I admit it. I’m down an obsessive rabbit hole. But a delicious one. All summer, I’ve been obsessed with making tomato jam. I’ve gone through half a dozen jars due to recipe testing; we’ve given jars away and have slathered tomato jam on anything that makes even a little sense.
In one brainstorming session, Sean gave me an idea to try making sloppy Joes with the jam. It makes sense. The prepared jam has everything you’d want in a good sloppy Joes seasoning: umami, spice, sweetness, and acidity. So I went for it. And obviously it worked!
♥ Related: Kielbasa, Kale, & Bean Soup
Having tomato jam on hand means that this dish only takes a few more ingredients and about 20 minutes of cooking time. It’s just another reason to keep my obsession going strong!
I like serving sloppy Joes on large potato buns with sesame seeds. Toasting them with a little shredded cheese on each side keeps the bun from getting soggy and…well, cheese is welcome in most dishes, IMO.
As an aside, clearly this is a meal meant for tater tots. Tater tots pro-tip: bake frozen tater tots a little hotter and a little longer than the package recommends and you’ll get a crispy, almost-like-fried tot. Stir and flip a few times during baking to ensure an even crisp.
To make this recipe, you will need a batch of Smoky Chipotle Tomato Jam which is extremely easy to make; you’ll find loads of uses for the jam in addition to these sloppy Joes. Click the link above or watch the video below for the recipe.
Smoky Chipotle Sloppy Joes
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 red bell pepper diced medium
- ½ onion diced small
- 1 lb ground beef lean
- ¾ cup smoky chipotle tomato jam recipe linked in story and notes below
- ⅓ cup water
- 4 oz cheddar or jack cheese grated
- 4 potato buns large with sesame seeds
- salt to taste
- pepper to taste
- In a large skillet, over medium high heat, sauté the onion and red bell pepper until lightly browned. This will take about 5-7 minutes.
- Add the ground beef. Season the beef with a big pinch of salt and several grinds of freshly ground pepper. Brown the ground beef for about 3 minutes until the meat is starting to crisp and the color has only a few spots of pink left. This will take about 5-7 minutes.
- Mix in the tomato jam and water. Stir until the jam is combined well into the beef and vegetable mixture. Simmer on medium heat stirring occasionally until the sauce has reduced and thickened, about 10 minutes. You're looking for a thick chili-like consistency that's not very soupy.
- While your sloppy Joes are simmering; add grated cheese to both sides of the four buns and broil for a few minutes until the cheese is melted and then buns are slightly toasted. Keep an eye on this or your buns may burn!If you aren't serving four people and want leftovers, just toast as many buns as you have people.
- To serve, scoop some sloppy Joe mixture onto your buns and enjoy with plenty of napkins ready!
- For this recipe, you will need a batch of Smoky Chipotle Tomato Jam.