sloppy goes…

…for dinner tonight! There’s a time to keep things clean & orderly in the kitchen, and then there’s a time to bust out the extra napkins. Tonight falls into the latter category. I love to try and keep meals new & creative, but sometimes, ya’ just want a good, hit-the-spot dinner, especially when the temperature dips down. Classic, cost effective, and simple – We’re making Sloppy Joes! I have seen many variations to this good old American sandwich, but we’re going to keep things pretty standard, using a seasoned tomato based sauce, and lean ground beef. This is a good one to make during week nights when time is sparse, and goes well with almost any side dishes, though I like mine with homemade mac & cheese, which will be our next post! If you aren’t a fan of beef, you can easily substitute ground turkey, but I’m partial to the beef-based version myself. You won’t need to buy a seasoning packet made for sloppy joes, it just has a bunch of sodium & stabilizers, so we’ll skip it and use fresh flavors of oniongarlic and eat them on soft, steamed bakery buns. 

Even though I love Sloppy Joes, they’re certainly not the most attractive sandwich, and they seem somewhat reminiscent of elementary school days. I can’t help but think of the lunch lady scene from the movie Billy Madison. Though, ours will be entirely less frightening, I promise…

Get your buns ready, get to the stove, and let’s get this homemade Manwich in motion:


5 from 1 reviews
Classic Sloppy Joes
Classic, delicious and quick, good ole Sloppy Joes! Lean ground beef and fresh onion, garlic and a tomato-based sauce make this one a weeknight winner!
Serves: 2 lbs of beef = large batch, but you can ½ for several large sandwiches
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
What to get:
  • 2 lbs lean ground beef ( I used 93/7 this time, but prefer 90/10)
  • 1 sweet white onion, chopped finely
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped finely (were large cloves)
  • 2, 8-oz cans tomato sauce
  • 3T tomato paste
  • ¼ cup Heinz Ketchup
  • 2T Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tsp red wine vinegar
  • ½ tsp salt (additional to taste)
  • ½ tsp pepper (additional to taste)
  • 1 tsp dried Italian seasoning
  • dash cayenne pepper
  • package soft bakery buns or standard hamburger buns
What to do:
  1. In large mixing bowl, combine ground beef, salt, pepper & Italian seasoning, mixing well.
  2. In large skillet on stove crisp one piece of bacon, discard bacon slice and reserve some of the grease.
  3. To pan, add the onion & garlic and sauté for about 3 minutes on medium-low.
  4. Now add seasoned ground beef and stir to incorporate into onion mix evenly.
  5. Cook beef in pan for about 5 min, then add 2 cans of tomato sauce, tomato paste, ketchup, worcestershire, red wine vinegar and dash cayenne pepper.
  6. Combine well and cook on medium-low stirring occasionally, letting sauce thicken & then add more salt & pepper to taste.
  7. Keep meat mix on low until cooked through, sauce has thickened and you're ready to serve.
  8. In small steamer pot on stove boil a half cup of water and place sliced buns in pot with lid, to steam for a minute or so (you can skip if they're the overly soft white hamburger variety).
  9. Serve meat mixture on buns and add slice of Cheddar or American cheese for melting as desired!
I made a very large amount, which yielded intentional leftovers to share, so feel free to adjust using half the amount of ground beef, and you can always add more seasoning as you prefer! These are great on fresh deli white buns that have a little more texture than standard, white hamburger buns. I slightly steam the bakery rolls for a chewy & softer texture. These also reheat well if you make leftovers.
Serving size: one beefy bun

Typically I would have bought 10% fat-lean ground beef, but the butcher gave me 3% accidentally, and I didn’t notice in time! Oh well, at least he still gave me beef. So, in this instance, I seasoned the pan that I used to cook the beef, by first crisping-up a piece of bacon. I removed the bacon and left a small amount of the resulting grease, so to give us a little more flavor to work with. Many people add chopped bell pepper and/or brown sugar into their meat mix, but I think the tomato paste and ketchup give it enough sweetness, though if you want yours sweeter, just add more ketchup! Also, this sandwich would be very good with a slice of melted cheese on top of the meat, though I skipped this time, to save it for the impending cheesy macaroni goodness!

On this rainy day, you don’t have to be a kid to stay-in & be a little sloppier than usual… and I’m not regretting this dinner one little bit!

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Welcome to the dinnervine!

Thank you for visiting the dinnervine! In the words of Julia Child, "People who love to eat, are always the best people," and I couldn't agree more. I hope you enjoy these dishes as much as I did making them. Here's to creating new recipes and memories with friends & family, cheers! 

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