Carolina Style Vinegar Sauce for Pulled Pork

Does the pulled pork from your smoked Boston Butt need some sauce but you don’t want to slather it in a mustard-based or sugary tomato-based version? Don’t worry, there is a traditional version harking back to the North Carolina that’s commonly called a BBQ “Finishing” Sauce. You may know it as a Carolina Vinegar Barbecue Sauce. Whatever you call it… it’s good!

Allow some Fridge Time!

This sauce is often very thin and simply made with vinegar, a dash of salt and pepper, and maybe cayenne and other spices. Make it, seal it and put it in the fridge for a week. This will allow the flavors to properly meld. If you make it and use it too soon you risk a chance of coating your lovingly smoked Boston Butt pulled pork with a sauce that’s a bit strong. Take the time to let the sauce age.

Carolina Style Vinegar Sauce

This is a version of a Carolina Vinegar Sauce with a dash of ketchup for good measure. There are several style of Vinegar sauces. Some use ketchup, and some don’t! It just depends on if you standing in the Eastern Carolinas or the Western Carolinas! The point is, there are plenty of variations just like you would find in mustard-based or tomato-based sauces… try this one and tweak it to make it your own.

  • 2 cups apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons dark brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoon ketchup
  • 1 1/2 tablespoon hot sauce
  • 2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon salt

Directions: Combine all the ingredients together in a saucepan and cook over medium-low heat for about 20 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to cool before storing in the fridge. Store for at least one or two days before using as the flavors will really kick in. Drizzle lightly over a small amount of pulled pork and give it a taste test before dashing huge splashes onto your pulled pork sandwich. And, allow each person that’s dining with you to add their own sauce to their liking.

And speaking of pulled pork! The BBQ Dragon Claws are perfect for pulling smoked Boston Butt!

Author Bio: Kent Whitaker, also known as “The Deck Chef,” is an award-winning culinary writer and cookbook author. He’s also penned Young Reader, NASCAR and History titles. The former winner of the Emeril Live Food Network Barbecue Contest also covers football, motorsports, and bass fishing. Kent currently lives in East Tennessee with his wife, son, and a couple of dogs that love when he fires up the smoker or grill. You can reach out to Kent at, Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

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