Vegan Sloppy Joes for Meatless Monday
Hearty sloppy joes don’t have to be a distant memory if you’ve gone meatless. These tasty sammies are loaded with sweet and smoky spices, protein, onions, and mushrooms.

I used to love sloppy joes as a kid, and hadn’t had them in years. I was getting a hankering for them, and called my mom to find out her secret recipe. “Ground beef and ketchup.” Hmmm. I’d been thinking about how to make them meatless, and then the June issue of Cooking Light magazine came, with this wonderful recipe for Beef and Mushroom Sloppy Joes. It was a perfect starting point for my quest.

The renovation: I used texturized vegetable protein (TVP) instead of the ground beef. You’ll also find TVP in my chili recipe, veggie keema, and these grilled Vietnamese appetizers, so buy a bag, don’t worry that you won’t use it again. I used balsamic vinegar instead of red wine vinegar, added some smoked paprika to enhance the meatiness, and some additional sugar in the form of agave, as I was trying to replicate my taste-memory of these.

Suitable for:
vegan, gluten-free, reduced-sugar diets

Not for:
low-sodium or migraine diets

Vegan Sloppy Joes for Memorial Day

Healthy sloppy joes

5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Total Time 45 mins
Course Dinner, Lunch
Cuisine American
Servings 8 servings


  • 1 tbsp olive oil (extra virgin)
  • 1-1/2 cups texturized vegetable protein see notes below
  • 8 ounces mushrooms cremini
  • 1 cup onions chopped (230 g)
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 cup tomato paste organic, no salt added (115 g)
  • 1 tsp oregano (dried)
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika pimenton
  • 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tbsp molasses
  • 1 tbsp agave syrup
  • 1 dash hot sauce
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper


  • Heat 1 1/2 C. filtered water in a glass dish in the microwave until just under boiling. Add the TVP and set aside.
  • Clean the mushrooms using a damp towel to remove any soil. Add to your food processor with the S-blade attachment and pulse until finely chopped.
  • Remove the skin and finely chop the onion. Peel the garlic cloves and mince finely.
  • Heat a large nonstick saute pan over medium-high heat. Add oil and tilt to coat the pan evenly. Add the onion and mushrooms and cook five minutes, stirring to cook evenly. Add the garlic, salt and pepper and cook five minutes more.
  • Add tomato paste and the rest of the ingredients to the pan; turn down the heat and put on the lid. Cook about 15 minutes, then taste and adjust seasonings.
  • Serve on your favorite toasted gluten-free bread or bun.


Per serving:
  • 111 calories
  • 2 g fat
  • 0 g saturated fat
  • 1 g monounsaturated fat
  • 0 g polyunsaturated fat
  • 0 g trans fat
  • 0 g cholesterol
  • 207 mg sodium (67 mg sodium with salt omitted)
  • 518 mg potassium
  • 16 g carbohydrate
  • 3 g fiber
  • 9 g sugars
  • 8 g protein
  • 3 Weight Watchers Points Plus
Make sure you choose TVP (or TSP) made from non-GMO organic soybeans and nothing else. Diabetics should omit the molasses. Vegans should use vegan Worcestershire sauce. If you're GF, see if you can find a Worcestershire sauce that's GF. I had to make my own, as the vegan version is not GF. It takes more than two weeks to make it at home (!), so I won't be posting the recipe unless I get a request. Choose tomato paste that's organic with no salt added. If your tomato paste comes in cans that are larger than 4 oz. (115 g) freeze the rest to add to soup, chili, or pasta sauce.