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Guest Recipe: Sloppy Joes Burger by Claire T

This Guest Recipe from Claire, aka and @needaphone on Twitter sounds amazing.

Sadly Claire didn’t manage to take a photograph, so that means that I will just have to go and make it so that I can get one.  I’m sure my boys will love giving it a try.

The trick to this recipe is to brown the meat well, on high heat. Don’t crowd the pan , work in batches and don’t stir the meat until it is well browned on one side. It helps to use a large cast iron pan, or an anodised pan, as these pans can handle the heat and are relatively stick-free.


  • 1Tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 cup minced carrots or sweet pepper
  • 1 cup chopped onion ( about 1 medium onion)
  • 1/2 cup chopped celery
  • 2 gloves garlic,minced
  • Salt
  • 1 1/4lb ground beef
  • 1/2 cup tomato sauce ( or 1 15 once can whole tomatoes, pureed)
  • 1 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • 2 Tbsp brown sugar
  • Pinch ground cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • Pinch cayenne pepper
  • 2 turns of freshly ground pepper
  • 4 hamburger buns


  •  Heat love oil in a large saute pan on medium high heat. Add the carrots and saute for 5 minutes. ( If you are using peppers instead of carrots, add those at the same time as the onions).
  • Add the chopped onion and celery.
  • Cook. stirring occasionally until onions are translucent, about 5 more minutes.
  • Add the minced garlic and cook for 30 more seconds. remove from heat. remove vegetables from the pan to a medium-sized bowl, set aside.
  • Using the same pan ( or you can cook the meat at the same time as the vegetables in a separate pan to save time), generously salt the bottom of the pan ( about 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon).
  • Heat the pan on high. Crumble the ground beef into the pan. You likely need to do this in two batches, otherwise you will crowd the pan and the beef won’t easily brown. Do not stir the ground beef, just let it cook until it is well browned on one side. Then flip the pieces over and brown the second side.
  • Use a slotted spoon to remove the ground beef from the pan ( can add to the set- aside vegetables), salt the pan again and repeat with the rest of the ground beef.
  • If you are using extra lean beef you will likely not have any excess fat in the pan, if you are using 16% or higher, you may have excess fat. Strain of all but 1 tablespoon of the fat.
  • Return the cooked ground beef and vegetables to the pan.
  • Add the ketchup, tomato sauce, Worcestershire sauce, vinegar and brown sugar to the pan. Stir to mix well.
  • Add ground cloves. thyme, and cayenne pepper. Lower the heat to medium low and let simmer for 10 minutes.
  • Adjust seasoning to taste.
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