Earlier this year we were eating Sloppy Joe’s at my parents house. I made my 2-year-old a plate and set it in front of her, but a few minutes later she started complaining.
“Want a Sloppy Joe!”
“You have a Sloppy Joe. See? It’s right here.”
“No! I want a Sloppy Joe!”
“Sweetie, this IS a Sloppy Joe.”
“No! I don’t want this,” she said as she pulled off the top and bottom buns and handed them to me.
I realized, laughing, that we had been going so long without buns on our Sloppy Joe’s that my youngest didn’t remember life with buns. I wasn’t sure whether to be a proud paleo mom or feel sorry for her. The older two, however, were in heaven with their spongy bread soaking up the Sloppy Joe sauce. Can you blame them?
Eating a Sloppy Joe with a lettuce cups became um… unnecessarily sloppy. Sometimes we put them on a bed of Sweet Potato Fries. (Hello, amazing.) And sometimes when I was craving something with more freshness I’d put it on a bed of lettuce, which later evolved into a full-blown salad topped with paleo Ranch and diced pickles.
And, if we’re being honest here, shredded cheese.
My bestie’s 4-year-old daughter calls them Salad Joe’s. I really love that.
What’s in a Sloppy Joe Salad?
I included a recipe down there, but a couple of the components are existing recipes on my blog, so I’ll give you those first with some adaptations…
Best. Sloppy Joe’s. Ever. Yes, the name is a bit presumptuous, but I stand by it. Also, there’s no chopping involved — unless you really want some diced pickles on top. Worth it.
Dry Paleo Ranch Seasoning My favorite paleo ranch, ever. And I love that I can make a big jar of it and always have it on hand. I’m so over being at the mercy of fresh herbs when I want some ranch.
Homemade Mayonnaise This recipe uses extra-virgin-olive oil, but I’ve started using avocado oil instead for a more neutral flavor. If you’re cool with dairy, you can also use Greek yogurt in the dressing.