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Sloppy Joes

Sloppy Joes just got an upgrade. A few more veggies and definitely more lip-smacking taste than you remember. Served on toasted hamburger buns, or whatever you like really. Just make sure that you have lots of napkins on hand. LOTS of napkins.

A skillet filled with sloppy Joe meat mixture, flanked by a filled, untapped sandwich with a toasted top and a bag of sesame seed buns.

Adapted from Sam Sifton | The NY Times Cooking No-Recipe Recipes | Ten Speed Press, 2021

I love these served on toasted potato buns, with steamed broccoli on the side, a walk for the dog, and bed.–Sam Sifton


Yep. You can even make them so far ahead of time that you’ll have to thaw them out before you serve them. The filling itself can be made up to a day ahead, then reheated and put together whenever you’re ready. You can also scoop the filling into freezer bags (in whatever portion you like) and thaw later on. Perfect for busy weeknights or when you’ve suddenly got a house full of hungry kids.

Sloppy Joes

A skillet filled with sloppy Joe meat mixture, flanked by a filled, untapped sandwich with a toasted top and a bag of sesame seed buns.

This simple version of sloppy Joes, the classic sandwich served in school cafeterias and at kitchen counters across the country, comes together in about 20 minutes and can be made with ground beef, chicken, or turkey. As the name suggests, they are messy, so serve with a fork and plenty of napkins.

Sam Sifton

Prep 30 mins

Cook 30 mins

Total 1 hr



6 servings

442 kcal

No ratings yet

  • In a large Dutch oven over medium heat, warm the oil. Toss in the onion, celery, jalapeño, and red bell pepper, and cook until the vegetables are very soft, 10 to 15 minutes. Stir in the garlic and cook for 2 minutes more.
  • Dump the ground beef into the pot and stir, let sizzle until well browned, about 10 minutes.
  • Reduce the heat to medium-low, stir in the tomato paste and cook for 3 minutes. Pour in the tomato sauce, mix and let simmer for 3 minutes more. Stir in the Worcestershire sauce and hot sauce and continue cooking until the mixture is quite thick, 5 to 10 minutes. Season to taste with salt.
  • Toast the hamburger buns, load them up, and dig in.

Serving: 1servingCalories: 442kcal (22%)Carbohydrates: 25g (8%)Protein: 24g (48%)Fat: 27g (42%)Saturated Fat: 9g (56%)Polyunsaturated Fat: 2gMonounsaturated Fat: 12gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 81mg (27%)Sodium: 516mg (22%)Potassium: 516mg (15%)Fiber: 2g (8%)Sugar: 5g (6%)Vitamin A: 217IU (4%)Vitamin C: 7mg (8%)Calcium: 104mg (10%)Iron: 4mg (22%)

Recipe Testers’ Reviews

Originally published August 17, 2021


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