Chef Erin Finegan's Cherry Cola Barbecue Sauce

Total Time
1hr 5mins
Prep 5 mins
Cook 1 hr

This is my rendition of a recipe found in Bon Appetit (July 2008). A sweet-savory sauce that's great with any grilled meats. (I use on my baby back ribs and they are always the first to go! Adjust the heat by adding hot pepper sauce to taste.

Ingredients Nutrition

  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 2 cups chopped yellow onions
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 12 cups ketchup
  • 1 14 cups cherry jam or 1 14 cups cherry preserves
  • 1 cup cola (regular, not diet)
  • 13 cup light brown sugar (packed)
  • 14 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons grenadine
  • 1 teaspoon sriracha sauce (Thai chile sauce)


  1. Heat oil in a heavy saucepan over medium heat.
  2. Add onions and sautee until they are golden brown (about 5-7 minutes).
  3. Add garlic and stir for 1 minute.
  4. Deglaze with the grenadine and quickly add ketchup, jam, cola, brown sugar, and vinegar then bring to a simmer, stirring occasionally.
  5. Reduce heat to medium-low, simmer uncovered until reduced to about 4 cups stirring often to prevent scorching (about 40-50 minutes).
  6. Stir in 1 teaspoon of siracha.
  7. Season to taste with sea salt and fresh ground black pepper and more hot sauce, if desired.
  8. Transfer to bowl and cool completely.
  9. May be refrigerated for up to 2 weeks.
Most Helpful

Very nice! I cut the recipe in half and plan to use it on some ribs this weekend. It was a little more sweet than I would have liked, so I just added a little extra balsamic vinegar at the end and it was perfect. UPDATE: We ate this with ribs last evening and it was OUTSTANDING. It was SO much better than our usual favorite (KC Masterpiece). . .even my hubby agreed. I served this atop my Low & Slow Oven Baked Ribs - Super Simple!.

JanuaryBride January 12, 2010