Recipe Makeover: Homemade Sloppy Joes Better than Manwich
You’ll never buy Hunt’s Manwich Sauce in a can again.
This is my homemade version of Manwich Sloppy Joes that I’ve been making at home since I was a teen. It is so simple, and as Brian says, “it’s the bomb!”.
This is a recipe using 2 lbs of ground beef. You could use 1 lb, but this is so good, and freezes so well (if it makes it that far) that you should go with the 2 lb version. I use my Le Creuset dutch oven, but a large cast iron skillet works as well.
- 2 lb ground beef (80/20)
- 1 1/2 large onions, chopped, about 2 cups total (I use Vidalia when available)
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1/2 tsp onion powder
- 2 Tbs fresh ground black pepper (we grind a lot ahead of time and keep it in a sealed container)
- 2 1/2 cups Hunt’s or Del Monte Ketchup (NOT Heinz, it’s too salty)
- Kosher Salt to taste, about 1 tsp
- Water – 1 to 1 1/2 cups
Brown the ground beef until all the water is cooked out and only grease remains, then throw in the onions and cook until they just start to turn transluscent.
Then add the garlic and onion powder, black pepper, ketchup and salt.
Combine well, then add water to almost cover the mixture. This helps absorb the meat absorb the flavors, and gives a good fine texture, instead of hard chewy lumps.
Cook over medium heat until moisture dissipates, stirring every 10 minutes or so, then turn to low. This takes about 30 minutes, so go have a beer.
When the meat reaches a good thick, wet consistency, check for flavor and add what you think it needs. More garlic? More pepper? More ketchup? Whatever you like. I also sop up any extra grease with a paper towel to cut down on the fat factor.
Serve on a lightly toasted Kaiser or potato roll, along with a side of cole slaw, potato chips, and homemade onion dip, and you’ve got a great quick meal for the family. This is also perfect for potlucks and family reunions….I’ve never come home with any leftovers! Ever!
Homemade Onion Dip
Oh, and the onion dip… easy, and a huge hit with my sons, who used to swear by Helluva Good brand, but they like this better…
8 oz Cream Cheese, softened
3 Tbs. minced onion
Pinch Kosher salt
3 Tbs milk.
Blend (or smoosh with a fork) the cream cheese with the minced onion (don’t go by taste at this point, as the onion flavor gets stronger as it sits), and add a pinch or 2 of coarse Kosher salt. Add milk gradually to reach desired consistency. BE CAREFUL, it gets too thin really quickly if you add too much milk, so be sure to mix in each tablespoon until you reach Nirvana in the onion dip realm. Let it sit for at least 15 minutes. OMG, this stuff is so good!