Root Beer Turkey Sloppy Joes

When I first met my husband, a college kid at the time, he lived with five guys in a small city apartment. They decorated with beer cans. They heaped dishes in the sink and wet towels on the floor. But, they cooked! At least whatever their best cookbook (appropriately titled, “A Man, A Can, A Plan”) told them to. Anything besides microwaved Ramen and greasy pizza was enticing to me. And I loved the fact that he put in effort, at least. Even though everything he cooked tasted like metal.

Of course, I was enamored with the fact that he didn’t live with his parents AND could at least heat up a can of slop on the stovetop. So, it was love. But, it wasn’t until I fell hard and we got our first place that I wanted to cook him something good. And I mean good. No cans required.

Now that that goofy college kid and I have a baby, the emphasis of my good home cooking is a bit more on the quick-and-easy side, a bit less gotta-impress-this-fella. He’s impressed enough with a sloppy joe from scratch!

This sandwich is one of our favorite comfort foods, and full of hearty homemade goodness. Sweet and salty, with a little spice from your favorite hot sauce, these sloppy joes make a mouthwatering weeknight meal. And incredibly easy, too!

You’ll love this recipe, and so will any kiddos in your life. Just don’t forget a pile of napkins… these sandwiches really live up to their name!

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Root Beer Turkey Sloppy Joes

Yield: Serves 4 (serving size: 1 sandwich)


1 teaspoon canola or vegetable oil
3/4 cup chopped onion
20 oz. ground turkey
1/2 cup tomato sauce
1 teaspoon tomato paste
1/4 cup bottled chili sauce or hot sauce (I used Frank's Red Hot)
1/4 cup root beer (I used diet)
1 Tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon each: garlic powder, chili powder, ground mustard

For serving:
4 hamburger buns, toasted


Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add oil. Once hot, add onion and cook 3 minutes. Add turkey and cook 4 minutes, or until browned, stirring to crumble. Stir in tomato sauce and remaining ingredients. Bring to a simmer. Cook 5 minutes or until slightly thickened, stirring occasionally.

Divide turkey mixture evenly among bottom halves of buns; top with top halves of buns.


If your sauce is too thin after simmering, make a slurry by combining 1 teaspoon each cornstarch and water in a small bowl. Stir into the sauce and simmer until thickened.

Adapted from Cooking Light


13 Responses to “Root Beer Turkey Sloppy Joes”

  1. #
    Elisa @ Insalata di Sillabe — August 25, 2014 @ 3:41 am

    Looks amazing and such a comforting weeknight meal, perfect for Fall!

    xo, Elisa

  2. #
    Jules @ WolfItDown — August 25, 2014 @ 4:06 am

    These look too good!
    I have made two types of different sloppy joes before, one turkey and one vegan, but this…With root beer?! Gotta try it :D Thanks for the recipe! x

  3. #
    Sues — August 25, 2014 @ 6:51 am

    This sounds SO unique and fun. I love sloppy joes and I love root beer and I’m not sure who wouldn’t like the combination of the two!

  4. #
    Cassie — August 25, 2014 @ 7:33 am

    You have me craving sloppy joes for breakfast. Love the sound of these!

  5. #
    Gaby — August 25, 2014 @ 10:07 am

    So creative! I bet this is over the top amazing!

  6. #
    Karly — August 25, 2014 @ 10:15 am

    Love this! Sloppy joes are my favorite and this is a fun twist!

  7. #
    Nicole ~ Cooking for Keeps — August 25, 2014 @ 1:13 pm

    OMG, the name of that cookbook, hilarious. Your husband was infinitely better than mine, Kevin lived off of frozen pizza and Chipotle until we started dating, not a kitchen tool in sight. What a perfect weeknight dinner Georgia! Quick and easy is where it’s at!

  8. #
    marcie — August 25, 2014 @ 3:01 pm

    Very entertaining post, Georgia — I love the story about your husband in his college days. And that cookbook! So funny. :) These sloppy Joe’s look aaa-mazing, and I know my family would love ‘em! Pinning. :)

  9. #
    Bianca @ Confessions of a Chocoholic — August 25, 2014 @ 4:00 pm

    Sometimes the messiest foods are the best kinds of foods!

  10. #
    Kitchen Belleicious — August 26, 2014 @ 8:42 am

    oh yo so know I am going to have to do this. My root beer loving husband would be all over this. What a wonderful and fun twist on a classic

  11. #
    Ramona — August 27, 2014 @ 7:29 am

    These sloppy joes are so fun! Very cool using root beer… it must give it some great flavor.

  12. #
    Maureen | Orgasmic Chef — August 29, 2014 @ 3:04 am

    What a clever recipe!

  13. #
    Andy — August 30, 2014 @ 9:23 pm

    Made this last night for dinner and ate the leftovers tonight. Oddly, my husband requested sloppy joes this week and I had just seen this recipe. Great timing! We really enjoyed them!

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