the Easiest Sloppy Joe Sauce like…EVER.

This is a homemade sloppy joe recipe so easy to make you won’t ever reach for a can again. In fact, grab your ground beef and a can of cola and you will have this on the table for supper in 20 minutes.

The finished sloppy joes in a bun, on a plate.
onions browning in a pan
ground beef browning in a pan

Can I sub out ground turkey or chicken for the ground beef?

Of course, you can sub ground turkey or chicken for the beef. Because ground turkey and chicken are fattier than beef you will need to add a tablespoon or two of olive oil when browning them. But by all means…use your favorite meat!

cocoa cola being used for sloppy joe mix

Why use cola in Sloppy Joes?

The caramel flavor in the cola sweetens the sloppy joes in much the same way as brown sugar, as well as reducing down into a nice thick sauce.

Paired with the tomato paste (similar to using ketchup like a traditional homemade Sloppy Joe Sauce), Cola does a darn good job at keeping Sloppy Joes tasty and easy.

pan of homemade sloppy joe sauce

Use this easy Sloppy Joe sauce to make up our family favorite Sloppy Joe Tater Tot Hotdish, or simply serve on a bun with a side of veggies (like we’ve done here).

Either way, you’ll have an easy dinner that your whole family will love!

Sloppy Joe on a plate with a side of grapes

Coca Cola Sloppy Joes

| 6 sandwiches
Prep Time | 5 minutes
Cook Time | 20 minutes
Total Time | 20 minutes
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This homemade sloppy joe sauce is crazy easy and crazy delicious thanks to the use of a can of cola. Keep it easy and fast for family dinner!


  • 1 ½ pound ground beef (or chuck)
  • 1 onion diced
  • 1 6 ounce can tomato paste
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 cup cola Coke, Dr Pepper, Pepsi, etc.
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • ½ cup water
Check out our Kitchen Reference Guide for help with unfamiliar terms.


  • In a large skillet, add ground chuck and onion. Cook, chopping the beef into crumbles, over medium-high heat until the beef is browned and the onion is soft. Drain.
  • Add the meat back to the skillet with remaining ingredients. Stir together and heat until boiling. Reduce heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes.
  • Serve on hamburger buns, toasted bread, or hoagie rolls.


Calories: 312kcalCarbohydrates: 6gProtein: 19gFat: 22gSaturated Fat: 8gCholesterol: 80mgSodium: 300mgPotassium: 355mgSugar: 4gVitamin C: 1.7mgCalcium: 28mgIron: 2.4mg
an easy and delicious sloppy joe sauce in a large spoon scooped from a skillet

Traditional Homemade Sloppy Joe Sauce

Sloppy Joe Tater Tot Casserole

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