I grew up in the Midwest in the ’60s eating various and assorted “loose-meat” sandwiches, mainly Maid-Rite Sandwiches or as they are sometimes called Tavern Burgers. I never heard the word, Sloppy Joe, until I was an adult and moved away, and then no-one seemed to know what a Maid-Rite was!
If you’ve never encountered the Maid-Rite Sandwiches, they are seasoned ground beef served on a soft, white bun (preferably steamed.) It is a lot like a Sloppy Joe but doesn’t have that sweet tomato sauce that Sloppy Joes have. This is the Maid-Rite Sandwich I grew up on, the one my Mom made. When I left home, I made them, too, and my kids grew up on these Maid-Rites.
About Maid-Right Sandwiches:
The name comes from the Maid-Rite franchise chain, although the recipe for this home-made version is quite a bit different than the original franchise version, which only has a blend of secret spices and no tomato at all. And no Gumbo Soup, either.
Yeah, Campbell’s Gumbo Soup is the surprise ingredient in these Maid-Rites. Campbell’s Chicken Gumbo Soup to be specific. Yeah, really. Now you know (if you follow me, and if you don’t, I’d love it if you did!) I like to do clean eating, from-scratch cooking, but in this case, nostalgia wins out! (Besides, talk about an easy recipe!)
Maid-Rite Sandwiches are just good basic family fare (but you could always add a little hot sauce) and this makes enough to feed a crowd & any leftovers, if you have them are even better the next day. It’s a perfect meal to make any time you have a busy night and If you have a smaller family, maybe you’ll want to stash some in the freezer.
While I almost always serve my Maid-Rite Sandwiches on buns, the cheap, soft, squishy kind, just like we had when I was a kid, the Maid-Rite Sandwiches filling is great as a stuffing for a baked potato, zucchini boat, or in stuffed peppers. I usually serve my Maid-Rite Sandwiches with sweet corn and fries, like my Stupid Simple French Fries or potato wedges, like my Bomb Baked Potato Wedges. Today, we served them with baby potatoes just because I had them on hand.
Making Maid-Right Sandwiches:
I’m giving you two recipes for Maid-Right Sandwiches, here. One is the traditional stove-top version and the other an Instant Pot recipe. Both are easy, but what the instant pot buys here is a little time saving and a long-simmered taste with no stirring or watching. I love the ability to set it and forget it and walk away until it’s done with no worries about stirring or scorching. Or the mess you get with stovetop cooking…
By the way, if you don’t want to make so much on the stovetop, just half everything in the recipe. I never make a lesser amount because it’s so easy to freeze if I have extra and I love having a couple of quick meals available at a moment’s notice. If you’re cooking in the Instant Pot, you won’t want to half the recipe because you’ll need the volume of liquid to produce the steam.
Saving Money on Maid-Rite Sandwiches:
As far as price savings, it’s the everyday items that really add up, more so than the occasional specialty item. We always tend to shop well if we’re buying something that costs a lot, and we tend to discount how much paying just a little bit more than we should, every week on the everyday items we buy often costs us.
If your family uses two pounds of ground beef a week, over a year you’ll see savings by stocking up and freezing when it’s at a rock bottom low, and you’ll usually see a low like that around once a quarter. 2 pounds x 52 weeks x $1.89 sales price = $196.56. At $2.49 a pound, it’s $258.96. At $4.49 a pound, it’s $466.96. That’s potentially about a 270 dollar difference in just one grocery item, and the only thing needed to attain that savings is to buy your ground beef at the right time. Just a little food for thought.
Maid-Rite Sandwiches – Instant Pot or Stove-top
Note: timing is longer for stovetop version.
- Total Time: 25 minutes
- Yield: about 15 servings 1x
- Category: Beef Main Dish
- Cuisine: American
- 2 pounds ground beef
- 1/2 onion finely diced (or 1/2 teaspoon onion powder)
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 2 cans (10 3/4 ounces) Chicken Gumbo Soup, one can strained and liquid discarded
- 1/2 cup ketchup
- 2 heaping tablespoons plain yellow mustard
Instant Pot Instructions:
Preheat the instant pot using the Saute function. Add the ground beef & onion & cook until the beef is no longer pink, using a wooden spoon or potato masher to break down the ground beef. Remove the instant pot liner and drain excess fat, if desired, and return the pot & ground beef mixture to the Instant Pot.
Add the remaining ingredients, except the buns. Add the lid and seal and set to high pressure, seven minutes. When time is up, use the quick release.
The beef mixture will still have quite a bit of liquid in it. Press the clear button, then the saute button and simmer, stirring now and then, until reduced to the point that when a spoon is run across the bottom of the pan, the space doesn’t fill in immediately with liquid. Taste and adjust seasonings.
Serve on buns with desired accompaniments.
Add ground beef and onion to a large high-sided pan or Dutch oven. Cook over medium-high heat until beef is no longer pink, using a using a wooden spoon or potato masher to break down. Drain excess fat, if desired, and return the pan to the stove-top.
Add the remaining ingredients, except buns; bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, stirring now and then, for 10 to 15 minutes, or until mixture reaches desired thickness.
Simmer to the point that when a spoon is run across the bottom of the pan, the trail doesn’t fill in immediately with liquid. Taste and adjust seasonings.
Serve on buns with desired accompaniments.
Keywords: Canned Soup, Family Recipe, Freezes Well, Ground Beef, Gumbo Soup, Instant Pot, maid-rite, Sandwiches, Sloppy Joes
I’ll be posting Maid-Right Sandwiches on Fiesta Friday #189; Fiesta Friday is an ongoing “link” party where bloggers join together and share their best recipes and party ideas of the week.