A childhood staple, Sloppy Joes are hearty and delicious! Make them in your Instant Pot for a super quick and easy dinner that has a sweet and savory sauce. This is the perfect recipe for family dinner and also potlucks.
Sloppy Joes are one of those classic meals that makes most people think of childhood. There’s a reason for that! They are super easy to prepare, making them the perfect meal for busy families. Moms are smart! They are good at finding those easy recipes that are also off-the-charts delicious. Sloppy Joes are perfect for family dinner any night of the week and they are also the perfect potluck party food.
Every time I arrive at a party and see that sloppy joes are on the menu, I start loading up a bun pronto! These savory sandwiches are staples at graduation parties, summer potlucks, game-day parties, Father’s Day celebrations and so much more. They are delicious, versatile and when made in an Instant Pot Duo they become even more delicious! I’m telling you, there is magic inside that little pot of yum!
WATCH THIS QUICK VIDEO TO SEE HOW TO MAKE PERFECT SLOPPY JOES IN YOUR INSTANT POT!
HOW TO MAKE HOMEMADE SLOPPY JOES IN AN INSTANT POT
This pressure cooker sloppy joes recipe is a family meal and a classic that everyone will enjoy! Follow these simple steps to make it in your Instant Pot!
Set the Instant Pot to saute mode. Add the ground beef, onion and garlic and cook until the meat is no longer pink. Drain grease from the pot, if needed. Add 1 tablespoon of olive oil if the pot is too dry.
Add the ketchup, mustard, brown sugar, Worcestershire sauce, water, salt, pepper and cayenne pepper to the pot and mix well.
Place the cover on the pot and set the timer to 5 minutes on high pressure (use the pressure cook setting). It will take the Instant Pot approximately 9 minutes to build up pressure before it begins cooking.
When cook time is up, release pressure naturally for 10 minutes then do a quick release. It’ll be great to not have to stir occasionally – the pressure does all the work!
Remove the cover, stir and let sit for 5-10 minutes before spooning into hamburger buns and serving. Top with pickle slices, if desired.
RECIPE TIPS: MAKE THIS THE TASTIEST SLOPPY JOE RECIPE YOUR GUESTS WILL EVER EAT!
Spice up the recipe by adding 1/2 teaspoon of additional cayenne pepper. You could also add up to 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes and or 1 teaspoon chili powder! Make sure to stir the beef mixture with your wooden spoon so you don’t get a clump of spice. It’ll be YUM!
I will occasionally add a splash of soy sauce to the sauce for an extra salty end result. I love the twist this adds. Don’t add too much, though!
Use lean ground beef or even ground turkey for an extra lean meal.
Add a chopped red, orange or green bell pepper to the pot along with the onions for extra crunch and flavor!
I love sandwich toppings almost more than I love sandwiches! Great topping options for sloppy joes include: pickle slices, a spoonful of coleslaw, red onion slices, sliced green onions, a thick tomato slice, cooked bacon strips, a slice of cheese (put it on while it’s hot so it melts!) or a fried egg if you’re feeling really crazy.
WHAT GOES WITH SLOPPY JOES?
One of the great things about this delicious hot sandwich is that there are so many options to serve alongside it. This is what makes it such a great party food. It goes with everything! Here are a few ideas for sloppy joe sides:
Potato salad is the perfect side for hot sandwiches.
Baked beans, either made in an Instant Pot, on the stove top or in a slow cooker!
Salads are a great side for this sandwich. Any leafy salad goes great with it, but my favorite is a good chopped salad.
A pasta salad would be a perfect fit! How about Caprese Pasta Salad!
Grilled or fresh veggies are a perfect side.
Chips of any kind or even French fries! Or hey, roasted sweet potatoes would be great, too!
WHAT MAKES THESE BETTER THAN STOVE TOP OR SLOW COOKER SLOPPY JOES?
We all know that no matter how sloppy joes are made, THEY ARE DELICIOUS. Nobody will argue with that. So are they really that much tastier when made in an Instant Pot? The amount of time it takes to make them on stove top and pressure cooker are about the same, but the flavor? The Instant Pot works it’s secret magic to turn up the dial on the flavor, even over the slow-cooked version.
GREAT PARTY FOODS TO MAKE FOR YOUR NEXT GATHERING
Sloppy Joes are the ultimate party food, but there are so many other delicious recipes to make for your next gathering that people will swoon over. Check out these yummy options!
BEST RECIPES TO MAKE IN AN INSTANT POT
The list of recipes you can make in an Instant Pot is endless! It can act as a slow cooker, saute pan, steamer, rice maker, yogurt maker and pressure cooker. It can cook soup, chili, pasta, meat, potatoes, veggies, cake, beans and so much more. Here are a few of my favorite Instant Pot recipes:
INSTANT POT BURN NOTICE
If you see that dreaded burn notice flash on your Instant Pot, do not fret! Know that your pressure cooker is keeping a good eye on your food. It has sensed that the temperature toward the bottom of the pot is too high and has therefore turned it off temporarily. It is giving you a chance to fix the problem! This can happen especially with thick sauces because of the heaviness of the contents inside the pot. It can also happen if there is not enough liquid inside the pot.
If you see the burn notice, press CANCEL as soon as possible. Do an immediate quick release and wait for the silver float valve to drop. Transfer the inner pot to a hot pad holder. Scrape any bits of food that may have adhered to the bottom of the pot using a spoon.
If there are no burned bits:
Add 1/2 cup of beef broth or water to the recipe.
Stir the contents of the pot thoroughly and resume cooking.
If you see burned pieces in the mixture:
Pour the contents into a saucepan and clean out the pot using soap and water, making sure any charred pieces of food are removed from the bottom of the pan. Remove visible pieces of burnt food and pour it back into the pot.
Add 1/2 cup of beef broth or water to the recipe, stir the contents thoroughly and resume cooking.
HOW TO AVOID SEEING THE DREADED BURN NOTICE ON THE INSTANT POT
Stir heavy sauces or soups just before placing the cover on the pot for cooking. You will want the heaviest ingredients toward the top in order to ensure they don’t stick to the bottom and burn.
Make sure your pot contains enough liquid! Add extra beef broth or chicken broth if it is already an ingredient in the recipe. If the recipe does not contain a thin liquid (e.g., a recipe that requires a trivet), add 1 1/2 cups of liquid to the bottom of the Instant Pot before cooking.
I do not use an 8-quart IP, but from what I have read this size is much quicker to burn than the 6-quart version. The 8-quart Instant Pot may require more liquid than the 6-quart does.
Instant Pot Sloppy Joes
- 2 pounds ground beef
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 yellow onion chopped
- 1 cup ketchup
- 2 tablespoons mustard
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
- 1 cup beef broth or water
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 8 hamburger buns
- sliced pickles for topping, optional
- Set Instant Pot to saute. Add the ground beef, garlic and onion and cook until meat is no longer pink; drain, if needed.
- Add the ketchup, mustard, brown sugar, Worcestershire sauce, water, salt, pepper and cayenne pepper to the pot; mix well.
- Place the cover on the pot and set timer to 5 minutes on high pressure (pressure cook setting). It will take the IP around 9 minutes to build up pressure before it begins cooking.
- When cooking is done, let it release naturally for 10 minutes then do a quick release.
- Remove cover, stir and let sit for 10 minutes before spooning into buns and serving. Top with pickle slices, if desired.