Instant Pot Sloppy Joes Recipe

Enjoy an easy dinner in just minutes. These Instant Pot Sloppy Joes are homemade, kid-friendly, and the perfect sweet and tangy weeknight meal recipe idea!

If you love this easy dinner idea, be sure to try my Swedish Meatballs recipe as well as my easy Buffalo Chicken Pasta!

Instant pot with sloppy joes and a wooden spoon.


Why this Recipe Works

Everyone loves family dinner recipes. From Chicken Tetrazzini to meatloaf, each family makes their own version.

Sloppy Joes are a family favorite in our house. But growing up, we always made them my momma’s way.

One pound of ground beef, browned…drain and add enough Open Pit barbecue sauce to make them “sloppy.”

That’s it.

It wasn’t until years later that I realized those sandwiches were more like loose meat BBQ, not traditional sloppy joes.

Sloppy Joes originally got their name from a cook name Joe at Floyd Angell’s cafe in Iowa. He added tomato sauce to a loose meat sandwich, and thus became the classic dinner.

Sticking with the tomato sauce, I’ve created the perfect Sloppy Joe Recipe in the Instant Pot. You can also make this on the stove top or slow cooker, see below for details!

Step by Step Instructions

Bun with sloppy joes and potato chips. Instant Pot in background.

Brown the meat.

Turn your pressure cooker to SAUTE, and add ground beef. Cook until brown and crumbly. Drain any excess grease or liquid and transfer meat to a plate. Set aside.

Cook the vegetables.

While on SAUTE, add olive oil to pressure cooker. Add diced onion, green pepper, and garlic to instant pot. Cook for about 3-4 minutes, until peppers are softened. Add in crushed tomatoes, water, light brown sugar, worcestershire sauce, chili powder, dry mustard, salt, and pepper. 

PRO TIP: Use a wooden spoon to scrape up the bits on the bottom of the pan. Otherwise you may get a burn notice!

Pressure cook.

Add the beef to the mixture, stirring to combine. Lock the lid and turn valve to SEALING. Select HIGH PRESSURE and cook for 6 minutes.

Use a quick pressure release and carefully remove the lid after the valve drops. If your sauce is too thin, SAUTE for a minute or two until it boils and thickens.

Hamburger bun with sloppy joes and wavy potato chips.

Sloppy Joes on the Stove

To make these on the stove, add beef to a large skillet or saucepan. Cook and brown the beef, drain, and set aside on plate. 

Add olive oil to skillet and cook onion, green pepper, and garlic over medium high heat. Cook for about 4 minutes, until peppers are softened.

Add remaining ingredients, and ground beef, to the skillet. Cook on low for about 20-30 minutes, until thickened. Serve and enjoy.

Sloppy Joes in the Slow Cooker

Brown beef in skillet, or in slow cooker if yours has that function. Drain grease and add all the remaining ingredients to the crockpot.

Turn on low for 6 hours. 

Serve and enjoy!

Serving Suggestions

We love enjoying potato chips with our homemade sloppy joes. 

Don’t forget the buns!

Pot with sloppy joes and wooden spoon.

Tips and Tricks

  • Some people choose to use ketchup instead of tomatoes. I love the freshness of the tomatoes and being able to control the sugar and spice in this recipe.
  • Don’t forget to deglaze the pan after adding the liquids. If you want to avoid the dreaded BURN notice, this is a must do!
  • Need your sauce thicker? You can saute a little after pressure cooking. Or thicken with cornstarch. Add about 2 Tbsp cornstarch to a bowl, with 2 Tbsp of the sloppy joe sauce. Whisk and pour into pressure cooker. Saute until thick.
  • Dice your pepper and onion SMALL
  • Today’s recipe was tested in a 6qt Instant Pot. You may need to make changes for a different size.
  • Use the leftover sloppy joes to make this delicious Sloppy Joe Pizza!!

More Instant Pot Recipes:

Instant Pot Sloppy Joes

4.75 from 27 votes
By: Aimee
Enjoy an easy dinner in just minutes. These Instant Pot Sloppy Joes are homemade and the perfect sweet and tangy weeknight meal recipe idea!
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 8 servings

Ingredients 

  • 2 lbs lean ground beef
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion diced
  • 1 green pepper diced
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 28 oz can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 Tablespoons light brown sugar packed
  • 2 Tablespoons worcestershire sauce
  • 1 Tablespoon soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon dry mustard
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper

Instructions 

  • Turn your pressure cooker to SAUTE, and add ground beef. Cook until brown and crumbly. Drain any excess grease or liquid and transfer meat to a plate. Set aside.
  • While on SAUTE, add olive oil to pressure cooker. Add diced onion, green pepper, and garlic to instant pot. Cook for about 3-4 minutes, until peppers are softened.
  • Add in crushed tomatoes, water, light brown sugar, worcestershire sauce, soy sauce, chili powder, dry mustard, salt, and pepper. Scrape up the bits that remain on the bottom of the pan.
  • Add the beef to the mixture, stirring to combine. Lock the lid and turn valve to SEALING. Select HIGH PRESSURE and cook for 6 minutes.
  • Use a quick pressure release and carefully remove the lid after the valve drops. If your sauce is too thin, SAUTE for a minute or two until it boils and thickens.
  • Serve sloppy joe meat on a bun and enjoy!

Notes

  • Some people choose to use ketchup instead of tomatoes. I love the freshness of the tomatoes and being able to control the sugar and spice in this recipe.
  • Don’t forget to deglaze the pan after adding the liquids. If you want to avoid the dreaded BURN notice, this is a must do!
  • Need your sauce thicker? You can saute a little after pressure cooking. Or thicken with cornstarch. Add about 2 Tbsp cornstarch to a bowl, with 2 Tbsp of the sloppy joe sauce. Whisk and pour into pressure cooker. Saute until thick.
  • Dice your pepper and onion SMALL
  • Today’s recipe was tested in a 6qt Instant Pot. You may need to make changes for a different size.
  • Use the leftover sloppy joes to make this delicious Sloppy Joe Pizza!!

Nutrition

Calories: 337kcal, Carbohydrates: 14g, Protein: 35g, Fat: 16g, Saturated Fat: 6g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 8g, Cholesterol: 101mg, Sodium: 748mg, Fiber: 3g, Sugar: 9g
Course: Main Dish
Cuisine: American
Did you make this recipe?Mention @shugarysweets or tag #shugarysweets!

Enjoy an easy dinner in just minutes. These Instant Pot Sloppy Joes are homemade and the perfect sweet and tangy weeknight meal recipe idea!



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About Aimee

Aimee is a dessert lover (specifically rice krispie treats), workout enthusiast, self-taught foodie, and recipe creator.

Learn more about Aimee.

Affiliate Disclosure:**There may be affiliate links in this post! By clicking on them, or purchasing recommended items I may receive a small compensation. However, I only recommend products I love! Thank you for supporting Shugary Sweets! See my disclosure policy for more info**

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Posted on October 8, 2019

Comments & Reviews

  1. It seems every time I use crushed tomatoes or sauce I get a burn error. Did anyone get a burn message? I would like to try this if not

  2. This recipe is perfect with 3 pounds of ground beef. You don’t have to worry about it being runny. It is absolutely perfect. Yum yum yum!

  3. Sloppy Joes are my favorite food! Like….they would be my last meal, I love them that much. I can’t wait to make this sloppy joe recipe!

  4. We’re big fans of sloppy joes and I love making them in an electric pressure cooker. Heck, I love making everything in an electric pressure cooker, I use one 3-5 times per week minimum.

    1. Looks really good and I want to try, but don’t have dry mustard. Can I add yellow mustard or just omit it?

      1. I add prepared mustard to my recipe. It provides a vinegar (acidic) flavor to balance the sweet. Yellow mustard is fine, but I normally use sweet and spicy. Give it a try and see what you think!

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