Most of the meals I prepare are family friendly. Every once in a while I’ll make something that I know is a bit of a stretch for the kids, and sometimes I make things that I know they’ll really enjoy, even though they might not be favorites of my husband or I.
Catering to their tastes isn’t something we do very often. As a result, we’ve been fortunate to not have overly picky kids. Sure, they each have their things they don’t like, but for the most part, they’re always willing to try whatever they’re given. And they usually end up eating all of it!
So, all that to say, this was a recipe I made with the kids in mind. They love sloppy joes and they love pasta. Combining the two just seemed natural. And they all loved and each of them had seconds. (As for me, I wasn’t a huge fan, but that has more to do with the fact that I don’t usually like sloppy joes than anything else.)
Sloppy Joe Spaghetti Bake
- 1 lb. ground beef
- 1/2 onion, diced
- 1 15 oz. can diced tomatoes
- 1/3 c. ketchup
- 1 1/2 T. mustard
- 1 T. brown sugar
- 1 t. chili powder
- 1/2 t. cumin
- 1/2 t. salt
- 1/4 t. black pepper (*Adjust seasonings to taste, as desired)
- 1/2 lb. spaghetti, cooked and drained
- 1 c. shredded cheddar cheese
1. Brown ground beef with onions in a large skillet. Drain. Stir in tomatoes, ketchup, mustard, brown sugar and seasonings. Simmer for about 10 minutes, until flavors are combined. Remove from heat.
2. Place cooked spaghetti noodles in a casserole dish and top with sloppy joe mixture. Cover with cheddar cheese. Bake at 350 degrees for 10 minutes, or until cheese is melted. (Or, refrigerate until dinner time and then bake for about 20 minutes, until heated through.)
Please note, the sloppy joe mixture turns out much “sloppier” than I would make for serving on a bun. This was done on purpose so that the finished dish wasn’t too dry.