Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Slow-cooker venison sloppy joes

There are some things that are just worth the effort of making them completely homemade, and sloppy joes are one of them. I started making my own a few years ago and I've never looked back.

Now, to be fair, there was really no back to look too. My mom never made sloppy joes growing up, and while I may have had them in the cafeteria in high school, I was never really a Manwich eater. They just didn't appeal to me. 

This recipe is different, though.  It's chock full of fresh veggies, lean meat, smokey spices and a subtle sweetness. 

I used venison because that is what I had. My father-in-law gave us several packages of venison burger and venison makes great sloppy joes. You could easily substitute ground beef or turkey. 

If you've never had it, venison has a stronger flavor than beef. Some would call it "game-ey"  but I think it's almost sweet.  One problem with venison is that it's very lean, so it can be hard to keep it tender.  For that reason, sloppy joes, stew, a bolognese or slow-cooking a roast are the best ways to prepare this meat. 

Okay, here's what you need:
1 lb. of lean ground meat (I used venison)
1 small onion, diced
1 carrot, chopped
1 stalk celery, chopped
1 14 oz. can diced tomatoes
2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
3 tablespoons dark brown sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons cumin
1 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
6 whole-wheat rolls (sandwich or hamburger-style)

To start, chop your veg.

Brown your venison (use a little oil if it's sticking.)

Toss your venison, veggies, tomatoes, Worcestershire sauce, brown sugar and spices into the slow-cooker.

Mix it all up.  Doesn't it already look delicious?

Cook on high for 4 hours or low for 6 hours, until it look like this: 

Toss it on a hamburger roll, or over top of some pasta, and eat it up.

It's hard to make sloppy joes look as delicious as they taste.


Becky said...

Whoa! That is a great idea! My memory of sloppy joes is also school cafeteria-ish, and this looks like a vast improvement. Wayne needs this recipe for his venison.

Sprite's Keeper said...

Wait, Sloppy Joes have carrots in them? All these years!

Andrea said...

Well that looks fantastic! I don't mind a good Manwich every now and then (um, from a can...that sounds no better), but the hubs won't eat Hunts ketchup, and that is who makes Manwich...whatever!

Susanica said...

This looks delicious Jenni. We'll have to cook some of them up!-M

gretchen said...

Do you think if I cooked the veggies long enough, Jude wouldn't figure out they were, you know, vegetables? Where do you get your venison? I'll never forget the first time Jimmy went to my friend Kaysie's family ranch in TX. Her dad barbecued sausage, and Jimmy was chowing down on it, he went on and on about how it was the best sausage he'd ever had. All the Texans sort of started to giggle. Then Kaysie's dad told Jimmy "Yeah. I shot that buck myself." Jimmy sort of freaked out.