Quick and Easy Dinner Recipe: Sloppy Joe Tostadas

November 4, 2016

It’s a dish that carries a myriad of names - wimpies, toasted deviled hamburgers, hamburg a la Creole, yip yips, slushburgers, and on - but this classic American meal is most commonly known today as Sloppy Joe’s. It was created in the 1930s by a Midwestern chef named Joe and since the '30s has been defined as a quick, easy, and cheap meal. In the 1960s, food companies began packaging the sauce (think Manwich) for homemakers, and it remains today a popular meal among both hungry kids and adults. The traditional Sloppy Joe recipe consists of a hamburger bun piled high with a sweet and savory tomato sauce combined with ground beef. But why buy a box when you can make this easy dish as home with healthier ingredients? Just say no to those processed foods!

This tasty and fun variation from Homemade@Hawthorn starts with a sweet, savory, and spicy sauce that includes ingredients like Chipotle sauce, soy sauce, tamarind (a tangy, sour fruit pulp), apple cider vinegar, ketchup, brown sugar, and Worcestershire, then combines it with high-quality beef (preferably grass-fed). The high carb bun is skipped and instead the sauce is spooned over corn tortillas and topped with slices of avocado. From start to finish this hearty and comforting meal is on the table in just 25 minutes!

Sloppy Joe Tostadas
Serves: 2-4

2 tablespoons butter
1 small onion, diced small
1 small bottle (4 ounces) Chipotle hot sauce
½ cup brown sugar
¼ cup soy sauce
½ cup ketchup
3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
¼ cup tamarind (look for this in the ethnic section of your supermarket)
Couple dashes of Worcestershire
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 pounds grass-fed, local if possible, ground beef, bison or pork
1 bag whole corn tostadas
1 avocado, peeled and sliced in half


To make the Sloppy Joe sauce, in a medium size saucepan on medium high heat, melt butter until it gets foamy, about 2 minutes. Add onion and cook until it becomes soft and translucent, about 5 minutes. Reduce heat to low and add hot sauce, brown sugar, soy sauce, ketchup, apple cider vinegar, tamarind and Worcestershire sauce. Let simmer for a few minutes while stirring occasionally. Season with salt and pepper to your liking, remove from heat and set aside.

In a medium shallow pan over medium heat, add olive oil and ground meat. Stir until brown and fully cooked through, about 10 minutes. Add the Sloppy Joe sauce to cover the meat. Stir until incorporated and heated through, about 2 minutes.

To serve, place a couple tostadas on the plate and spoon the sloppy Joe mix right on top. Finish the tostada with a sliced half avocado. This recipe also works great on some toasted challah buns and with a side of chips and some pickles.

About this recipe: Hawthorn Suites by Wyndham has teamed up with renowned chefs Hari Nayak and James Rigato to create custom recipes for guests to make in their Hawthorn Suites kitchenettes. The Homemade@Hawthorn collection of 14 easy recipes are designed for the home chef, using simple and fresh ingredients, and range from healthy to hearty. They take under 55 minutes to make with the majority using under 10 ingredients.

Created by Chef Rigato | Photo © Joe Vaughn
Recipe courtesy of Homemade@Hawthorn, a Hawthorn Suites by Wyndham guest program