Italian Style Sloppy Joes: A Family Favorite

6 servings
55 min

These Italian Sloppy Joes are a simple twist on a childhood comfort food. They combine Italian sausage with bell peppers, onions, garlic, and Italian seasonings for a bold and zesty flavor profile.

I’ve always loved an easy sloppy joe recipe, but I don’t love the ingredients in those cans or even in the packaged seasonings. This homemade sloppy joe recipe uses easy to source ingredients that you can actually pronounce. Yes, you’ll have to chop a few veggies, but they add an amazing amount of flavor to the recipe.


This recipe makes six servings, so I always freeze a few of the servings for easy weeknight dinners. In fact, I often double the recipe to have more servings to freeze. Don’t you just love recipes that double as meal prep to make future weeknight dinners fast and easy?


Not only are these easy homemade sloppy joes perfect for weeknight dinners, they’re also perfect to feed a crowd. Think game day food, a gathering of teens at the house, or even a casual dinner with friends.


Italian Sloppy Joes are a family friendly meal that are sure to be a hit!

FAQS:

How long can I store the sloppy joe mixture in the refrigerator?Store in an airtight container for up to four days. To reheat, simply simmer over low heat in a sauce pan or microwave. You may need to add a touch more liquid if the mixture has thickened in the refrigerator.

What kind of bun is best for serving sloppy joes?Hamburger buns are traditional, but you really can use any type of bun you like. I highly recommend toasting the bun first before adding the sloppy joe mixture. For this recipe, I used hoagie rolls, but you could also use brioche buns, french bread, or even toasted garlic bread.


INGREDIENTS FOR ITALIAN SLOPPY JOES:

  • Ground Italian sausage
  • Red and/or green bell pepper
  • Yellow onion
  • Garlic
  • Italian seasonings
  • Diced tomatoes
  • Tomato sauce
  • Salt
  • Red pepper flakes (optional)
  • Buns and cheese for serving


HOW TO PREPARE EASY SLOPPY JOES:

You will need these ingredients ⇧
  • Remove the sausage from its casing, and brown in a large skillet over medium high heat, breaking the meat apart as it cooks. When cooked through, drain excess grease from the pan.
  • While the meat is browning, chop the onion and peppers, and mince the garlic. You’ll also want to drain your diced tomatoes.
  • Once the meat is cooked through, add the peppers and onion to the skillet, and continue cooking over medium-high heat until they begin to soften, about 10 minutes.
  • After the vegetables are soft, add the garlic, and sauté about 3 minutes. Then add the spices, drained diced tomatoes, and tomato sauce. Let simmer about 30 minutes over medium low heat to let the flavors fully combine, and reduce the tomato sauce a bit.
  • When ready to serve, toast your buns or hoagie roll, and spoon the sausage sloppy joe meat on top. Melt cheese on top if desired.
Cooke the sausage, peppers, onion, and garlic.
Add the seasonings, diced tomatoes, and tomato sauce.
Toast the buns, and melt cheese on top.

SERVING SUGGESTIONS:

  • Potatoes are pretty traditional for serving along side sloppy joes. You can serve with fries, or try my favorite Roasted Potatoes, Potato Salad, or Twice-baked Potatoes.
  • If you prefer to go the veggie route, check out Brussels Sprouts Coleslaw or cook up some corn on the cob.
  • Mediterranean Three Bean Salad is also a great choice for sandwiches.
  • Make a double batch and freeze the leftovers for up to six months for easy weeknight dinners when you’re busy.


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INGREDIENT SUBSTITUTIONS:

  • Italian sausage: Use either mild or hot depending on your taste preference. You can also use turkey sausage in this recipe.
  • Italian seasoning: 2 tsp. dried basil, 2 tsp. dried oregano, 1 tsp. dried parsley
  • Mozzarella cheese: Try Provolone, Fontina, or white cheddar.
  • Gluten-free: Just make sure to buy gluten-free buns.
  • Lower carb option: Serve over spaghetti squash.
  • Whole30 option: Serve over a baked sweet potato or roasted potatoes, or bake into a zucchini shell. Omit the optional cheese.


RECIPE NOTES:

  • This recipe was originally published April 12, 2017, but was updated with new photos and tips to make it more user friendly.
  • I love my 12″ skillet with a lid for simmering recipes like this one.


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Italian Style Sloppy Joes: A Family Favorite

Recipe details

  • 6  servings
  • Prep time: 10 Minutes Cook time: 45 Minutes Total time: 55 min
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Ingredients


  • 1 pound Italian sausage (hot, mild, or a mix) or turkey sausage
  • 1 /2 green bell pepper (1/2 cup diced)
  • 1/2 red bell pepper (1/2 cup diced)
  • 1/2 medium yellow onion (3/4 cup diced)
  • 5 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons Italian seasoning blend
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 teaspoon pink Himalayan salt
  • 1 15-ounce can fire roasted diced tomatoes
  • 10 ounces tomato sauce

Instructions


Remove the sausage from its casing, and brown in a large skillet over medium high heat, breaking the meat apart as it cooks. When cooked through, drain excess grease from the pan.
While the meat is browning, chop the onion and peppers, and mince the garlic. You’ll also want to drain your diced tomatoes.
Once the meat is cooked through, add the peppers and onion to the skillet, and continue cooking over medium-high heat until they begin to soften, about 10 minutes.
After the vegetables are soft, add the garlic, and sauté about 3 minutes. Then add the spices, drained diced tomatoes, and tomato sauce. Let simmer about 30 minutes over medium low heat to let the flavors fully combine, and reduce the tomato sauce a bit.
When ready to serve, toast your buns or hoagie roll, and spoon the sausage sloppy joe meat on top. Melt cheese on top if desired.

Tips

  • Italian sausage: Use either mild or hot depending on your taste preference. You can also use turkey sausage in this recipe.
  • Italian seasoning blend: 2 tsp. dried basil, 2 tsp. dried oregano, 1 tsp. dried parsley
  • Mozzarella cheese: Try Provolone, Fontina, or white cheddar.
  • Gluten-free: Just make sure to buy gluten-free buns.
  • Lower carb option: Serve over spaghetti squash.
  • Whole30 option: Serve over a baked sweet potato or roasted potatoes, or bake into a zucchini shell. Omit the optional cheese.

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