I love to entertain, and since the world is starting to finally reopen, I’m really excited to get back to gathering together with friends and family to enjoy and share delicious food. One of my favorite items to make for tailgates or get togethers of any kind are sliders because there are just so many options, and their smaller size makes it convenient to eat and chat, move about, and as far as I’m concerned, let’s you consume more of them!
I find that most people think of your classic cheeseburger when they think of sliders. The slider is said to have been invented by White Castle in the 1920s. The petite burgers were sold for five cents each, until the 1940s when the price rose to ten cents. Today, a White Castle slider will cost you right around a dollar! Speaking of White Castle, a few years ago, my friend and I dressed up and made reservations at White Castle for Valentine’s Day, just for fun!
The term slider also has some history with the U.S. Navy, referring to the greasiness of the burger. Today, sliders are a much more general term for a small two-to-three bite sandwich. They’re perfect for adult gatherings, tailgates, kid’s parties, and really any occasion you can think of! You can have fun mixing and matching flavor profiles. Sliders can be made between biscuits, Hawaiian rolls, mini-pitas, and the filling options are endless, so that’s where your creativity comes in. I’ve even had Chicken and Waffle Sliders at a New York Yankees game!
I’ve made meatball sliders, chicken parmesan sliders and gyro sliders, but my latest slider, the sloppy joe slider came about to satisfy my fiancé’s love of Sloppy Joes and to use up all the hard work from our Knife Skills class!
Whenever we teach Knife Skills (the most popular class at The Chopping Block) we always get asked, “what should I make will all of my vegetables?” Usually I think fried rice, soup, frittata or quiche, but during our last virtual class Chef Sara Salzinski and I thought those diced peppers and onions would be perfect for Sloppy Joes, and you could probably throw in some of the diced carrots and zucchini if you wanted (just don’t tell the kids… or my fiancé!). Try these Sloppy Joe sliders, and you’ll never by the stuff in the can again!
Plus, you’ll have an opportunity to practice some knife skills before you join us for that class in-person on Saturday, July 17 at 11am (just one seat left!) or virtually on Wednesday, June 16 at 6pm CST or Sunday, July 25 at 3pm CST.
Sloppy Joe Sliders
Scroll down for a printable version of this recipe
Serves: 4 to 6
Prep Time: 15 min
Cook Time: 20 min
Total Time: 35 min
1 package of slider buns (I like King’s Hawaiian)
1 pound 85/15 ground beef
1/2 onion, diced
1/2 green pepper, diced
1/2 cup ketchup
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 Tablespoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon sriracha or your favorite hot sauce (you can omit, or add more!)
1 Tablespoon mustard
1 teaspoon Worcestershire
2 Tablespoons brown sugar
1/4 cup water
Salt and pepper to taste
1/4 cup butter, softened
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon large flake salt
1/2 cup plain potato chips
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
2. In a pan over medium high heat, season and brown ground beef. I find 85/15 has just enough fat to sauté the vegetables, but if you feel you have a lot in the pan, you can drain it off.
3. Add diced onions and peppers, and cook to soften (about 5 minutes).
4. Add ketchup, chili powder, garlic powder, sriracha, mustard, Worcestershire, brown sugar, salt and pepper. Mix with ground beef-onion-pepper mixture to combine.
5. Let cook 10 minutes, add water as needed to attain desired consistency (I usually use about 1/4 cup).
6. In a baking dish, place the bottoms of the slider buns (if you don’t have the separate them from each other – even better!).
7. Top with Sloppy Joe mixture.
8. Add top slider buns on tip of Sloppy Joe mixture.
9. Brush top slider buns with softened butter, and sprinkle with garlic powder and large flake sea salt.
10. Bake at 375 degrees for 10 minutes.
11. Carefully remove tops, sprinkle crushed potato chips over sloppy joe mixture, and replace top buns.
If these Sloppy Joe sliders have you ready to tackle petite sandwiches, check out our virtual Cheesesteak Slider class this Friday, June 18 at 6pm CST.
Sliders are this week's challenge for our private Facebook group members. Join our group, make sliders this week and show off your creations to other home cooks!
We’re featuring another of my favorite sandwiches on Saturday, July 10 at 6pm CST in our virtual Lobster Rolls class.
Sloppy Joes are definitely a kid favorite, but if you really want to be your kid or teen’s favorite person this summer, sign them up for one of the last spots in our July and August summer cooking camps. Trust us, they’ll have a blast, and you’ll reap the benefits of having a kid that can cook!