How often does a recipe title sound too pretty to eat? I feel like not often, but this is one of those times where I think it just might be the case! I'm lucky enough to have the hook up when it comes to picking fresh blueberries so I've been doing lots of experimenting with them + when my girl @gutsy_baker asked me if I wanted to collab on a beach picnic menu I knew I'd be using my favorite fruit in one of my recipes for sure!
I've been doing a lot of baking lately, so I immediately knew I wanted to go savory here. I've also really been wanting to showcase a recipe that involves grilling, something I don't do nearly enough of. Following a low FODMAP protocol can feel really restrictive practically all the time and for me one of those times where it felt particularly restrictive and isolating is during BBQ season. With all the processed meats and sugary sauces that come with a typical American grilling session, someone on a restrictive protocol in the name of healing their gut doesn't always have great options. Traditional BBQ sauces can contain all kinds of hidden sugars, gums, gluten, garlic + onion which is enough to make someone like myself sick from just one bite! But that doesn't mean I don't love a good BBQ sauce, so coming up with one on my own was a must. The addition of chipotle pepper + white pepper offset the sweet yet tartness of the blueberries, adding a bit of smokiness which is 100% what you want in a good BBQ sauce! I didn't include it in the ingredient list, but if you happen to have liquid smoke available, throw a few dashes of that in for good measure, it will not disappoint!
This blueberry BBQ sauce pairs perfectly with grilled chicken, but would also be really tasty with shrimp or scallops on the grill.
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For the BBQ Sauce
3 cups blueberries
1/2 cup coconut sugar
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
1 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
1 tsp chipotle pepper flakes
1 tbsp walnut oil
2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
2 tbsp maple syrup
1/2 tsp lemon juice
1/4 tsp white pepper
1/2 inch knob fresh ginger, grated
2 tbsp tapioca flour
For the Chicken
1-2 lbs skinless boneless chicken thighs
salt + pepper to season
Line a baking dish with chicken thighs prior to making sauce.
In a medium sauce pan over medium-low heat, add in blueberries and all additional ingredients EXCEPT tapioca flour.
Fold ingredients into blueberries with a silicone spatula or spoon until fully incorporated. Allow to come up almost to a boil, but do not allow to boil.
As soon as sauce is almost at a boil, reduce heat to low, allowing to simmer and reduce down about 7-10 minutes.
Remove sauce from heat, allow to cool, and mash blueberries slightly with a fork. If you prefer a smoother texture, use an immersion blender or pour sauce into a blender and pulse until smooth.
If the sauce is thinner than you prefer, add tapioca flour 1 tbsp at a time noting that a little goes a long way here! Too much, and you'll have a gummy sauce.
Once sauce is complete, pour about 1/2 cup over chicken thighs, cover baking dish, and marinate in the fridge at least 4 hours, up to overnight.
When ready, grill chicken thighs or bake in the oven at 400F for 25 minutes or until internal temp reaches 165F.