The perfect weeknight dinner is my sloppy joe stuffed sweet potato. It's Whole30 and Paleo-friendly. Smoky BBQ sauce melds perfectly with the sweet potato. Make a large batch and always have a quick and easy dinner you can serve to your family.
The great American classic sloppy joes that we all grew up with are back and better than ever! We are removing the sugar and carbs so you can enjoy this recipe anytime you want.
Today there are plenty of sugar-free BBQ sauces on the market. I am biased toward my homemade BBQ sauce, I think it's the best. I use coconut aminos, dates, and pineapple juice to rival any sauce out there.
So if you are trying to improve your summer barbecue recipe index, give this one a try! I feel these sloppy Joe stuffed sweet potatoes will be in your weekly rotation.
Why this recipe is so good
- Easy to meal prep. The sloppy Joe mixture freezes well and reheats in no time at all.
- Sweet potatoes. The sweetness of the potatoes pairs perfectly with the smoky BBQ sauce. What a clever gluten-free way to enjoy an American classic.
- Healthy. Many of us steer away from sloppy joes for their high sugar and carb content. How about a BBQ sauce sweetened by dates and a bun replaced by sweet potatoes. So tasty!
- Ground beef - I like to use organic and grass-fed beef when I can get my hands on it. 85% lean/15% fat is what you are looking for
- Onion - Make sure to small dice the white onion
- Red bell pepper - For texture and color
- Garlic - Always buy fresh garlic. I am not a fan of jarred garlic
- Sweet Potato - Buy potatoes that are uniform in size
- BBQ sauce - If going Paleo or Whole30 buy a sugar-free BBQ sauce
- Green onions - thinly sliced
- Parsley - Roughly chop by running your knife through the parsley 1-2 times.
1. Bake sweet potatoes. Wrap sweet potatoes in foil and bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour.
2. Cook onions and garlic. In a large cast-iron skillet, add a tablespoon of ghee or avocado oil. On medium-low heat, sweat the onions and garlic until they are soft and translucent. This will take about 2-3 minutes.
3. Brown the ground beef. After the onions and garlic are nice and soft, add in the beef. Break apart with a wooden spoon and cook all the way through. You will not see any pink.
4. Red bell pepper. Cut the red bell pepper in a medium-small dice and add it to the pan. Cook for another 2-3 minutes.
5. Whole30 BBQ Sauce. No Sloppy Joe would be complete without this tangy sauce. You can make my recipe or find a Whole30 version at your local market.
6. Mix everything together. Heat the BBQ sauce through and mix everything together so the flavors meld.
7. Stuffed sweet potatoes. Cut open the cooked sweet potatoes down the center lengthwise. Using your hand squeeze both ends of the potato to open it up. Spoon the sloppy Joe mixture into each sweet potato. Use about ½ cup of mixture per potato.
8. Top with green onions and parsley. Thinly slice green onions and roughly chop parsley. Enjoy!
Hint: To make this recipe extra delicious, try my homemade Whole30 BBQ recipe.
- Traditional BBQ sauce - utilize your favorite BBQ sauce if you are not following a Paleo or Whole30 eating plan.
- Ground Turkey - if you are trying to stay away from red meat use ground turkey. This is a great substitution and tastes delicious.
- Plant-Based Meat - there are a ton of plant-based meats on the market today. I would say the most well-known is Beyond Meat.
- Gluten-Free Buns - If you can't get on board with stuffed sweet potatoes use a gluten-free bun. Try my all-purpose gluten-free flour blend to make your own sloppy joe buns.
- Make it spicy - if you like a little kick in your food, add a chopped chipotle pepper. Chipotle peppers are smoked jalapenos that are stored in adobo sauce.
- Go plant-based - replace the ground beef with cooked lentils and black beans. Lentils have a meaty taste and are a great vegan option.
My Whole30 sloppy Joe's stuffed sweet potato is great for meal prep. You can double the recipe and freeze the filling until you are craving this easy weekday dinner again. The meat mixture will last for 5 days in the refrigerator or freeze for up to 3 months.
- Sweet potatoes should be roughly the same size. I can't tell you how many times 3 out of 4 sweet potatoes are cooked and the last one is underdone. The larger the sweet potato, the longer it will take in the oven.
- Line baking tray with parchment paper. This will make clean-up a breeze! Sweet potatoes release a sugary liquid that is a pain to remove when it hardens.
- Cook onions and garlic on medium-low. High heat will brown or burn the garlic. Strive for soft and translucent.
- Be generous with BBQ sauce. Nobody likes a dry sloppy joe. The recipe calls for 1 cup of sauce but, add more if you like it saucy!
- Let the sweet potatoes rest. Sit out at room temperature for 10-15 minutes. The potatoes should be nice and soft. Sweet potatoes feel hard straight out of the oven.
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes! My favorite way is in my instant pot. Add 1 cup of water and cook on high pressure for 15 minutes. Let the pressure release naturally for 10 minutes.
A mixed green salad with my white balsamic dressing is a great option. Around our house steamed broccoli is another favorite.
Absolutely!!! I love to double this recipe and put it in the freezer for a quick and easy weeknight dinner. You can cook the sweet potatoes ahead of time and leave them in the refrigerator.
Bring this all-American classic back into your weekly rotations. My sloppy joe stuffed sweet potatoes will be a great Whole30 go-to menu item.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Individually wrap sweet potatoes in aluminum foil. Place on a parchment-lined baking tray and bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour. (depends on the size of the sweet potato)
- In a large cast-iron skillet over medium-low heat add in ghee or oil and sweat the onions and garlic until translucent. 2-3 minutes.
- Add in the ground beef and break apart with a spoon. Cook the meat until completely brown. There should be no visible pink.
- The chopped bell pepper goes in next and cooks for 2 more minutes.
- Pour in 1 cup of Whole30 BBQ sauce and cook for 5 minutes until everything mixes together and heats through.
- Spoon the sloppy joe mixture into the sweet potatoes and top with green onions and parsley.
- If the BBQ sauce evaporates or reduces too quickly, simply add more.
- Pick sweet potatoes that are roughly the same size.
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