How To Make The Best Sloppy Joes

How To Make The Best Sloppy Joes

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We all know how to make the best sloppy joes recipe, right? Well, I am sharing some of my old family recipes so you can add these to your family reunion meals, regular family meals or neighborhood parties. You can make these with beans or all different kinds of meats. I live in Utah and when I got married about six months later I soon learned about deer hunting. Now, keep in mind I had not eaten animals that were shot in the wild before. Nope, my mom picked up meat at the local supermarket. I should have known that Utah was a big hunting state because when I dated my now husband Mark, he made me my first venison sandwich. One thing that helped me down that sandwich was the Miracle Whip and pickles, lots of bread and butter pickles. Isn’t it funny the things you learn when you meet someone from another city or state? I had never tasted Miracle whip, and I grew up on Mayonnaise. I was only aware of sweet pickles and dill pickles. Life is always a new adventure!

Now our pantry is stocked with Mayonnaise, Miracle Whip and bread and butter pickles. No venison, just saying. I must share my first experience with my husband bringing home a deer complete with antlers. Here’s the deal, I had never seen a deer, let alone cut up a deer to package, freeze and eat. Mark hung the deer out in the garage for about a week, as I remember. The next step was to bring this huge dead animal into my kitchen and learn to cut it up. I was 20 years old. I will never forget that experience. Mark was beaming with pride to have shot this deer to provide us with meat we could eat for a year. Just so you know, in Utah around deer hunting season you will see trucks driving down the highway or freeway with hunters smiling ear to ear with their animal hanging over the bed of the truck. The antlers have to visible in the truck because that shows what a great hunter(s) the guy(s) and the gal(s) in the truck are. Ego can be a pretty important thing in a hunters’ world, don’t you know! I had to call my friend, Wally to confirm this! LOL!

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I really tried every recipe in the world to make that meat edible, nope I couldn’t eat it. I do have some cute nephews and friends that hunt and they know exactly how to clean every wild animal and cool it down to make it edible. They even package their own meat. I applaud them, I will be a vegetarian. Now let’s get going on the sloppy joe recipes I want to share with you today. I made a PRINTABLE for you at the bottom of the post. Lodge cast iron frying pans work great to make these recipes: Lodge Cast-Iron Skillet L10SK3ASHH41B, 12-Inch

Sloppy Joes

1. My Favorite Sloppy Joes Recipe


2-6 ounce cans tomato paste with equal amounts of water added

4 lbs. freshly ground beef, venison, elk, turkey or cooked beans of choice

2 onions, chopped

2 tablespoons butter

1/2 cup brown sugar

4 teaspoons salt

1/2 cup white vinegar

1/2 cup prepared mustard (bottled-not dry)

1/2 cup barbecue sauce

4 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce

Fry the meat of choice with the chopped onion until cooked and browned. Add the remaining ingredients in the order shown. Cook on low in a slow cooker for 4-6 hours, depending on your slow cooker temperature.

2. Slightly Spicy Sloppy Joes


4 lbs. ground beef

1-1/2 cups chopped onion

2 tablespoons butter

2 cups ketchup

1 cup water

1/2 cup celery, chopped very fine

2 tablespoons lemon juice

2 tablespoons brown sugar

2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce

1/2 teaspoon dry mustard

3 teaspoons sea salt

1 teaspoon white vinegar


Grab a frying pan and melt the butter, add the chopped onions and cook until tender. Add the hamburger and cook until lightly brown. I usually drain the grease, but lately, there hasn’t been much grease to drain. Add the cooked onions and meat into your slow cooker and add the remaining ingredients. Cook in your slow cooker on low for 6-8 hours, depending on the temperature of your unit.

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3. Simple Sloppy Joes


1 15-ounce can tomato sauce

2 pounds ground beef

2 medium onions, chopped

1 10-1/2 ounce can tomato soup

1/2 cup ketchup

2 tablespoons brown sugar

1-1/2 teaspoons chili powder

1-1/2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce

1 teaspoon salt

1-1/2 teaspoon dry mustard


Grab a frying pan and cook the chopped onions with the hamburger until browned. Drain the excess grease. Add the remaining ingredients and cook in your slow cooker on low for 6-8 hours, depending on the temperature of your slow cooker.

4. Sweet Saucy Sloppy Joes


8 ounce can tomato sauce

2 pounds hamburger

1 chopped onion

1 tablespoon butter

1/4 cup brown sugar

2 teaspoons salt

1/4 cup white vinegar

1-1/3 tablespoon mustard (not dry)

2 tablespoons barbecue sauce

2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce

1/4 cup chopped bell pepper


Brown the onions, peppers, and hamburger in the butter. Drain the grease if applicable. Add the cooked ingredients into your slow cook and then add the remaining ingredients. Cook on low for 6-8 hours, depending on how the temperature of your slow cooker.

Here is a PRINTABLE of the recipes: Food Storage Moms Sloppy Joe Recipes

These sloppy joe recipes would be great to make for your next family reunion, neighborhood party or church gathering. We can make these with freeze dried hamburger as well, and we  don’t need to cook the freeze-dried meat because it’s already cooked and ready to go! Thanks again for being prepared for the unexpected.

My Favorite Cooking Items:

  1. You can cook outside with a Dutch oven if you have charcoal stored. The six-quart Lodge Dutch oven is the one I use: Lodge Camp Dutch Oven, 6 Qt
  2. One pound bread pans: Fat Daddio’S 2-Piece Bread Pan Set
  3. I had to replace my old Crockpot with a new one recently: Crock-Pot SCCPVL610-S Programmable Cook and Carry Oval Slow Cooker, 6-Quart


  1. Linda, what a delightful post!! My husband & I got a good laugh from it!!! You are a hoot!!! Enjoyed it very much. Made me wonder where are you from? I do not care for venison, either & I was born & raised in Idaho. Thanks for the recipes, it is always good to try a new variation of a recipe.

    • Hi LaRene, I’m so glad you enjoyed the post about the venison! I was born in California and raised in Las Vegas, Nevada. I moved to Salt Lake City, Utah when I was 18-1/2 years old. I met my husband and we married about 6 months later in Salt Lake City, Utah. (blind date) Now we live in Southern Utah, no snow to shovel! I hope you are your husband are doing well! Love you, girlfriend!

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