Huckleberry Barbeque Sauce with Thin Cut Pork Loin Chops

Huckleberry Barbeque Sauce with Thin Cut Pork Loin Chops

It’s the first day of spring.

It feels like winter.

Winter in the Cascades

I wish it were summer.

I love summer in the Northwest.

Blueberries, blackberries, huckleberries and raspberries.  Rainier cherries, apricots and peaches.

And sunshine. 🙂

Summer Flying!

And flying!

I heard single engine planes over my roof this afternoon.

Getting ready for fair weather.  Arriving soon.  We hope.

Huckleberry Barbeque Sauce

I feel so lucky to have the sweetest of friends.

Friends who give me summer berries in the middle of winter.   (Thank you Traci and Nick!)

Barbeque Sauce and Northwest Huckleberries

Picked with love and exuberance by two precious little boys on summer vacation.

Bagged and frozen by Mom and Dad, and then given to me.

Frozen berries that warm my heart.  (Kisses to Z and M!)

Huckleberry Barbecue Sauce with Thin Cut Pork Loin Chops

I probably have two or three barbeque sauce recipes hanging around.  And I love them all.  However, on occasion even a chef needs a little trick or two to get dinner rolling.  Yes, this is one of my “cheat” recipes.  And I love it!  Huckleberries are the perfect addition to my jarred sauce.  If you can’t find huckleberries, try blackberries.  And, if you don’t care for the blackberry seeds, strain the sauce through a mesh strainer.


1 Jar of your fave barbeque sauce, about 2 cups

1 cup huckleberries, blackberries or blueberries (if frozen, thawed and drained)

1/4 – 1/3 cup dark brown sugar (depending on sweetness of the fruit)

1/4 teaspoon chipotle chili powder (optional, I like this for an extra kick of smokey spice)

4-6 Thin cut pork loin chops or pork chops, or a pork tenderloin (no thicker than 3/4 inches, larger chops will take longer to cook)

Fresh thyme leaves, lightly chopped


In a small sauce pan or pot over medium heat, mix together the berries, sugar and barbeque sauce.

Bring to a lively simmer and let the sauce sit over low heat, stirring occasionally, for about 5-10 minutes or until the berries have lightly infused the sauce and sugar is dissolved.

Stir in the chipotle chili powder and taste for seasoning, adding additional sugar or chili powder as desired.

Before serving, sprinkle with chopped fresh thyme leaves.

To Prepare the Pork Loin Chops:

Heat a large heavy bottom skillet over medium high heat with a tablespoon or two of high heat veggie oil.  Season the chops with salt and pepper on both sides.

When the oil is hot but not smoking, add the chops.  Brown them on each side.

If they are thin, it shouldn’t take long for the chops to cook through.  About 3-4 minutes each side.  The chops will be done when they reach 145F.

Thicker chops will take much longer to cook.  After browning the thicker chops, place them in a 350F pre-heated oven to finish cooking.  They will be done when they reach 145F.  About 10-15 minutes total cook time.

This sauce is also delicious over grilled pork chops or grilled pork tenderloin.



  1. Karista! just did this for dinner with grilled chops from the farm, quinoa and green beans tossed in butter and pecans. Was absolutely delicious… thanks a ton!

    • So happy to hear you loved this dish! I still have about a pound of huckleberries left in the freezer and planned on making this in the next few weeks. And yum! The quinoa and green beans tossed in butter and pecans sounds divine! I think I’ll prepare that too. 🙂

  2. You are the sauce guru!!!! Loving this recipe as pork chops always needs something to dab into.

  3. Looks so good. I am going to have to give this recipe a try.

  4. It looks delicious, I just love the sauce:)

    • Thank you Katya! I love the flavors of sweet and spicy with pork. Hope you’re doing well! Happy Monday (afternoon for you I think) 🙂

  5. Those huckleberries are worth their weight in gold! Literally! I can’t wait to try this recipe this summer. I just need to find my own secret huckleberry picking spot. Bob’s family in Coeur d’Alene won’t even tell us where they pick! Can you imagine?? Looks really delicious Karista!

    • Haha! Thanks Maria. I have a huge bag of frozen huckleberries if you want some. I’m sure I have enough to share. 🙂 Nick and Traci pick them on the island. Or, actually the boys do all the picking.

  6. I love that you’re recipe is a yummy BBQ I spired dish, even when the snow is falling outside! May I just say how stunning those tress are with their blanket of snow and I had never heard of Huckleberries outside of (the) story of Huckleberry Finn of course!

    • Thank you! I took the picture while cross country skiing in the cascade mountains, about 35 miles east of where we live. When I’m skiing through the trees it feels like I’m in one of the Narnia movies. LOL! Magical! Huckleberries actually grow wild here. Along with blackberries, raspberries and blueberries. If I can get out and get some good picking days in, I usually have a nice stash for the winter. 🙂

      • To me this sounds like paradise! To pick wild berries and get out amongst nature and that incredible sense of enjoyment from your surrounds! I’m in Sydney and we have the. Lt amazing harbors and views/landmarks! It’s an amazing city and it’s sunny with the very early days of autumn here so still quite warm.

        I guess what I was reflecting on was the stillness of nature on your photo and the cooler weather which allows us to cook/comfort foods for the colder months! Not too much longer for me!

    • I love your interpretation… stillness of nature. It really is still. So quiet and peaceful. I had a very wise woman once tell me once we need the seasons to grow, to rejuvenate, to re-assess. Each season has it’s purpose. I’ve had the stillness of winter for several months now and I’m ready for spring, sunshine, fresh produce and all the activities summer brings. Just as you must be ready to settle in to winter’s retreat. Thanks for your comments. So fun chatting with you!

      • That’s my favourite part of blogging! Connecting with folks around the world, reading about food and seeing how people juggle their lives and the things they love! The sense of community is wonderful once you learn about different readers, etc 🙂

  7. I’ve never seen huckleberries before but the meal looks amazing 🙂

    • Thanks Tandy! Huckleberries, blackberries, raspberries and blueberries all grow wild here. The huckleberries are less sweet, but lovely paired with other berries and fruits. I use them in recipes most the summer. By fall we’re ready to move on to the apples. 🙂 Have a lovely day!

  8. What a delightful meal and how special of your friends to send you such treasures.
    Hope your summer arrives soon.
    🙂 Mandy

  9. Ooo . . . This sounds incredible. My husband is a huge pork-chops lover, though I hardly let him eat them because they tend to be higher in fat than chicken and fish. But these look too yummy not to try. And huckleberries; how fun!

    The pictures are gorgeous, too! Do you take those with your camera?

    • Thanks Cara! Pork Chops are one of my husbands favorite foods too. 🙂 Sometimes I substitute with Pork Tenderloin. I do take my own pictures. My photography skills are getting better but not where I’d like to be. My new camera requires lots of practice. I graduated from a point and shoot to a Nikon D5100. Huge learning curve! 🙂

  10. I think cheating is always permissible this time of the year. I’m still dreaming about summer in Maine. We went up to our cottage in Maine yesterday but there is still 6 inches of snow and ice on the ground. No grilling for awhile…but this recipe is a keeper.

    • Thanks Karen! I’ve got a few “cheat” recipes in my back pocket for those late work days. 🙂 I love Maine! We vacationed in Bar Harbor over the 4th of July many years ago. I could have stayed. What a beautiful place in the world.

  11. OH wow…. It looks incredible! Can’t wait to try it!

  12. It feels like summer here today! But I love the seasonless sauce – so beautiful with pork, game etc.

  13. That looks amazing! I’m sure the huckleberries provide a tarty-sweetness that is perfect with pork . . . yummmm!

    • Thanks Bill! You describe it perfectly. A tarty-sweetness that compliments the pork. 🙂 I love fruit and pork together. I think those two are a perfect match.


  1. […] Huckleberry Barbeque Sauce.  One tasty sauce over barbecue pork or chicken and a great way to use all those summer […]

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