The Best Vegan Sloppy Joes

A twist on a classic, these Vegan Sloppy Joes will knock your socks off! Loaded with lentils, a soy based crumble and spices, this one pot comfort food meal will satisfy the hunger bug every time!

Sloppy joes are a classic comfort food meal that’s traditionally made with ground beef, tomato sauce, onions and some simple spices. I grew up on those and totally enjoyed them. These days, though, I often mix things up a bit and love to try vegan and vegetarian versions of some of my faves. With the ingredients that I’m using for this vegan version, even meat lovers will devour them. Promise.

You’ll Need:

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 onion -roughly minced
  • 340 g soy based crumble (Veggie Ground Round)
  • 19 oz can lentils -rinsed and drained
  • 1 tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp mustard powder
  • 1/2 tsp dried organo
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 2 Thai chili peppers -minced or 1/2 tsp cayenne
  • 3 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1/2 cup unsalted vegetable stock -or more, if desired
  • 1/2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 4 burger buns -variety of your choice

Optional Suggested Garnishes:

  • vegan cheese shreds -or regular if you want vegetarian
  • hot peppers


  1. In a non stick pan on medium heat add olive oil. Cook onion 3-5 minutes until translucent.
  2. To onion add soy based crumble. Break up with a back of a wooden spoon. Cook 3-5 minutes.
  3. To pan, add lentils and stir to combine. Add chili powder, garlic powder, mustard powder, oregano, salt, pepper, chili peppers (or cayenne) and tomato paste. Stir to combine. Cook 2-3 minutes.
  4. Stir in stock (add more if you like your sloppy joes more 'loose').
  5. Stir in balsamic vinegar. Serve on warmed/toasted buns. Garnish, if desired. Enjoy!


  • If you can't find (or don't want to use) soy based crumble, use all lentils. So sub the crumble for about another 1.5 cups of lentils.
  • This recipe can easily be made ahead and reheated when it's time to enjoy. You may just have to add a little stock to loosen to your desired consistency.
  • I used Thai chili pepper here, but you could omit or replace with cayenne powder to taste (if that's what you have on hand).
  • I used veggie stock in this recipe, but mushroom stock would work lovely too.