Not Your Mama’s Sloppy Joes

not your mamas sloppy joes

When I was a kid it seems like a disliked every cheap and easy dinner. Sloppy Joes were no exception to that rule. My revulsion to the orange loose meat sandwiches lasted straight into adulthood. However, Sloppy Joes are popular party fare, so I am bringing them to Fiesta Friday.

When I was a child I may have tried the canned stuff once or twice but I have no recollection of what it tastes like… Now that I’m grown, I can make Sloppy Joes into whatever I want them to be. I wanted my Joes to be meaty and spicy. Savory and not too sweet, too tangy or sour. And one more thing — the sauce must not be orange! Luckily the concoction I created resulted in a nice brick red sauce. Whew. Dodged that bullet!

I started out with a base sauce including a lot of the ingredients in Sloppy Joe recipes  – meat, onions, peppers, tomato sauce, tomato paste (I couldn’t bring myself to use ketchup or canned tomato soup), vinegar and Worcestershire sauce. The resulting sauce smelled tomato-y and sour. Not what I was going for. So I added some more seasonings and some spicy elements and ended up being thrilled with the results. Meaty? Check. Savory? Check. Spicy awesomeness? Check, Check! I think this one is going to make my regular dinner rotation.


Sloppy Joes:

Makes 8 sandwiches

– 1 lb ground beef

– 1 8 oz can tomato sauce

-1/2 6 oz can tomato paste

– 1 small onion diced

– 1 red pepper diced fine

– 1 Tablespoon rice wine vinegar

– 1 Tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

– 1 Tablespoon soy sauce

– 3 Tablespoons barbecue sauce (I used Sweet Baby Rays)

– 2 Tablespoons chilli powder

– 1 tablespoon onion powder

– 1 teaspoon garlic powder

– 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

Start by cooking the ground beef over medium low heat. Add the diced onions and peppers and turn the heat back to low. Cook until the beef is browned then add the sauce ingredients. This sauce isn’t seriously spicy but it does have some heat. If you want to have a milder sauce cut back on the black pepper. Simmer over low heat until thickened to the desired consistency. Serve on hamburger buns.

Whole wheat hamburger buns were on sale at Aldi this week (45 cents for an 8 pack, woop woop!). I think the hearty whole wheat buns held up really well to the wet sauce, which was awesome.

Have you reinvented any dishes you didn’t like when you were a child? How did it go?

Most importantly — Did you bring them to a party?



22 thoughts on “Not Your Mama’s Sloppy Joes

  1. Hmm, good question. I may have to think about that dish I didn’t like when I was a child. 🙂
    Your sloppy joes are absolutely gorgeous and mouth-watering! They will be sure hot for today’s FF!

    • Never had a Sloppy Joe? E-Gads! That’s crazy! But I’m sure there are staple meals in Belgium that I have never tried. Happy Friday!

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  3. Yummy! These sloppy joes sound delicious (and magically meat my allergy needs too). I also didn’t like sloppy joes as a young kid, but I love them now. My mom turned them into an after ski day dinner when we started to get older, and they kind of became a family classic. Thank you for bringing these to FF and have a wonderful weekend! 😀

    • Joes would be a great winter meal. I need to get on a slow cooker version of this so I can make them without heating up the kitchen in the summer. Happy weekend to you as well 🙂

    • Rock on! I don’t know if it was the elementary school cafeteria food or the canned stuff that ruined Joes for me. At any rate– they’re fixed now huzzah! Happy Fiesta Friday!

  4. I haven’t had Sloppy Joes since I was a kid. However, I can recall them always coming from a can, which is probably why I wasn’t too fond of them. Thank you for this wonderful homemade recipe, I will definitely be making it soon! 🙂

  5. Welcome to Fiesta Friday!! What an awesome post…I had to chuckle, because all three of my kids hated / and still hate Sloppy Joes!! These look fabulous, and I think I’m going to try them for the two who still live at home!! Thank you so much for sharing these with all of us, and you’re right, they are the perfect party food!
    Hot Cherry Soup was one of the things that my aunt would make periodically, and invite us to her house. My mom loved it, but I just couldn’t stomach it. I love cherries, they’re one of my most favorite fruit, but just not in soup. It makes me shudder to even think of it!! I guess I should try to reinvent it.. 🙂
    Have a lovely weekend.. ❤

  6. Wow, your sloppy joes sound great! The first time I made sausage rolls rather than buying shop ones, I was like, I didn’t know they could taste so good. And you’ve inspired me to try reinventing more childhood party foods! 😀

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