Spicy Blueberry Balsamic BBQ Sauce

blueberry balsamic bbq sauce www.anourishedappetite.com

Like most of my recipes, this Spice Blueberry BBQ Sauce was a complete and utter accident. It all started with my dog’s seizures and the rest is delicious history! If you follow me on Instagram, you may have already read my posts about my puggle Max and his recent seizures. He began having seizures in the beginning of December and I immediately started researching holistic options to treat them.  Thankfully the first vet we met with was not a pill pusher and asked me to note how often the seizures were happening and the length of each seizure, waiting to see a pattern.  If a pattern did present itself then we would meet again to discuss medication options.  I immediately started doing my research

Unfortunately, the seizures became more frequent and it was evident that we would have to treat them with some kind of medication.  The current medication typically used to treat seizures is phenobarbital. One of the major side affects for this drug is weight gain.  Well if you have seen a picture of Max you know he has no room to grow.  He looks like a stuffed sausage casing, waiting to burst! It also causes liver failure and he is still a spry, young pup of 5 years so giving him a chemical to prevent the seizures while simultaneously ruining his liver was not an option for me.

blueberry balsamic bbq sauce www.anourishedappetite.com

Thankfully I found a wonderful holistic veterinary clinic in my area.  I took Max right in and got a second opinion because I knew that the conventional veterinary approach was not for us. The vet prescribed Lepsilyte which is a liquid botanical medication formulated from extracts of skullcap and valerian.  A flavonoid compound found in skullcap is thought to have sedative and antispasmodic properties. Valerian is an herbal sedative that works to gently calm the nerves without inducing an altered mental state which can happen with most anti-seizure prescription drugs.

Max was also prescribed Cannabinoid Oil, or CBD oil.  The CBD oil we use is a dog-specific formulation derived from hemp and mixed with fish oil. It is considered a “non-psychotropic chemical constituent of cannabis or hemp” because it does not contain Tetrahydrocannabinol, THC,  which is the principal psychoactive constituent in marijuana. The THC is what gets you high. All mammals have a neurological system called the Endocannabinoid System, ECS.  The ECS’s specific role is to receive and process nutritional cannabinoids. This system is involved in numerous physiological processes. CBD oil binds to ECS receptor sites alleviating issues such as loss of appetite, pain, nausea, mood, memory, inflammation and seizures.

blueberry balsamic bbq sauce www.anourishedappetite.com

The alternative medication has worked wonders for Max.  I have only witnessed one seizure since starting this protocol in February.  Before we started the medication he was having them every week.  His current protocol not only works great but has no known side effects!  These are medications I can get behind without guilt or worry about their potentially negative impacts.  Plus I do not have to watch my poor puppy go through multiple seizures.  It is truly one of the most heartbreaking sights.

Now back to the recipe….Besides the medication, I also started making my dogs food.  I do not do the raw meat, for financial reasons.  But I do throw a bunch of organic vegetables like spinach, broccoli, peas, green beans, carrots and sweet potatoes in a slow cooker with blueberries and a variety of ground meats.  The other day, blueberries and ground pork just happened to be next to each other in the slow cooker.  When I removed the lid all I could smell was an interesting mingling of sweet and savory and instantly began to drool.  On my next trip to the farmers market I picked up a bunch of blueberries and got to cooking!

Spicy Blueberry Balsamic BBQ Sauce
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 2 cups
  1. In a medium sauce pan, bring to a boil blueberries, balsamic and honey
  2. Turn down heat, simmering till blueberries burst, about 5 minutes
  3. Add dry ingredients and garlic, simmer for another 5 minutes
  4. Add molasses, combine using an immersion blender
  5. Simmer on low for 15-20 minutes
  6. Sauce will thicken as it cools


To a nourished life,


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