I loved eating sloppy joes when I was a kid. I remember trying them at school and then going home to mom – and asking her to make them for me too. Truthfully, thinking about the cafeteria sloppy joes I used to eat as a kid makes me cringe a bit these days…
Reminisce by making yourself healthier homemade sloppy joes by using my recipe! It’s MUCH healthier than what you likely ate as a child – especially if you choose to make this with grassfed beef and organic ingredients.
You can make this sloppy joe meat pretty quickly too – by using your Instant Pot. Serve this super saucy meat on a gluten-free bun or a sweet potato if you prefer a grain-free option!
Once the meat is done cooking in your Instant Pot, you can hit the “saute” function to reduce some of the liquid. That’ll keep your sloppy joes from becoming a bit too sloppy. Meat tends to release a lot of water – so I usually do this with most meat dishes that I make in the Instant Pot. It helps concentrate the flavors without too much extra liquid.
This recipe calls for two pounds of meat – I usually freeze half the batch for a rainy/lazy day. You can halve the recipe if you want. Also, if you don’t have an Instant Pot, you can make my Sloppy Joe Boats instead!
Let me know how you like the recipe!
- 2 tablespoons avocado oil
- 2 onions, diced
- 8 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 teaspoons cumin
- 2 teaspoons smoked paprika
- 2 teaspoons paprika
- 2 teaspoons salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- 2 pounds ground beef
- 2 (15 ounce) cans tomato sauce
- 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 2 tablespoons molasses
- 2 tablespoons yellow mustard
- ¼ teaspoon cayenne (adjust to taste!)
- Cilantro, garnish – optional
- Press the “sauté” button on the Instant Pot. Add the oil and onions and and saute for 4-5 minutes.
- Next, add the garlic, spices and ground beef. Cook until the beef is mostly browned.
- Add the remaining ingredients, then cover the lid and close the pressure valve. Cook for 10 minutes at high pressure.
- Naturally release pressure (or use the quick release if short on time).
- Open the pot and if the meat released a lot of liquid, press the “saute” button to boil off any extra liquid. Reduce the sauce according to your desired level of thickness.
I do not add any additional water to the Instant Pot prior to cooking because meat naturally releases water. You can add water if you’d like, but you’ll need to boil it off at the end by pressing the saute button once it’s done cooking.
Also, just fyi – I usually end up freezing half for another day.