Curry Sloppy Joes

This Curry Sloppy Joes incorporate a delicious blend of curry spices, tomato sauce and lean ground beef to make this healthy one pan dish. Perfect for those following a low carb, sugar free or high protein diet. Naturally gluten free too! 


It was during my semester in America I came across ‘Sloppy Joes’. 

To be honest- I thought it was an American term for someone a little ‘buzzed’ at the bar. Here in Australia, when someone tends to go a little bit overboard we call them ‘sloppy’. Actually, that’s one of the more polite terms used.

One of the guys in my dorm room was telling his roommate that ‘Tuesdays are sloppy joe days’. Being the naive Australian I was, I thought it meant it was another night out at the local bar. At 6pm, I did the typical ‘Pre going out routine’.


Wear my non ripped  jeans. 

Wear my semi decent shirt.

Wear decent footwear.

Add hair wax. 

Remove any excess money from my wallet. 

Go to the ‘Meeting point’ and hail a cab. 

I went to the meeting point and saw it was deserted. I rang one of my friends (who was actually from Australia studying abroad too) confused as to why he wasn’t here- If anyone loves a night out more, it’s him! 

‘Dude, it’s sloppy Joe Tuesdays!’

‘I know’.

“So, where are you?’

‘Uhh, having sloppy Joes’

‘I’m here at the bus stop and no one else is.’

‘They aren’t serving it outside.’

‘……Wait, what are sloppy Joes?’ 

I think I was the most dressed up person in the dining hall that night. I ate two ‘Sloppy Joes’ on hamburger buns and died a little bit inside. 



Since my return, I’ve loved making Sloppy Joes because let’s face it- There’s nothing more simple that browning meat with some sauce and spices and chucking it on a bun and calling it dinner. While I love the classic salty/tangy flavour (usually made with apple cider vinegar), I enjoy changing it up with this version here which omits it, but adds some delicious curry spices because let’s face it- When it comes to spices, me and curry are having an affair. A legal one. 

This recipe can use any ground meat and I even made a Vegan version, using crumbled tofu (Although that was for breakfast- Expect a recipe coming your way soon!). I received a fair few requests for more low carb recipes this year. The beauty of this is- For those following a low carb diet, this would be great mixed with brussels spouts or over some roasted cauliflower. For others (like myself)- I’ve loved having this over this basmati rice or even just eaten by the spoonful. 

These are anything BUT sloppy. In both definitions. 


Curry Sloppy Joes

A delicious blend of curry spices, tomato sauce and lean ground beef to make this healthy one pan dish. Perfect for those following a low carb, sugar free or high protein diet. Naturally gluten free too!
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Author: Arman @ thebigmansworld


  • 500 grams lean ground beef can sub for any ground meat
  • 1/2 onion diced finely
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 1/2 cup passata tomato sauce
  • 1 T cumin
  • 2 tsp garam marsala
  • 2 tsp sea salt
  • 1 T red pepper flakes optional
  • Oil or butter for cooking


  • Coat a large frying pan with oil and once hot, add the onions and garlic and allow to fry for 2 minutes, stirring once or twice. Add the ground meat of choice and stir several times, until fully broken up. Cook for 4-5 minutes, or until meat has browned.
  • Add the pasata, cumin, garam marsala, sea salt and red pepper flakes and mix well until fully incorporated. Allow to cook, stirring occasionally, until most of the liquid has been absorbed.
  • Remove from heat and allow to sit in pan for several minutes. Serve immediately with extra red pepper flakes if desired.


Similar to chili or stews, this tastes delicious the day after. It can be refrigerated for up to a week or frozen for up to two months.
If subbing with tofu crumbles, do not freeze.

Friends, this blog will be down around Sunday for some tech work. Please bear with me and have a great weekend. Eat something delicious for me. 

Linking up with these amazing parties- #recipeoftheweekRealfoodWednesdayssimple supper TuesdaysGluten Free Wednesdayswhat’s cookin’ WednesdaysSaturday SharefestDIY With the SITS and some weekend pot luck lovin

Did you ever or do you currently have a ‘pre going out’ routine?

Have you ever eaten Sloppy Joes?

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71 thoughts on “Curry Sloppy Joes

  1. Have you ever seen It Takes Two? IT’s a Mary-Kate & Ashley Olsen film so chances are no! Anyways sloppy joes always reminds me of that movie as they were featured in one scene- haha cue in randomness ;)! Although I’ve never actually had sloppy joe, I’ve eaten the Indian equivalent which is called keema. Given the curry & garam masala flavours of your version, I’d say it’s pretty similar to keema!

    And I’m a girl- of course there is a pre-going out routine ;)!

  2. It’s 10 am, I am totally ravenous and I am craving this like crazy right now! Naughty you plonking this in front of me!
    This is btw actually how I make my meat sauce. I love it a bit spicy and a good amount of garlic. And as for the love affair with curry, you two totally have my blessing 😉

  3. What the heck? Who invented sloppy joe’s? Who would eat meat sauce on a bun??? I don’t wanna know, and I don’t wanna see anyone eat this at ANY TIME! 😀 must be the worst mess in the world. The recipe itself is amazing though. I’d eat it with zucchini noodles or as you said – just by the spoon full 😉
    Blog won’t be up on Sunday? You have to compromise that by sharing another cool recipe OR a fun rambling post 😉

  4. Way to combine the two countries cuisine….well….not that curry is Australian, but you know what I mean! I miss curry so much, we had it at least once a week at home. Great combination!

  5. haha, I had no idea what sloppy joes were until I went on my first trip to America, but I never tried one and I have no idea why. I have a massive list of all the food I want to try on my tip this year and this is on it.
    And a twinkie. Never had one of those either.

  6. Love the idea of making a curry version!
    As for pre-going out routine – it usually involves at least 3-4 girls crowded in a bathroom with a shitton of makeup and hair straighteners/curlers plugged into every available outlet. So it’s pretty typical, I think.

  7. Haha! I love the story, man. I actually had never really had sloppy joes until I met my wife. When I was a kid, “sloppy joes” were spaghetti sauce over a bun. Not quite the same thing. I’m also digging the curry version here!

  8. Haha, your “sloppy Joe” story is hilarious! Your sloppy Joes look awesome, I’m loving the curry spin. I bet they’re way better than the one’s in the dinner hall!

  9. A big oh nooo to the sloppy joes mix-up! To be honest, I don’t usually like sloppy joes–just not a fan of classic American BBQ sauce or anything that reminds me of it. How dare I, right? This curried version though will go sooooo well with me.

  10. Did you spill any sloppy joes on yourself when you got all dressed up for dinner? What if you have a beer with your sloppy joes in Austrailia – do you get sloppy while eating sloppies? What if you spill sloppy joe on you while drinking a beer – do you get double sloppy? That’s a lot of sloppiness.

  11. I’d like to see an illegal affair with curry. That could be interesting.

    The Hubby loves sloppy joes and he has a ton of ground beef in the freezer. I will definitely steer him towards these. He’ll be thrilled.

    My going out routine is nap, coffee, shower, coffee, dance music and then go. It’s a ritual now.

  12. Hahaha love the back story behind this recipe. But guess what? I bet you were also the classiest guy in the dining hall as well ;). But on a serious note, sloppy joes are joy and happiness all wrapped inside a bun. Comfort food at its finest!

  13. Hahah cracking up at your Sloppy Joes story from your semester in America! That is the greatest thing, especially because I can totally imagine it and I would’ve done the same thing. It sounds like we are talking about a sloppy, buzzed person for sure!! And this looks YUMMY I’ll have to try. You would be so proud at the amount that I eat red meat now… like so much. Miss youuuuu

  14. I had no idea what sloppy joes were until I saw it in a movie. Actually, I think it was an Olsen twins movie — weeeeird. And my going out routine changes depending on who I’m with and where I’m going, but it always, ALWAYS involves loud music and makeup. Always.

  15. First, I love that you eat sloppy joes over rice – that is my favorite way to eat them. I don’t like stuff oozing out of my sandwiches:)
    The curry in this sounds good – might be on the plan for the boys very soon!!!

  16. How many servings in this recipe?
    It looks delicious and I cannot wait to make it! I’m very happy there is ground meat defrosting in my refrigerator as I write this 😀

  17. This would totally work great with TVP for a vegan version! I will have to use this spice recipe the next time I make it. Sloppy Joes are really great with caramelized onions and cheese as well!

  18. LOL. I totally see where you’re coming from with the assumption that “sloppy joe” meant a drunk fella. I didn’t know what “pre-gaming” was until I came to college (not that I did it!).
    But curry sloppy joe’s?? Genius. I love the classic BBQ-type already, but adding curry sounds heavenly.

  19. that’s rice underneath, right? we like the carbs, so glad you plated it. Although i bet the kiwi would be diggin it with brussels. good luck sunday. Can’t wait to see the new tech updates.. redesign???

  20. Another amazing recipe, I love mince – my friend makes Sloppy Joes on a regular basis but I’ve never tried them, I’ve shared your recipe with her! Found you through #RecipeOfTheWeek

  21. Hi Arman! Has any1 ever introduced u by saying, “giv it up for Our Man….Arman!”. Lol. Jokes aside…luv that u luv curry….(me indian btw). Do try other indian dishes…u’ll luv them too!

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