Easy Vegan Sloppy Joes


Exactly a decade ago, a fast and flavorful recipe for vegan sloppy joes was shared with us by Nasoya. It’s a super-easy recipe that I was inspired to pull from our archives last week. And I’m happy to report that it’s not only quick, but delicious too.

Easy Vegan Sloppy Joes Recipe - fast, healthy, nut-free and optionally gluten-free

I would be lying if I said that these vegan sloppy joes tasted just like the meaty versions. But that doesn’t change the fact that they’re pretty darn good. The flavor is mild and family-friendly, but hearty and satisfying. And the cost per meal came out to only about $1 per person!

I didn’t feel like a big hamburger bun, so I served these vegan sloppy joes open-faced on toasted whole grain English muffin halves (from Trader Joe’s). You can eat them by hand, or with a knife and fork if you aren’t into the sloppy style.

Easy Vegan Sloppy Joes Recipe - fast, healthy, nut-free and optionally gluten-free

Special Diet Notes: Easy Vegan Sloppy Joes

By ingredients, this recipe is dairy-free / non-dairy, egg-free, optionally gluten-free, nut-free, peanut-free, vegan, plant-based, and vegetarian.

5.0 from 2 reviews
Easy Vegan Sloppy Joes
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
This recipe was originally shared with us by Nasoya, a popular organic tofu producer. I have modified the recipe a bit, but stayed true to their concept.
Serves: 4 to 6 servings
  • 1 14- to 16-ounce package organic firm or extra-firm tofu, well-drained and crumbled
  • 2 tablespoons olive or grapeseed oil
  • 1 medium green bell pepper, diced
  • 1 small white or yellow onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce or wheat-free tamari (for gluten free)
  • 2 cups canned tomato sauce (I used Trader Joe's)
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • ½ teaspoon ground cumin
  • 4 to 6 dairy-free hamburger buns or English muffins, toasted (gluten free, if needed)
  • Water, if needed
  • Salt, to taste (optional)
  • Black pepper, to taste
  1. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the bell pepper, onion, and garlic (if using) and sauté for 5 minutes, or until tender.
  2. Add the crumbled tofu and soy sauce or tamari, and sauté for 5 minutes, or until the tofu starts to brown.
  3. Stir in the tomato sauce, chili powder, and cumin powder. Once bubbling, reduce the heat to low, and simmer for 2 to 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. It should be quite thick, but if it's too thick, add water, 1 tablespoon at a time, to reach your desired consistency.
  4. Season to taste with salt (I usually add about ⅛ teaspoon) and black pepper.
  5. Serve hot over toasted hamburger buns or English muffins.

More Easy Vegan Sandwiches

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Thai Peanut Veggie Sandwiches (vegan & optionally gluten-free)

Easy Thai Peanut Veggie Sandwiches Recipe (Vegan, Dairy-Free & optionally Gluten-Free)

Roasted Beet Sandwiches (vegan, optionally gluten-free & allergy-friendly)

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About Author

Alisa is the founder of GoDairyFree.org, Food Editor for Allergic Living magazine, and author of the best-selling dairy-free book, Go Dairy Free: The Guide and Cookbook for Milk Allergies, Lactose Intolerance, and Casein-Free Living, and the new cookbook, Eat Dairy Free: Your Essential Cookbook for Everyday Meals, Snacks, and Sweets. Alisa is also a professional recipe creator and product ambassador for the natural food industry.


  1. My husband LOVES sloppy joe’s and we’ve been looking for a vegan take on the recipe. These look so flavorful – will definitely be trying. Thanks!

  2. Alisa, your recipes never fail me. So, I will pull out the block of tofu I have in the fridge and make this without any hesitation! Great recipe for when my vegan bro comes over 🙂

  3. I like that you served them open face and using an English muffin! I am not a huge burger fan because I feel like there is always to much bread, but serving it like this would solve that issue 😀

    • Me too! Ever since my husband went away years ago, I’m not big on the fluffy “bun” part of burgers. But English muffins are a much better size and fulfilling density.

  4. One of the girls was asking about sloppy joe’s and I bet these would even surprise and satisfy the meat eaters as well with all the filling flavors!

  5. I’ve never seen the sloppy joes with the tofu! Super unique. I’ve actually never had an actual sloppy joe but I think it’s funny to call my husband sloppy joe every time he makes a mess eating (his name is joe, LOL!), he doesn’t find it so amusing.

  6. So funny – I was just thinking fondly of sloppy joes yesterday, and then this popped up in my Facebook feed. It must be fate! I need to make them soon.

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