Good Morning America Recipes

Mike Mills' Apple City Barbecue Sauce

Better Than From the Bottle

GMA Recipes
Servings:Over 8
Difficulty: Easy
Cook Time: min

A few of Mike's tips and secrets…

Oil the meat, not the grill

Sprinkling with garlic salt adds extra flavor and helps the skin crisp up

Magic Dust or your favorite rub is a dry marinade that adds great flavor.

Use bone-in chicken to help cook the inside faster and better. Cook the meat bone-side down.

There's a difference in barbecue and grilling. When you're barbecuing, don't cook over direct heat—the inside will be raw and the outside will be burned.

Don't turn the meat and don't poke the meat with a fork.

Use a little apple wood {or your favorite wood} along with charcoal for extra flavor.

Don't sauce the meat until right before you take it off the grill. The sugar in the sauce will burn.


  • 1 cup ketchup (I use Hunt's)
  • 2/3 cup seasoned rice vinegar
  • ½ cup apple juice or cider
  • ¼ cup apple cider vinegar
  • ½ cup packed brown sugar
  • ¼ cup soy sauce or Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 teaspoons prepared yellow mustard
  • ¾ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ¼ teaspoon ground white pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne
  • 1/3 cup bacon bits, ground in a spice grinder
  • 1/3 cup peeled and grated apple
  • 1/3 cup grated onion
  • 2 teaspoons grated green bell pepper
  • Cooking Directions

    Combine the ketchup, rice vinegar, apple juice or cider, cider vinegar, brown sugar, soy sauce or Worcestershire sauce, mustard, garlic powder, white pepper, cayenne, and bacon bits in a large saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Stir in the apple, onion, and bell pepper. Reduce the heat and simmer, uncovered, 10 to 15 minutes or until it thickens slightly. Stir it often. Allow to cool, then pour into sterilized glass bottles. A glass jar that used to contain mayonnaise or juice works real well. Refrigerate for up to 2 weeks.

    Makes 3 cups

    Variation: To make this sauce a little hotter, add more cayenne pepper to taste, approximately another ¼ to ½ teaspoon. Be careful; a little cayenne goes a long way.

    © Mike Mills, Amy Mills and 17th Street Bar & Grill. Adapted from Peace, Love, and Barbecue.

    This recipe was styled by chef Karen Pickus for Good Morning America.

    Recipe Summary

    Main Ingredients: ketchup, vinegar, apple juice, garlic, mustard

    Course: Sauces and marinades

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