Photo: Randy Mayor; Styling: Missie Neville Crawford
Hands-on Time
25 Mins
Total Time
25 Mins
Serves 6 (serving size: 1 sandwich)

We replace half the meat with nutty-hearty canned chickpeas, saving money and saturated fat. While many sloppy joe recipes are very sweet, this version has just a touch of brown sugar and is capped off with crunchy bread-and-butter pickles. Serve with apples or grapes for an easy side.

$5.72 for six servings

How to Make It

Step 1

Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add onion; sauté 4 minutes or until almost tender.

Step 2

Add sirloin; cook 5 minutes or until browned, stirring to crumble. Stir in chili powder, sugar, and salt; cook 1 minute, stirring constantly.

Step 3

Add 1/4 cup water and tomato sauce; reduce heat, and simmer 2 minutes or until thickened.

Step 4

Place chickpeas in a bowl; partially mash with a fork or potato masher. Stir chickpeas into sirloin mixture.

Step 5

Spoon about 1/2 cup sirloin mixture onto bottom half of each bun; top each with 3 pickle chips and top half of bun.

Ratings & Reviews

The family loved it!

December 23, 2016
This recipe came up as an option for me on the Cooking Light Diet plan. I was wondering how my family would react to this recipe and they loved it!  My skeptical son asked what the 'chunks' of garbanzo beans were but was so busy eating his sandwich that he didn't notice that I didn't answer him.  When everyone was done and I had confirmed that they all liked it and wanted it to be a 'make again' dish I let them know there were garbanzo beans in it.  They didn't even care, the recipe was that good and flavorful.  No more Sloppy Joe packets for us!!!!!

3 1/2 stars

April 19, 2016
Much better than I anticipated and super quick and easy too.  I might kick the heat up a bit (I already added some fresh cracked pepper) with some red pepper flakes or chipotle chili powder.

Very easy weeknight meal

January 14, 2016
I made these vegetarian by using Morning Star Crumbles.  Since they are drier I added more tomato sauce.  My daughter loved them and asked for seconds. 

Enjoyed it

September 28, 2015
Simple ingredients and fairly fast if you use a food processor or an immersion blender on the chickpeas. 

Okay, not great

August 30, 2015
Very easy to prepare but I agree with the other reviewer that the chickpeas are distracting - the texture doesn't really fit. There's another CL Sloppy Joe recipe with kidney beans that is much, much better.

Will make again

August 30, 2015
Everyone in my house (husband, 2 year old, myself) really liked these. I was really surprised they had so much flavor given the amount of chickpeas. We'll definitely make these again!

Really Great the Next Day!

August 28, 2015
I wasn't sure what I expected of these sloppy joes but they turned out pretty well.  I liked them much more the second day than the first.  I was pleased with the bean texture but found I liked the beans mashed quite a bit..  I added a second TBSP of brown sugar and a little prepared mustard to the sauce.  My two-year old and husband both enjoyed them too.  I will make these again and again!

Missed the mark

August 25, 2015
This wasn't the worst recipe I have made for sloppy joes but this wasn't the best.  I don't think I would make again. The chickpeas were distracting, I think I would add black beans instead to one of my other recipes. Don't think I will make again.