Lentil sloppy joes are rich, satisfying, and delicious. The secret to the amazing flavor is the addition of pickle brine! It really packs a lot of flavor into this classic comfort dish.
There are a few meals that my kids ALWAYS enjoy. Pretty much any type of pizza or pasta, anything with potatoes, and lentil sloppy joes. I don’t mind making it on a regular basis:
- It’s a really quick and easy.
- Dried lentils are a healthy and affordable protein option.
- I usually make a double batch, because the leftovers are even tastier.
- It’s vegan, gluten-free, nut-free and delicious!
Traditionally, sloppy joes are served on soft, white-bread buns. However, there is no reason why you have to serve lentil sloppy joes that way! Especially, if you happen to be gluten-free (like I am).
Here are a few different serving suggestions:
How to add fermented foods to lentil sloppy joes
I love fermenting. It’s an easy and delicious way to preserve food. (Zero-waste and no cooking!) It’s also a great source of probiotics. I created this recipe to use up dill pickle brine, however, boiling the brine means that it won’t be probiotic.
However, it is really easy to serve lentil sloppy joes with a forkful of fermented vegetables. Here are a few suggestions:
- Fermented pickles are the obvious choice for sloppy joes. This is my favorite fermented pickle recipe. I love it because it will last for months in a dark pantry!
- Serve it with a forkful of sauerkraut.
- Any fermented vegetable pickle will work as a topping. Just chop up any larger vegetables, so that they can easily be served as a topping.
Pickle-ific Lentil Sloppy Joes
Lentil sloppy joes are rich, satisfying, and delicious. The secret to the amazing flavor of this classic comfort meal is pickles! See the section above for a few other serving suggestions.
- Prep Time: 15 minutes
- Cook Time: 30 minutes
- Total Time: 45 minutes
- Yield: Serves 4 to 6 1x
- Category: Main Dish
- Cuisine: American
- Diet: Vegan
- 1 1/2 cups of dried brown or green lentils
- 1 large onion, diced
- 2 medium carrots, diced
- 4 cloves of garlic, finely diced
- 1 green pepper, diced
- 1/4 cup of vegetable oil
- 1 Tbsp chili powder
- 1 cup dill pickle brine
- 1 cup water
- 1 can of tomato paste (5.5 oz)
- 2 Tbsp of soy sauce (or wheat-free tamari)
- 1 tsp basil
- 1 tsp oregano
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
- Salt, to taste (will depend on the saltiness of the brine)
- 6 to 8 dill pickles, chopped into bite-sized pieces
- 4 hamburger buns or 8 slices of bread
- Rinse the lentils, then boil in a large pot until they are soft, but not mushy, about 15 minutes. In the meantime, wash and dice the vegetables.
- When the lentils are cooked, pour them into a strainer and rinse out the soup pot.
- Return the pot to the stove and add the oil and onions. Saute on medium heat, until the onions are starting to soften. Add the carrots and garlic. Continue to cook for another 5 minutes, then add the green pepper and chili powder. Saute until the chili powder is fragrant, about 2 minutes.
- Add the pickle brine, water, tomato paste, and soy sauce to the pot. Stir until the tomato paste is well mixed into the liquid. Add the lentils, herbs, and spices. Bring everything to a boil, reduce the heat, and simmer until the carrots are soft and the flavors are well blended. Turn off the heat.
- Taste, and add salt, if needed.
- Serve lentil sloppy joes on an untoasted bun and top with diced dill pickles.
- I tested this recipe with homemade fermented pickles and store-bought vinegar pickles. It was delicious both ways! However, I did need to add more salt when using store-bought pickles.
- While white hamburger buns are traditional for sloppy joes, there are other options! See the section above for a few of our favorite alternatives.
- We use a not-so-spicy chili powder. Feel free to switch the chili powder to paprika if you want to avoid the spice altogether.
- Serving Size: 1 bun
- Calories: 392
- Sugar: 13.4g
- Sodium: 1923mg
- Fat: 16.7g
- Saturated Fat: 3.3g
- Carbohydrates: 52.6g
- Fiber: 9.5g
- Protein: 11.9g
- Cholesterol: 0mg
Keywords: Vegetarian, gluten-free, meatless, comfort food, fall, winter, kid-friendly