Sloppy Joes

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Sloppy Joes are a sweet and tangy beef mixture that’s full of flavor and stuffed between hamburger buns. They are so delicious, easy to make, and will bring you back to your childhood!

Sloppy Joes start with a homemade beef mixture that is packed with flavor and stuffed between a hamburger bun.

If you’re in need of a family-friendly recipe that you can get on the dinner table quickly, then this Sloppy Joe recipe is for you!

It’s this exact recipe that officially got me out of my ‘sloppy joe slump’. When I was a kid you couldn’t get me to eat a sloppy joe to save my life, but now as an adult they are one of my go-to dinners. They are so simple to prepare and everyone loves them. Even my own kids request these babies. 🙂

Sloppy Joes start with a homemade beef mixture that is packed with flavor and stuffed between a hamburger bun.

The homemade beef mixture has the perfect sweet to tang ratio and is basically effortless! After it’s finished simmering you stuff it in-between hamburger buns and then dinner is done!

Now, I like to add in a little extra step to really set the sloppy joes over the edge: toast the buns. It gives the sandwiches a little bit of crispiness that is amazing! So if you have a few extra minutes, make sure to butter up those griddles and crisp up those buns for one unforgettable sloppy joe!

While my family loves to eat ours with a side of carrots and ranch, you could sweeten the deal with some  Parmesan Ranch Potato Chips, Creamy Macaroni and Cheese, or some Baked Onion Rings.

No matter how you choose to eat your sloppy joe or what you decide to serve it with, you’ll down them in no time. You really just can’t go wrong with a messy, meaty and totally mouth-watering sloppy joe.

Sloppy Joes start with a homemade beef mixture that is packed with flavor and stuffed between a hamburger bun.
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5 from 5 votes

Sloppy Joes

These Sloppy Joes are a family favorite. The beef mixture is packed with flavor!
Cook Time 25 minutes
Servings 6
Author Holly


  • 1 Tablespoon butter
  • 1/4 cup chopped yellow onion
  • 1 pound lean ground beef
  • 1 cup ketchup
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 Tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 6 hamburger buns


  • Melt butter in a large non-stick skillet over medium heat. Add the ground beef and onion. Cook and crumble until meat is no longer pink. Drain grease.
  • Add ketchup, water, brown sugar, Worcestershire sauce, vinegar, chili powder, salt and pepper. Stir well and let simmer over low heat for 20 minutes.
  • Butter the hamburger buns, if desired, and toast them under the broiler. Watch closely so they don't burn!
    Spoon meat mixture onto the bottom halves and cover with tops. Serve immediately and enjoy!


Freezer Instructions: Cook meat mixture according to instructions above. Let cool. Place in a freezer-safe container and freeze up to 2 months.
To reheat: Place container in fridge to let mixture safely thaw up to 24 hours. Place meat mixture in a large skillet and cook over medium-high heat until thoroughly heated.



Sloppy Joes start with a homemade beef mixture that is packed with flavor and stuffed between a hamburger bun.
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26 thoughts on “Sloppy Joes

  1. Sounds good. We love Sloppy Joes here too. My recipe is different though. I might just have to make mine in the next week and post it ’cause I don’t think I ever have. And then I might just have to give your recipe a try and compare. I love comfort food!

  2. I love these. I like to put a slice of Kraft singles cheese on mine and Lance likes sliced cheese with Tabasco. I should make these soon. Thanks!

  3. I was ho-hum about them as a child, too…but it was probably because they were always made with a can of “sauce.” I have a feeling, I’d love your version!!!

  4. Sloppy joes are the perfect comfort food!!! These sound like the ones mom used to make…but all I could remember was ketchup and brown sugar. Thank you so much for the awesome recipe!!!

  5. Came across your blog today and found a bunch of recipes I want to try now! So tonight I tried the Sloppy Joe. It was super easy, and really good. I did add about 1/4 – 1/2 cup finely diced mushrooms and 1/4 – 1/2 cup finely diced green peppers just to sneak in some more veggies, as well as 1 tsp of diced garlic. The only thing was it was a little runny, so next time I would maybe try adding only 1/4 cup water. But the flavor was great, and it was super easy so it will definitely be going on my list of repeat meals. Thanks for sharing, and I look forward to trying more of your recipes!

  6. This is amazing!!! So perfect for sloppy joes. Gives it a bbqish taste. Thanks so much for the recipe! I think ill actually make homemade bbq sauce from now on and use this as the recipe 😀

  7. Yum! Making these for dinner tonight! :)) I lost my go to recipe that I use lots so when I saw this one I bookmarked it. I’ve made a ton of your recipes & never once been disappointed! I’m a fan for life – lol!

  8. My family loves these sloppy joes! Can this recipe be doubled or tripled for large groups? Also, can it be made in the crock pot?

    1. Hi Kristin! This recipe doubles and triples easily. Yes, I would imagine it could be made in the crock pot. I would brown the ground beef first, then add all the ingredients to the crock pot as well. Set on low or warm for up to 4 hours or so. 🙂

  9. I haven’t had sloppy joes in years because my husband does not like them, he has a thing about sweet beef. But my daughter just asked me the other day why we never have had sloppy joes (she saw them at lunch at school). Your recipe has me drooling. I think I’m just going to have to make these for me and my daughter, and make everyone else eat left-overs. haha

  10. 5 stars
    Okay, just finished making this recipe…it’s officially the Sloppy Joe our family will be having from now on. Thank you! A splendid recipe!

  11. 5 stars
    I’ve made these a few times now and they are so delicious! Especially on a toasted brioche bun. Don’t skip that last step. My family really enjoyed them, too.

  12. 5 stars
    I just made this today and it was so easy to make and the taste was awesome. I followed the recipe exactly. We always did enjoy eating sloppy joes but always from a can but after making the recipe you posted there will be no more sloppy joes from a can for us. Your recipes you post i have never been disappointed yet. Thank you Holly for always posting such great recipes.

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