Old Arthur’s Barbecue Sauce – 160-Year-Old Family Recipe

Award winning BBQ sauces & rubs

Old Arthur's

Old Arthur’s Barbecue Sauce is an American original first crafted by a former slave, Arthur Watts, more than 160 years ago. The recipe and its unique flavor was created by patriarch, Arthur Watts, and passed down through the Watts family over six generations. With Old Arthur’s, you are experiencing authentic barbecue sauce as it was first enjoyed in the early United States.

Meet and shop Old Arthur’s at the Chicago Artisan Market in Ravenswood on Sat- Sun, April 22-23, 2023 at 4325 N. Ravenswood Ave., Chicago (Artifact Events Bldg.). Discover top Chicago & Midwest artisans in food, fashion, home goods + art.

Popular Products:
Old Arthur’s Barbecue Sauce – Original – Rich and tangy with a hint of hickory and just the right amount of kick, it enhances the flavor of pork, beef, chicken, and fish.
Old Arthur’s Barbecue Sauce – Hot & Spicy – The same bold flavor as the original, but made for those that enjoy a hotter barbecue sauce. Use it in all the same ways: as a baste, to sop, mixed in a slow cooker with your favorite meat, or to top off any grilled, roasted or broiled foods.
Old Arthur’s Bootleg Dry Rub – A signature blend of bourbon, brown sugar and Kona coffee, herbs and spices that will take your favorite steak or chop to the next level.
Old Arthur’s Righteous Poultry Rub – Experience a unique combination of hickory and spices, with a distinct blend of classic poultry herbs for a rub that is truly crafted to bring out the best in your chicken or turkey

A Century and a Half of Progress:
One could literally say a full century’s worth of effort – and then some – has gone into the refinement of this sauce. Arthur was born a slave in 1837, and his primary task from the age of 6 was tending the cooking fires on the estate that bonded him. From this early age, Arthur continuously experimented with the freshest natural ingredients available to him to perfect his sauce to complement the meats he prepared over an open pit.

When freed at the age of 27 by Abraham Lincoln’s EmancipationOld Arthur's
Proclamation executive order (January 1, 1863), his recipes were the only possessions of value that he took with him out of bondage. Arthur left the south and settled in Illinois. Relying on the popularity and demand for his renowned sauce, Arthur took great pride in earning his keep with it until the time of his death at 108 years of age! (Pictured: Arthur at age 106)

At Old Arthur’s, they believe that no single human being has ever put as much concentrated effort into refining a
recipe, and they are proud to be able share this important piece of history for your pleasure.

Old Arthur’s Barbecue Sauce
Evanston, IL
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More things to do in Chicago:
Oak Brook Artisan Market – 2-Day Outdoor Market in Oak Brook, IL
• Chicago Artisan Market – Best of the Midwest in Fulton Market and Ravenswood