Cherry Bourbon Sauce

This sweet and spicy sauce is a perfect complement to any pork or chicken recipe.20140823-IMG_2915-Edit-1-2

When we made smoked stuffed pork chops, we knew it needed a complementary sauce.  Since it was stuffed with cherries, I have been looking for a sweet sauce, and I knew I wanted to add bourbon to the flavor profile, thanks to The Flavor Bible, by Karen Page.  I didn’t have to go far after this recipe popped up, leading me to a fun foodie blog, A Bachelor And His Grill.  Tonight, we gave it a try, with a few modifications.  I substituted dried tart cherries, which are available year round, and added Hatch green chile for its smokey heat that we love.    

Ingredients for spicy, sweet cherry bourbon sauce

Ingredients for spicy, sweet cherry bourbon sauce


  • 3 tablespoons oil
  • 2-3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 medium sweet onion, diced
  • 4 ounces Bourbon whiskey
  • 3 tablespoons water
  • 2 cups tart dried cherries, chopped
  • 1½ cups ketchup
  • ⅔ cup brown sugar
  • ¼ cup apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons ground mustard
  • 1 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • ½ teaspoon fresh grated ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried, ground chipotle
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cup chopped and roasted Hatch green chile (the more the merrier!)
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste


In a large bowl, let dried cherries sit in the bourbon and water for as long as possible to soften, at least 30 minutes.  Stir occasionally to make sure all of the cherries get to soak up the happy flavor of bourbon.  

Fire up a chimney of charcoal.  Mix together ketchup, brown sugar, apple vinegar, water, ground mustard, Worcestershire sauce, grated ginger, chipotle, green chile.  Add happy bourbon cherries.20140823-IMG_2906-Edit-1

When the charcoals are hot, place 12″ Dutch oven or skillet over the top of the chimney and sauté onions in oil until they are clear.  Add garlic and stir for a minute or two until you can smell the swee aroma of garlic mixed in with the onions.  Stir in cherry mixture and simmer, stirring frequently, for about 20 minutes.  20140823-IMG_2911-Edit-1When the sauce is thickend, remove from heat to cool.  Using a knife or food processor, make a smooth sauce OR leave it chunky, and serve over your favorite chicken or pork.

I love the layers of flavor in this sauce!  Spicy, sweet, smokey… delicious! 



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2 Responses to Cherry Bourbon Sauce

  1. Pingback: Pork Ribs and Homemade Rub | Texas Iron Chef

  2. Pingback: Bacon Wrapped Stuffed Pork Loin | Texas Iron Chef

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