Dunk it, smear it and load it up; these mouth-watering relishes, dips and sauces automatically improve the quality of your barbecue bash by at least 97 percent and taste great on just about anything. From grilled steak to skewered shrimp and everything in between, here are 30 ways to rock your summer barbecue.
Spicy Vine Tomato Relish
A deep burgundy combo of fresh and canned tomatoes slow-simmered with dried chili flakes and mustard powder, to eat this flavourful relish, grab a spoon, wipe a generous heap on the business end of a cheeseburger and call it a day.
Got a garden full of fresh mint? Throw it in your chimichurri for an even brighter version of everyone’s favourite summer grilling sauce.
This garlicky sauce of oil, chilis and fresh parmesan is begging for a bed of grilled bread. But don’t stop there. This would be heaven with chicken, too.
Thai Dried Chilli Dipping Sauce
One of two famous street vendor sauces in Thailand, the “Jaew” sauce’s main goal in this life is to make grilled meat better. With toasted rice powder, lime, cilantro and chili peppers, it’s easy to taste why this is an iconic dipper.
It looks like a simple ranch dressing, but this Southern white barbecue sauce is so much more. Loaded with pepper and garlic and whipped with mayonnaise, this easy creamy sauce can work as an addictive dip or as a marinade for grilled chicken.
Spicy and subtly smoky, the slap-on-everything Korean sauce features the almighty gochujang, the fiery red pepper paste that’s used as a base in a whack of Korean dishes. Try wrapping a spoonful of white rice in lettuce, insert a piece of grilled kalbi or barbecued chicken, top with ssamjang sauce and place directly into your mouth. Drool.
Balsamic Chimichurri Sauce
The ultimate grilling sauce, not much beats an herby chimichurri. This one kicks things up a notch by layering in a splash of tangy balsamic.
For the hot sauce fanatic, this labour of love sauce is a project for sure, but one that’ll knock you and your barbecue guest’s socks off.
Piri Piri Sauce
Built with smoked paprika, bell peppers, onions, lemon and two kinds of chilis; trust me, stock the ingredients for this vibrant grill sauce at all times and you’ll be ready to rock and roll at the drop of an apron.
Easy Feta Dip
It’s essentially a deconstructed greek salad dressing, but I’m willing to bet the farm that this pleasingly-salty sauce is ripe for dredging everything from chicken skewers to barbecued veggies to grilled pita.
If you’ve got a jar of roasted red peppers, then gather up some tomatoes, garlic and almonds and introduce this classic Spanish sauce as your new favourite barbecue paint.
Jalapeño Cilantro Salsa
Give me a vibrantly-green fresh salsa that’s just hot enough to give my mouth a little tingle, and watch as I heap an embarrassing amount of it on grilled steak, chicken, tacos and anything else that comes off the grill.
Roasted Salsa Verde
Authentic salsa verde with roasted tomatillos, cilantro and lime is where it’s at. Resist the urge to drink it and instead, just drizzle this killer sauce on everything.
Ginger Scallion Sauce
It sounds pretty basic, but this oil-based ginger and green onion sauce works like magic when poured over grilled seafood. Use it alongside the ssamjang sauce and prepare to have your mind blown.
Salsa de Albañil (Tomatillo Salsa with Avocado and Queso Fresco)
Thick wedges of creamy avocado in a sauce concocted of chunky tomatillos and salty queso fresco; this salsa is an ode to summer if there ever was one.
Sweet and Spicy Pineapple Dipping Sauce
As if we’d forget about the citrusy sweet nectar of the sunshine yellow pineapple. This summer sauce is whizzed with pineapple juice, a generous hit of jalapeños, garlic and other goodies. If you’ve never tried it, the wicked delicious combo of sweet and spicy takes barbecued chicken to the next level.
Dominican chile sauce packed with lime and herbs, look to this spicy sauce for a pre-grill pcik-me-up for chicken.
Sweet and Spicy Zucchini Relish
Sure, you can haul out the bottled stuff, but this zucchini relish packs more than just a sweet and spicy flavour combo; it’s got a pretty hefty veggie count to boot.
Honey Chipotle BBQ Sauce
Paint a rack of ribs with this smoky homemade barbecue sauce and prepare to start smacking curious fingers from snagging a sample.
Don’t get stuck on labels. This jar of pickled radishes and other goodies would be just as great on burgers, a pulled pork sammie or even as a crunchy side.
Curtis Stone’s Homemade Ketchup
It’s got to be homemade if you’re looking to inject an umami-flavoured kick to your burger to grilled hot dog. The best part?Chances are good you’ve got everything in your pantry to make Curtis Stone’s ketchup recipe right now.
I dare you to say you don’t eat anchovies after a lick of this creamy, salty concoction.
Pickled Corn with Red Onions and Cilantro
Pile this sweet and sour corn relish as high are you can on hot dogs, in a burger or in a grilled veggie taco and be done like…well, dinner.
Spicy Pickled Pineapples
This pack of pickled pineapples makes me want to sing a little song and dance a little dance and eat all my meals outside this summer.
Pickled Red Onions
The magical colour pop of pickled red onions stewed with vinegar and dashed with some cinnamon and star anise; this is a must-make sour side for barbecued hot dog and burgers.
A perfectly ripe smashed avocado happens to make everything better; especially Greek style tzatziki. It’s just a fact.
Charred Habanero-Garlic and Cilantro Salsa
Grilled shrimp tacos on the menu? Then make this charred habanero salsa, stat!
Grilled Bloody Mary Salsa
It’s hard not to acknowledge the genius behind this salsa. While grilling the tomatoes lends it a smoked note, expected flavours like Worcestershire, horseradish and chilies will have you reaching for the vodka.
Take avocado, cilantro and lime and mix it with an delightfully unexpected twist of parsley, pistachios and olive oil and proceed to dip it, dunk it and baste it on everything.
A little bit of dill, a whole lot of garlic and cool greek yogurt makes for a pretty perfect addition to any summer fete.