gluten free dairy free sloppy joes full 01

Gluten Free, Dairy Free Homemade Sloppy Joes

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When you think of Sloppy Joes, you may think the only way to make them is to grab a can of Manwich from the grocery store, add some ground beef, and boom, Sloppy Joes. Well, yes, but that is just ONE way to make Sloppy Joes.

Rich grew up with homemade Sloppy Joes and the idea of using a can to make Sloppy Joes seemed foreign to him. Victoria, on the other hand, never had a Sloppy Joe that did not start in a can and she was excited to experience a homemade Sloppy Joe.

Our Sloppy Joe recipe builds on Rich’s mom’s recipe and adds a few more ingredients to amp up the flavor level. It’s tangy with a hint of sweetness, has a terrific beef flavor, and one of the most critical ingredients, the green peppers, adds flavorful zing.

We also added a fried onion garnish (optional) to add more flavor and texture. And, Victoria loved her Sloppy Joe topped with her coleslaw (see recipe below), dill pickle chips, and the frizzled (fried) onions. Enjoy!

Recipe Notes

  • The Sloppy Joes will taste amazing without the frizzled (fried) onions, but they do add a nice flavor and texture. 
  • If you haven’t found a gluten-free hamburger bun you love, check out our recipe here.
  • You can substitute sweet paprika for smoked paprika, but you will lose a bit of the smokiness the smoked paprika brings.
  • The chili flakes are optional and if you love heat, add them!
  • We created our own cooking flour blend for the frizzled onions, and you can find that recipe here. But, if you want to use gluten-free all-purpose flour, that should work too.  

discover. cook. enjoy.

Gluten-Free Victoria Wolf

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Gluten Free, Dairy Free Homemade Sloppy Joes

This scratch-made recipe is so much better than the canned version! The optional frizzled onions takes the flavor to a new level.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Servings 8 servings
Calories 477 kcal

Suggested Tools

Glass Measuring Cups
Measuring Spoons
Spider Strainer Skimmer Spoons

The Ingredients

For the Meat and Veggies

For the Sauce

  • 1/2 cup ketchup, we use Heinze
  • 1/2 cup beef stock
  • 15 oz crushed tomatoes, we user Cento
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • 1 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 tsp mustard
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp fish sauce
  • 1/4 tsp chili flakes, optional

For the Frizzled Onions (optional)

  • 1 small onion, sliced thin, about 1/8 inch
  • 1 cup cashew milk, unsweetened
  • 1/2 tsp white vinegar
  • 1/2 cup gf explorers cooking flour blend
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 cup Sunflower Oil, or enough to fry the onions
  • Kosher salt for sprinkling after fried

The Process

Prep the Frizzled Onions (if using)

  • Combine one cup of cashew milk and 1/2 teaspoon vinegar into a small bowl. Slice the onion thin (about 1/2 inch) and to the milk and vinegar mix. While the onions are marinating in the cashew milk, add the cooking flour blend to a bowl. Add the onion powder, garlic powder, salt, and pepper, and mix to combine.
  • Heat the sunflower oil in a heavy pan or dutch over high heat. Once the oil temps at 375 degrees, you are ready to fry the onions.
  • Grab a small amount of onions from the milk, shake off the excess moisture, and dredge in the flour blend. Shake off the excess flour and add to the pot of heated oil. Cook until golden brown and the onions float to the surface. Remove from the oil with a spider skimmer spoon onto a paper towel-lined pan. Sprinkle with kosher salt. Repeat until all the onions have been fried. Set onions aside for garnish.

Mise en Place

  • Measure all the sauce ingredients into prep bowls. Mince the onion, green pepper, and garlic and place into prep bowls.

Cook the Meat and Veggies

  • In a large skillet, heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil on medium-high. Add the ground beef. Cook until done, breaking up the meat as you cook. Remove the meat from the pan, drain off the fat, and transfer to a bowl. Set aside.
  • Add a tablespoon Earth Balance to the skillet and once melted, add the onion, green pepper, and garlic. Sweat the veggies until soft.
  • Add the tomato paste, mix with the veggies, and let cook for about 2 minutes. Add the ground beef back to the pan and mix to combine with the veggies.

Make the Meat Sloppy

  • Add the crushed tomatoes, ketchup, brown sugar, mustard, red wine vinegar, smoked paprika, black pepper, kosher salt, and chili flakes (if using) to the pan and mix to combine.
  • Add the beef stock, Worcestershire sauce, and fish sauce and cook on medium for 10-15 minutes to thicken and meld the flavors.

Building the Joe

  • Add a good amount of Sloppy Joe mix to your bun and enjoy! )See the link to our recipe in the ingredients.)
  • If using frizzled onions, add the Sloppy Joe mix to the bun and top with frizzled onions and enjoy!
  • Victoria loves to add coleslaw (see the link to her recipe in the ingredients.), dill pickle chips, and frizzled onions. Enjoy!



Calories: 477kcalCarbohydrates: 17gProtein: 12gFat: 41gSaturated Fat: 7gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2gMonounsaturated Fat: 29gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 40mgSodium: 779mgPotassium: 481mgFiber: 2gSugar: 9gVitamin A: 395IUVitamin C: 14mgCalcium: 46mgIron: 2mg
Keyword ground beef
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
kitchen gear and gluten free products we love

We have found that having the right tools in the kitchen can really help make cooking more fun and easy. Also check out the gluten-free, dairy-free products we use and love!

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