Coffee Barbecue Sauce Recipe

Almost a decade ago, chef Jonathan Adams and his childhood friend Damien Pileggi came up with the perfect Super Bowl barbecue sauce: a caffeine-infused concoction that would keep their friends properly jazzed throughout half-time. The pair has been using various incarnations of the recipe ever since.

Now that Adams is the chef at Philly's Pub & Kitchen and The Diving Horse in Avalon, N.J., and the two of them run Philadelphia's first mobile coffee bar, Rival Bros Coffee, they've tweaked the recipe to include their own craft-roasted coffee. "When cooking with coffee, the point isn't to have the dish taste like coffee," says Adams. "You use it more like a workhorse ingredient. Just to give food that extra dimension."

Read: Philadelphia: We Love Rival Bros. Coffee

Coffee Barbecue Sauce Recipe
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  • 2 1/2 cup Double-strength drip-brewed coffee
  • 1/2 cup bourbon whiskey
  • 1 cup worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 cup cider vinegar
  • 1 cup chicken or pork stock
  • 1 cup ketchup
  • 1/2 cup guajillo chili powder
  • 4 1/2 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 jalapeno
  • 1 Spanish onion
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  1. In a heavy-bottom pot, heat the olive oil to almost smoking. Add the onions, garlic and jalapeƱo, and cook until charred.
  2. Add the remaining ingredients, bring to a boil and reduce by half.
  3. Let cool to room temperature and puree in a high-speed blender until silky smooth.
  4. Pass the sauce through a fine mesh sieve and pour into jars.
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