Pumpkin Sloppy Joe’s Recipe – The Perfect Fall Family Meal

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Pumpkin Sloppy Joe’s Recipe – The Perfect Fall Family Meal

Slop, sloppy joe! Does anyone else remember that SNL Adam Sandler song? School is back in session and we are always looking for an easy weeknight meal for our busy week of school and activities. When I think of sloppy joes, I think of childhood. I remember being extremely grossed out by the look but ended up loving them anyways. It is one of those classic meals that was served in your childhood. Nowadays you can take any classic sloppy joe recipe and mix it up how you wish. This is why I am excited to share with you one of my favorite recipes, the Pumpkin Sloppy Joe’s recipe.

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Why Pumpkin?

Before I get into this great recipe, one question I have been asked is why pumpkin? First, it’s fall and if you have not jumped on the pumpkin bandwagon, I am hurt *wink*.

Pumpkin offers many nutritional benefits including:

  1. Rich in Vitamin A
  2. High antioxidant
  3. Includes vitamins that can boost your immunity (hello, flu season!)
  4. High in potassium, vitamin C, and fiber, which have been linked to heart benefits.

You definitely will want to level up this loose meat sandwich with pumpkin!

Ingredients and Supplies Needed

I am sure you will be surprised by the simple ingredients in this Pumpkin Sloppy Joe recipe. Typically, homemade sloppy joes include ingredients such as tomato sauce, tomato paste, brown sugar, Worcestershire sauce, and more. This healthy sloppy joes recipe is pretty clean and healthy!

  1. Reliable crock pot – We use this one and it is a staple in our kitchen
  2. Freezer containers – I would recommend doubling this! Freeze any extras in an airtight container for a quick meal during a super busy week.
  3. 1 lb lean ground beef
  4. 1/2 cup diced yellow medium onion
  5. 1/2 diced green bell pepper – you can use whichever color you wish!
  6. 2 gloved garlic minced from fresh garlic cloves – the jar stuff works too.
  7. 1 cup pumpkin puree – Libby’s Pumpkin is my favorite!
  8. 1/2 cup ketchup – look for sugar-free
  9. 1 Tablespoon dijon mustard
  10. 1 Tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  11. 1 teaspoon chili powder
  12. 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  13. 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  14. Pinch of cloves, nutmeg, and black pepper
  15. Hamburger buns and/or sweet potato chips/crackers, and cheese for serving.

The great thing about this comfort food, there really is no right or wrong way to prepare this. You can even add in some extra produce if you wish to sneak in some additional veggies for your children. Get creative and use what you have on hand!


Take all the ingredients and dump them into your crockpot and cook on medium-high heat for 3-4 hours or low heat for 6-8 hours. Take note of your crockpot. I know ours can cook super quick, so adjust the temperatures and time that works best for you. If you are home, I would take a slotted spoon and stir it every once in a while, but it is not required. Once your meat mixture is done, remove the lid and let sit for a bit for any extra liquid to evaporate.

How to serve Pumpkin Sloppy Joes

There are all sorts of fun ways to serve these Pumpkin Sloppy Joes. If you are looking to cut bread, serve it like chili with a little shredded cheese on top. I love eating it like chili. It is less messy and I find some delicious sweet potato chips or crackers for a wonderful crunch. You can also serve it as a sandwich. Cut up some fresh apples from your favorite local orchard and you have the perfect fall dinner.


Erin Huiatt

Erin is a reliable resource and stepping stone for women and families to find support and make connections within our community. She wants families to feel confident to reach out and ask for help and advice to get pointed in the right direction. She enjoys traveling and exploring with her two children in tow!

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