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Easy Halloween Sloppy Joes

My grandma served these sandwiches every time I visited, and when I had children of my own, I made these sandwiches. My grandchildren enjoy it now, too. It's an inexpensive recipe to make, so it's great for a party. —Patricia Pidgeon, Sycamore, Illinois
  • Total Time
    Prep: 5 min. Cook: 45 min.
  • Makes
    8 servings


  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1-1/2 cups ketchup
  • 3/4 cup sweet pickle relish
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 8 hamburger buns, split
  • 8 slices process American cheese
  • 2 baby dill pickles, sliced


  • In a large skillet, cook beef and onion over medium heat until the meat is no longer pink; drain. Stir in the ketchup, relish and brown sugar. Cover and simmer for 30 minutes or until heated through.
  • Spoon over hamburger bun halves. Cut each slice of cheese diagonally. Cut one piece diagonally again. Use two smaller triangles as eyes and large triangle as mouth. Put 1 slice pickle on each eye.
Nutrition Facts
1 each: 433 calories, 14g fat (6g saturated fat), 51mg cholesterol, 1247mg sodium, 59g carbohydrate (31g sugars, 2g fiber), 20g protein.

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  • CathyOMichigan
    Oct 31, 2014

    My mother made a very similar recipe. It has yellow mustard in place of the relish. make these, shut the heat off for half hour or so, turn the heat back on and let the sugars carmelize. .. oh boy.. the flavor is out of this world! This is the key step.Be careful though, the will burn very easily. I've made them for crowds and am always asked for the recipe. Enjoy!

  • skipper3
    Oct 25, 2011

    My son was making fun of this while I was making it and I doubled the recipe and we ate it two nights in a row. It is sweet, but not too sweet. We all LOVED IT!!

  • tagstr
    Oct 21, 2011

    tried this recipe but thought it was way to sweet. I make my sloppy Joes with ketchup and that is sweet enough. I also add peppers, celery and onion to my recipe so that might make the difference

  • bearceeper
    Oct 20, 2011

    liked it and almost all of the other variations

  • jensenal
    Oct 20, 2011

    I fallowed the recipe just to see how it tasted. I liked the taste of the sauce but thought it was too sweat. Will make it again and ad some vinegar & mustard,and cut back on the sugar. Other than that I liked it. Quick and easy to make.

  • colt4
    Oct 20, 2011

    my hubby always thought my sloppy joe's was the ticket....tasted yours yesterday and said this had to be the best! I did add some worchestershire sauce and 2 drops of liquid smoke.....

  • Julielynn38
    Oct 20, 2011

    My dad makes this but I actually increase the beef to 1 and a half pounds and add a can of tomato soup and a can of chicken gumbo. And simmer for 45 minutes to an hour. It is awesome! It is a big hit at parties!

  • kirbyg
    Oct 20, 2011

    I made the recipe exactly as stated and they turned out excellent. They were not too sweet as other reviewers thought they would be. They were perfect. My family loved them. They are very unique. I made a second batch and added the 8 slices of cheese to it while cooking so it melted within and it turned out wonderfully also. This recipe deserves 10 stars!~ EXCELLENT RECIPE!!!

  • lizbethr
    Oct 19, 2011

    I should have followed my instincts, which said,"Too sweet!!!!" With the sweet pickle relish & then that much sugar, I didn't like this at all. in fact,some of it might go outside to the "critters". Sorry

  • sunsetgrafx
    Oct 19, 2011

    My family loved it. Especially since it looked like a jack o'lantern face. Would make again!