Sloppy joes have been a part of my life since I was a little kid. Mom would make them for an easy dinner when our schedules got crazy as kids. She started making them with ground turkey when we decided as a family that we shouldn’t eat so much red meat. When I told her I was going to make Sloppy Joes with lentils, she thought I was crazy – there was some audible skepticism in her voice when I talked to her this afternoon. Now, I dare her to make these and see how right I was.
Some googling showed me that this is not an original idea – but lacking a car to go grocery shopping, I used ingredients that I have talked Paul into keeping in his kitchen. These make use of some pre-made rubs & sauces, but the end result is delicious.
I served them on Against The Grain’s gluten free pumpernickel buns.
- 1 c Lentils
- 4 c water
- 2 T steak seasoning/barbecue rub (I used the steak house rub from Williams Sonoma)
- 4T tomato paste (buy this in a tube – that way you won’t waste half a can when you make this)
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, minced (or 1 1/2t minced garlic from a jar)
- 1 c Sweet Baby Rays Barbecue sauce
- 1 1/2 c water
- 2 T olive oil
Cook the lentils in 4 c of the water until al dente (they don’t have to be all the way cooked). Drain and set aside. Put olive oil in a dutch oven or sauce pan. Saute onions, garlic & rub until onions are translucent and fragrant. Add tomato paste & 1 1/2 cups water and the barbecue sauce to the onions & garlic. Cook sauce on medium heat until it begins to thicken (about 15 mins). Add lentils and cook until the lentils are cooked through and the sauce is the desired consistency. If it is too thick, you can always add a little water.