Turk-Wee Sloppy Joes


While other kids went outside to play when I was in grade school, I would always find myself in the kitchen with the lunch ladies, checking out what they were making for that day and stealing bites of whatever I could get my hands on. One of my favorite things the ladies prepared were sloppy joes. They were tangy, warm and fun to eat because they were so messy. I loved biting into them and watching the sauce dribble back onto the plate.

Recently, I was nostalgic for a good sloppy joe recipe and I couldn't believe how many of the ones in cookbooks or available online contained tons of sugar and ketchup. This recipe is super yummy, but also healthy, which makes it a great meal for the whole family. I use ground turkey instead of beef because it’s lower in fat, comparable in price, and tastes just as delicious.

Kenya's still too young to get the concept of holding a big sandwich like this, but he loves to eat the turkey mixture with a spoon out of a bowl.


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Turk-Wee Sloppy Joes (Serves 4)

Prep Time: 1 mins Cook Time: 24 mins

egg free

nut free

dairy free

gluten free


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 onion, diced
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, diced
  • 1 carrot, diced
  • 1 celery stalk, diced
  • 1 pound ground turkey
  • 1 15 Oz Can Tomato Sauce
  • 3 tablespoons worcestershire sauce
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 4 whole Wheat Sandwich Buns or Rolls (optional)


1. Heat the olive oil in a large sauté pan over medium heat.

2. Add the onion and cook for 3-5 minutes or until soft.

3. Add the bell pepper, carrot and celery and continue cooking for 3 minutes.

4. Add the ground turkey and cook for 5 minutes or until meat is cooked through.

5. Add the tomato sauce and Worcestershire sauce and cook for 10 minutes.

6. Season with salt and pepper.

7. Serve as is or on buns.

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Hi, I’m Catherine. Mama of three. A Kentucky girl living in California. Here’s what I know: all kids can be great eaters and mealtime must be easy. I create simple, healthy recipes the whole family will love.

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  • Marsha

    Very yummy recipe! I did not have tomato sauce so I substituted a 6 oz can of tomato paste and about 1 1/2 cans of water. It tasted great and both my 3 1/2 year old and 2 year old sons gobbled it up!

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  • Alex Walker

    Agree with the others that this is quite tasty. We added a little bit of low sugar ketchup because we didn't have Worcestershire. The only hitch is that one of my twin toddlers, who has become extremely fastidious, didn't like it being \"sloppy.\" Ha. Great recipe.

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  • Susan Brabant

    Catherine - I'm just getting into using a slow cooker. Could this be made in the slow cooker. Would you brown the meat first? Or would this type of recipe dry out the mixture in a slow cooker?

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  • Mandieharris

    These are particularly delicious - for kids and adults alike. I've made them a few times now, and they've been a huge hit each time. I like how the veggies are incorporated - actually makes it so much more flavorful than the version you remember growing up. I should note that I do use ground beef for mine since I don't care for ground turkey. And I server them on sweet Hawaiian rolls. Fab! Thank you for the recipe!

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