Sloppy Joes

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    Homemade Sloppy Joes – A nostalgic, economical and easy recipe that feeds the whole family! These sloppy joes are hearty, savory and have the best flavor!

    It doesn’t get more nostalgic than a delicious sloppy joe recipe. It’s one of those dishes that almost everyone grew up eating, along with meatloaf, chicken pot pie, spaghetti and meatballs, shepherd’s pie and pot roast.

    sloppy joe recipe

    Homemade sloppy joes

    This sloppy joe recipe was always a childhood favorite. There’s just something about family time and sloppy joes! It’s a classic recipe that’s super economical and easy to feed the whole family.

    Making these sloppy joes from scratch was just as easy as popping open a can, but they have more nutrition from using fresh ingredients (and the more fresh veggies I can sneak into dinnertime, the better!). They’re hearty, savory and have the best flavor! Plus the brown sugar adds just the right amount of sweetness.

    My family loved these homemade sloppy joes and ate them right up! I love that they come together in just 30 minutes. They make the perfect weeknight meal!

    Why is it called a sloppy joe?

    Sloppy joes have been around for as long as I can remember. The name is definitely unique, so many wonder how the sandwich got it’s name. Many claim that it was actually invented by a cook named Joe in an Iowa cafe in the early 1900’s. He created a “loose meat” sandwich made of beef and tomato sauce, which is now known as the sloppy joe.

    Over the years, the dish has evolved and now typically includes beef, tomato sauce or ketchup, veggies, mustard, Worcestershire and other seasonings.

    how to make sloppy joes

    What are sloppy joes made of?

    Below are the main ingredients included in this easy sloppy joe recipe, but feel free to add in more veggies like chopped carrots, yellow bell pepper or tomatoes. We love to serve them on fresh hamburger buns too.

    • Lean ground beef
    • Onion
    • Red bell pepper
    • Minced garlic
    • Ketchup
    • Brown sugar
    • Yellow mustard
    • Worcestershire sauce

    How to make sloppy joes

    These homemade sloppy joes are so easy and come together in just 30 minutes! Follow the simple steps below to get started and scroll down for the printable sloppy joe recipe.

    1. In a frying pan over medium heat, brown ground beef with onion, pepper and garlic. Then add in ketchup, brown sugar, mustard and Worcestershire. Season with S&P to taste.
    2. Cover and let simmer on low for 10 to 20 minutes (stirring occasionally). If more liquid is needed, add more ketchup or a couple Tablespoons of water.
    3. Serve sloppy joes on fresh hamburger buns and enjoy!

    sloppy joes

    How do you thicken sloppy joes?

    The sloppy joes will thicken as they continue to simmer and should have a great texture once ready to serve. If for some reason your sloppy joes have too much liquid after simmering, try adding in some corn starch. Just mix about a Tablespoon of both cornstarch and water together in a small bowl and combine. Then add cornstarch mixture to sloppy joe mixture and stir until it thickens.

    What to serve with sloppy joes

    There are so many yummy side dishes to serve with sloppy joes! Below are a few of out favorites.

    sloppy joes

    Sloppy Joe Recipe

    Course: Main Course
    Cuisine: American
    Keyword: sloppy joe's
    Prep Time: 10 minutes
    Cook Time: 20 minutes
    Total Time: 30 minutes
    Servings: 6
    Calories: 152
    Author: Jamielyn Nye
    Homemade Sloppy Joes – A nostalgic, economical and easy recipe that feeds the whole family! These sloppy joes are hearty, savory and have the best flavor! 


    • 1 pound lean ground beef
    • 1/3 cup chopped onion
    • 1/3 cup chopped red bell pepper
    • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
    • 3/4 cup ketchup
    • 1 tablespoon brown sugar , more to taste
    • 1 teaspoon yellow mustard
    • 1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

    S&P, to taste

      For serving: hamburger buns


        • Brown ground beef with onion, red pepper, and garlic in a frying pan over medium heat. Add in ketchup, brown sugar, mustard and Worcestershire sauce. Season with salt and black pepper to taste. 
        • Cover and simmer on low for 10-20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add more ketchup or 1-3 Tablespoons water if need more liquid. 
        • Serve on fresh hamburger buns.


        Note: Nutrition value does not include hamburger buns. 
        To toast your hamburger buns, heat 1-2 Tablespoon of butter on a griddle over meidum heat. Then place the hamburger buns on and cook 1-3 minutes, or until the bottoms are lightly toasted. This will add great flavor and prevent the buns from getting soggy. 


        Calories: 152kcal | Carbohydrates: 11g | Protein: 16g | Fat: 3g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 46mg | Sodium: 342mg | Potassium: 386mg | Sugar: 9g | Vitamin A: 415IU | Vitamin C: 12.6mg | Calcium: 14mg | Iron: 2mg

        Hope your family loves this sloppy joe recipe! Enjoy :)

        homemade sloppy joes

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