Lentil Sloppy Joe

Menu Part: 
Cuisine Type: 
10 sandwiches

“At a full-time retreat focused on using more legumes and grains, several cooks developed this Lentil Sloppy Joe Sandwich recipe,” explains Carol Fletcher, assistant director for residential dining at the University of Northern Iowa, in Cedar Falls. By adding the pulse, dining services was able to create a healthier version of this traditionally meat-based student-favorite sandwich. “We continue to look for new recipes that support the changing student taste palate and to add variety to our menus,” Fletcher adds.


5 ½ oz. lentils
3 ⅓ cups water
2 ½ tsp. canola oil
6 ½ oz. diced onions
5 oz. chopped fresh tomatoes
2 ½ oz. molasses
2 ½ tsp. apple cider vinegar
2 tbsp. + 1 ½ tsp. yellow mustard
¼ tsp. Tabasco sauce
¾ tsp. chopped fresh garlic
¼ tsp. rubbed sage
¼ tsp. ground cumin
¼ tsp. onion powder
½ tsp. basil leaves cut
¼ tsp. turmeric
¼ tsp. ground black pepper
4 oz. tomato paste
⅓ cup + 1 tbsp. water
10 wheat hamburger buns


  1. Sort and rinse lentils. Place clean lentils in steam jacketed kettle, cover with first-listed water; bring to boil. Reduce heat to medium and cook until lentils are tender (water will almost be gone). Remove from kettle.
  2. Heat oil in kettle. Add onions and sauté until lightly browned and softened. Add tomatoes and cook an additional 5 minutes. Add molasses, vinegar, mustard, Tabasco, garlic and spices. Combine thoroughly. Add lentils and bring to a boil.
  3. Add tomato paste and second-listed water; return to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes, or until flavors are blended and proper consistency is reached.
  4. For service: Portion filling onto hamburger buns with #16 dipper.
Source: University of Northern Iowa, Cedar Falls

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