Pineapple BBQ Sauce Recipe

5 from 2 votes

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Bust out that grill and get ready for a treat. This pineapple bbq sauce recipe will tantalize every one of your taste buds with savory, salty, and spicy tones in a mix of sweet tropical tanginess. Your BBQ just got a whole lot more exciting!

pineapple BBQ sauce in a glass jar with a brush with sauce on it

Nothing says summertime like the intoxicating taste of tropical fruit! This recipe for pineapple bbq sauce is a fantastic way to infuse all your favorite meats with the flavor of the season. 

Whether you need a marinade for your chicken breasts or need a dip for your appetizer platter, this pineapple bbq sauce recipe is your ticket to success. 

a brush with pineapple barbecue sauce and butter on a piece of parchment

For more irresistible sauces, check out my Master BBQ Sauce Recipe (Sweet Heat), Homemade Buffalo Sauce, Apricot Chipotle Sauce, or this Chipotle Peach BBQ Sauce.

overhead of pineapple BBQ sauce ingredients

Ingredient Notes and Substitutions

  • Oil – Choose canola or another vegetable oil to harmonize and accentuate the sauce. 
  • Garlic Nothing delivers a sharp, peppery pop like freshly minced garlic. 
  • Onion – I use yellow onions for their mild bite and earthy sweetness. White or red onions will work in a pinch. 
  • Kosher Salt – A small bit of kosher salt enhances all the other flavors without too much saltiness. 
  • Ketchup – Adds salty-sweet and tangy umami flavor. Tomato paste or tomato sauce can both work as substitutes. 
  • Pineapple Chunks – I go with canned pineapple chunks for this recipe and use the juice included in the can. You can opt for fresh or frozen and thawed pineapple if desired. 
  • Pineapple Juice – The juice from the canned pineapple is usually adequate for this. If more is needed, pineapple juice is readily available in the supermarket. 
  • Molasses – Adds a deep, smoky, almost burnt sweetness to the sauce. Honey or maple syrup can be subbed in if needed. 
  • Rice Vinegar Adds a subtly sweet acidity to the bbq sauce. Apple cider vinegar would be the next best option. 
  • Brown Sugar Choose light brown sugar for an earthy, nutty, and caramel-like sweetness. 
  • Dijon Mustard – Adds just the right blast of zesty tang. Spicy brown or horseradish mustards will also work. 
  • Worcestershire Sauce There is no substitute for this salty, savory, sensational masterpiece. However, you can try soy sauce if you must. 
  • Chili Garlic Paste – This pungent zingy spice brings the sauce to life. Harissa or Sriracha sauce will work if needed.
overhead of cooking pineapple BBQ sauce in a pan with a spoon to stir

How to Make Pineapple BBQ Sauce

  1. Saute Onion & Garlic. Place a medium saucepan over medium heat. Heat the vegetable oil, then add in the garlic, onions, and salt. Saute for about 3 minutes or until soft. 
  2. Add Other Ingredients. Combine the remaining ingredients in the saucepan. Stir to mix. 
  3. Simmer & Stir. Stirring often, allow the mixture to simmer for about 15 minutes, or until it has adequately thickened.
  4. Blend Until Smooth. Once thickened, remove the saucepan from the heat. Carefully blend the sauce using an immersion blender until smooth.
a brush with pineapple BBQ sauce on it over a glass jar with sauce inside

Pineapple Barbecue Sauce Serving Suggestions

This pineapple bbq sauce recipe makes the perfect sauce for all your summertime grilling needs. Great with chicken, pork, beef, or seafood, this tasty sauce is hard to beat. 

Here are just a few ways to include it in your menu: 

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Frequently Asked Questions

What happens when you marinate meat with pineapple?

Did you know that pineapple contains a secret meat-tenderizing weapon? It is an enzyme called bromelain, and it is the same reason people often say pineapple is good for digestion. It helps break down tough proteins!

Since this recipe for pineapple bbq sauce has both pineapple meat and pineapple juice, you can rest assured it is going to tenderize any meat you marinate in it. Your results will be savory-sweet, tropically tangy, and totally tender! Be aware though that with chicken, don’t marinate longer then overnight or up to 12 hours, as it will start breaking down the meat fibers and turn the chicken to a mushy texture.

What makes homemade barbecue sauce thicker?

In general, the most surefire way to thicken any sauce, including homemade bbq sauce, is to reduce it over a slow, simmering heat. This allows the liquid to evaporate, leaving behind a thick, glaze consistency.

This homemade pineapple barbecue sauce gets most of its thickness from this reduction method combined with the chunks of pineapple that get blended into the mix. 

If it still comes out too thin, you have options. Consider slowly stirring in a cornstarch slurry — a mixture of 1 tablespoon of both cornstarch and water — until you reach the desired thickness.

How long does pineapple BBQ sauce last?

Leftover pineapple barbecue sauce can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 2 weeks. Some sources claim homemade bbq sauce is fine at room temperature, but I prefer to not tempt fate.

Freezing for up to 3 months is also an option. Just be sure to store your sauce in airtight, freezer-safe containers first.

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Pineapple BBQ Sauce Recipe

5 from 2 votes
Celebrate summer with this recipe for pineapple bbq sauce. It’s easy to make and savory-sweet with just the right amount of zesty heat.
Servings: 32
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 18 minutes
Total: 28 minutes



  • Heat the vegetable oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the garlic, onions and salt and saute until soft, about 3 minutes.
  • Add the ketchup, pineapple chunks, pineapple juice, molasses, vinegar, brown sugar, mustard, Worcestershire and chili garlic paste.
  • Simmer uncovered, stirring often, until thickened, 15 minutes.
  • Remove from the heat and blend with an immersion blender until smooth.


Makes 1 quart (4 cups). Serving Size 2 tbsp. 32 Servings total


Calories: 30kcal | Carbohydrates: 8g | Protein: 0.3g | Fat: 0.1g | Saturated Fat: 0.01g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.02g | Monounsaturated Fat: 0.03g | Sodium: 234mg | Potassium: 94mg | Fiber: 0.1g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 81IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 10mg | Iron: 0.2mg

The information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.

Course: condiments
Cuisine: American, Southern
Have You Made This Recipe? Let Me Know on InstagramTag @keviniscooking or tag me #keviniscooking!
titled image (and shown): pineapple BBQ sauce recipe


Whether in the kitchen or on the grill, you’ll find me cooking American favorites with a love for BBQ, Mexican and Tex Mex. I’m passionate about making tasty food because life’s too short to be bland!

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  1. 5 stars
    We love huli huli bbq sauce. We keep a jug in the fridge all year long. Great on pulled pork shoulder too!