Manwich, the commercial variety of sloppy joes, was always a treat when I was growing up. It took me forever to realize that you can make them yourself.

So, not only are sloppy joes a time-honored tradition, they're quite easy to prepare. Essentially, it's "brown meat, add stuff, cook, serve". Only ramen's easier than that but here are some instructions you can follow if yer not so daring..

what you'll need

what to do

  1. In a large pan, brown meat until no longer pink. Be sure to break up the meat and drain it of the grease.
  2. When the meat is halfway cooked, add in the chopped onions. (You may want to add one clove of garlic to the mix for a little more kick in the sauce.)
  3. Combine all of the liquids and seasonings and add to the pan. Cook, uncovered for about 20-30 minutes on low heat.
  4. After most of the water has evaporated, it should be pretty thick. Let cool for about 2 minutes. Serve on toasted buns. Enjoy.

Sloppy Joe is a nickname in Australia for a type of thick fleecy windbreaker/sweater, machine knitted and with slightly elasticised cuffs and hem. Also known as a windcheater (pron: winn-sheeter)

Sloppy joes are a form of meat sandwich halfway between a barbecue sandwich and a hamburger. In composition, sloppy joe sauce is very similar to spaghetti without the pasta. According to, the etymology of the name is uncertain (though it is presumably named after someone named Joe) save that the word, and presumably the dish, originated in 1961. However, the "sloppy" part seems obvious, as it is nearly impossible to eat a sloppy joe without dripping some of the sauce onto one's plate (or, if one is not careful, one's lap). This is one of the easiest and most economical types of bachelor food to prepare; the leftovers can provide several meals, especially if stored properly in Tupperware or Rubbermaid containers.

Though the recipe in another writeup under this node seems like a good one, it really isn't necessary to go to that much trouble. A surprisingly good (not to mention easy and cheap) batch of sloppy joes can be made by buying a dry sloppy joe spice packet at your grocery store. Such packets typically require a pound of ground beef (use ground chuck or ground round if you can; they're not that much more expensive and they have less fat to drain), a can of tomato paste, some water, and seasoning to taste (this noder particularly recommends a dash of Sriracha hot sauce). It is also not necessary to buy a name brand (such as Manwich) of sloppy joe sauce; generic store brands taste about the same and cost less money. In this noder's experience, the canned sauce tends to produce a much runnier sauce than the dry packet; thus the extra work of mixing in the tomato paste and water brings a more desirable meal. Also, fresh store bakery kaiser rolls or onion buns make a much more satifying sandwich than pre-packaged hamburger buns.

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