Servings: 4-6

I keep trying different methods and improving my sloppy joe game. Here’s a really good version, a bit more work than some of the others, but worth it.

Ingredients

  • Olive oil (3 turns on the skillet)
  • 1 yellow onion, finely diced (1/4″ cubes)
  • 1 large, or two smaller carrots, finely diced
  • 2 celery stalks, finely diced
  • Feel free to add other firm saute veggies to the mix: bell peppers, beans and the like
  • Either:
  •     1 pound ground meat (beef, pork, bison, chicken)
  • OR
  •     1/2 package of extra firm tofu, cut into 1/2 in cubes
  •     1/4 cup sliced mushrooms
  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic
  • 1/4 cup red wine
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon dry mustard
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 tablespoons packed brown sugar
  • 3 ounces tomato paste (1/2 can)
  • 1 1/2 cups (1 28oz can) crushed tomatoes (a good brand like Muir Glenn)
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • For Mashed Potatoes
    • 3 large or 6 small russet potatoes
    • 1 Tbsp butter
    • 4 Tbsp sour cream or 1/4 cup milk

Directions

  • In a large saute pan over medium-high heat, combine the olive oil, onion, celery and carrots; cook for 5 minutes until softened.
  • Add the meat, 1/3 at a time. Let moisture cook off each 1/3, move to the outside of pan, and do the next 1/3 until all the meat is cooked; mix together, and cook for another minute until beef browns well.
  • Depending on the amount of residual fat, you may need to drain some of the fat from the pan (if you used meat).
  • OR
  • Add the Tofu and sliced mushrooms
  • Add the garlic.
  • Deglaze with the red wine, then stir in the remaining wet and dry ingredients
  • Reduce the heat and simmer for 20 to 30 minutes.
  • If the sauce gets too thick as it simmers, add up to 1 cup of broth or water to adjust the consistency.
  • While sloppy joe mixture is simmering, cut potatoes into 1″ pieces, boil for 20 minutes, and until a fork easily penetrates the potato
  • Drain water from pot, or pour into a colander and return potatoes to pot
  • Add butter and sour cream to potatoes, and mix with a potato masher
  • You can also just serve over sliced or baked potatoes, or mashed without the dairy, rice, pasta, or the more traditional buns or bread as well