Friday, February 28, 2014

The Pioneer Woman Wannabe: Sloppy Joes

I think my mom secretly works for The Pioneer Woman. She's managed to not only introduce myself, my 3-year old, and my brother's girlfriend to Ree Drummond but make us obsessed with her. Ok, that happened on it's own after we started watching the show, but still. From not having heard of her before, suddenly we're buying her books, trying her recipes, and making sure we're home from our errands in time for her show to come on. Recently it was my turn to try out one of her recipes and I chose Sloppy Joes. My husband had suggested it the night before and as I scoured the internet for recipes, I remembered watching one of her shows feature such an item. A quick trip to her website, and we were on our way!

Now, I'm not feeding anyone or anything on a cattle ranch, just myself, husband, and toddler who seems to have a bottomless stomach for snacks and sweets but not so much for entire meals. I take that back. She'd sell her soul for some eggs and 'tatoes. So I had to scale back and alter the recipe a bit. Here is Ms. Drummond's Sloppy Joe concoction:, and here is what I did:

1-1 1/2 pounds ground beef
1 Tbs butter
1/3 of a large onion, chopped
3/4 of a green pepper, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 cup Ketchup
1/2 cup water
1 1/2 Tbs brown sugar
1 1/4 tsp chili powder, more or less to taste
1 tsp mustard powder
Few dashes of Worcestershire
1 1/2 Tbs tomato paste
Salt and pepper to taste

I put the butter in a big pot then added the ground beef when it started to bubble. I browned the beef then drained off a little bit of the fat. Then I added the chopped onion, green pepper, and garlic and let it cook until the onions were very tender. We enjoy the taste onions bring to a dish but not so much the crunch that goes with it.

I then added the ketchup, brown sugar, mustard powder, chili powder, tomato paste, Worcestershire sauce, salt, pepper, and water and let it simmer for about 20 minutes.

 Being pregnant, I'm sensitive to smells, especially that of cooking food. But this made the house smell absolutely heavenly as it cooked.

I didn't serve with Kettle chips like The Pioneer Woman, sour cream and onion seemed to fit the bill just fine. And with my toddler just about finishing an entire sandwich and my husband going back for thirds, the chips were pretty secondary to non-existent. 

Success! Add another Pioneer Woman Wannabe to the mix!


  1. Do you think it would be good without the peppers? I just can't do cooked peppers...

    1. Absolutely! You couldn't really taste them, especially if you cook them until they're super soft (my husband hates peppers but I sneak them into a lot of things). But, actually, this was the first time I've ever had peppers in my Sloppy Joe mix. I don't remember what exactly my mom did when I was growing up but I'm pretty sure it came from a can and/or didn't contain peppers.