Monday, May 21, 2012

Crock Pot Sloppy Joes

Is there any food better than the food from our childhood?  I bet all of us can name at least 5 foods that we ate as a kid that we will always love and remember. My husband will tell you his Mom made the best grilled cheese. His favorite meal (made by his Mom of course) was tomato soup and grilled cheese. And now that his Mom has passed away, I think that is an even more cherished memory for him. No one makes food as good as Mom.

One food I absolutely loved to eat as a kid was Sloppy Joes. My Mom worked full-time but she always worked real hard to make sure we had homecooked meals during the week.   Even though she would be exhausted from work (she was a school custodian), she would still do her best to cook us our favorite foods. And my Mom could get creative and it seemed like she topped everything with cheese slices. She put sliced cheese on sloppy joes, stuffed peppers, sandwiches, and she even sliced it up and put it in scrambled eggs or in salads. I think she always wanted to make sure we got our daily intake of dairy especially since I've never been a good milk-drinker.

Now, I ain't got no problem with good ole Manwich in a can. I like it. My Mom used it often and I still use it today. But it's kinda like spaghetti sauce. Sometimes you want to make it up from scratch when you have time. And you get such great flavor and hopefully enough leftovers to freeze for later. I'm making this Sloppy Joe filling in the slow cooker.  I think it gets tastier as it simmers away gently in the crock pot. But you can definitely make these on the stove top (see notes below).
2 pounds ground beef
1 small onion, chopped
1 (8 oz.) can tomato sauce
1/2 cup ketchup
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup brown sugar, packed
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 tbsp. chili powder
1/4 tsp. garlic powder
1 tbsp. cider vinegar
2 tbsp. yellow mustard
1 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
salt & pepper, to taste
8 slices American cheese
8 Hamburger Buns, toasted
Chances are you already have lots of these ingredients already in your pantry.
(garlic powder not pictured)

In a large pan, brown ground beef with chopped onion.
Crumble and cook until no longer pink.
Drain excess grease.
Put ground beef mixture into your slow cooker.
Add in the rest of your ingredients (except cheese and hamburger buns)
Give it all a good stir.
Cover and cook on low for about 4-6 hours.
When ready to serve, toast your hamburger buns. I usually just put a dab of butter in my cast iron skillet. Put the heat on medium. Then put in the buns. 
Mmmm....nice and buttery and toasty.
Put filling onto each of your buns and top with cheese.
 I like to eat mine as an open-faced sandwich.
My husband prefers his the traditional way.
Cook's Notes: To make this on the stove top, brown ground beef and onion in a large pot.
Drain excess grease and return beef mixture to pot. Stir in the rest of the ingredients (omit the flour).   Bring mixture to a boil. Cover and reduce heat to medium low and allow it to simmer for about 30 minutes.


recipe slightly modified from Southern Living recipe


  1. Sloppy Joes are still a favorite of mine. I don't think I've ever met a person who was unfamiliar with Sloppy Joes. Great adaptation for the crockpot!

  2. How funny, I was just thinking about sloppy joes last night! It's like you read my mind :) I do have all of this in my pantry,so guess what I'm making for dinner? Best of all, bye-bye Manwich!

  3. I'm going to make these this week! I think my husband, Mr. Picky-Eater, must have been in your family some how because he loves Kraft Cheese Singles!! He WILL NOT eat anything else.....and he puts it on every thing. In other words, he puts a Single on every single thing! : ) Love you and all your recipes!! Congrats on 10,000 likers/followers etc..

  4. I am really starting to feel like I need a slow cooker...

  5. I'd put meat to thaw for Sloppy Joe's tonight; it's like you read my mind. Checking out your recipe now.
    Catherine Denton

  6. I love sloppy joes. We ate them all the time as kids. Just such a fun meal.

  7. What a great meal....especially with that melted cheese on top. YUUUUMMMM! I'm glad to see a picture of your hubby too....being a visual person, I like knowing what folks look like. What a gorgeous family you are! Thanks for sharing another family favorite...have a yummy day Friend. XO

  8. Looks great! Love my slow cooker! Even in the summer!

  9. My 5 yo breaks out in a really bad rash anytime I've made sloppy joe's using Manwich. I'll give this a try. What is the flour for? To thicken it up?

  10. I made these for our pot luck Christmas lunch at work. I cooked my meat and mixed it all at the house, and then when I got to work, I just plugged it in and let it cook while I worked. EVERYONE on the floor was yelling out, "WHAT IT THAT I SMELL?! IT SMELLS SOOOOOO GOOD!" I got as many compliments of the taste as I did the smell. It was excellent! I'll never do a "can" sloppy joe ever again.

  11. Just made this recipe today and OMG, DELICIOUS! Love your website and all your yummy recipes. I'm going to try out a few more in the next week and can't wait! :D

  12. My favorite part about your website it the picture of all the ingredients you use. Mainly because I buy mostly store brand items also. I thing most store brand items make a great dinner!! This recipe, along with 6 other recipes, will be on my menu for this week!

  13. I was curious how many servings this recipe makes? I am planning on making this for my husband's birthday!

    Thanks! Looks great :)

  14. Hi Ashley - this makes a good bit. I think it could easily serve 8-10 (depending on how generous your servings are :) ~Brandie

  15. I am making this for 30-35 people in a week. How much would you recommend making for this amount of people? Also, I will be making it the day before our event. Is this still good if reheated?

    1. Hi Trisha, this recipe will serve 8-10 people. So you would probably want to at least triple it. You can cut back the ground beef to about 1 1/2 pounds instead of the 2 pounds. That should help cut back on the cost a little for making so much of it.

  16. I am allergic to onions, so I am glad I found this recipe because I can not do the Manwhich stuff.. Thank you!

  17. going to make this today w/o the vinegar, looks really good!

  18. I have never really liked Sloopy Jo's but after making several of your recipes I decided to try it and I am completely in love with this one! I would recommend it to anyone!


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