Sloppy Joes

I love sloppy joes.

Sloppy Joes |

For two reasons. Reason one: I grew up eating sloppy joes at my grandparents so every time I eat them it reminds of them and home. Reason two: I love ground beef, ketchup, and bread and butter pickles.

Sloppy Joes are one of my family’s favorite meals. Every time we travel back to Iowa to visit my parents, my mom has a gigantic batch waiting for us in the crock pot. This warms my heart.

Sloppy Joes |

It’s a one pot meal that is easy to make, can be frozen, thawed, and re-heated later, and can be made ahead of time. I actually prefer making them the night before and re-heating the next day – they taste better.

I’m also one of those that adores ketchup on everything. You know who else loves ketchup? My niece, Susannah. No wonder we have this special connection? She dips her hot dog or grilled cheese into ketchup and then enjoys just the ketchup. I’m not saying I condone this, but I totally understand it. We get each other.

And bread and butter pickles? I eat those straight out of the jar.

Sloppy Joes |

Not a fan of the pickles? Eat these bad boys as is. I won’t judge.

Sloppy Joes |

I used King’s Hawaiian Buns and I don’t think I will ever go back to regular buns. They’re soft, chewy, slightly sweet and compliment the salty, sweet, and tangy meat so well.

Sloppy Joes |

I made ’em extra sloppy for ya! 😉

Sloppy Joes
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 4
  • 2 pounds ground beef
  • 1 white onion, diced
  • 1 green pepper, diced
  • 2 teaspoons minced garlic (2 garlic cloves)
  • 2 cups ketchup
  • 2 tablespoons yellow mustard
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 5 dashes tobasco sauce
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil for skillet
  • Buns
  • Bread and butter pickles
  1. Add olive oil to a large skillet or dutch oven and place over medium heat. Add ground beef and cook until brown, about 10 minutes. Drain fat.
  2. Add onion, green pepper, and garlic. Cook for an additional 4 minutes.
  3. Next add ketchup, mustard, brown sugar, tobasco sauce, and black pepper and stir.
  4. Turn heat down to low. Add water and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 20 minutes or until thickened.
  5. Serve on a toasted bun with bread and butter pickles.
Sloppy Joes taste even better the next day. Prepare ahead of time, refrigerate, then re-heat on the stove or in a crock pot.


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  1. Mary Delgado says

    I’ve been making homemade sloppy joes using my own recipe, but something was always missing. I’m going to try this recipe – it may contain the missing ingredient I’ve been looking for! Thank you!

  2. michelle says

    So glad for the pic. Out here Sweet Rolls are pastries like Danish and cinnamon raisin snails. Just reading recipe was sort of strange—but at the county fair yesterday they had Krispy Kreme Donut Hamburgers– so I took a look.
    Now that I am sure you meant something like hamburger buns I am very happy.


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