Old Fashioned Sloppy Joes Recipe: Easy & Delicious

8 Min Read
Old Fashioned Sloppy Joes Recipe

Are you looking for a filling lunch that won’t break the bank? The best Old Fashioned Sloppy Joes recipe is right here. Using soft ground beef, onions, bell peppers, and a homemade sauce, you can whip up a delicious family-friendly supper in only 30 minutes that will have everyone begging for more. Reject the canned goods and embrace the deliciousness of a sauce that is cooked from scratch. Prepare to find a cheap, wholesome, and quick meal choice that will quickly become a family favourite.

Why We Love These Old Fashioned Sloppy Joes:

  1. Budget-Friendly: This classic recipe is perfect for families on a tight budget. With a homemade sauce made from pantry staples, you can create a delicious meal without breaking the bank.
  2. Healthy: By making the sauce from scratch, you have complete control over the ingredients. Our recipe skips the ketchup and opts for a combination of tomato sauce and tomato paste. Say goodbye to processed sugars and hello to a healthier version of this classic dish.
  3. Simple and Quick: With our easy homemade sauce, you can have dinner on the table in just 30 minutes. Pre-chop the onions and bell peppers and store them in the freezer for even quicker meal prep. Perfect for those busy weeknights when time is of the essence.

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You’ll need the following materials to prepare our handmade Old Fashioned Sloppy Joes:

  • 1 cup of tomato sauce (equivalent to an 8-ounce can)
  • A small amount of tomato paste for added flavor and thickness
  • Worcestershire sauce for umami savoriness
  • Ground mustard or yellow mustard for a tangy kick
  • Molasses for a depth of flavor and hint of sweetness
  • Apple cider vinegar for a touch of tanginess
  • Chili powder for a bit of spice
  • Smoked paprika for a subtle smoky flavor
  • Ground beef (you can substitute with ground turkey for a leaner option)

How to Make Old Fashioned Sloppy Joes:

  • In a skillet, cook the bell peppers and onions until they are tender. Cook briefly after adding the garlic.
  • Breaking up the ground meat as it cooks, add it to the skillet and heat until browned.
  • Add the ingredients for the homemade sauce and thoroughly blend. To a low simmer, add the mixture.
  • Cook the meat sauce uncovered over low heat until it gradually thickens and reduces.

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  • Customize to Taste: Adjust the recipe according to your family’s preferences. If you prefer a milder version, omit the peppers and chili powder. For more spice, substitute bell peppers with jalapeños and increase the amount of chili powder or add cayenne powder.
  • Leaner Option: Swap out the ground beef for ground turkey or ground bison if you prefer a leaner protein.
  • Add Extra Veggies: Sneak in some extra veggies by finely chopping zucchini, mushrooms, or carrots. Mix them in with the onions and bell peppers for added nutritional value.

Serve and Enjoy

Use firm buns and toast them slightly before serving the Old Fashioned Sloppy Joes to prevent sogginess. The traditional hamburger bun, brioche bun, or potato roll are all fantastic options. For added flavour, you can also include a slice of cheddar or American cheese and a couple pickle slices. For a full and fulfilling lunch, serve your Sloppy Joes with chips, French fries, or a side of coleslaw.

Storing Leftovers

If there are any leftovers, let the dish cool fully before storing it in the fridge for 3–4 days in an airtight container. The Sloppy Joes can be frozen for up to 3 months if you need to store them for a longer period of time. For the best results when reheating, defrost them first and then cook them in a skillet or saucepan over medium-low heat.


With the help of our best-ever Old Fashioned Sloppy Joes recipe, you may eat a sumptuous home-cooked lunch without going over budget. This quick, inexpensive, and healthful choice is ideal for hectic weeknights. Using our easy instructions and our handmade sauce can let you take this traditional dish to new levels of deliciousness. Bid adieu to canned food and welcome the pleasure of a handmade Sloppy Joe. Prepare to enjoy every messy and tasty bite!


Can I substitute ground beef with ground turkey in the Old Fashioned Sloppy Joes recipe?

Yes, you can definitely substitute ground beef with ground turkey in this recipe. Ground turkey provides a leaner option while still delivering delicious flavor. Simply replace the ground beef with an equal amount of ground turkey and follow the rest of the recipe as instructed.

Can I adjust the spiciness of the Sloppy Joes?

Absolutely! The level of spiciness in the Sloppy Joes can be adjusted according to your preference. If you prefer a milder version, you can omit the peppers and reduce or omit the chili powder. On the other hand, if you enjoy more heat, you can substitute the bell pepper with jalapeños and increase the amount of chili powder or add some cayenne powder.

How long can I store the leftovers?

You can store the leftovers of the Old Fashioned Sloppy Joes in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 3-4 days. If you have more leftovers than you can consume within that timeframe, you can freeze them in a ziplock bag or airtight container for up to 3 months. Make sure to thaw them before reheating for the best results.

What type of buns are recommended for serving the Sloppy Joes?

Classic hamburger buns work well for serving Sloppy Joes. You can choose between seeded or unseeded buns based on your preference. Other options such as brioche buns, potato rolls, or Kaiser buns also make great choices. Toasting the buns briefly before assembling the Sloppy Joes helps prevent them from getting soggy.

Can I add extra vegetables to the Sloppy Joes?

Absolutely! Adding extra vegetables to the Sloppy Joes is a great way to incorporate more nutrition into the dish. Finely chop up some zucchini, mushrooms, or carrots and mix them in with the onions and bell peppers while sautéing. This not only adds flavor but also increases the nutritional value of the meal.

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By Amina
Meet Amina, a passionate blogger, expert SEO writer, and talented part-time copywriter. With her website, WorldCounseling.com, she dives deep into the realms of self-discovery, personal growth, and mental well-being. Amina's engaging articles provide valuable insights and practical advice to help her readers navigate life's challenges with confidence.
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