If there’s one simple sandwich that I never tire of, it would be homemade from scratch, old-fashioned, good ol’ Sloppy Joes!
Whether enjoyed open-faced on bread or toast, piled onto a bun, topped with a creamy slice of American cheese, there’s just something about a Sloppy Joe that takes you straight back in time to those endless summer days that seemed to last forever!
Lying in the backyard bare-footed on the warm, soft green grass watching lady bugs, the hot sun making your cheeks turn rosey-pink, and seeing every animal imaginable in the puffy, white cotton candy clouds strolling by above. When the world was yours and there was a new wonder discovered every minute!
I used to crave a good Sloppy Joe every so often, but the disappointment that came from “those cans” or packets added to ground beef always left me broken-hearted and feeling, well, just plain old.
(And doctoring them not only didn’t make them taste that much better, but defeated the purpose of buying them in the first place. Waste of money.)
When you want it, you want it to be just like it was when you were a kid, and nothing else will do! Want to feel like a kid again? Sit with your knees at the table and giggle without a care in the world? Then donate those packets and cans to a food bank and start making it homemade again!
It’s just as easy and there’s just no comparison. It takes nothing more than you probably already have, and so easy to whip up on a busy weeknight.
You can use whatever meat or meats you and your family prefer, but I have come to love a half and half combo of half mild italian sausage and half ground beef! Second best, but really just as good, is all ground beef.
Whatever you decide to use, you won’t be disappointed ever again!
*Goes very well served with my Deli-Style Macaroni Salad
GOOD OL’ SLOPPY JOES
2 lbs. ground beef, or sub 1 lb. with mild ground italian sausage
salt and pepper lightly, 1/4 tsp. each or to taste
1 1/2 cups ketchup
1/8 tsp. garlic powder
1/4 cup dark brown sugar, light is fine, too
1/4 cup lemon juice concentrate
1 Tbl. worcestershire sauce
2 tsp. apple cider vinegar, balsamic or red wine vinegar, or regular distilled vinegar
2 tsp. yellow table mustard
1 tsp. dried minced onions
8 hamburger buns, or 16 Hawaiian Rolls for sliders
8 slices American cheese, optional
dill or sweet bread and butter pickle slices, optional
In frying pan, brown ground beef (along with sausage if using it), until no longer pink, breaking up into very small pieces as you cook. (If you leave it in larger pieces/chunks, the meat won’t get coated as much with the sauce, and won’t be as good. It will also fall off of the bun more easily and be harder and messier to eat. The sauce holds everything together.) Drain grease. Add rest of ingredients, stir well to mix. Simmer over low heat for 5-10 minutes, stirring ocaisionally. Taste for pepper and saltiness. Add if desired to taste. Serve on warmed, or toasted hamburger buns or sweet Hawaiian rolls with a little american cheese if desired. Also good open-faced on bread slices, plain or toasted. Wonderful with my Deli-Style Macaroni Salad.