Cheap Recipe: Spicy Sloppy Joes

7 Aug
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Beware--the aroma of these meaty sandwiches may attract hungry pups.

Beware--the aroma of these meaty sandwiches may attract hungry pups.

How do you keep a Pembroke Welsh Corgi in suspense? Give up? Make a batch of Spicy Sloppy Joes and put up a pet gate in the kitchen doorway. Dezi, our resident faerie steed (pictured left) just about had a stroke waiting for tender morsels of meat and veggies to slip to the floor where he could gobble them up without prejudice.

A lot of people consider Sloppy Joes kind of a ghetto dinner; something to make when you’ve got no time and next-to-no ingredients. But really, I look forward to Sloppy Joe night. Maybe it’s because we don’t have them super often (Hubby’s opposed to anything we have more often
Spicy sauteed vegetables give this version an extra kick.

Spicy sauteed vegetables give this version an extra kick.

than once every three weeks), or maybe it’s because i like to make them when there’s fancy cheese or really good pickles or something in the fridge, but for whatever reason, I get really excited when we have Sloppy Joes for dinner. Plus, nothing reheats better in an office microwave the next day, so I know I’ll have a minimum of two enjoyable meals off any given pan of Sloppy Joe meat.

So without further ado, I give you my recipe for Spicy Sloppy Joes in hopes that it will inspire you to treat Sloppy Joe night like I do–a happy occasion, rather than a last-minute weeknight cop-out, although it does function nicely in that capacity as well.
Diced onions and green peppers will help the meat go further.

Diced onions and green peppers will help the meat go further.

Preheat a large skillet over medium heat. Dice half an onion and a bell pepper (green or red) and add to skillet with some butter or margarine. Season to taste (I use garlic powder, cayenne pepper and dill weed) if desired. When vegetables begin to tenderize, add either 1 lb. ground beef/turkey or the equivalent of prepared TVP (I used half beef and half TVP). Increase heat and stir often until meat is browned thoroughly and

Don't waste time measuring the sauces. Just squirt out two similar-looking blobs and call it even.

Don't waste time measuring the sauces. Just squirt out two similar-looking blobs and call it even.

 evenly. Drain if necessary. With spoon, mound meat into the center of the skillet and use back of spoon to press two equal indentations into the mound. Fill one “crater” with ketchup and the other with barbecue sauce. (Click here to read tips for cooking with cheap or generic BBQ sauce.)

A little parmeasan cheese gives these Sloppy Joes a complex flavor.

A little parmesan cheese gives these Sloppy Joes a complex flavor.

 Stir and let simmer 3-5 minutes. Once meat is evenly coated with both sauces, shake appxoimately 2 tablespoons grated parmesan cheese over meat and stir until cheese is no longer visible. Remove from heat and serve on browned, lightly buttered hamburger buns with cheese, pickles, chow chow or mustard. Pair sandwiches with a cheap can of fruit for a delicious and speedy plate presentation.

Chilled fruit cocktail multitasks as an attractive side dish and fresh dessert.

Chilled fruit cocktail multitasks as an attractive side dish and fresh dessert.

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One Response to “Cheap Recipe: Spicy Sloppy Joes”

  1. Linda August 7, 2009 at 12:53 PM #

    My secret-ingredient-condiment for sloppy joes is coleslaw. It makes a sloppy joe turn into haute cuisine. The Cadillac of coleslaw for this purpose is the mayo-type with cabbage and carrots, but since some are allergic to eggs, the vinegar-and-oil kind is pretty good too. Dang, Gracie, you made me hungy!

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