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10-Minute Light Sloppy Joes

Need a 10-minute, cheap (ahem–affordable) dinner idea? Light sloppy joes are the right way to make dinner fast and feed a crowd for pennies.

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light sloppy joes

You know those night when you wish you had a maid? And a cook? And dinner done before you left work?

Oh yeah–that’s every night.

I hear ‘ya.

Even though the pace of the day feels like it’s sucking the life straight out of you, that’s no reason that you can’t still put a warm, hearty meal on the table. And not to mention it’s affordable–double points.

But I have a question: With a recipe this easy, why are light sloppy joes are one of those dishes most people make from a can?

This recipe is perfect with ground beef or turkey and the ingredients are so simple. You’ll never miss that can. And while your at it, make a double batch and freeze half–then just stick it in the fridge to thaw before you head out in the morning.  Warm it up when you get home and pile it high on a whole grain bun and you’re done.

If you make this with ground beef you can take the lower-fat approach that my mother in law uses  by boiling the uncooked beef in hot water until no pink remains then drains away the water before continuing.

Sounds gross, but it works like a charm if you can get past the fact that it looks like a science experiment for a few minutes. Or, you can just fry yours and drain well if you don’t want to boil it.

light sloppy joes

Light Sloppy Joes

These light sloppy joes have just a few ingredients and can be made with your favorite low fat meat--lean beef, turkey or even pork would work well.
5 from 2 votes
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Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Servings: 5 people
Calories: 307kcal
Author: Rachel Ballard



  • In a skillet brown the turkey, pork or beef until no more pink remains. Drain well.
  • Add the brown sugar, chili powder and ketchup and stir well.
  • Mix the flour into the water in a small bowl and mix to remove any lumps.
  • Add to the meat mixture and stir until it bubbles and thickens--about five minutes.
  • Serve warm with pickles and plenty of chips.


Calories: 307kcal
Recipe Rating

Jim Smith

Wednesday 19th of June 2019

Made this last night-absolutely delicious-very creamy. Thanks so much

Rachel Ballard

Thursday 20th of June 2019

So glad you enjoyed them Jim! --Rachel

Rachel Ballard

Wednesday 15th of February 2017

This is a great quick dinner idea.

Elisa Gabbett

Tuesday 14th of June 2016

Rachel, your recipes are delicious and simple to follow for insecure cooks like myself. I agree with Trish, your writing is entertaining! The baked mac and cheese is the best comfort food I've tasted in a long while, and a family favorite. You're a gifted writer, cook and baker! Wish you the best.

Rachel Ballard

Wednesday 15th of June 2016

Elisa this might be the nicest comment anyone has ever left for me. You just summed up all I try to do here and I so sincerely thank you for taking the time to tell me how you feel. YOU are why I write! I wish you all the best as well. Much love, Rachel

Trish Scudder

Tuesday 31st of December 2013

All of your recipes are delicious. I also enjoy your funny stories like "The Storm That Cost Me $29.95".

Keep the recipes and stories coming!

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