Sloppy Joe Pasta

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Sloppy Joe pasta is a twist on the classic sloppy joes where hamburger buns are replaced with pasta noodles smothered in a homemade sauce and plenty of seasoning. This one-pot meal is perfect for pasta-loving sloppy joe fans who want to add a new recipe to their easy weeknight dinner rotation!

If you are a sloppy joe lover like I am you should give this sloppy joe casserole and these Crockpot Philly cheesesteak sloppy joes a try.

Sloppy joe pasta with ground beef and rotini noodles. Served with sliced bread.

Sloppy Joe pasta is where your favorite saucy pasta meets your favorite saucy sandwich in a one-pot ground beef pasta recipe. Instead of the traditional pasta sauce, we’re making the signature sweet sloppy joe sauce!

Even the pasta gets cooked in the same pot, which not only makes it super simple to come together but the cleanup is easy too. 

Sloppy joe pasta with ground beef and peppers in a skillet with wooden spoon.

This is the kind of comfort food recipe that will have the whole family running to the table. Serve it with a side salad or steamed veggies and you’ve got a complete meal sure to satisfy your crowd.

Why you’ll love this recipe

  • You can’t beat a one-pot meal, especially on busy weeknights.
  • Beefy, saucy, and full of flavor.
  • Can be made lighter by using ground turkey or ground chicken.
  • A family-friendly recipe made with simple, cost-effective ingredients.

Ingredients for Easy Sloppy Joe Pasta

This section includes ingredient notes and substitution options. Get all measurements, ingredients, and instructions in the printable recipe card at the end of this post.

Sloppy joe pasta recipe ingredients: diced yellow onion, diced red and green bell peppers, minced garlic, ground beef, rotini pasta, chili powder, salt, pepper, mustard, BBQ sauce, worcestershire sauce, beef broth, and fresh parsley.
  • Ground beef – I use lean ground beef (80/20 or 85/15) so there is still plenty of flavor but not too much excess grease.
  • Bell peppers – Use diced sweet red bell pepper and savory green bell pepper. Both together are a great balance.
  • Aromatics – Diced yellow onion and minced garlic add plenty of flavor to the base of the entire dish. 
  • BBQ sauce – Add your favorite BBQ sauce to this recipe, whether homemade or store-bought. 
  • Brown sugar – Along with the BBQ sauce, the brown sugar adds the signature sweetness.
  • Worcestershire sauce – This savory, umami element gives the entire dish a flavor boost. 
  • Dijon mustard – Tangy and pungent, the sharpness cuts through the sweetness very nicely. Yellow mustard can also be used.
  • Seasoning – Salt, pepper, and chili powder.
  • Beef broth – The liquid needed to cook the pasta.
  • Pasta – I use rotini pasta because I like the sauce getting into all the nooks and crannies, but use whatever short pasta you prefer. Shells, elbow macaroni, penne, or bowtie pasta are great options, too.

How to Make One Pot Sloppy Joe Pasta

This section shows you how to make the recipe with step-by-step photos and instructions. For the full printable recipe, see the recipe card below. 

Step 1: In a large pot over medium-high heat, cook the ground beef, green pepper, red peppers, and onion while using a wooden spoon to crumble the beef as it cooks. Once it has cooked through add the minced garlic and cook for another minute until fragrant. Drain excess grease if needed.

Two image collage. Left: raw chopped onions, peppers, and ground beef in skillet. Right: Cooked ground beef mixture with onions and peppers.

Step 2: Stir in the BBQ sauce, brown sugar, Worcestershire sauce, mustard, salt, pepper, and chili powder.

Step 3: Pour in the beef broth and the uncooked rotini. Stir well to make sure the entire mixture is combined.

Step 4: Cover with a lid and allow it to simmer for 10-14 minutes, stirring occasionally. The pasta should be cooked to al dente.

Sloppy joe pasta in a skillet with wooden spoon.

Serve with a side salad, fluffy potato rolls, or a bun to soak up all that sauce!

Pro Tip:

An easy way to remove excess grease is to tilt the pot to one side (preferably away from you) and use kitchen tongs holding balled-up paper towels to soak up the grease.

Spoon-full of one pot sloppy joe pasta over skillet.


Refrigerator – Keep leftover sloppy Joe pasta stored in an airtight container for up to 4 days in the fridge.

Freezer – You can also keep it for up to 3 months in the freezer. Thaw in the fridge before reheating.

Reheating – A quick zap in the microwave for a single portion. If you’ve got lots to heat up, use a large skillet on the stovetop over medium-low heat.

Tips for the Best Sloppy Joe Pasta Skillet

  • Save some time and use frozen peppers and onions. No need to thaw them first.
  • Cook pasta to al dente. That way it won’t be mushy by the time you eat it.
  • This recipe serves 6, but you can easily double it if needed. Just as long as you have a big enough pot or Dutch oven.
Heaping serving of sloppy joe one pot ground beef pasta garnished with parsley.

Additions and variations

  • Like a little heat? Sprinkle in some red pepper flakes or diced jalapenos to this sloppy Joe recipe. You could even swap the ground beef and make it a spicy sausage pasta.
  • Swap the BBQ sauce for tomato sauce to make it less sweet.
  • Toss in extra veggies even the picky eaters won’t notice! Corn, peas, diced carrots, etc.
  • Ground chicken or turkey can be used in place of beef. 
  • Sloppy cheeseburger pasta. If you’ve had my baked manwich casserole or Philly cheesesteak sliders with ground beef, you’ll know what a great addition cheese makes. Simply sprinkle cheddar cheese or cheddar-jack cheese overtop as soon as it’s done cooking, then cover and allow the cheese to melt before serving.
Plate of sloppy joe pasta with peppers, onions, and a homemade sauce.

More One Pot Recipes

Sloppy joe pasta with ground beef and rotini noodles. Served with sliced bread.
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Sloppy Joe Pasta

Author: Jaclyn
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 30 minutes
Total: 40 minutes
Sloppy joe pasta is a flavor-packed one pot dinner made with ground beef, rotini, bell peppers, garlic, and onions in a perfectly seasoned homemade sloppy joe sauce. The easy skillet recipe comes together in 40 minutes and is sure to become a family favorite.


  • 1 pound lean ground beef
  • 1 red bell pepper diced
  • 1 green bell pepper diced
  • ½ yellow onion diced
  • 1 clove garlic minced
  • ¾ cup BBQ sauce
  • 1 Tablespoon light brown sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 Tablespoon dijon mustard
  • ½ teaspoon salt or to taste
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper or to taste
  • ¼ teaspoon chili powder
  • 2 ¾ cup low-sodium beef broth
  • 3 cups rotini


  • In a large pan over medium-high heat, add ground beef, diced bell peppers, and onion. Cook, crumbling the beef, until cooked through, about 5 minutes. Add minced garlic; cook until fragrant, around 1 minute. Drain excess grease if needed.
  • Stir in BBQ sauce, brown sugar, Worcestershire sauce, mustard, salt, pepper, and chili powder.
  • Pour in beef broth and add rotini; stir well to combine.
  • Cover and simmer, stirring occasionally, until rotini is al dente, about 10-14 minutes.


  • Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days.
  • Other short pasta such as elbow macaroni would work too.
  • Shredded cheese can be sprinkled on top when it is done cooking. Cover the pan to allow the cheese to melt then stir in to the pasta before serving.


Calories: 309kcal | Carbohydrates: 43g | Protein: 23g | Fat: 5g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.5g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2g | Trans Fat: 0.3g | Cholesterol: 47mg | Sodium: 883mg | Potassium: 755mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 17g | Vitamin A: 804IU | Vitamin C: 43mg | Calcium: 38mg | Iron: 3mg
Sloppy joe pasta with ground beef and rotini noodles. Served with sliced bread.

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