The World’s Best Sloppy Joes are healthy, delicious, easy and fast. Both kids and adults love this mid century creation. What more could you ask for!
Please note: This post contains an affiliate link to my favorite time-saving gadget used to make this recipe.
If you’re like me, anytime you make sloppy Joes you brown up a pound of ground beef or turkey and grab a can from your cupboard to mix in. Well, not anymore! Give up the preservatives and high fructose corn syrup and make tastier ones from scratch — in a snap!
A Mid Century Meal That’s Still a Favorite Today
Sloppy Joes are thought to have originated in Sioux City, Iowa at a corner joint called Ye Old Tavern. Supposedly a cook named Joe combined the popular loose meat (ground hamburger) sandwich with tomato sauce, and the sloppy joe was born. It first appeared in cookbooks in the 1940’s and has remained a casual family favorite ever since.
The 1950’s recipe shown on this vintage card tastes very similar to the popular canned sloppy joe mixes, only better. The freshly chopped onion, celery and green pepper make a world of difference in the taste of this dish.
I used to dread it when a recipe called for chopped items like onions and peppers. Not only are the vapors too much for my eyes, but it took me a long time to chop and dice. And even though I have taken knife skills classes, I’m still dangerous when I wield a knife. Kevin has had to come running with a bandage more times than I care to remember!
One day when I was at my niece’s house she whipped out a little gadget called a Chop Wizard, slid in a slice of onion, and viola! Perfect, evenly diced onion in one second. I couldn’t believe it. I ordered one of my own and I use it almost daily. It has both a larger chop blade and a smaller dice blade. I used the dice blade to prepare the onion, green pepper, and celery for this recipe.
Here’s What You’ll Need to Get Cooking
The ingredients you need to make the World’s Best Sloppy Joes from scratch are:
- Ground beef or ground turkey
- Yellow onion
- Green Pepper
- Worcestershire sauce
- Sea salt
- White vinegar
- Tomato sauce
- Buns for serving
Helpful Hints For Making Sloppy Joes
- Measure and prep all of your ingredients in advance to make cooking go very fast.
- Cook beef or turkey in skillet until almost, but not quite, fully browned. Then add vegetables and simmer for 5-7 minutes while meat continues to brown and vegetables tenderize.
- Cook ahead of time then store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days or in a freezer bag in the freezer for up to 6 months, and reheat for a fast meal.
1 pound ground beef or turkey
1 cup diced yellow onion
1/2 cup diced green pepper, seeds removed
1/4 cup diced celery
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon white vinegar
8 ounce can tomato sauce
1/4 cup ketchup
- In a skillet, cook the meat over medium heat until it is almost browned, then add the onion, green pepper and celery. Cook on medium-low until onions are clear and vegetables are crisp-tender, 5-7 minutes.
- Add all remaining ingredients to the skillet and simmer for 30 minutes. Serve over hamburger buns, or store in refrigerator or freezer for re-heating later.
Meat mixture can be stored in the refrigerator for 3 days or in freezer bags in the freezer for up to 6 months.
Serve on slider buns for appetizers. Kids also love sloppy joes on slider buns for their meal!
Keywords: From Scratch Sloppy Joes, Old Fashioned Sloppy Joes, Mid Century Dinners, 1950’s recipes, 1960’s recipes, 1940’s recipes