How to make Alabama’s famous white BBQ sauce

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Pulled chicken barbeque sandwich with white saucePulled chicken barbeque sandwich with white sauce — Photo courtesy of The Food Channel


Prep time: 5 minutes | Cook time: 40 minutes | Serves: 4

In the United States of BBQ, four regions reign supreme: Kansas City, Memphis, Carolina and Texas. But there are quite a few regional BBQ styles that haven’t earned their due respect outside of the region of their birth, chief among them Alabama and its beloved white sauce.

While the rest of us dump one variety of red sauce or another over our grilled or smoked meats, Alabamans have been slathering white sauce all over everything from chicken to pork shoulder to ribs since the 1920s.

If you need proof that Alabama is onto something when it comes to this mayo-based BBQ sauce, consider the episode of “Master of None” when Aziz Ansari famously missed a flight back to New York in an attempt to track down a bottle of white gold.

This pulled chicken sandwich is the perfect vehicle for this creamy, smoky sauce, but you can – and should – dump it on anything and everything.

Recipe courtesy of The Food Channel


For the pulled chicken sandwich

    2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts
    1 teaspoon salt
    1 teaspoon black pepper
    1/2 cup orange juice
    1/2 cup soy sauce
    1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
    1/4 cup hoisin sauce
    1 teaspoon Chinese 5-spice powder
    As desired white barbecue sauce
    4 rolls

For the white BBQ sauce

    1 cup mayonnaise or salad dressing
    1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
    2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
    1/2 teaspoon ground or cracked black pepper
    1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
    1/2 teaspoon liquid smoke
    1/4 teaspoon salt


For the chicken sandwich

    Place chicken in a medium saucepan and cover with 2 inches of water. Turn heat on medium, place the cover on a little askew to allow steam to escape, and boil for 10-15 minutes, or until completely cooked through.
    Drain water and add orange juice and soy sauce. Take lid off, reduce heat to low and simmer 15 additional minutes. If you notice the juice running dry, add more juice and soy in equal amounts if needed.
    Remove chicken and saucepan from heat and allow to cool to room temperature. Remove chicken to clean work surface and shred with two forks, or simply chop with knife. Return chicken to pot and add remaining ingredients, blending well. Add a scoop to a roll and top with white barbecue sauce.

For the white BBQ sauce

    Simply whisk all ingredients together well, cover and refrigerate at least 3 hours. Serve drizzled over fried chicken sandwiches, pulled pork or chicken, slathered over grilled or baked chicken or as a dipping sauce for ribs.
    Prep time for the sauce is about 5 minutes, with no cook time. Yields approximately 1-1/2 cups.


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