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Sloppy Joe's Italian Style
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Tailgating with Bolognese Sliders, the Five Star Sloppy Joe Makeover

(Adapted from La Cucina Italiana , October, 2009) an Italian take on an American tradition of Sloppy Joe's.
Servings: 6


  • 1 14- ounce can San Marzano whole peeled tomatoes in juice or half large 28 ounce can
  • 2 cups beef broth
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 celery rib roughly cut
  • 1 small onion roughly chopped
  • 1 medium carrot roughly chopped
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter divided (3 for sauce, 1 for toasting rolls)
  • 2 links sweet Italian sausage removed from casing
  • 2 ounces pancetta or bacon finely chopped
  • 1 1/2 pounds ground beef
  • 1/2 pound ground pork
  • sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup dry red wine
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 3/4 cup whole milk
  • freshly grated nutmeg
  • small water rolls


  • Puree tomatoes until smooth. Set aside.
  • Heat beef broth with tomato paste. Set aside.
  • Make battuto. Chop together the celery, onion and carrots.
  • Melt butter in large pot until frothy. Add vegetables, sausage and pancetta. Cook on low heat, until veggies are softened, not browned, about 25 minutes.
  • Add beef, pork, and break up with wooden spoon. Cook 10 minutes. Do not brown.
  • Add salt and pepper.
  • Add wine, bring to boil until it is mostly evaporated, about 5 minutes.
  • Add tomato puree and beef broth mixture and bay leaf.
  • Cook for 2 1/2 hours on simmering heat until liquid is evaporated.
  • Add milk and cook for 30 more minutes.
  • Add pinch of nutmeg. Season with salt and pepper.
  • Brush rolls with butter. Grill until toasted golden brown.
  • Spoon bolognese sauce on rolls.