Essential Sloppy Joes

Sloppy Joes. I don’t know if I ever used a recipe for the basic Sloppy Joe. They always seemed to come from standing in front of the fridge and rummaging through the cupboards as the clock struck five and I was wondering what to make for dinner!

Essential Sloppy Joe
Essential Sloppy Joe

My Mom used to make the old Campbell’s Gumbo Soup recipe and I have another recipe on my site for a marvelous, long simmering Sloppy Joe, Kaltenbach Farms Sloppy Joe, that serves a huge crowd (or gives you some for the freezer), but here’s my go to dinner save – more along the lines of Manwich. This is so easy, don’t buy that stuff!

Soft and slightly sweet with just a bit of a bite from the mustard powder (yep, mustard powder, as in my Top Secret Super Stealth Arsenal of Ingredients) these are a fabulous save! Especially if you have a pound of hamburger you can thaw in the microwave in a few minutes.


Make them and you’ll wonder why you don’t make them more often – heck, double the recipe, you won’t be sorry! I had to estimate amounts as I threw these together the other night, so feel free to adjust to your taste. I tend to go on the light side of the sugar spectrum.

Essential Sloppy Joe
Essential Sloppy Joe

Remember to buy items like ground beef on sale, and divide into portions and freeze, especially if you won’t be using them for burgers. There’s no sense in buying ground beef at full price.

Watch for sales on bell peppers, too, and buy a few extra to last for the next week when you see them on sale. If you click over to the Kaltenbach Farms Zesty Sloppy Joes, you’ll see a link for Strategies Applied that gives more money saving tips.

Essential Sloppy Joe
Essential Sloppy Joe

Essential Sloppy Joe

  • Servings: 6
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1/2 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 half bell pepper, finely chopped
  • 3/4 cup ketchup
  • 3 tablespoons to 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 to 3/4 teaspoon dried mustard powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • salt and pepper to taste

Brown hamburger, along with onion and bell pepper. Drain well. Add the rest of ingredients, stirring well. Bring to a simmer and stir now and then for 10 minutes or so until desired moisture level is reached.

Taste and add salt and pepper as desired.

Serve on buns with pickle.

from the kitchen of

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You know I’ll be bringing this to our Throwback Thursday #40 Link Party, hosted by Quinn of Dad What’s for Dinner, Meaghan of 4 Sons are Us, Alli of Tornadough, Carlee from Cooking with Carlee and Moi! That’s right – me!

Click over to our latest Throwback Thursday post for links to their blogs and social media, rules and more info or just click on the blue leapfrog, below, to view all the Throwback Thursday Posts or enter your own!

I’ll also be bring this to Angie’s Fiesta Friday, so check it out!