Smoky & savory Vegan Sloppy Joes, made with whole food plant ingredients and naturally sweetened. Only 30 minutes from start to finish, this is a tasty plant based meal that the whole family will love!
Meet one of my favorite vegan meals: the Best and Easiest Vegan Sloppy Joes!
When I went vegan 8 years ago, vegan sloppy joes were one of the meals I made most often. One of the first cookbooks I got was Veganomicon and the recipe I used was from that book. I still have that cookbook, it’s a great one, especially for vegan beginners!
What’s so great about Vegan Sloppy Joes?
- They are super inexpensive to make, with lentils as the base. You can find cheap lentils in the bulk section of your grocery store.
- Going along with the inexpensive bonus, they also use everyday ingredients you can buy at any grocery store and keep in your pantry for last minute meals.
- They are filling and SO satisfying!
- They are oil free, naturally sweetened and FULL of fiber and protein.
- Leftover sloppy joes keep really well in the fridge, and they can also be frozen!
- And best of all, they are so flavorful- rich, smoky, sweet and savory; the sauce will keep you coming back for more!
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How should I serve Vegan Sloppy Joes?
You can go the traditional route and serve sloppy joes on any kind of bun (just check the ingredients to ensure vegan). Either fill a burger bun, or serve open faced. I like the whole wheat buns from Trader Joes.
Or simply serve open faced on sprouted wheat bread, or gluten free bread if needed.
The mixture also tastes good served with a baked potato, or straight out of a bowl! Usually, we just use Ezekiel bread or whole wheat burger buns.
Sometimes, I like to add pickled red onion or sliced pickles. Yum!
FAST AND EASY TIP:
You can buy pre-packaged cooked lentils, or canned lentils to make this recipe even faster! If you do that, this meal will only take you 10-15 minutes to make, talk about fast food. You will need about 3 cups cooked lentils.
Want more easy & healthy vegan dinner recipes? Check out my eBook, Plant Based Family Dinners or any of these recipes:
Don’t forget to follow me on Pinterest for more easy, healthy and tasty plant based vegan recipes!
Recipe adapted from Veganomicon cookbook.
The Best and Easiest Vegan Sloppy Joes
- 1 cup uncooked green lentils
- 4 cups water
- 1 medium yellow onion, diced
- 1 medium green bell pepper, chopped small
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 3 tablespoons chili powder
- 2 teaspoons smoked paprika
- (1) 15-ounce can tomato sauce
- 2 tablespoons ketchup (or tomato paste)
- 3 tablespoons yellow mustard
- 3 tablespoons pure maple syrup
- 1 teaspoons salt, or to taste
- For serving: whole grain hamburger buns
- First, cook the lentils: In a medium pot with a lid, add the lentils and water. Bring to a boil, then lower heat and simmer for 18-20 minutes or until tender. Drain excess liquid and set aside.
- Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Once hot, add the chopped onion, green bell pepper and garlic. Use a few tablespoons of water, or vegetable broth, to saute and prevent burning. Stir constantly for 3-4 minutes, using more water as needed.
- Now add the chili powder and smoked paprika, and stir to coat the vegetables for about 1 minute. Add a little water if it's too dry.
- Next, add the tomato sauce, ketchup, mustard and maple syrup. Stir until well incorporated. Add in the cooked lentils and stir. Season with salt to taste.
- Serve on burger buns with red onion slices if desired and enjoy! We also eat this open faced on sprouted wheat bread, over a baked potato or even just out of a bowl, it's so good!
- To make this meal faster and easier, you may use canned or packaged already cooked lentils. You will need about 3 cups cooked lentils.
- The sloppy joe mixture freezes well, simply fill freezer friendly containers, leaving a little room for expansion and freeze. Let defrost when ready to use, add to a pot and cook until warm.
- Leftovers will keep in the fridge for 3-4 days.
- Nutritional information is for the sloppy joe filling only.