Ah, that Pioneer Woman. Everything over there is delicious. I don’t usually consider her food to be terribly original or inventive, just a really great solid version of whatever she’s trying to make. That’s what you get with these sloppy joes. If you’ve never made sloppy joes “from scratch” and have been relying on a mix or a can, you’re definitely in for a treat. The flavors are brighter, there’s just the right amount of spice, and browning the buns with butter is a great, simple touch that really makes a difference.
(If you have made sloppy joes from scratch, there’s probably not anything earth shattering about this recipe. My family used ketchup, mustard, and brown sugar to make their sauce, and this is certainly in that family. But the onion & bell pepper adds something to the mix, as does the fresh garlic.) This recipe is extremely flexible though, so you can leave out pretty much any of the ingredients that you don’t care for.
Sloppy Joes a la Pioneer Woman
Serves 8; Adapted from thepioneerwoman.com
- 2 Tablespoons Butter
- 2-½ pounds Ground Beef
- ½ Large White or Yellow Onion, Diced
- ½ Large Green Bell Pepper, Diced
- 5 cloves Garlic, Minced
- 1-½ cups Ketchup
- 1 cup Water
- 2 Tablespoons Brown Sugar
- 2 teaspoons Chili Powder (or use more or less to taste)
- 1 teaspoon Dry Mustard
- ½ teaspoon Crushed Red Pepper Flakes (or use more or less to taste)
- Worcestershire Sauce, To Taste
- 2 Tablespoons Tomato Paste (optional)
- Tabasco Sauce (optional; to taste)
- Salt To Taste
- Freshly Ground Black Pepper, to taste
- Kaiser Rolls, Hamburger Buns, or other soft sandwich rolls
Add two tablespoons of butter to a large skillet or dutch oven over medium high heat. Add ground beef and cook until brown. Drain most of the fat and discard.
Add onions, green pepper, and garlic. Cook for 3-4 minutes, or until vegetables begin to get soft.
Add ketchup, brown sugar, chili pepper, dry mustard, and water. Stir to combine and simmer for 15 minutes, adding salt and pepper to taste. Also add tomato paste, Worcestershire, and Tabasco if desired. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed.
To prepare the buns:
Spread both halves of each bun with butter and brown on a griddle or skillet. Spoon meat mixture over the rolls. Serve hot.