A classic childhood memory for some households: Sloppy Joe’s. This recipe for quick and healthy sloppy joe’s can’t be easier, or more tasty. Ready in about 15 minutes, this will become your family’s go-to weeknight meal, guaranteed. The sloppy joe filling is a delicious balance of sweet and savory; slightly smoky, and just delicious. Pile the filling high on a fluffy bun for the ultimate comfort food, and serve it alongside some veggies for a well-rounded meal. This meal is one the whole family can enjoy, made with wholesome ingredients.
All about these Quick and Healthy Sloppy Joe’s
Traditionally, a sloppy joe is a sandwich served on a hamburger bun, filled with a mixture of ground meat seasoned with spices and tomatoes. The recipe, like many other classic American recipes, varies from region to region and from household to household. The name also varies from region to region, but one thing remains consistent: this is easy comfort food at its finest!
This recipe for sloppy joe’s is a combination of sweet and savory. The flavor is smoky and hearty, but it has notes of sweetness from the brown sugar and ketchup used in the sauce. It tastes similar to a Swedish meatball, and it is delicious!
So what makes this recipe “healthy” anyway?
This recipe uses beef, ketchup, and even brown sugar… so what exactly do I mean when I call it “healthy?” Some recipes swap out ground turkey or chicken for beef, but here, I use the real deal.
The only swaps that lighten this recipe up are the use of olive oil spray in place of the traditional butter or oil, and the use of 96/4 extra lean ground beef instead of a more fatty cut. Otherwise, everything else in this recipe is the real deal: real ketchup, real brown sugar. All the spices. All the flavor.
To me, eating healthier isn’t about eliminating food groups, but about using real ingredients, but tweaking the measurements to suit your needs. This recipe only uses 1 tablespoon of brown sugar, and in my opinion, it is plenty to sweeten the entire dish. When I tell you this dish is packed with flavor, I mean it! Of course, you can make your own substitutions to adjust the macros or to fit your lifestyle, like reduced sugar ketchup, brown sugar replacement, etc.
What you’ll need to make quick and healthy sloppy joe’s
- 96/4 extra lean ground beef
- You can find this cut of beef in Trader Joe’s or Aldi, and I also find the Laura’s Lean Ground Beef brand at Target.
- garlic cloves
- onion powder
- garlic powder
- ground mustard
- chili powder
- tomato paste
- Worcestershire sauce
- buns for serving
How to make quick and healthy sloppy joe’s
To make this recipe, you will only need 15 minutes! This is the quickest and easiest recipe you will ever make. It comes together so quickly, but develops so much flavor, you won’t believe it. To make this recipe, simply start out by chopping the onion and mincing the garlic. Spray olive oil spray in the frying pan, and preheat it over medium heat.
Add the onion to the pan, and cook it for about 5 minutes for it to become tender and start to caramelize. Next, add the ground beef to the pan, and break it apart with a wooden spoon. Add the onion powder, garlic powder, paprika, ground mustard, and chili powder to the beef. Continue cooking the beef for about 5 minutes or until its no longer pink.
Next, add the minced garlic and tomato paste to the pan, and stir to combine. Add the ketchup, water, brown sugar, and Worcestershire to a small bowl and whisk to combine. Add the sauce to the pan, and stir to combine. Let the mixture simmer for about 5-10 minutes or until it thickens to your desired consistency.
Serve on top of a fluffy bun for the ultimate bite!
Quick and Healthy Sloppy Joe's
- shallow Dutch oven, cast iron pan, or frying pan
- olive oil spray
- 1 onion, medium/large, chopped
- 1 lb 96/4 extra lean ground beef
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tsp onion powder
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1/2 tsp ground mustard
- 2 tsp chili powder
- 1 tbsp tomato paste
- 1 tbsp brown sugar
- 1 tsp worcestershire sauce
- 1/2 cup ketchup
- 3/4 cup water
- buns for serving (not included in macros)
- Preheat the pan over medium heat, and add olive oil spray.
- Chop the onion and add it to the pan.
- Cook the onion for 5 minutes or until tender and it starts to caramelize.
- Add the beef to the pan, and break it apart with a wooden spoon.
- Add the garlic powder, onion powder, ground mustard, paprika, and chili powder.
- Cook the beef with the spices for about 5 minutes or until it is no longer pink.
- Add the minced garlic to the pan, followed by the tomato paste.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the brown sugar, ketchup, worcestershire sauce, and water.
- Add this sauce to the pan with the beef, and simmer for about 5-10 minutes or until it reaches your desired consistency. Taste for seasoning.
- 4 WW points per 1/2 cup
You might also enjoy these quick and easy beef-based healthy recipes: