I've been meaning to share this recipe with you all for the longest time. This is the best version of sloppy joes that I've ever tried and it uses a slow cooker, the favorite appliance of harried homemakers everywhere. You know what's even better? Using food storage will streamline the preparation of this meal and make it come together very quickly. Try it - you won't be disappointed.
Crockpot Sloppy Joes
Recipe adapted from Not Your Mother's Slow Cooker Cookbook
1 lb lean ground beef (OR 1 pint of home-canned ground beef, drained)
1 onion, finely chopped (OR approx. 3 T. dry onions, rehydrated according to package directions)
1/2 large red bell pepper, finely chopped (OR about 1/4 c. dry bell pepper, rehydrated according to package directions)
1 large rib celery, finely chopped (OR about 2 T. dry celery, rehydrated according to package directions)
1 clove of garlic, minced (OR 1/4 t. garlic powder)
1-6 oz. can tomato paste (OR 3 oz. tomato powder mixed with 3 oz. water)
2 T. apple cider vinegar
2 T. firmly packed brown sugar
1 t. paprika
1/2 t. dry mustard
3/4 t. salt
1/2 t. chili powder
1/4 t. ground black pepper
1 t. Worcestershire sauce
Dash of Tabasco sauce
Dash of cayenne pepper
Buns for serving
If using fresh ingredients: Brown beef in a skillet with onion, bell pepper, celery and garlic. When the meat is cooked through, transfer the mixture to your slow cooker. Add the remaining ingredients and stir to combine.
Cover and cook on low for 5 to 7 hours. If you let it cook past 5 hours, keep an eye on it because it might start to get overcooked on the sides, depending on how "hot" your slow cooker cooks.
Ladle mixture on buns and enjoy.