Total Time
Prep 10 mins
Cook 30 mins

When our kids went to band camp, I used to volunteer. A school cook who worked at the camp showed me how to make this recipe. Now I make it for my grandkids and to share at get togethers with our friends. It's great on hot dogs too.

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Put ground beef into a large pan.
  2. Put enough cold water over beef to cover.
  3. Use you hands or take a fork and stir the meat in the cold water to break it into fine pieces (It looks a mess, but this is a great way to defat the burger).
  4. Cook the hamburger and water stirring it until it comes to a boil, cook for 3-4 minute.
  5. Carefully drain the meat into a large colander then return it to the pot.
  6. Add the onion and cook until onion is clear.
  7. Add ketchup, brown sugar and pepper.
  8. Simmer for 20 minutes.
  9. Serve on buns.
  10. If you would like to make this ahead to serve later, just put it in the crock pot and set on low.
  11. (Letting it simmer for a longer time makes it more tasty).


Most Helpful

I am one of the "band camp" kids so I know how good this is. Now that I make it myself, I also know how easy it is. I've made it when family comes to visit and they can't believe those are the only ingredients, but they are! I usually do not have brown sugar and just use regular.

Melanie M January 16, 2004

I am really really sorry, I don't like to give low reviews. I am going to give this 4 stars for easy prep. But........This was sweet and I didn't even use the amount of brown sugar it called for. It was sweet & dry once it was ready. So I had to put it back on the stovetop, I added a bit of water, garlic powder, and some hot pepper flakes just to get rid of the sweetness. Made for Zaars Chef Alphbet Soup Tag Game.

daisygrl64 August 17, 2009

Yum!! I'm really picky about sloppy joes. That stuff in a can is nasty, and the recipe I have been using was just ok. This recipe, however, is excellent!! I just browned the beef, rather than boiling it, and it still turned out wonderful. I did make more sauce... I wanted them sloppy! Thanks for sharing a great recipe!

Boxergurl June 01, 2009

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