Sloppy Joes

This is weeknight comfort food at its finest. This recipe creates a homemade sauce that is tangy and flavorful but also quick and easy. It uses both ketchup and canned tomato sauce for lots of tomato-y zip and just a touch of brown sugar for a bit of sweetness and slight caramel finish. Green bell pepper is a key addition; it really enhances the other ingredients, elevating the flavor profile into the realm of a true sloppy joe. Dovetailing Tip: Begin soaking 1 1\2 pounds pinto beans to have ready for Perfect Pinto Beans on day 4.

Prep time:
Cook time:
Serving size: 4
Calories per serving: 533

2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 medium onion, diced
1 green bell pepper, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
1 pound lean ground beef
12 ounces (1 1/3 cup) tomato sauce
3/4 cup ketchup
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1 tablespoon yellow mustard
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon paprika
pinch of cayenne pepper
kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
6 hamburger buns, toasted

Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onions and peppers and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened and starting to caramelize in some spots, 6 to 7 minutes. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Stir in the beef and cook, breaking up the meat with a wooden spoon or spatula, until it is browned, no longer pink in the middle and cooked through, 7 to 8 minutes.

Stir in the tomato sauce, ketchup, brown sugar, Worcestershire sauce, mustard, red wine vinegar, paprika, cayenne pepper, 1 teaspoon salt and a generous amount of black pepper and simmer, stirring occasionally, until thickened and heated through, 5 to 6 minutes. Spoon the meat onto the toasted buns.


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