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Simple sloppy Joe

Use a simple meat and tomato sauce, just season with your favorite herbs and spices.


1 lb beef (lean meat, ground or minced)
2 T cooking oil (any cooking oil, we like olive oil)
4⁄5 c tomato sauce (plain)
1⁄2 t salt (or to taste)
1⁄2 t sugar
1 pn pepper
4 bread (bread rolls, hamburger rolls)


Heat oil in a large skillet over a medium-high heat. Brown the beef.

Add tomato sauce, salt and pepper. cover and simmer for at least until the meat is done, about 15 minutes.

Halve the bread rolls and place each one, opened, on a plate.

Pour some meat sauce over each roll and serve.

Total time
21 minutes
Cooking time
Preparation time
5 servings


If you don't have cooked tomato sauce, substitute the tomato sauce with 2 cups passata (sieved tomatoes with no seeds or skin, comes in jars) or 3 cups canned chopped tomatoes and increase the simmering time to 30 minutes. Alternatively, use a flavored tomato sauce.

You could flavor your sloppy Joe with a dash of Tabasco or Worcestershire sauce. Try herbs 1 Tbs fresh chopped herbs or 1-2 tsp dried herbs -basil, oregano, marjoram, parsley are good options. Spices? coriander or cumin go well with tomato -add 1 tsp ground cumin or 1 tsp ground coriander. Mustard or crushed garlic are also a popular addition.

Substitute plain tomato sauce with barbecue sauce and a little ketchup, or just with ketchup and brown sugar with no compunction.

Add vegetables to your sloppy Joe.


American cuisine

Sloppy Joe on a bun is a popular school cafeteria lunch in New Jersey.

easy, meat
sandwiches, main course
New Jersey food recipes
Food in U.S.A, Mid Atlantic