Instant Pot Sloppy Joes

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Servings: 6

Poor sloppy Joes don’t get much respect, but, when they’re made with plenty of seasonings and served on freshly toasted buns, we think this nostalgic childhood favorite is still a winner. And using an Instant Pot to prepare them makes prep and cleanup a breeze. Serve with a side of coleslaw, a few pickle spears and wedges of roasted potatoes.


  • 1 Tbs. canola oil
  • 1 small yellow onion, diced
  • 1 celery stalk, diced
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 1/2 lb. (750 g) ground beef
  • 1 cup (8 fl. oz./250 ml) tomato sauce
  • 1/2 cup (4 fl. oz./125 ml) ketchup-style chili sauce
  • 1 Tbs. Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 Tbs. Dijon mustard
  • 1 Tbs. cider vinegar
  • 1 Tbs. firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 1 tsp. chili powder
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1 Tbs. cornstarch
  • 1 Tbs. warm water
  • 6 hamburger buns, split and lightly toasted


In an Instant Pot set to “sauté,” warm the oil. Add the onion, celery, bell pepper and garlic and sauté, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables start to soften, about 3 minutes. Add the beef and sauté, breaking up the meat with a wooden spoon, until no longer pink, about 5 minutes. Add the tomato sauce, chili sauce, Worcestershire sauce, mustard, vinegar, brown sugar, chili powder, 2 tsp. salt and 1/2 tsp. pepper. Stir to combine.

Cover the pot with the lid, lock the lid into place and turn the valve to “sealing.” Set the Instant Pot to pressure cook at high pressure for 10 minutes. Turn the valve to “venting” to manually release the steam. When the steam stops, carefully remove the lid.

In a small bowl, stir together the cornstarch and warm water until combined. Add the cornstarch mixture to the beef mixture. Set the pot to “sauté” and cook, stirring occasionally, until the mixture is thickened, about 2 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

To serve, place the bottom halves of the buns, cut side up, on warmed individual plates and top with the beef mixture, dividing it equally. Cover with the bun tops and serve immediately. Serves 6.

Williams Sonoma Test Kitchen