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Maple Chipotle Barbecue Sauce

Maple Chipotle Barbecue Sauce. A sweet, smoky spicy and very easy to make homemade barbecue sauce that can be as mild or spicy as you like. Terrific on chicken or ribs but delicious on grilled steak too!

Maple Chipotle Barbecue Sauce shown on a whole barbecued chicken

Maple Chipotle Barbecue Sauce on whole roasted chicken.

My back yard is covered in snow this morning after a winter storm yesterday, smack dab in the middle of our Canadian winter. Memories of summer barbecues are months old and anticipation for more still months away.

Some oven roasted chicken glazed with this very simple but incredibly flavourful maple syrup based barbecue sauce was particularly appreciated earlier this week.

I roasted this whole chicken on a rack, uncovered for about 1 3/4 hours at 350 degrees by simply seasoning it with salt and pepper inside and out.

Raw whole chicken on wooden cutting board

Frozen chicken can be used in a pinch but I find fresh chicken is much juicer when roasted.

Into the cavity I stuffed some chopped onion, garlic and a few sprigs of thyme. In the last 45 of cooking time I just brushed the whole chicken with the barbecue sauce every 10 to 15 minutes.

This sauce is very easy to make and I’m also working on two other recipes that will use it so make a big batch in anticipation of Maple Chipotle Pulled Pork and Maple Chipotle Baked Beans.

Maple Chipotle Pulled Pork

Maple Chipotle Pulled Pork

SUMMER UPDATE: This BBQ Sauce is still a family favourite, months later when we can now enjoy its smoky flavour on chicken and ribs from the backyard grill. We recently barbecued another whole chicken over indirect heat on a covered charcoal barbecue and it was some of the best we’ve ever tried.

Just build your charcoal fire on one side and cook the chicken on the opposite side until the internal temperature reaches 175 degrees F on a meat thermometer. I brushed the whole chicken with the BBQ sauce about 4 times in the last 45 minutes of cooking time. Turning on only 1 burner on a gas grill would also work. Just place the chicken on the opposite side of the grill and close the cover.

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Maple Chipotle Barbecue Sauce
Prep Time
15 mins
Cook Time
45 mins
Total Time
1 hr
Maple Chipotle Barbecue Sauce - a sweet, smoky spicy and very easy to make homemade barbecue sauce that can be as mild or spicy as you like. Terrific on chicken or ribs but delicious on grilled steak too!
Course: Barbecue and Grilling
Cuisine: North American
Servings: 2 1/2 cups BBQ Sauce
Author: Barry C. Parsons
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 3 cloves chopped garlic
  • 1 medium red onion chopped
  • 2 cups plain tomato sauce
  • ½ cup maple syrup
  • ¼ cup apple cider vinegar
  • ½ to 2 tsp ground chipotle powder according to taste, 2 tsp would be quite hot
  • ½ tsp black pepper
  • ½ tsp ground dry thyme
  • 1 tsp salt
  1. In a small saucepan, cook the onions and garlic in the olive oil slowly over medium low heat until well softened and beginning to caramelize.
  2. Add all of the other ingredients to the pot and bring to a slow simmer.
  3. Simmer slowly for about 20-30 minutes or until reduced by about ¼ the initial volume, stirring often. When cool, puree in a blender or food processor until smooth. Makes about 2½ cups.
Recipe Rating

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Sandra D

Friday 21st of June 2019

I have some canned chipotle peppers I'd like to use up - how much would you suggest I use instead of the powder?


Sunday 8th of July 2018

Hi! By tomato sauce do you mean sauce in a can (I.e. pasta sauce) or ketchup? Thanks!

Barry C. Parsons

Monday 9th of July 2018

Gosh no, not ketchup! Plain canned tomato sauce.

Debs @ The Spanish Wok

Sunday 22nd of January 2012

Yum, sounds delicious and I have all these ingredients, thanks.


Saturday 21st of January 2012

That's similar to my recipe, but I like to simmer whole pieces of apple and include a shot of bourbon for good measure. :) It's excellent with puled pork.

I love your idea of maple chipotle baked beans. I'll have to make those.

Happy Saturday!

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