Vegan lentil Sloppy Joes are savory, sweet, healthy, and so tasty! A perfect family friendly vegan dinner recipe.
Sloppy Joes are a favorite in this house. My grandma’s recipe for Sloppy Joes was something that we made often when I was growing up.
It was a traditional recipe that used ground beef, and it had a delicious sweet and tangy sauce that we loved.
I knew that it must be possible to make a vegan version of that classic recipe, so I got to work on it, and these vegan lentil Sloppy Joes were born.
The sauce is still deliciously sweet and tangy, and the base is made of green lentils, so these are full of healthy, plant-based protein.
Ideas for substitutions in this vegan Sloppy Joe recipe:
- If you don’t have green lentils, you could try French green lentils, or even yellow split peas.
- Chickpeas could also be used in this recipe – just partially mash them after cooking for a nicer texture.
- If you can’t do onion, you could leave it out, and try adding some chopped green peppers instead.
These lentil Sloppy Joes are very flavorful, and so filling. The lentils are packed with protein, so you don’t have to worry about being hungry after eating these!
Which brands of hamburger buns are gluten free?
Both Canon Bakehouse and Udi’s make gluten free hamburger buns, but they do contain egg, so they aren’t vegan. Schar makes gluten free buns that are egg free, but they do contain soy.
This recipe for gluten free vegan buns looks delicious, and it’s free of the top 8 allergens.
The pretzel buns that are pictured are not gluten free, but they are vegan, and Pretzilla is a nut free and sesame free company.
If you make these, please share on Instagram and tag me @prettybeeblog. I love to see your creations!
Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links.
Vegan Lentil Sloppy Joes.
Healthy lentil sloppy joes are sure to be a favorite! A vegan sandwich recipe that is full of flavor!
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil
- 1 ¼ cup green lentils picked over and rinsed
- 1 onion chopped
- 8 ounces tomato sauce
- 2 Tablespoons mustard
- 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
- 1 Tablespoon granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- ½ teaspoon pepper
- 2 teaspoons cumin
- ½ teaspoon chili powder
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 6 hamburger buns
- ½ cup chopped onion optional, for topping
Place the lentils in a pot with enough water to cover them by about 1.5 inches. Turn the heat to high, and bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium low. Place a lid on the pot and tilt it to vent out the steam.
Cook until lentils are tender, about 25-30 minutes. Drain out any excess water from the pan.
In a large pan, cook the onion in the olive oil over medium heat until tender, about 7 minutes.
Add the lentils to the onions, and stir. Add the remaining ingredients, and heat over medium low heat for about 15 minutes so the flavors can combine.
Add more salt and pepper as desired.
If desired, toast the buns. If you need a gluten free bun, you could check Schar brand, which is gluten free, but does contain soy.
Top toasted buns with sloppy joe mixture and serve. Garnish with chopped onion if desired.
This recipe was originally published in May of 2014. It has been updated with an improved recipe and new photos.
More delicious vegan lentil recipes to try:
Vegan Lentil Salad with Brown Rice
Double Chocolate Lentil Muffins
Is the original recipe available somewhere? It was my favorite and I never printed it out.
I don’t have it, I’m sorry!
Assume the mustard in recipe is referencing the condiment as opposed to dry mustard? Please confirm. Thanks.
Yes, regular yellow mustard.
mustard? like frenches? i am stoll confused
Yes, yellow mustard is what I used!
Shared this recipe with a friend who made it for vegetarians coming to a barbecue. Those taking it could put it in a bun or over rice. There were lots of compliments. Thank you for sharing this recipe!
These are just delicious!
Katie @ Produce on Parade
Oh my goodness, on pretzel buns!? These sloppy joes sound so perfect right now!!!
Sloppy joe’s are such a great comfort food, and I love chickpeas. What a great idea to use them in a sloppy joe! It sounds like you had a productive weekend! Those are the best kind of weekends, where you get a lot done and also have some fun plans!
Thank you so much, Kristine! And it is so nice to get a few things done!
Kathi @ Deliciously Yum!
Love these vegan sloppy joes. I have always loved lentils, so I’m sure I would adore them just as much slathered in your delicious sauce and served on top of a pretzel bun. Such a great idea!
Thank you so much, Kathi!
Love the lentil and chickpea filling in these sloppy joes! My family would be all over these. :) Beautiful photos!
Thank you so much, Sarah!
Handmade by Lorna
Lovely looking recipe – I have never eaten a sloppy joe but look forward to trying these.
Thank you so much! I hope you enjoy them!
Natalie @ Tastes Lovely
Such a good idea to use lentils and chickpeas instead of meat! Those make great meat substitutes. This sloppy joe sauce sounds perfect!
I wish I had a three day weekend! In Canada, we had ours the weekend before, so it was back to work yesterday as usual. I don’t really have a natural way to get rid of dandelions, but what I do, is pluck them out with a spade or something. It definitely works -it does take a long time, but I just listen to my iPod. It actually becomes rather therapeutic!
These sloppy joes are calling my name! I’ve never eaten a sloppy joe in my life, which is embarrassing. I need to change this immediately! Also, those buns look so good!
I’ve never eaten a sloppy joe in my life either, Alisson ;-) But I definitely must try it soon. I love this recipe, Kelly.
Thank you so much, Olivia! And you do need to try sloppy joes! :)
Allison, my mom said we should spade them out, too…but there are so many! Ugh. Oh well. You need to try sloppy joes! They are yummy, especially at a summer barbecue!