What Happened to Sweet Baby Ray’s BBQ Sauce?

If you are a fan of finger-licking barbecue sauce, chances are you have come across the popular brand, Sweet Baby Ray’s BBQ sauce. However, have you ever wondered what happened to this beloved condiment? Let’s dive into the story and find out.

The Rise of Sweet Baby Ray’s

In the late 1980s, two brothers, Dave and Larry Raymond, embarked on a mission to create the perfect barbecue sauce. They experimented with different recipes in their backyard in Chicago until they finally achieved a flavor that won over their friends and family.

Sweet Baby Ray’s BBQ sauce quickly gained popularity locally, thanks to its balanced blend of tangy and sweet flavors. Word spread about this mouthwatering sauce, and soon it was being sold in local stores.

The Secret Recipe

What makes Sweet Baby Ray’s BBQ sauce so special? It all comes down to one thing – the secret recipe. The precise combination of high-quality ingredients like brown sugar, tomato paste, vinegar, and various spices creates a unique taste that sets it apart from other barbecue sauces on the market.

The Raymond brothers’ commitment to using only premium ingredients ensured that their product stood out among competitors. The result was a sauce that satisfied even the most discerning barbecue enthusiasts.

Award-Winning Success

As more people discovered Sweet Baby Ray’s BBQ sauce, its popularity soared. It wasn’t long before the brand started receiving recognition from prestigious competitions and food critics.

  • 1992: Sweet Baby Ray’s wins its first major award at the Mike Royko Ribfest in Chicago.
  • 1995: The sauce gains national attention by winning the Best Sauce in America award.
  • 2006: Sweet Baby Ray’s is inducted into the Barbecue Hall of Fame.

This recognition further solidified Sweet Baby Ray’s as a top contender in the barbecue sauce market and helped it expand its reach beyond Chicago.

A Change in Ownership

In 2005, Sweet Baby Ray’s BBQ sauce underwent a significant change when the brand was acquired by Ken’s Foods, a Massachusetts-based food company.

The acquisition allowed Sweet Baby Ray’s to benefit from Ken’s Foods’ extensive distribution network and resources. With their expertise in food production and marketing, Ken’s Foods helped take Sweet Baby Ray’s to new heights.

Expanding Product Line

Under Ken’s Foods ownership, Sweet Baby Ray’s expanded its product line beyond the original barbecue sauce. Today, you can find an array of flavors including Honey BBQ, Hickory & Brown Sugar, and Sweet Vidalia Onion among others.

This diversification allowed the brand to cater to different taste preferences and expand its customer base even further.

The Legacy Lives On

Despite the change in ownership, Sweet Baby Ray’s BBQ sauce remains true to its roots. The secret recipe that made it famous is still used today, ensuring customers can enjoy that signature flavor they have come to love.

Sweet Baby Ray’s continues to be a staple on grocery store shelves and an essential ingredient for backyard barbecues across the country. Its commitment to quality and taste has made it one of the most beloved barbecue sauces available today.

In conclusion, Sweet Baby Ray’s BBQ sauce has come a long way since its humble beginnings in a backyard in Chicago. With its secret recipe, award-winning success, and expansion under new ownership, it has solidified its place as a barbecue sauce favorite.