what your food is actually made of. With healthier versions of BBQ sauces that are low in sugar and sodium, you can easily swap out your unhealthy BBQ sauce for a healthy one.

② Look for Ingredients You Recognize

Look for Ingredients You Recognize
If your barbecue sauce starts listing ingredients that you can’t even pronounce, chances are it’s not as healthy as it could be. When barbecue sauce was first created, there weren’t ingredients like high-fructose corn syrup and xylitol sweetener, so it’s definitely possible to create a delicious barbecue sauce without artificial ingredients.


Look for ingredients like tomato sauce, ketchup, onion powder, apple cider vinegar, black pepper, ground mustard, and lemon juice–all-natural ingredients that you can find in your kitchen.


While there are ingredients you should look for in a healthy barbecue sauce, there are also ingredients you should avoid. If you check the ingredients in many barbecue sauces, you’ll notice high-fructose corn syrup near the top of most lists. 


High-fructose corn syrup means a lot of added sugars; the higher it is on the ingredient list, the more of it there is. Molasses, while a natural ingredient, is also full of unhealthy sugars and is a popular ingredient in barbecue sauces.

Kara Swanson
Nutritionist
Kara Swanson's Comment

The fewer the ingredients the better. And preferably ingredients you actually know and can pronounce! Make sure to look them up online and take charge of what ingredients are being put in your body, so that the next time you come across the ingredient you know whether to stay away from it or whether it's okay to consume.

③ Make Sure the Flavor Complements Your Food

Make Sure the Flavor Complements Your Food
When you’re trying to purchase the perfect healthy barbecue sauce, think about the kinds of foods you eat on a regular basis. If you eat a lot of meat, a smoky, spicier barbecue sauce might work best. If you’re more interested in vegetables, a sweeter, even fruity sauce would work perfectly with your meal.


Be careful to avoid unnatural sweeteners like corn syrup. If you want a sweet barbecue sauce, check to make sure all-natural sugar is used instead. 


The kind of sugar that’s used can also impact the flavor, with artificial sweeteners often being very intense if there is too much in a sauce. A natural sugar will give it a nice flavor balance while also being a healthier option.

Kara Swanson
Nutritionist
Kara Swanson's Comment

BBQ sauce is a great way to spice up a boring dish so don't be afraid to explore and try new flavors. It's always a great way to flavor vegetables so they are even more enjoyable for your family.

7 Healthiest BBQ Sauces

Here are our picks for the 7 healthiest barbecue sauces. We made our choices based on the points listed in the buying guide below, as well as reviewer comments when available.
Products
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Points
1

Stubb's

Original Legendary Bar-B-Q Sauce

Stubb's Original Legendary Bar-B-Q Sauce 1枚目

A Smokey, Low-Cost, Low-Sugar Sauce

2

Bone Doctors'

Carolina Bold Barbeque Sauce

Bone Doctors' Carolina Bold Barbeque Sauce 1枚目

A Barbecue Sauce With the Zest of Apple Cider Vinegar

3

Bone Suckin' Sauce

Thicker Style Sauce

Bone Suckin' Sauce Thicker Style Sauce 1枚目

A Thick, Low-Sugar Barbecue Sauce

4

Jack Daniel's

Old No.7 Brand Sweet & Spicy BBQ Sauce

Jack Daniel's Old No.7 Brand Sweet & Spicy BBQ Sauce 1枚目

A Spicy Barbecue Sauce With Vitamins and Minerals

5

Simple Girl

Organic Carolina Kick BBQ Sauce

Simple Girl Organic Carolina Kick BBQ Sauce 1枚目

Low-Calorie and Sugar-Free Sauce

6

Dinosaur Bar-B-Que

Sensuous Slathering Sauce (2 pack)

Dinosaur Bar-B-Que Sensuous Slathering Sauce (2 pack) 1枚目

Mighty Barbecue Flavor and a Scattering of Micro-Nutrients

7

Guy's Award Winning BBQ Sauce

Original Sugar-Free Sauce

Guy's Award Winning BBQ Sauce Original Sugar-Free Sauce 1枚目

Sugar-Free for an Extra-Healthy Sauce

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No.1

A Smokey, Low-Cost, Low-Sugar Sauce

If you’re looking for a healthy barbecue sauce that won’t break the bank, Stubb’s is just what you need. With only 4 grams of added sugar per serving, this smokey barbecue sauce is perfect for both meats and vegetables. The sugar that is in the sauce is natural cane sugar, which is much healthier than artificial sugars.

On top of the rich flavor, you’re getting 4% vitamin A, 4% vitamin C, and 2% calcium, making this already healthy sauce even healthier! It’s tough to find a healthy sauce that’s delicious, natural, and inexpensive, but that’s just what you get with Stubb’s Original. This legendary barbecue sauce is a great choice for going healthy on a budget.
No.2

Bone Doctors'Carolina Bold Barbeque Sauce

$5.99

A Barbecue Sauce With the Zest of Apple Cider Vinegar

Rounding out the top three in our list is Bone Doctors’ Carolina Bold Barbeque Sauce. This incredible sauce features zero high-fructose corn syrup, which is one of the top ingredients to avoid in a barbecue sauce. It also has just 1 gram of sugar per serving.

As the name implies, this sauce is bold and spicy. Using a zesty apple cider vinegar as its base, this sauce can really enhance a lot of barbecue dishes. It also has 4% of your daily Vitamin A requirements per serving and 2% of your iron. 
No.3

A Thick, Low-Sugar Barbecue Sauce

Too many barbeque sauces simply fall right off your food. The Bone Suckin’ Sauce Thicker Style recipe stays right on your food so you can experience its full, rich flavor. This low-sugar barbecue sauce only has 8 grams of sugar per serving, making it a great option if you’re wanting a sweeter sauce that’s not so packed with sugars.

This barbecue sauce also has an incredibly low amount of sodium at 100 milligrams per serving. As for the flavor, the thick sauce is on the sweet side, making it perfect for a slow-roasting barbecue in your backyard with friends and family.
No.4

Jack Daniel'sOld No.7 Brand Sweet & Spicy BBQ Sauce

$4.72

A Spicy Barbecue Sauce With Vitamins and Minerals

Jack Daniel's is great at making much more than just whiskey. This barbeque sauce features brown sugar as its main ingredient--which means it's not exactly low-sugar--but it doesn't contain a drop of high fructose corn syrup. Plus, this sauce is made in small batches, meaning you're only getting the authentic stuff!


You'll also get some of your daily calcium and potassium out of this formula. If Sweet & Spicy isn't your thing, there are also Original and Honey flavors to choose from!

No.5

Simple GirlOrganic Carolina Kick BBQ Sauce

$10.97

Low-Calorie and Sugar-Free Sauce

The Simple Girl brand is known for creating flavorful sauces that are low on calories and sugars. The Carolina Kick barbecue sauce is completely sugar-free, which makes it a very healthy choice! If you’re looking for some heat, this is the sauce for you; it’s got a nice kick that goes well with meat dishes such as chicken or steak.

There’s also some great nutritional value that’s added to this sauce, with a whopping 7% of your daily Vitamin A in just one serving. For a healthy barbecue sauce that’s packed with flavor, it’s also very affordable.
No.6

Dinosaur Bar-B-QueSensuous Slathering Sauce (2 pack)

$14.75

Mighty Barbecue Flavor and a Scattering of Micro-Nutrients

Clocking in at 5 grams of sugar per serving, this low-sugar barbecue sauce packs a lot of punch. It has a unique smoky flavor that’s also slightly sweet, making it a great option for both meats and vegetables.

This all-natural sauce includes delicious ingredients like crushed tomatoes, vinegar, sugar, mustard, onion, garlic, and green bell pepper. You’ll also get 3% of your Vitamin A, 3% of your Vitamin C, 1% of your calcium, and 1% of your iron intake per serving. Pair that with only 177 grams of sodium and you’ve got a versatile, healthy sauce that goes with a lot of different foods.
No.7

Guy's Award Winning BBQ SauceOriginal Sugar-Free Sauce

$9.49

Sugar-Free for an Extra-Healthy Sauce

The proof is all in the name; it’s tough to create a delicious barbecue sauce that’s completely sugar-free, but that’s exactly what Guy’s did with their Sugar-Free sauce. If you take a look at the ingredient list, you’ll see ingredients like water, tomato paste, vinegar, salt, and lemon juice all near the top of the list, which is a sign that this sauce is healthy.

Not only are you cutting out the sugar, but you’re also getting a small source of Vitamin C; each serving has 2% of your recommended daily value. This sauce is great for someone looking for a smoky flavor that works well with chicken or steak. While it’s definitely pricier than some of our other options, it’s a delicious and healthy sauce that everyone will enjoy.

More Tips from Kara Swanson

More Tips from Kara Swanson

Now that you've gotten the basic information about how to choose a barbeque sauce down, expert Kara Swanson has a few more tips to add into the mix about sauce formulas and making healthy swaps.

Kara Swanson
Nutritionist
Kara Swanson's Comment

Chemicals seem to be added into everything these days but don't be fooled - they do nothing good for our health. When you start choosing foods without chemicals - as they should be, they will naturally have a shorter shelf life. Just make sure you read the expiration date and plan meals accordingly so you can use up all of the BBQ sauce to avoid waste.


Also be aware that healthier BBQ sauces might taste a little bit different without all the added sugars, sodium, and chemicals. Be patient though, because your taste buds will adapt and change as you continue making healthier swaps. It takes some time for our bodies and taste buds to get used to less sugar and sodium, but the healthier swap is worth it for your health.

Looking For Some Other Healthy Condiments?

Who says you have to make a trade-off between health and flavor? Give us a few minutes of your time, and we’ll prove that you can have the pleasure without the guilt.
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