Freezer Friendly Sloppy Joes

These freezer friendly sloppy joes are a new family favorite. I have tried many recipes and this one I have adapted from The Pioneer Woman is my absolute favorite.  

Bonus, there is a decent serving of vegetable hidden away in each serving. I use finely diced red peppers, and onions that go undetected by many a suspicious kid. My kids are well adapted to bits, and pieces in their food and no longer hunt them out....but I know many of other parents still struggle with this! If it is an issue for you, dice everything up into itty bitty teeny pieces, and throw them in there anyway. They are welcome to try and pick it out it they desire : )

This meal is great fresh off the skillet, but pinky swear, it is just as good from the freezer. 

This is lighting fast to put on the table and I give you permission to be a total bum with side dishes and serve baby carrots and/or grapes with it. A green salad is awesome if you are feeling really "fancy".

Freezer Friendly Sloppy Joes
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
I think I love these as much as my son. Sweet and tangy and ready in minutes out of the freezer. Make a double batch, you won't regret it!
Recipe type: Freezer
Serves: 6-8 servings
  • 2.5 Lbs. ground beef (preferably grass fed)
  • 1 red bell pepper diced very small
  • 1 small onion-or half a large onion-diced very small
  • 1C. water
  • 1.5 C. ketchup
  • 3-5 garlic cloves minced
  • 2 TBLS. brown sugar
  • 2 tsp. chili powder
  • 1 tsp. dijon mustard
  • 2 tsp. hot sauce or tabasco
  • 1 TBLS worcestershire sauce
  • ½ tsp. salt (or to taste)
  • black pepper
  1. Start by browning the ground beef in a large pot over medium-high heat. Drain off the fat.
  2. Add in the red peppers and onions and sauté about 5 minutes to soften.
  3. Add 1 cup water, the ketchup and garlic. Stir it around to combine, and then add the brown sugar, chili powder, mustard, hot sauce, Worcestershire, salt and pepper to taste. Stir to combine, and then cover and simmer over medium-low heat, about 15 minutes.
  4. -TO FREEZE-
  5. Let finished mixture cool to room temperature in pan. Divide the mixture to best suit your needs. For example I find this recipe realistically yields 6 servings (your nutritionist would rather this serve 8 however.) I divide this recipe evenly into three quart sized freezer bags. Each bag will provide 2 serving I can feed my kids for rushed on the go dinners made just for them. You could also freeze it in one Gallon sized freezer bag to serve the whole family with the potential for seconds or leftovers.
  6. -TO SERVE FROM FROZEN- Take out bag of frozen sloppy joes and defrost on counter or in fridge. If you are taking it out of freezer at the last minute you can defrost it in a bowl or room temperature water for much faster results. Place defrosted (or partially defrosted) mixture into medium sized skillet and warm over low/meduim low until heated through.
  7. I serve on whole wheat bulkie rolls with a side of carrot sticks, grapes, or a side salad.