On Sloppy Joes!

I know we all just got done stuffing our faces and bellies with delicious Thanksgiving food (#allthegravy), but I recently shared this recipe with a coworker, and she loved it, so I thought, okay, we’re already getting overly full, so what’s another filling recipe for those post-feast days, or for whenever something gooey and messy is needed at the end of a long work week (or work day as I’m sure we all have those every once in a while)!

A few notes though. 1) I LOVE Worcestershire sauce, so I am VERY heavy-handed with it in this recipe. I think its peppery tang helps cut the heaviness of the meat, BUT if you prefer the tomato-y flavor, just simply halve the amount that I’ve included. OR, if you’re like me and you can’t get enough Worcestershire, add the amount I’ve listed, taste, and then add more if you think it could be more pronounced, which I have also done. I do think the amount I’ve given is a good starting point for those who embrace the tang, but again, halve if it’s too abrasive a flavor for you, or add more if you want it to stand at the forefront!

2) Buns. Everyone is different in how they’ve eaten their Sloppy Joes, but I think it’s fun to try different buns to see what works best for your messy masterpiece. If you prefer more of a meaty mixture, then I think a hamburger bun is going to work in your favor, but if you’re more focused on developing the flavors of the sauce (which means a runnier/messier Slop), then I feel a hamburger bun is more likely to disintegrate before you finish your sammich! But others love that, so again, it’s totally up to you and your preference, but if you’d like to try something a little more substantial that can stand up to just about any kind of mess you can imagine, I really like pretzel buns OR Kaiser buns! In both instances, they are soft & salty enough to stand up to a runny sauce and a lot of meat!

And for all those who are Manwhich lovers, trust me, making the sauce from scratch really does make a difference, not to mention that this recipe is super easy to make, flavor-packed, and one of the most enjoyable meals where getting messy is required and napkins are completely useless. If you’re ready to get your hands (and face) dirty, then this sloppy concoction is right up your alley! — Cooking Maggie

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Ingredients:

  • 1 1/4 lb ground beef
  • 1 bell pepper (red or green), diced
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 teaspoon red wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon fresh cracked black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons Worcestershire Sauce
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 2 cups pureed tomatoes (or canned tomato sauce when in a pinch)
  • salt & additional ground pepper to taste
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • oil for the pan
  • Optional: 1 teaspoon red chili flakes
  • 4 rolls (hamburger, Kaiser, or pretzel buns)
  • Optional Toppings: fresh tomatoes, dill pickles, sliced cheddar cheese, cole slaw

 

Instructions:

  1. Brown meat, add cracked black pepper.
  2. Add pepper and onion, until soft. Then add garlic till aromatic, about 30 seconds.
  3. Add tomato sauce, tomato paste, vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, and brown sugar.
  4. Let simmer and thicken for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  5. Taste and season with additional salt and pepper.
  6. Serve with sliced pickles & cheddar cheese on your preferred bread roll, then enjoy the mess!!

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