Turkey sloppy joes are delicious and contain less fat and calories than the typical ones make with beef. And they taste just as good! Learn how to make this classic American dish, homemade sloppy joes, but with a healthier protein. This recipe is easy to follow and will yield enough juicy turkey sloppy joes for a crowd. Come to dinner hungry because this dish makes some hearty sandwiches.
Turkey sloppy joes are an easy dinner option.
Turkey sloppy joes are a great last-minute dinner option. They can easily be made at home with minimal ingredients. This recipe is a family favorite for a reason! Kids adore this meal! Almost everyone loves a good old-fashioned, juicy sloppy joe sandwich.

What is a sloppy joe? 

Sloppy joes are sandwiches that gained popularity in the early 20th century. The origin of the name is argued but many people believe it originated in Sioux City, Iowa and was created by a cook named Joe. It usually consists of ground beef but can be made with ground turkey, chicken or “impossible” meat. A tomato-based sauce is what gives this dish its “sloppiness”. Definitely make sure to have some napkins nearby when eating it. The meat is cooked in the sauce, making it moist and flavorful. They are also commonly known as joeys, grinders, or messy sandwiches.


5 Reasons To Make Turkey Sloppy Joes? 

Turkey sloppy joes are easy and delicious. Check out the four reasons I adore making this recipe, especially when I had kids still living at home.
  1. Turkey sloppy joes are usually served on hamburger buns which makes them a very affordable option for families.
  2. Yes, turkey sloppy joes can be messy to eat, but that’s part of the fun!
  3. Sloppy joes are one of the easiest, most delicious meals you can make with ground turkey.
  4. It’s easy to customize this recipe based on your family’s taste preferences. The ingredients are affordable and straightforward, and the result is delicious.
  5. This is a great recipe to serve a crowd as it can be easily doubled or even tripled!
The ingredients for turkey sloppy joes are probably already in your pantry.

How to Make Turkey Sloppy Joes


The ingredients needed for turkey sloppy joes are minimal.

  • Ground turkey (or other protein). Each pound of meat serves 4-5
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 onion diced
  • 3 garlic cloves diced
  • 1 green pepper diced
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1/2 cup ketchup
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • Salt and pepper to taste as needed


Mix all the ingredients in this dish well.

1. In a tablespoon of olive oil in a sauté pan over medium heat, start to brown protein. Be sure to break it up with a wooden spoon or your favorite tool.
2. As the protein cooks, add onion, garlic and green pepper and stir it occasionally with a wooden spoon.
We like the sauce for turkey sloppy joes to be thick.
3. Mix together ketchup, Dijon mustard, Worcestershire and brown sugar.
4. Once cooked, stir in 3/4 cup of water.
5. Add ketchup mixture and stir.
6. Once combined well, add another 3/4 cup of water and stir.
7. While stirring occasionally, allow the mixture to become the desired texture. We like it to be thick.
8. Add salt, pepper and red pepper if desired.
9. Serve on a toasted brioche bun with pickles, slaw and potato salad.

What to Serve with Sloppy Joes?

There are many different things you could serve as a side dish with sloppy joes. Some people like to keep it classic and simple with just fries or chips, while others want to get a little more creative.
Here are some ideas for good side dishes to serve with sloppy joes:

What else can I do with sloppy joe meat?

Turkey sloppy joes can be made to feed a crowd.

You can do a lot with sloppy joe meat, including using it as a filling for tacos, enchiladas, or burritos. You can also use it to make nachos, quesadillas, or even spaghetti and meatballs. Serve your sloppy joe meat over a baked potato, layered on a grilled cheese sandwich or even over hot dogs.

How to Freeze Sloppy Joes

Cool the sloppy joe mixture thoroughly, then add to freezer containers and freeze for up to 4 months. Just thaw overnight in your refrigerator before cooking when you’re ready to eat it again!