"No obstacles are insurmountable when God commands and we obey"
- - Heber J. Grant
June 09, 2015
The Best Sloppy Joes
by Melanie Gunnell

I know it gets redundant reading recipes that start with “the best” or “the ultimate” but these really are the best sloppy joes I’ve ever had. Really. The best. To be honest, I never liked sloppy joes until I tried these.

It was the dreaded meal (that and Shepherd’s Pie) that my mom made growing up (sorry mom!). I never even thought about making them for my family until I came across this recipe a few years ago and decided to take a chance. They were delicious and I’ve been making them ever since.

These are less tomato-ey and more smokey and BBQ-ey than traditional sloppy joes. Keep in mind that the roll makes all the difference — good bread equals a fabulous sloppy joe! (I served these sloppy joes on my french bread rolls.) Quick, easy, classic and totally delicious.

The Best Sloppy Joes
Yield: Serves 4-6


  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil

  • 2 onions, roughly chopped

  • 2 ½ pounds ground beef or lean ground turkey

  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste

  • 2/3 cup smoky BBQ sauce (or this awesome homemade version)

  • ½ cup ketchup

  • ¼ cup Worcestershire sauce

  • ¼ cup soy sauce

  • Freshly ground black pepper

  • 8 to 12 rolls or buns


  1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees.

  2. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onions and cook, stirring, until they start to turn translucent, about 4 minutes. Add the beef and cook, stirring and breaking up the meat, until it is finely crumbled, the liquid boils off and the meat begins to brown, about 10 minutes. Drain the grease off the meat and onions. Stir in the tomato paste, and keep stirring until the meat is coated. Add the BBQ sauce, ketchup, Worcestershire, soy sauce, and pepper, and bring to a boil. Cook until the sauce is slightly thickened, 4 to 5 minutes. You can make the sloppy joe meat up to 2 days in advance and reheat it over low heat or in the microwave.

  3. Wrap the rolls in aluminum foil and warm in the oven for about 10 minutes. Serve the sloppy joes hot with the warmed rolls.

  4. Notes — Freezable Meals: The leftover sloppy joes can be frozen. I store it in a freezer-safe container and then thaw in the refrigerator prior to serving. I reheat on medium-low heat in a saucepan on the stove.

Recipe Source: adapted from Dave Lieberman

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About Melanie Gunnell

Melanie Gunnell is a food-loving, chocolate-obsessed mom who has a desperate need to share her favorite tried-and-true recipes with the world. In a past life she graduated from Brigham Young University with a degree in public health, but for the past ten years, stay-at-home motherhood has been her job along with blogging-from-home for the past five.

She resides in the brilliantly cold tundra of Northern Minnesota with her husband and their brood of five children: four boys and one tiny, bossy girl. Dark chocolate (particularly the act of shoving chocolate chips in her mouth whilst hiding in the pantry) is her coping skill of choice for both the never-ending winters and the never-ending wrestling matches in her front room.


Calling(s): Primary pianist, CTR 6/7 Primary teacher, Activity Day leader

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