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Tomato Free Sloppy Joes

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Delicious tomato free homemade sloppy joes are a family dinner favorite! Simple ingredients for a sloppy Joe that is totally tomato free. 

The whole family will love these tomato free sloppy joes for dinner. Free from tomatoes and other nightshades so they are easier to digest. 

Free from: wheat, gluten, dairy, casein, eggs, fish, shellfish, soy, sesame, peanuts, tree nuts, coconut, corn, celery, and more

three tomato free sloppy joes on a plate in a white kitchen

This recipe has the look, texture, and taste of sloppy joes just like the tomato version – only this time without the tomatoes! 

And you don’t have to enjoy it just on a bun. You can use this to top off chili dogs, in a bowl with rice, avocado and cilantro, or even on top of baked sweet potatoes.

What are nightshades? 

There are over 2,000 types of plants in the nightshade family and the majority of them are poisonous. However, foods like potatoes, tomatoes, peppers, and eggplants also fall into the night shade family.  

To read more about nightshades, make sure you check out my Nightshades 101 article!


What I love about this recipe is that it requires simple ingredients that you can purchase at just about any store. No weird or fancy ingredients here! The main ingredients you will need are:

Beets, Carrots, Onion – This is the base for most of my tomato free recipes. They blend together to make the perfect base that is the right texture and color thanks to the beets! Plus, your family will be getting hidden extra veggies – that’s a big win! 

Maple Syrup – This provides the sweetness in the sauce as well as providing a depth of flavor. 

Ground Mustard – I like to use ground mustard because paprika can be used in a lot of yellow mustards you can purchase. Just the mustard powder gives us that rich flavor we are looking for but without a hidden nightshade. 

ingredients for tomato free sloppy joes in various glass bowls on the countertop

Other ingredients you’ll need:

  • Beef 
  • Stock
  • Olive oil or other neutral oil 
  • Onion and garlic
  • Orange juice 
  • Zucchini 


In a large pot on the stove, over a medium to medium-high heat, combine the roughly chopped beets, carrots, half an onion, and garlic.

Add the stock, herbs, spices, and olive oil. Bring this to a boil, then reduce the heat to low and let it simmer until the beets are fork tender. This should take anywhere from about 45 minutes to an hour. 

Now, transfer this beet mixture to the blender or food processor. Be careful! It’s hot! Blend it until the sauce is smooth. Set this aside while we start the beef. 

In another large pot on the stove, this time over medium heat, cook the remaining half of an onion until it is translucent, about 5 minutes. Now add the beef and cook until the beef is browned and fully cooked. 

Finally, add the beet sauce back into the same pot as the beef. Stir this together. Now add the final ingredients of orange juice, maple syrup, diced zucchini, and mustard powder. Taste it for flavor and add more mustard til it gets to the taste you like best. 

Let this cook for about 5 minutes so everything gets nice and hot. Serve immediately and enjoy! 

How to Store 

This sloppy joe sauce is awesome the day you make it, but you can totally freeze this! Make the sloppy joes right up to the blending of the beet mixture but before you brown the beef. Take that beet mixture and freeze it in freezer safe containers and it will keep up to 3 months. 

Then, anytime you want fresh sloppy joes for a quick meal, simply cook the beef and add the thawed sauce and continue the recipe as written! 

I love to make a huge double (or triple!) batch of the beet mixture to have it ready in my freezer for quick meals throughout the month. 

row of three tomato free sloppy joes on a plate with a green napkin


Do I need ketchup for this recipe? 

Nope! This recipe is free from ketchup, tomatoes, and all nightshades. 

What is a good side dish for sloppy joes? 

Some of my favorites include: sweet potato fries, fresh green salads, or mac and cheese

Can I make this with different meats? 

Yes! You can use the same amount of meat with different things like ground lamb, chicken, or turkey. 

More Tomato Free Recipes

If you try these out, please leave a comment below! This provides helpful feedback to both me and other readers. And if you want more delicious, dietary friendly recipes you can subscribe to my newsletter and follow along on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook!

three tomato free sloppy joes on a plate in front of a white background

Tomato Free Sloppy Joes

Delicious tomato free homemade sloppy joes are a family dinner favorite! Made with simple ingredients, this classic dinner recipe is reimagined to be tomato free and nightshade free friendly. Naturally gluten free, dairy free, and more!
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Diet: Gluten Free
Keyword: allergy friendly, celery free, coconut free, dairy free, egg free, gluten free, nightshade free, nut free, sesame free, soy free, tomato free, wheat free
Yield: 6 sloppy joes
Calories: 295kcal


  • Large pot
  • measuring cups
  • measuring spoons
  • knife
  • Food processor or blender
  • Bowls


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil divided
  • 1 onion
  • 4 carrots
  • 1 beet
  • 2 cloves garlic divided
  • 2 cups vegetable stock or beef or chicken
  • 1 tablespoon orange juice
  • 1 teaspoon parsley
  • 1 teaspoon basil
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 lbs ground beef
  • 1 ½ teaspoons mustard
  • 1 zucchini diced
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup


  • In a large pot on the stove, combine the chopped beet, carrots, half of the onion, and 1 clove of crushed garlic. Add the stock and herbs with salt. Stir to combine. Bring to a boil over medium to medium-high heat. As soon as it boils, reduce heat to low and let simmer for 45 minutes or until beets are fork tender.
  • Carefully transfer the cooked beet mixture to the blender or food processor. Blend until smooth. Set aside.
  • In a large pot on the stove, add the remaining olive oil and onion. Cook until translucent, about 4 minutes.
  • Add the beef to the pot and cook until the beef is done and browned.
  • Add the blended beet sauce to the pot, as well as the mustard, zucchini, and maple syrup. Taste for flavor, adding more spices if desired. Cook for 5 minutes or until fully warmed through. Serve immediately. Enjoy!


This sloppy joe sauce is awesome the day you make it, but you can totally freeze this! Make the sloppy joes right up to the blending of the beet mixture but before you brown the beef. Take that beet mixture and freeze it in freezer safe containers and it will keep up to 3 months.


Calories: 295kcal | Carbohydrates: 14g | Protein: 14g | Fat: 20g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 10g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 54mg | Sodium: 615mg | Potassium: 522mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 9g | Vitamin A: 7045IU | Vitamin C: 12mg | Calcium: 54mg | Iron: 2mg

The nutritional information on this website is only an estimate and is provided for convenience and as a courtesy only. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.

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  1. I have had to go tomato free for a while and can’t wait to try this… Can canned beets be used instead of fresh?

    1. I haven’t tried the recipe using canned beets but I think it would work out! Since the canned beets are already cooked, you can skip adding them to the veggie mix in the pot and just add them when you add the other cooked veggies to a blender.

  2. 5 stars
    I used this recipe today to cook for my mother. She loves all things tomato but has developed an allergy. I made these for her and she loved them. I added a little cayenne because we like our joes spicy, and it worked great with the maple syrup.

    1. That’s fantastic! I’m so happy that your mom loved these sloppy joes. I totally agree, I love to spice mine up. Thanks for the wonderful review! 🙂

  3. This was really good! My daughter has been unable to have fructose of any kind including tomatoes for years. She said it tasted like tomato sauce as she remembers.

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