Vegan Sloppy Joes


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Recently when I made Curried Ginger & Raisin lentils, I mentioned how much I loved Manwich growing up.

I tried to loosely replicate Manwich in my last lentil recipe, Ketchup & Mustard Lover’s Protein & Veggie MashBut no matter how much ketchup I added, it just wasn’t Manwich.

Sometimes it’s fun to re-invent the wheel, like making Raw Vegan Gluten-Free Girl Scout “Samoas” Cookies.

Raw Vegan Gluten-Free Girl Scout "Samoas" Cookies

Other times it’s not so fun, and you use what you know is tried-and-true, such as a can of Manwich.  Which is exactly what I did.  Manwich is vegan according to many internet sources.  Google it.

Vegan Sloppy Joes on plate with salad



Vegan Sloppy Joes with Lentils & Beans (Bun-less)


1 c dry Green Lentils (green lentils are much heartier and firmer than red which turn to mush much easier)

1 can beans (I used red kidney)

1 can Manwich

Optional: 1 to 1.5 c diced Vegetables (I used carrots and broccoli)

Optional: 1 med/large Potato (the potato helps to absorb any excess liquid since there is no meat to “soak up” the Manwich.  Skip/reduce potato amount as desired.)

Optional: Chili powder, cayenne, cumin, garlic, onions, tomatoes/tomato sauce, salsa, salt/pepper, EVOO, all to taste


Cook 1 cup dry lentils with 2 cups water on stovetop (Bring the lentils and water to a boil, then cover and reduce heat).  Simmer for about 15-20 minutes, or until lentils are cooked.

While the lentils are simmering, cook the potato in the microwave.  (Large potatoes in my micro take about 8.5 to 9 minutes, turning potato over once midway through cooking.)  Dice the cooked baked potato into large chunks.

Once the lentils are cooked, add the everything except the cooked and diced potato and stir.  Simmer for 5-10 minutes on low heat, covered.

Then, fold in the (delicate) cooked potato chunks.

Stir to combine, and serve. (Being gluten free, I did not buy buns.  This would be great on buns, or even scooped up with chips)

Yields: Dinner for 3, plus leftovers for two more meals.




Here’s a Visual Guide

Ingredients need to make Vegan Sloppy Joes Vegan Sloppy Joe ingredients in potAfter the lentils are cooked, add in everything except the potato. Stir, cover, & simmer for 5-10 minutes

Fold in the cooked & diced potato

Diced potatoes added to pot

Serve the Bun-less Lentil Joes on buns, with chips, or as-is.  Simply next to a salad.

Finished Vegan Sloppy Joes on plate with salad

Close up of plated Vegan Sloppy Joes

The recipe is a one-pot meal, vegan, gluten free, ready in less than 30 minutes, makes planned leftovers, is packed with protein, and is cheap to make.

Vegan Sloppy Joes on plate with mixed vegetable salad

And oh yes, helps satisfy my childhood Manwich memories.   Minus the meat and gluten.

Close up of Vegan Sloppy Joes

The potato, beans, and added veggies help to “beef up” the recipe.  Pun intended. Even my Man (wich) didn’t miss the meat.  He wished for buns, but oh well, next time.

Planned leftovers are my savior.

Leftover Vegan Sloppy Joes in clear container
Check out my One-Pot Meals for a round up of recent lentil, rice, potato, veggie-bakes, casseroles, and recipe ideas that are variations on this theme.

From my last post, I’m glad you enjoyed Averie’s Alphabet.  It was fun hearing what your alphabet answers were.

Dessert: Wash your Lentil Joes down with Raw Vegan Chocolate MacaroonsDehydrator or oven-friendly.

Raw Vegan Chocolate Macaroons


1. Do you like Sloppy Joes?   Or Manwich?

I loved them as a kid.  I rarely ate meat as a child (just a personal preference thing from a very young age) but one way my mom could entice me to eat meat was when it was covered in Manwich.  The meat didn’t ever digest well, but I sure loved the sauce.

I am still a condiment loverBig time.  I like a little food with my sauce.

2. Do you have a favorite Sloppy Joes recipe?

I posted links to a couple of them as well as other lentil recipes, here, that I’ve seen and need to try.  Including the PPK recipe Snobby Joes.

3. Do you have any foods from childhood that no matter how much you grow up, you just have to have that particular food?

Yes!  Things like Sloppy Joes and Girl Scout cookies come to mind.

TGIF gang!  Any plans for the weekend yet?


Leave a Comment

Please note: I have only made the recipe as written, and cannot give advice or predict what will happen if you change something. If you have a question regarding changing, altering, or making substitutions to the recipe, please check out the FAQ page for more info.


  1. I don’t know why, but it never occurred to me that Manwich sauce would be vegan on it’s own! I personally am not a sloppy joe fan (never have been!) but I think that’s really interesting and definitely something cool to tell my friends about;) haha they’ll be impressed (maybe!)

  2. I love sloppy joes but I don’t think I’ve ever had manwich! In fact, I don’t think I’ve ever had a real sloppy Joe, just chili or vegan sloppy joes, lol.

    I loooooooooove samoas, omg, I could eat a whole box!!

    It’s been a crazy long week! I’m exhausted.

  3. Ahhh, Manwich! I never had it growing up. My mom always bought the dried spice packet that you mix with tomato paste and water…bleh! I bought it once after I moved out on my own because it was on sale and I was like, “Whoa, where have you been all my life??” Lol

    I haven’t had it in a year or so. If I get a craving, I always turn to HEAB’s sloppy joes! Soooooo yummy!

    No plans for the rest of the weekend, but I did make a TJ’s/WF’s run today! Had to get my fix…it’s been almost a month since I’ve been to either store!

  4. Only place I ate sloppy joes growing up was at school so they are not a fond childhood memory. Do you use TVP at all? That would give you a texture much closer to a traditional Manwich when mixed with the lentils?

    1. dont usually cook with TVP but good suggestion; I bet it would definitely add ‘authenticy’ if I get inspired.

  5. I think I told you before, I like my vegan joe’s with pearled barley. My husband loves them and requests them all the time. Yours look great, too!

    1. yes, i remember but thanks for the reminder! barley isn’t GF so i havent used it but i used to LOVE barley when i ate more gluten. Yum!

  6. I have only had sloppy joes once, and I didn’t like them … mostly because I didn’t like the soggy bun.

  7. Smart Manwich makeover.

    I liked them as a kid, too. As an adult, I’ve made them with ground turkey and chicken. A vegan version sounds great.

  8. I always loved sloppy joes growing up, but nobody in my family is a fan.

    funny story about manwich, I bought a can a while back and my husband broke into it…thinking he’d make us dinner one busy night and was really upset that they left the meat out.

    I don’t remember them ever adding meat to the can stuff but I could be wrong.

    I think your vegan-lentil version needs to be added to next week’s menu for sure.
    sounds perfect, and who doesn’t appreciate a one pot meal on a work night???


  9. Yum I have never had sloppy joes but these look amazing, as do those coconut macaroons right below them! haha im totally craving chocolate right now I need to get off blogs everyone I see has something chocolate that I want to make! By the way I was wondering how you get cookbooks to review, I am interested in doing a book review on my blog and was not sure if there is a company to go through or if you contact the publisher directly! Thanks <3 your blog!

    1. The publishers contact me now. In the beginning, I used to contact them every once in awhile. Now, 99% of everything I review on my blog now…they contact me. Have fun doing your book reviews!

  10. who knew about the manwich being vegan…awesome
    I love sloppy joes using lentils..even better on a toasted bun:)
    I use the PPK recipe or Vegan Dad’s recipe

    Ps I tried your curried ginger and raisin lentils. It’s a fave already. Made it twice since you posted about it:)

    I’m studying for an upcoming organic chem final. I’m trying to be a good student and not leave it all to a last minute cramming session:)

    Have a great weekend!!

    1. “curried ginger and raisin lentils. It’s a fave already. Made it twice since you posted about it:)”—-
      thanks for LMK, Melissa. Good luck with your studying this weekend.

  11. Manwich def brings back some child hood memories! I have been wanting to make sloppy joes out of lentils! This sounds supper yummy! I also am drooling over those chocolate macaroons

  12. woooo! I like your Sloppy Joe recipe! I have one too using tempeh but I really like the sounds of yours. :)
    Happy Friday!