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The Cheesy Sloppy Joe

There aren’t many things that give me feelings of nostalgia more than a good ol’ sloppy joe. If you grew up in America, especially if you went to public school, this easy-to-make, meat-filled delight has definitely been on the lunch menu at some point. And for most kids other than Lisa Simpson, Sloppy Joe day in the school cafeteria was a day you looked forward to. I mean most of the time it was just the leftover meat sauce from yesterday’s spaghetti. But we didn’t care. Maybe it was those catchy “Manwhich” commercials or the rare times our parents would lets us play with our food. Whatever it was, that sauced up ground beef on that burger bun brought me quite a bit of joy. These days my palette craves a more refined version of the meaty classic. But it still brings me the same happiness nonetheless. To turn this recipe up a few decimals I’ve enlisted flavors of another household classic: nacho cheese! So if you haven’t had a sloppy joe in a while or your kiddos aren’t up on game, grab these simple ingredients and take it back to the era of telephones with cords and TV Guides.

Cheesy Sloppy Joe:
1 pound ground beef
1/2 cup onion
1/2 cup green bell pepper
3 garlic cloves minced
1/4 cup ketchup
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1 tablespoon brown mustard
1/2 teaspoon red chili flakes
1/2 teaspoon chipotle powered
1/4 teaspoon cayenne power
1 cup nacho cheese sauce
Salt to taste
1 tablespoon olive oil

Nacho Cheese Sauce:
2 teaspoon corn starch
1/4 cup milk
2 1/2 tablespoons flour
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 cup shredded American cheese
1 1/2 cups shredded pepper Jack cheese
1/4 teaspoon cayenne powder

Diced white onions
Sesame seed buns

Nacho Cheese Sauce instructions:
In a small bow whisk milk and corn starch together until starch has fully dissolved. Set aside. Next in a sauce pan melt butter of low heat. When butter starts to foam whisk in flour. Continue stirring flour for 2 minutes. Make sure flour doesn’t start to brown. Whisk in milk until there are no lumps of flour. Next add cayenne powder then cheese. Stir sauce until all the cheese has melted and it’s has a smooth consistency. Remove cheese sauce from heat while you prepare sloppy joe.

Sloppy Joe instructions:
In a large skillet over high heat add olive oil. Sauté onions and peppers until onions start to turn soft. Add garlic and continue cooking for 2 mins. Next add ground beef breaking it up with a spatula or wooden spoon. Brown beef until fully cooked about 5-7 minutes. Add tomato paste, ketchup, mustard and Worcestershire sauce combine well. Sprinkle in chili flakes, chipotle and cayenne powders. Cook for 1 minute. Turn off heat and add nacho cheese sauce. Combine well. Add salt if needed.

Toast both sides of hamburger buns. Spoon a generous amount of sloppy joe sauce follow by nacho cheese sauce and top with diced onions. Enjoy!

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