These Sloppy Joes incorporate liver and lots of veggies to make them probably the healthiest Sloppy Joes you ever had! Don’t freak out—they taste great! They are paleo and low carb too. My kids LOVE them!
I grew up eating Sloppy Joes—the kind where the sauce came in a can that you mixed with ground beef and put on a bun. Sure, there are a few veggies in the canned stuff, but there’s also sugar and sometimes extra additives that just aren’t needed!
We always have room in our diets for more veggies, so I like to incorporate them where ever I can. My oldest son isn’t a fan of vegetables, so in recipes like this, I make sure they are virtually undetectable. He knows that they’re there, and is fine with that—he just doesn’t like it when the veggies are obvious.
Most of us can stand to eat more of nature’s most nutrient-dense food too! What food is that, you might ask? Liver. Yep, liver. Ounce for ounce, liver is the most nutrient-dense food you can eat. It is rich in real vitamin A (not just betacarotene), folate, niacin, riboflavin, vitamin B-5, vitamin B-6, vitamin B12, choline, iron, zinc, and selenium!
I originally created this delicious Sloppy Joe recipe to incorporate more veggies into my kids’ diet. Then I added chicken livers to take the nutrition level up a notch (or ten). The secret is using a food processor to get the veggies small enough to be almost undetectable—and there’s a lot! In fact, this recipe has onion, celery, carrots, and green pepper! This recipe is easy to put together and tastes great!
The veggies and liver may seem almost unnoticeable, but I don’t hide the fact that they’re in there! I tell my kids that the veggies are incorported into the meat mixture because I want them to learn to appreciate vegetables. If they know that they’re eating them (even when they aren’t obvious), they learn that the veggies are helping create the flavor in the food!
My kids LOVE these Sloppy Joes!
Food Processor (highly recommended) or cheese grater
2 TBS coconut or avocado oil1 Small red onion
1 Green pepper , small
1 Orange or red pepper, small
2 Stalks celery
2 Large carrots (purple carrots blend in with mixture best)
4-8 oz. Mushrooms optional
2 lbs. Ground beef
1 lb. Chicken livers
2 tsp. Salt
½ tsp Black pepper, ground
4 Garlic cloves, minced
3 tbsp. coconut sugar or zero calorie sweetener like Swerve or Lakanto sweetener
3 6 oz Cans tomato paste
2 tbsp. Apple cider vinegar
2 c. Water
Chop onion, celery, and carrots (If you have purple carrots, use them! The purple color blends into the color of the meat, making them less noticeable) into quarters. Remove core and seeds from peppers. Chop into large pieces. Place vegetables into food processor* and process until finely chopped.
Heat oil in large pan. Add veggie mixture and sauté for about 5-8 minutes.
Rinse food processor container, and add chicken livers**. Process for about 30 seconds until relatively smooth. It will look like a reddish slurry (yep, a little gross now, but it will be fine, trust me!).
Add liver and ground beef to veggies and cook until meat is no longer pink. Add salt, pepper, garlic, sweetener, tomato paste, apple cider vinegar, and water. Stir to combine. Simmer 10–20 minutes. If your sloppy Joes are too thick, add more water, if they are too runny, simmer uncovered for a few minutes until some liquid has cooked off. Add additional salt if needed.
Serve on gluten or grain-free buns, sweet potato pancake/buns, or a baked sweet potato. For paleo, try these sweet potato pancakes that make great buns. Or bake a potato or sweet potato and top with the sloppy joe mixture.
*I highly recommend using a food processor for this recipe! It saves a lot of time and energy. I like this one. If you don’t have one, you can use a cheese grater to shred the veggies, and a blender to puree the livers.
**Chicken livers have a milder flavor, but beef liver works great too!
Macros (for meat portion of a large sandwich)
Carb count excludes non caloric sweeteners because these do not affect blood sugar in most people. Net carb count excludes both fiber and sugar alcohols.
Sloppy Joes Macros
Net carbs: 13g
Want tips on getting your kids to eat more veggies? Get my FREE guide here!
Super Healthy Sloppy Joes
- 2 tbsp Coconut or avocado oil
- 1 Small red onion
- 1 Green pepper small
- 1 Red or orange bell pepper
- 2 Celery stalks
- 2 Large carrots purple carrots if you have em!
- 4-8 oz mushrooms optional
- 2 lbs. Ground beef
- 1 lb. Chicken or beef liver
- 2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp Ground black pepper
- 4 Garlic cloves, minced
- 3 tbs coconut sugar or zero calorie sweetener Swerve or Lakanto sweetener
- 3 6 oz cans tomato paste
- 2 tbs Apple cider vinegar
- 2 cups Water
- Chop onion, celery, and carrots into quarters. Remove core and seeds from peppers. Chop into large pieces. Place vegetables into food processor* and process until finely chopped.Heat oil in large pan. Add veggie mixture and sauté for about 5-8 minutes.Rinse food processor container, and add chicken livers. Process for about 30 seconds until relatively smooth. It will look like a reddish slurry (yep, a little gross now, but it will be fine, trust me!). Add liver and ground beef to veggies and cook until meat is no longer pink. Add salt, pepper, garlic, sweetener, tomato paste, apple cider vinegar, and water. Stir to combine. Simmer 10–20 minutes. If your sloppy Joes are too thick, add more water, if they are too runny, simmer uncovered for a few minutes until some liquid has cooked off. Add additional salt if needed. Serve on buns, sweet potato pancake/buns, a baked sweet potato. For paleo, try these sweet potato pancakes that make great buns. Or bake a potato or sweet potato and top with the sloppy joe mixture.Enjoy!
Heres a few more hidden veggie recipes to try:
Hidden Veggie Breakfast Bake
Hidden Superfood Meatballs
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