Spicy Cocoa Sloppy Joes

"Courtesy of the Hershey's Kitchen, with a couple of my personal additions. Don't be scared by the cocoa powder! It adds a nice richness to the sandwiches - but it doesn't make them taste like chocolate :) Use the smaller amount of chili powder for less spicy "joes" :)"
photo by Boomette photo by Boomette
photo by Boomette
photo by LifeIsGood photo by LifeIsGood
photo by True Texas photo by True Texas
photo by twissis photo by twissis
Ready In:
4 1/2 cups




  • Cook ground beef and onion in large skillet on medium heat until beef is browned and onion is tender. Drain excess fat.
  • Stir in remaining ingredients.
  • Heat 15 minutes on low heat or until hot.

Questions & Replies

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  1. Me and my son enjoyed them. But DH didn't. I used a dark cocoa powder. I added more ketchup. So I didn't have to add water. The cocoa powder added a different taste. I was curious to try this recipe. Thanks flower :) Made for PAC Spring 2012
  2. These were surprisingly good. The addition of the cocoa added an interesting dimension. As other reviewers have mentioned, the mixture was way too thick when made as written. I added half a can of tomato sauce and it was just right. This yummy recipe will be going in our supper rotation.
  3. These turned out just OK for us. We also found the mixture to be extremely thick and needed thinning with a bit of water before serving. Thanks for sharing.
  4. Made this recipe pretty much as given, although I did reduce the chili powder to 1 1/2 teaspoons, & that was plenty for the 2 of us! I'd intended to have sloppy joes for lunch & freeze the rest for another time, but neglected to bag the leftovers for freezing, & by the time I got around to it we decided to finish 'em off completely! Loved the taste & will make them again before long! Thanks for sharing! [Made & reviewed in I Recommend recipe tag]
  5. Boy did these vanish QUICKLY !!! The addition of cocca made this quite unique.. Got 2 -5 stars,and 2-4 1/2 stars, from everyone. They were spicy, but not overbearing. Wanted 2nd's for lunch tommorow, but I am out of luck.. They vanished quite quickly. Made in I Recommend,.


  1. Usually The Cookgirl bypasses the meat and heads straight for the salads, (or at least the vegetarian entrees.) This recipe, however was a winner! Not too sweet or spicy; thick, not watery mixture! I added a few twists of my own as follows: subbed Mexican chocolate for cocoa powder, subbed brown sugar for white, and added a clove of garlic as suggested by another reviewer. Served the mixture on whole wheat buns. The chocolate added a subtle richness. This would make an interesting chili with the addition of kidney beans. A very delicious recipe and I'm glad you posted it!


I have a degree in archaeology from a small Ohio college and I work for the Ohio History Connection. My passions are art, music, books, food, history, and cats/animal welfare. I also love photography. I have a 1,000 (plus) piece collection of vintage flower pins from the 1960's, hence the username ha. I also have small collections of vintage butterfly pins, vintage tablecloths, and vintage glass Christmas ornaments. (Can you tell I love vintage?) I took a trip to the Netherlands in March 2006 and fell in love! I doubt it will happen but if I ever have the opportunity I would love to live there.
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