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So Walmart is trying this new thing where they are offering moms (and dads) meal solutions.  You know, for those of us who are busy and forgot to write a meal plan!  Or, those of us who are pooped and don’t want to make what we planned!  So, this week here’s what Walmart is offering moms (and dads, of course!)…

  • Manwich Sloppy Joe $2.12
  • Great Value Hamburger Buns $1.06
  • Kraft Velveeta Shells and Cheese $1.70
  • Lipton Rice and Sauce, Broccoli & Cheddar $1.00
  • Bush Baked Beans (16 oz) $0.94

*Prices may vary by region

When I’m craving sloppy joes I have a great go-to recipe to make them from scratch.  I love this recipe because you can pack a vegetable into something that the kidlets LOVE, and they never have to know!  The secret ingredient is…CARROTS.

I grab a bag of Great Value buns (you can’t beat that price!) and this meal is done in minutes!  If I really want to impress and I’m feeding this to a crowd (I have served this to the company – its really that good!) I make the buns from scratch.  Of course, that is only on the weekends – on the weeknights when I’m in a hurry, I just go with store-bought.

Sloppy Joes

1 lb. grass-fed ground beef
1 c. carrots, shredded
1/4 c. brown sugar
1 small onion, chopped
1 T. red wine vinegar
1 T Worcestershire sauce
2 cups tomato sauce
2 T tomato paste (I buy the kind in a tube so I don’t waste)
4 to 5 buns
organic butter

Brown the ground beef and onion and drain the grease off. Add carrots, beef, and onion back to the pan. Cook for about 2 minutes. Add remaining ingredients and simmer for about 10 minutes (until ingredients have had a chance to combine and are bubbling).

To make this extra good … spread a little butter on the buns and grill on a hot griddle until toasty, then add a scoop of the sloppy joe mixture and enjoy! If you want to give homemade buns a shot, check out this recipe from King Arthur Flour.

Confession… it is good for the soul, right?  I LOVE Lipton rice and sauce.  I know there has to be a great recipe out there somewhere to make something similar from scratch, but it is so darn easy and tasty I haven’t even bothered to look for one! LOL.  My favourite variety is the Cajun rice and beans.  I add a little turkey smoked sausage to it, and voila!  It makes a meal in less than 20 minutes.  My husband can’t get enough of it!  But, as delicious as it is, it isn’t what I think of when I’m thinking about what to serve with sloppy joes.  I’m more likely to whip up a batch of my “almost famous” potato salad and some Bush’s baked beans.

My family loves Bush’s baked beans so much that we joke that it is our secret family recipe!  My mom tells the story of making homemade baked beans one year for a family reunion and the following year she brought Bush’s baked beans.  Everyone went crazy for the Bush’s baked beans and asked for the recipe.  She laughed and told them it was a secret family recipe!

This meal is delicious anytime and it is quick and easy.  But to me, this meal plan screams picnic or backyard bash.  So, invite the neighbours over and share a meal – the weather is great right now, so what better timing!  Plus, you won’t have to spend a bundle to make this meal for your friends, it is a great way to stretch a pound of beef.

This post is part of a series on Making Meals Easier for Mom (Meal Solutions).  I hope you love it as much as I do!  Follow me and my fellow Walmart Moms, Jenn at Frugal Upstate, Heather at Domestic Diva, and Lori at My Wooden Spoon, to get a fresh take on a new meal plan each week.  Walmart has provided me with compensation and a gift card in return for this post. Participation in this program is voluntary.  All opinions are my own.