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Sloppy Joes with Fruit Drink Pickles

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  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 2 days 40 min (includes pickling time)
  • Active: 35 min
  • Yield: 4 servings
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1 tablespoon olive oil

1 pound ground chuck, 85% lean 

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper 

1 small onion, chopped 

1/2 green bell pepper, chopped 

1 1/2 teaspoons chili powder 

2 tablespoons tomato paste 

1 cup tomato sauce 

1 tablespoon light brown sugar 

1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar 

2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce 

1 teaspoon soy sauce 

4 sesame seed topped hamburger buns, lightly toasted 

1/3 cup Fruit Drink Pickles, recipe follows

Fruit Drink Pickles:

One 24-ounce jar dill pickle chips

One .23-ounce packet powdered fruit drink, such as Kool-Aid (any flavor) 

1/4 cup sugar 


  1. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the beef and some salt and pepper and cook, breaking up any clumps with a wooden spoon, until brown, about 5 minutes. Add the onion, pepper, and chili powder and cook, stirring, until softened, about 5 minutes. Add the tomato paste and cook, stirring, 1 minute. Add the tomato sauce, sugar, vinegar, Worcestershire, soy sauce and 1/2 cup water and bring to a simmer. Simmer, stirring occasionally, until thickened, about 10 minutes.
  2. Serve the meat on the buns topped with Fruit Drink Pickles.

Fruit Drink Pickles:

  1. Drain the brine from the pickles into a bowl. Add the fruit drink packet and sugar and stir until dissolved. Add the brine back to the jar (discard any that doesn't fit). Refrigerate at least 2 days and up to 1 month.
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