I absolutely love this Sloppy Joe Casserole recipe. The combination of the veggies, the beef, cheese and the penne pasta is spot on. I found the meat to have a little sweetness to it, but some of my guests did not find it sweet at all.
Go figure! Maybe just the combination of the brown sugar and corn with the ground beef gave it the sweetness. Regardless this is one fabulous casserole recipe.
The only reason I am calling this a Sloppy Joe Casserole is that it shares many of the same ingredients as a traditional Sloppy Joe Sandwich recipe except made in a casserole dish.
I love bread but I need to keep those carbs in check so I prefer to make a sloppy joe casserole sans bread.
One of the surprise ingredients in this Sloppy Joe Casserole recipe is corn. The corn adds a little sweetness as well as a nice texture.
I was almost tempted to add some chopped bacon (because we all know that everything tastes better with bacon) but this dish did not need any help.
💭 What is Al Dente
When making pasta, it's important to cook the pasta al dente to ensure to best texture possible. If you are not familiar with the term "al dente", it means cooking the pasta so it's still chewy and firm and that it will hold its shape when the sauce is added to it.
You can check out my Sloppy Joes Sandwich or my Bacon Beer & Cheese Sloppy Joe Sandwich recipe for comparison. Or even better, check out my wife's favorite Sloppy Joe Turkey Skillet recipe. A must try if you prefer healthier white meat over beef.
Ever wonder how Sloppy Joe got its name? Then check out this interesting article on Wikipedia. I love to know the history of some of the recipes I publish.
Even if you don't care about the origins of sloppy joe recipes, you must give this recipe a try. You won't be disappointed.
💭 Recipe Variation
As far as the cheese is concerned, the Colby Jack Cheese really compliments this dish. But if you don't have any on hand or not in the mood to make a grocery run just for some Colby Jack cheese, you can substitute with mozzarella or Cheddar Cheese.
I'm not sure why this recipe has become such a popular recipe of mine. I know it tastes great and is a hit with everyone but what is the attraction? The flavor? The simplicity of it? I guess it doesn't matter. You must give this recipe a try!
🐄 How to Handle Raw Beef
Thaw raw ground beef on a plate on the lowest shelf of the refrigerator, to avoid dripping onto other foods.
Keep raw and ready-to-eat meats separate.
Wash hands thoroughly before and after handling raw ground beef. Wash cutting boards, bowls, and utensils used to prepare raw ground beef with hot soapy water and rinse well.
Use separate plates to carry raw ground beef patties to the cooking area and cooked patties to the serving area.
Use a Thermometer to ensure Ground Beef Reaches the Safely Cooked Internal Temperature of 160°F.
For more great recipes with Penne Pasta, I suggest you check these recipes out:
📋 Gather your Ingredients
You will need the following ingredients to make this Sloppy Joe Casserole recipe (see recipe card for quantities): Ground Beef, Yellow Onion, Green Bell Pepper, Red Bell Pepper, Garlic Clove, Petite Diced Tomatoes, Ketchup, Light Brown Sugar, Yellow Mustard, Frozen Corn, Penne Pasta, Colby Jack Cheese and Salt & Pepper.
🥣 How to make Sloppy Joe Casserole
Heat a little olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Cook and stir beef, onion, green bell pepper, red bell pepper, and garlic until the beef is browned and crumbly. Drain and discard grease.
Stir tomatoes, ketchup, brown sugar, mustard, salt, and pepper into the ground beef mixture; reduce heat and simmer until heated through.
Bring another large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add penne and cook al dente according to the directions on the package. Drain and set aside.
Add the frozen corn, pasta, and cheese to the ground beef mixture. Mix well. Pour into a 9 x 13 baking dish.
Bake for about 20 minutes or until cheese is bubbly.
Sloppy Joe Casserole
- Baking Dish
- 1 lb Ground Beef
- 1 small Yellow Onion, diced
- 1 Green Bell Pepper, diced
- 1 Red Bell Pepper, diced
- 3 Garlic Cloves, minced
- 14 oz Petite Diced Tomatoes
- 1 Cup Ketchup
- 1 tablespoon Light Brown Sugar
- 1 teaspoon Yellow Mustard
- 2 Cups Frozen Corn
- 16 oz Penne Pasta
- 8 oz Colby Jack Cheese, shredded
- Salt and Pepper, to taste
- Preheat the oven to 350°F.
- Heat a little olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Cook and stir beef, onion, green bell pepper, red bell pepper, and garlic until the beef is browned and crumbly. Drain and discard grease.
- Stir tomatoes, ketchup, brown sugar, mustard, salt, and pepper into ground beef mixture; reduce heat and simmer until heated through.
- Bring another large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add penne and cook al dente according to directions on package. Drain and set aside.
- Add corn, pasta, and cheese to ground beef mixture. Mix well. Pour into a 9 x 13 baking dish.
- Bake for about 20 minutes or until cheese is bubbly.
Nutritional information provided for this recipe is based on 1 serving. This information is an estimate and may vary based on several factors. If nutritional information is important to you and your diet, please verify this recipe with a Registered Dietitian.
OMG this is fantastic. Easy to make, I recommend this recipe. Everyone should try it and kids will love it too.
Thank you for this amazing dish!
Thank you! It's one of my favs as well.
Do you think I can use the no boil penne? Do you think there is enough liquid to cook them in the oven? Sounds awesome!
Great question. Unfortunately I've never used no-boil pasta before. But if it's just like boil pasta I don't see why it wouldn't turn out the same. The meat mixture is wet so I think you should be fine. If you do try it, come back and let us know how it turns out!
This was an awesome recipe. Thank you so much for sharing it. It was such a hit and all my family loved it.
Glad you liked it! Thanks for letting us know!
I have been making a very similar casserole for 40 years. I use the Manwich Sandwich Sauce in a can, but otherwise, it's the same! I'm sure yours is better being homemade, but the canned is great when you're in a hurry!
That is a great tip! Thanks for sharing. I have to try that next time I am in a hurry.
If you use manwich sandwich sauce what do you leave out the can of tomatoes and do I still use theeverything else thanks
I've never used manwich but if it's "wet" enough you should be able to leave out the tomatoes and ketchup. You just want to make sure the meat is not too dry. If you try it let me know how it turns out!
Yes, leave out any of the ingredients for sloppy joes- tomatoes, ketchup, brown sugar, mustard. It's just a quicker way to make this recipe. It's very good!
I feel like the pan should have been larger than a 9x13 and the casserole wasn’t very warm after the 20 minute baking time Should I have covered it??
Sorry to hear you had trouble making this recipe. I've made this dish many times without the issue you describe. I know many others as well. Might be something unique to your setup. That being said, if you do leave it in longer, I would strongly suggest you cover it with foil towards the ends of the process so you don't burn up the cheese.
can I freeze this.
I would not recommend it. Freezing cooked noodles will make them like mush when they are thawed out.
Turned out very good! Only I didn't cook the pasta or corn first I just added 1/2 cup water and covered with foil and cooked it for about 50-55 minutes then uncovered and added cheese and cooked for 10 minutes more. Turned out perfect! Thanks!
Great! Thanks for sharing your method!
This was very good and very easy to make. My family likes a lot of sauce so the next time I would either use less noodles or double the sauce. Also I will save some of the cheese to sprinkle on top or just add a little extra on top just for presentation! I will definitely make it again!
Thanks for the feedback! Still one of my favorite casseroles to make.