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The 5 BEST Alternatives for Sloppy Joes

Have you ever heard of Sloppy Joes? It’s a classic sandwich recipe that can provide a quick, easy, and tasty meal.

But what if you want to try something else instead?

Don’t worry; substituting the traditional Sloppy Joe ingredients is easy; simply use your favorite meat or veggie substitute.

Here are some ideas of how to cook and use Sloppy Joes and some of the best substitutes for the classic dish.

Get creative with your recipes and enjoy experimenting with different flavors – you might discover an even better version than the original.

What is Sloppy Joe?

Sloppy Joe, a classic American comfort food, is a sandwich made with ground beef cooked in a sweet and tangy tomato sauce and served on a hamburger bun.

The origins of this dish are often disputed, but it has been a long-time favorite in the United States.

The dish is popular among children and adults alike and can easily be prepared as a weeknight meal.

Preparing Sloppy Joe is quite simple – all you need to do is cook the ground beef with the tomato sauce and seasonings before piling it onto buns.

The dish has a rich flavor that really comes alive when served hot on warm buns.

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To get the best flavor out of it, try adding your favorite cheese or sliced pickles to top off the meal.

Serve along with some roasted potatoes or biscuits for an all-American dinner everyone will love.

The 5 BEST Alternatives for Sloppy Joes

If you’ve been looking for a delicious and easy alternative to the classic Sloppy Joe, look no further.

There are plenty of unique and tasty options available.

We’ve gathered five of the best recipes that will tantalize your taste buds without the hassle.

1 – Barbecue Sandwiches

Barbecue sandwiches are a delicious and tangy meal that can be enjoyed in a variety of ways.

The main ingredients found in many barbecue sandwiches include shredded pork, chicken, beef, or even lamb pieces pre-slow cooked in various seasonings and sauces.

One bite into this sandwich will leave you with an explosion of mouthwatering flavors that mix sweetness and heat perfectly.

Aside from the succulent meats present within the sandwich, one key element to its distinct taste is the buns used to cradle its filling.

Buns pressing against sauces add a delightful crunch that must be experienced firsthand.

If you want something different than the regular sloppy Joe, why not try out this unique barbecue sandwich?

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2 – Chili Burger

Chili burgers are a classic American comfort food that can quickly become an easy weeknight dinner.

It’s a delicious combination of two of your favorite foods, ground beef, and chili.

To make this dish, you start with sautéed ground beef mixed with chili powder and chopped onions until the mixture is browned and the flavors have come together.

From there, you form the burger patties, and pan-fries them until they’re nice and crispy, then top them off with cheese, tomatoes, lettuce, or whatever other toppings you like.

The taste blends together the salty, tangy flavor of the chili seasoning with juicy beef patties making these burgers truly mouthwatering.

Serve your creation on buns or wrap them in lettuce for a lower-carb version.

Chili burgers can also be easily substituted for sloppy joes – just use ground beef instead of pork and add chili pepper to the sauce for an extra punch.

3 – Picadillo

Picadillo is an irresistible Latin American dish that bursts with flavor.

The main components of picadillo are ground meat and potatoes, as well as ingredients such as garlic, raisins, and spices, often served over rice or in tacos.

The texture of this meal is delightfully chewy due to the combination of ground beef and potatoes.

A delightful mix of sweet raisins, savory garlic, and vinegar come together to give this dish a unique, complex flavor.

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To substitute for sloppy joes, replace the ground beef with leaner turkey or even crumbled tofu for a vegan version.

Add diced carrots and bell peppers, simmering until everything is fully cooked through; season with cumin, oregano, and Worcestershire sauce for a delicious rendition.

4 – Bagel Toast

Toast made using bagels instead of the traditional sliced bread really ups the game when it comes to ordinary breakfasts and brunch meals.

Bagel toast is crunchier, heartier, and has great chewiness, thanks to its compact form.

A combination of rich butter, spices like garlic powder, and optional topping like cheese can turn bagel toast into a delicious treat ready to be spread with mayonnaise or enjoy as a standalone unique breakfast option.

One way to provide variety in your meals is to substitute bagel toast for Sloppy Joes.

The crunchiness of bagel toast complements the tangy flavors of the Sloppy Joe mix nicely, making it a satisfying and refreshing change of pace.

5 – Beef On Weck

Beef on Weck is a classic Buffalo-style sandwich made with slow-roasted beef piled high on a kummelweck roll.

This delicious combination hails from Western New York, and its German name translates to “beef on roll with caraway”.

You can truly taste the hint of caraway in each bite, along with the salty crust of the roll.

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The texture of the beef is one that you don’t get in other sandwiches, being very moist from the hours it has spent roasting.

While not quite as messy as Sloppy Joes, this sandwich allows for plenty of flavors to come through.

To substitute for Sloppy Joe’s, omit the caraway and replace it with diced onion or even tomato relish.

All in all, Beef on Weck offers an experience out of the ordinary yet familiar enough to tantalize your taste buds.


In conclusion, if you’re feeling tired of your same old Sloppy Joes, why not switch things up with one of these delicious alternatives? Chili Burgers, Picadillo, Bagdel Toast, and Beef on Weck as some of the best options out there to replace Sloppy Joes in your meals.

Whether it be for a special occasion or just a regular weeknight dinner, these five alternatives are sure to exceed your expectations.

So go on and give one of them a try – you won’t be disappointed.

Yield: 1 Serving

The 5 BEST Alternatives for Sloppy Joes

The 5 BEST Alternatives for Sloppy Joes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes


  • Barbecue Sandwiches
  • Chili Burger
  • Picadillo
  • Bagel Toast
  • Beef On Weck


  1. Pick your favorite substitute from the list above.
  2. Follow cooking directions for your selected substitute with the proper ratio of ingredients.
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