Chipotle Pork, either tenderloin or Bone in Pork Chops (shown here, so good) is part of my regular repertoire and probably shows up about every other week. When our nephew Tim lived with us, we had it often and he said it was probably one of the favorite things I made. The main “sauce” is what I use as a marinade and then blend it with ketchup to make a BBQ sauce. It keeps in the refrigerator for a couple of weeks, so I usually have it on hand, thus the reason for its frequent appearance. In addition to pork, the marinade is fantastic with chicken, skirt steak, steak tips, shrimp or even a firm fish such as swordfish or halibut. The BBQ sauce is fabulous on pork, chicken and ribs. You may never buy a bottle of BBQ sauce at the store again (at least I hope not).


This marinade and sauce is SO easy and incredibly versatile. I created my first version of this over 20 years ago and have tweaked it over time. It is a staple in my kitchen and a true fan favorite. Try the marinade for fajitas and you may never use anything else again as it gives such a delicious, smoky flavor with just the right amount of heat. The BBQ sauce adds a nice kick for pork, chicken and ribs.
Course Sauces
Cuisine Mexican, Southwestern
Servings 3 Cups of marinade or 2 cups of marinade & 2 cups of BBQ sauce


  • Vitamix, blender or food processor



  • 1 can 7.5 oz Chipotles in Adobo**
  • 1 Cup Orange Juice
  • ½ Cup Dark Brown Sugar packed
  • ½ Cup Honey
  • ¼ Cup fresh lime juice 2-3 limes
  • 2 cloves of Garlic
  • 1 TBSP ground Cumin
  • 1 bunch Cilantro leaves & stems
  • ¼ Cup Light Olive Oil or Canola Oil not EVOO


  • 1 Cup Marinade
  • 1 Cup Ketchup
  • 1/2 Cup Honey
  • 1/4 Cup Dark Brown Sugar
  • 1/4 Cup Red Wine Vinegar



  • Place all ingredients in a Vitamix, blender or food processor with steel blade and process until smooth.
  • ** For a less spicy sauce, use ½ can of chiles & adobo sauce.


  • Blend 1 Cup of marinade with 1 Cup of Ketchup until smooth.
  • Pour into a sauce pan and whisk in honey, brown sugar and red wine vinegar.
  • Bring to a boil, stirring frequently.
  • Reduce heat to low, and simmer for 10-15 minutes, stirring frequently.


  • Do not use Extra Virgin Olive Oil, as it has too much flavor and will compete with the other ingredients. Light Olive Oil or Canola Oil are good bets, and even Vegetable Oil works well.
  • Use the whole bunch of cilantro, including stems, which have a lot of flavor. Simply cut or twist & tear the stems just above the elastic or twist tie, rinse and pat dry with paper towels or a dish towel.
  • Chipotles are smoked jalapenos, so this makes a spicy, smoky sauce. If you find it is too hot for you, simply double up on the rest of the ingredients to dial down the heat. Remember, however, that the base is a marinade and meant to impart flavor to your protein of choice.
  • Both the marinade and sauce keep in the refrigerator several weeks.
  • Pour the sauce over raw meat in Ziploc bags and freeze to have pre-marinated meat available at a moment’s notice. I suggest double bagging to avoid leaks.
  • If the BBQ sauce thickens in the refrigerator, just bring it to room temperature or warm it in a sauce pan to return it to it’s consistency.
  • This is delicious with pork chops, pork tenderloin, skirt steak, steak tips (hanging tenders in Chicago), chicken and even shrimp (though use sparingly with shrimp and don’t allow to marinte more than 15 minutes or it will “cook” the shrimp).
Keyword BBQ Sauce, Chipotle, Fajitas, Marinade, Pork Chops


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