Think a sloppy joe can’t a glamorous sandwich? Think again, bub.
While the sandwich has debated origins with various unflattering names, the combination of ground meat, onions, and seasoned tomato sauce has since become an American staple.
The standard sloppy joe isn’t as photogenic as avocado toast, but there’s endless room for creative variations. Here’s our pick of five local sloppy joes worth giving a heck about.
Ken’s Hardwood Barbecue
5250 E. 22nd St.
East Tucson barbecue joint Ken’s Hardwood Barbecue chops up beef brisket and pork rib meat for their Sloppy Joe Sandwich ($7). The smoky meat is simmered in a savory barbecue sauce and served on a brioche bun with pickles slices and onion. You won’t miss the ground meat.
For more information, call (520) 745-4746 or visit kenshardwoodbbq.com.
Maynards Market & Kitchen
400 N. Toole Ave.
JR’s Sloppy Joe ($9) over at Maynards Market takes a classy bistro approach with ground Arizona beef, bacon, tomato sauce, roasted poblano, smoked Espelette aioli, and American cheese pressed on sourdough. For a steal of a deal, visit from 4 – 8 p.m. daily to pair it with any draft beer for $10.
For more information, call(520) 545-0577 or visit maynardstucson.com.
9403 E. Golf Links Rd.
Mulligan’s takes the sloppy joe southwest with the Sloppy Jose ($11). Angus beef is slowly braised with a chipotle pepper barbecue sauce, topped with vinegar coleslaw, and served on a toasted local Viro’s Real Italian Bakery brioche bun.
For more information, call (520) 733-5661 or keep up with Mulligan’s on Facebook.
PY Steakhouse at Casino Del Sol Resort
5655 W. Valencia Rd.
Available only at the bar at PY Steakhouse, the PY Prime Sloppy NY ($10) features prime Arizona NY strip with chimichurri and Collier’s Powerful Welsh Cheddar on a brioche bun and a side of the house salt and vinegar chips.
For more information, call (520) 324-9350 or visit casinodelsol.com.
Renee’s Organic Oven
7065 E. Tanque Verde Rd.
Renee dresses up the sloppy joe into the Tailored Tony ($15), using local organic San Rafael Valley grass-fed beef, marinara, roasted red peppers, basil, and provolone on their organic focaccia. It’s served with your choice of a Tossed or Caesar Salad. Fun fact: it was one of two dishes Guy Fieri ate when he visited.
For more information, call (520) 886-0484 or visit reneesorganicoven.com.