Slow Cooker Vegan Sloppy Joes: Lentils are combined with beer, tomatoes, and spices to create an easy, vegan twist on a sloppy joe. This version of sloppy joes has so much flavor it is even a winner with die-hard meat-eaters.
My husband was out of town. Time for the kids and I to play 🙂
You see, he is meat and potatoes Midwesterner and my vegan creations sometimes scare him. Lentil Meatballs with Zoodles? He would pass out! But yet when I set lentil meatballs in front of him over regular spaghetti, he eats is with a smile on his face and gets a second serving–have I mentioned he is the pickiest of eaters in my house–if he THINKS he won’t like it, he WON’T try it.
Anyways, whenever he is gone, the kids and I channel our vegetarian/vegan selves and try out all sorts of new recipes.
This one came out of me looking at the pantry and saying, I have leftover hamburger buns from the weekend’s cookout and suddenly started craving sloppy joes. Well, there was sitting a bag of dried lentils–hmm, lentils work as a meaty texture in meatballs, chilis, and tacos. It could work in sloppy joes.
And then I remembered I had a crazy afternoon of car pooling and errands–dinner needed to be ready when the kids and I got home or we would be really, really grumpy. We like to eat! So, why not try it in the slow-cooker? The worse that could happen was that it wouldn’t work and we would eat oatmeal for dinner. And we would be okay with that.
Guess what? It worked like a charm. The kids and I all devoured 2 each. And we still had leftovers. Uh-oh, Daddy was coming home the next day. Should I try it out on him? Well, I did! And with some sharp cheddar cheese, he declared them not only edible, but actually really good. Want to know how he agreed to try lentils? The last visit to Costco they were sampling Lentil Curry. He tried it (he said later he thought it was ground beef) and LOVED it. So now, he may be more willing to give lentils a fair chance. After all, he ate 3 Lentil Sloppy Joes that night.
- 1 cup dried lentils
- 1 cup dark amber beer
- 1 cup water
- 1 8 ounce can tomato sauce
- 1 6 ounce can tomato paste
- 1 small onion, diced
- 1 small red pepper, diced
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon pepper
- ½ tablespoon soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- 2 tablespoons maple syrup
- 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
- Buns for serving
- Stir all ingredients (except buns) in slow cooker. Set to high for 4 hours or low for 8 hours.
If he was won over, I can guarantee this dish is a winner! (And a bit of cheese for those who are not Vegan, doesn’t hurt much!)
For this recipe I recommend: