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Hilda's Barbecue Sauce

Makes about 1 quart

I was always told that Hilda Schneck Herbein, a distant cousin by marriage known to us as Aunt Hilda, was a very good cook. Unfortunately, even though I knew her for many years before she passed away, I do not remember having the opportunity to taste any of her cooking. There were a few recipes that she shared with my mother, including this barbecue sauce recipe. It is typical of some regions of Pennsylvania. The recipe is best used with sandwiches made from leftover roasted meats, such as beef, pork or turkey. The sauce, and some leftover gravy if available, is added to the diced or shredded meat and simmered until hot. I must admit that I eventually substituted plain canned tomato sauce for the tomato soup because I find the soup too sweet and salty, but I wanted to post the original recipe and give you the choice.


Combine all ingredients and simmer for 30 minutes. Store in refrigerator for up to 1 week until ready to use. Recipe can be made in any amount.

Notes: A small bottle of ketchup is about 14 ounces. Therefore, unless the bottle size has changed through the years, as it has with many products, you will need about 28 ounces. Hilda's original recipe called for butter "the size of an egg". Does that give you some idea how old it is? I do not believe that two tablespoons is quite that size, but it is more than enough. This recipe can be made in any amount. Extra sauce can be frozen for up to one year.