White Lightning: How They Do `Cue Sauce in Alabama

In BBQ - Grilling - Smoking, Book Reviews, Recipes, Reviews, Stories by Mark Masker1 Comment

gibson bbq book coverDespite my lifetime membership on the naughty list, Santa gave me a great barbecue book: Big Bob Gibson’s BBQ Book. That’s where I first met Alabama white barbecue sauce.* It’s based on mayonnaise instead of tomato sauce. Hence the whiteness.

White sauce replaces sweet with sour for grilling with a twist. Like conventional tomato concoctions, homemade white is as varied as the tastes of its makers. I wanted a version with garlic and chile powder, which is why mine is actually a pink sauce instead of a “true” white. After you mix it up, you’ll want to let it sit in the fridge for 20 minutes so all the flavors can meld together.

It goes great on chicken and pork. Apply it during the tail end of grilling; it will break down and separate like a celebrity marriage if it’s heated for too long.

Yield: 4 cups
2 cups mayonnaise
1 cup apple cider vinegar
2 tablespoon lemon juice
2 cloves minced garlic
1 teaspoon chile powder
3 tablespoons black pepper
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons prepared horseradish

Making this stuff is as no-brainer as it gets. Mix everything together, then put it in the fridge in an airtight container for 20 minutes. It will keep for a week.

*I may go crazy and add food coloring to freak out my friends. Just imagine blue sauce over meatballs. The jokes write themselves!

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Managing Editor | Mark is a freelance journalist based out of Los Angeles. He’s our Do-It-Yourself specialist, and happily agrees to try pretty much every twisted project we come up with.


  1. sanfay

    I’m printing this one. Sounds great. Don’t see to may recipes with horseradish. So much better than plain mayo.

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