If you’re looking for a quick throw-together dinner, look no further. Sloppy joes are a family-friendly meal that takes just under 25 minutes to put together and only requires one pot (or pan!) so the clean-up is quick too. They are thick, saucy, smokey, and sweet.
My mom used to make us sloppy joes when we were kids and although it wasn’t in the regular rotation, I was always so excited whenever I saw them on the dinner table. I haven’t had them in a long time, but I had such a craving for them the other day that I had to make them.
My version of this messy sandwich is incredibly smokey thanks to liquid smoke and smoked paprika. It’s not exactly a typical flavor for a sloppy joe but I thought it’d be a welcome addition and I was not disappointed. My husband liked it a lot too, and he’s not usually a fan of sloppy joes.
How to make sloppy joes
- Brown the meat.
- Add the sloppy sauce ingredients.
- Simmer for 15 minutes until super thick!
- Toast some buns (optional but delicious).
- Assemble the sandwiches and make a mess trying to eat them.
That’s really it! These are going to be a staple in my house moving forward because it’s one of those meals both my husband and I actually agree on. He’s actually requested for it to become a weekly meal.
What to serve with sloppy joes
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Sloppy Joes (One-Pot!)
- 1¼ lb ground beef (we used 80/20)
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 2/3 cup ketchup
- 1 tbsp brown sugar (loosely packed, light or brown)
- 3 tbsp yellow mustard (prepared)
- 2 tbsp tomato paste
- 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
- 2 tsp dried minced onion flakes
- 2 tsp smoked paprika
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper powder
- 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
- 1 tsp liquid smoke (we used mesquite flavored)
- 1/2 cup water
- hamburger buns or sandwich rolls
- Set a large skillet on the stove over medium heat.
- Add the ground beef and the salt and break up the beef and cook until browned. Drain out the excess grease.
- When the beef is browned, add all the other ingredients and stir to combine. Set the heat to low and simmer for 15 minutes.
- While the beef simmers, feel free to toast up the buns.
- Serve on buns and enjoy!