Steven Raichlen Best of Barbecue Lemon Brown Sugar Barbecue Sauce (2/5)

Steven Raichlen Best of Barbecue Lemon Brown Sugar Barbecue SauceNever buy barbecue sauce at Border’s book stores. For one, they are a friggin book store – they shouldn’t be selling barbecue sauce. And number two, it’s expensive. I picked up this large brown cylinder-jar of sauce in the hip neighborhood of Chestnut Hill, Philadelphia, PA – setting me back $8.99 for 18 ounces. Worth it? Hell no.

Smell: Hints of lemon mixed with molasses, vinegar, and spices and high fructose corn syrup (OK I didn’t smell the HFCS).

Taste: Extremely sweet. Nothing unique or bold, however. Limited lemon zing… too-safe, mild lemon aftertaste. Was expecting stronger lemon flavor. But then again, I guess I don’t really want lemon in my sauce anyway.

Consistency: Thin and drippy.

Packaging: Nice jar for smooth flow and pour into larger basting container. However, it left me with a bad taste in my mouth, like I was buying from the CEO of BBQ as this guy has a finely crafted PR image and team of support. I kinda like buying from the little guys.

Good execution, yet too big in terms of presence and ingredients. No doubt Steven has a team of people working on his behalf to add to his BBQ University and BBQ book revenue stream, but he may have had this project on auto-pilot.

Ingredients: Tomato concentrate, distilled vinegar, high fructose corn syrup, corn syrup, brown sugar, lemon juice, molasses, garlic, salt, spices, chili pepper extract, salt, hydrolyzed soy and corn protein, liquid smoke, anchovies, water, onions, wheat, soybeans, mustard flour, onion powder, tamarind extract, cloves, natural flavor, black pepper.

Nutrition Info: 50 calories per 32g serving, no fat, 13g carbs, 290mg sodium

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Site Editor, BBQ Sauce Lover, Family Guy, Hi Tech Marketer by Day. He recently wrote the Ebook “How to Market Your BBQ Sauce” which can be purchased on this site.



  1. Dude, Steven Raichlen is the god of BBQ. I’m not sure that you are worthy of cooking with his sauce.

  2. Hmm, yet I would argue a finely crafted PR image and marketing message does not enthrone Mr Raichlen a BBQ god (although the dude is very smart). On this site, I am looking for diamonds in the rough, although a fine flavor from a big brand will not go unnoticed! Personally I felt the lemon BBQ connection in this sauce didn’t work very well.

  3. Herman Johnson says

    I think that Steven should check on what high fructose corn syrup is before recommending it for a bbq sauce.

  4. Great post! I’ll probably blog something similar later.

  5. I’ve never had this sauce out of the bottle, but have used the recipe out of his book and added a splash of apple cider vinegar, and a handfull of cayenne. everyone always ask me for the recipe….

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