A sloppy joe typically contains ground beef cooked in a sauce made of tomatoes or ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, and other seasonings. As a general rule of thumb, whatever pairs well with burgers and hot dogs is what goes with sloppy joes as well.
Since you only get the saucy meat and a bun, adding a side next to it makes total sense!
🧡 Why You’ll Love These
Delicious | Each one of these recipes are going to be ones that your family will love to eat time and time again.
Easy to Prepare | We are looking for sides that are quick and easy to prep for those rushed weeknights.
Spin on Classics | These are all going to offer you something a tiny bit different so you aren’t caught up in a rut when making meals. Instead of Mac and cheese, there is a recipe for a fried version.
Comfort Food and Healthy Options | Variety is the spice of life and these recipes have it all. When you are looking for comfort food with gooey cheese on tots, there is an option.
Make sure to fully cook the ground beef to an internal temperature of 165 degrees, per the USDA.
🤤 Rich & Comforting Sides
It’s ok to pair your sloppy joes with another calorie-rich side, at least occasionally. We have to enjoy life every once in a while!
These sides are perfect for a really satisfying family dinner as well as when you’re entertaining guests.
Is there anything you can’t fry? This way-too-decadent version of mac and cheese deserves a rightful place next to your sloppy joes.
As good as it may be, this recipe needs planning ahead. You will need to make the mac and cheese, shape it into balls and freeze it overnight.
The next day you can bread and fry your mac and cheese nuggets. They will be gooey on the inside and crispy on the outside. Total success!
Blooming onions are such a tasty treat! Deep frying them is the traditional method and it totally works.
With an Air Fryer however, you can significantly reduce the oil content of this dish and the total calories you’ll be ingesting.
Air frying is also way less stressful than deep frying. There is no danger of splashing hot oil all around.
If you have made these in the Deep Fryer before, this easy conversion chart guides you on how to make them in your AF with ease.
Anything cheesy goes well with a juicy sloppy joe. Tater tots fit right in that category!
This recipe is really generous with the cheese and the ranch seasoning makes it even better.
It also uses frozen tater tots, so it’s a quick side you can make even if you’re in a rush.
Homemade potato chips are scrumptious and pretty easy to pull off if you follow some basic rules.
The sliced potatoes need to be soaked in water to remove all that extra starch that can make them stick to each other while they’re frying.
Hot oil is always a requirement for making crispy potato chips. A thermometer will help you easily find out when the oil temperature is just right.
A fried crispy snack is always good to pair with the sloppy joe. In that case, pairing these foods with a dip will turn it into the ultimate cheat meal!
I love how easy it is to make this cheese dip. Just mix the ingredients and that’s it!
If you choose to make it ahead, the flavors will get better as it sits in the fridge.
Smoked Homemade Beans
Beans and sloppy joes seem like an unusual combination, but it works. Using smoked paprika in your beans will add such an amazing flavor!
You can prep and boil dry beans or use plain ones in a can. The second option will make the cooking process a lot faster.
There are way too many delicious ingredients in the name of this recipe. Grilled corn on the cob is already fantastic, but who says you can’t take it to the next level?
With or without sloppy joes, this corn on the cob recipe will surely be a hit for your family!
Mix it up and make the same recipe but throw this one on the grill as we did with the street corn.
This Taco-Bell inspired copycat is a mouthwatering companion for your sloppy joes~ Along with some chipotle queso, you’re looking at a comforting meal that’s a proper feast!
While this is not exactly a calorie-conscious recipe, these fries are baked in the oven, so they will have a lower fat content compared to the fried version.
Leftover sloppy joe’s mixture can be frozen for up to 3 months in a sealed container.
💪 Healthy & Nutritious Sides
Pairing sloppy joes with a light side dish will make your meal more nutritious and healthy, but it doesn’t mean you will compromise on taste or flavor!
These recipes make it easy to add more veggies to your diet and stay away from oily, deep-fried foods.
A simple green salad is an excellent side for sloppy joes if you need a healthy recipe that’s ready in 10 minutes.
This salad has a limited number of ingredients and a basic but very tasty vinaigrette dressing. It goes well with burgers, sandwiches, meat-based mains, and pasta, among others.
Serving some dill pickles next to a sloppy joe is such a classic combination. Pickles nicely complement this meaty sandwich!
It’s incredibly easy to make dill pickles at home. You just need some pantry staples and patience to wait 48 hours until they are ready.
Avoid the fried potato chips by choosing a healthier alternative like these baked zucchini chips.
The parmesan cheese will make these chips deliciously crunchy and it makes a great low-carb side or a party snack on its own.
Coleslaw is actually a healthy side if you skip the mayo. It will be just as tasty, I promise!
This recipe is using a a classic dressing made with olive oil, vinegar, and spices. There are even several variations you can try for the sake of diversity.
The Air Fryer is such a wonderful tool to make fried foods with the least amount of oil. Broccoli turns out excellent in the Air Fryer and this is the perfect weekday quick recipe.
You can keep things simple and add just some olive oil, salt, pepper, and minced garlic to your broccoli florets. Sometimes the most basic recipes are also the tastiest!
Wedge salad is a steakhouse classic, and it goes perfectly with any burger or sandwich.
It’s easy to pull off, but it looks impressive, so it’s an excellent choice to serve when you’re having guests.
For me, the blue cheese dressing is irreplaceable, although a ranch dressing also works if you prefer it.
Fajita veggies are not just a Chipotle copycat, they’re also a really healthy side dish.
Sautéed bell peppers and onions with salt, pepper, olive oil, and oregano sound like the kind of recipe you can make when you need something on the table fast.
You can use the same method with other veggies and try different herbs and spices.
A sweet side with a fresh twist, like this easy fruit salad, makes an interesting option to pair with sloppy joes. It just works!
That crunchy poppy seed dressing makes this fruit salad magic. For the best flavor, use seasonal fruits only.
Here’s another sautéed veggies recipe with an amazing texture and flavor.
Anyone can make it and you can eat it next to chicken, pork, beef, burgers, sandwiches and many other main dishes.
I don’t know about you but I couldn’t find one word I don’t like in this recipe’s name.
The coating includes egg whites, which binds everything and ensures your mushrooms turn out crispy.
Knowing myself, I won’t be able to resist trying it in the Air Fryer.
There are the best healthy and comfort food sides to serve with your family’s favorite sloppy joe’s recipe.
Ginny Collins is a passionate foodie and recipe creator of Savor and Savvy and Kitchenlaughter. Indoors she focuses on easy, quick recipes for busy families and kitchen basics. Outdoors, she focuses on backyard grilling and smoking to bring family and friends together. She is a lifelong learner who is always taking cooking classes on her travels overseas and stateside. Her work has been featured on MSN, Parade, Fox News, Yahoo, Cosmopolitan, Elle, and many local news outlets. She lives in Florida where you will find her outside on the water in her kayak, riding her bike on trails, and planning her next overseas adventure.