Recipe: Sloppy Joes (meatless)

Meatless Sloppy Joes

makes about 5 servings

Let’s be honest here…I’ve only eaten a couple of vegan meals in my life. It’s tough to try new food, and I wasn’t too thrilled to try this. However, we keep trying new things and I haven’t been disappointed yet.

Eating sloppy joes without meat may seem crazy to you (as it did to me), but I’d encourage you to give this a try! Buying bulgar instead of meat saved us a couple of dollars and that could really add up if you have a large family to feed!


  • 1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
  • 1/2 cup Bulgar ($0.40)
  • 1/2 medium Onion, finely chopped ($0.35)
  • 1/2 Green Pepper, finely chopped ($0.50 – on sale)
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/2 – 1 1/2 cup water
  • 6 oz can of Tomato Paste ($0.59)
  • 1/3 cup Ketchup
  • 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 teaspoons Red Wine Vinegar
  • 1 Tablespoon Brown Sugar
  • pinch of Cayenne Pepper
  • Salt & Pepper (to taste)
  • Hamburger buns ($1.69)
  • Total Cost of Recipe = $3.53

    Immediate note: I wasn’t a big fan of the green peppers in the recipe. It was delicious other than that. If you want to add the green pepper, I’d recommend roasting/baking them for 5 minutes and then add them in as directed.


    In a large pan, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and green peppers to the pan, cooking until the onions become a little translucent.

    Stir in the minced garlic and cook another 1-2 minutes.

    Next, stir in bulgar and cook for 1-2 minutes.


    Add in 1/2 cup of water and the tomato paste. Turn heat down to medium-low and cook the mixture uncovered. Add more water as needed (the mixture does become fairly thick – we added about 3/4 cup of water total).


    Once bulgar reaches your desired consistancy, stir in the remaining ingredients (ketchup, Worcestershire, red wine vinegar, brown sugar, cayenne pepper, and salt/pepper) and cook for 5-6 minutes.

    Serve on a bun and enjoy!


    Original recipe found at Naturally Ella

About the Author

By , on Feb 7, 2012
Andy Tenton
Andy is a 30-something New Yorker who turned his financial life around. He took charge of his finances, got out of debt, and is now working his way toward financial success. He is the publisher of

How to Become Rich e-Course

Budgeting 101


  1. Patricia Morand says:

    I am going to try this recipe this weekend. This sounds delicious.

    • Andy says:


      It was great! As I mentioned in the directions, I’d just caution you about the green peppers.

      There really was no distinction between this and normal sloppy joes though…well, other than bulgar is much cheaper than meat!

      Good luck! Hope you enjoy it.

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