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Hawaiian Sloppy Joes

Serves 6

Aloha chefs!  Splash into summer with these sweet and tangy tropical handhelds. These delicious pineapple-studded Hawaiian Sloppy Joes put regular ol’ sloppy joes to shame! The filling is made from lentils and ground mushrooms, simmered in a brown sugar tomato sauce with a kick of crushed red pepper. Both kids and adults will be licking their lips (and fingers) after one of these! The filling can be made in advance and reheated for dinner in a jiffy.

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 green bell pepper, finely chopped
  • 8 ounces crimini mushrooms, trimmed and pulsed in a food processor or finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • ¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1 (15-ounce) cans lentils, rinsed and drained (or 1 ½ cups cooked lentils)
  • 1 (14-ounce) can tomato sauce
  • ¼ cup soy sauce
  • ¼ cup packed brown sugar or maple syrup
  • 1 tablespoon white or apple cider vinegar
  • 1 cup chopped fresh pineapple
  • 6 whole wheat buns
  • Procedure

    In a large pot, heat oil over medium-high heat and sauté onions and green peppers until soft. Add mushrooms and let cook, stirring frequently, until soft, about 8 to 10 minutes. Add garlic, salt, and crushed red pepper, and let cook a couple more minutes.

    Stir in lentils, tomato sauce, soy sauce, brown sugar, vinegar, and pineapple. Reduce heat to medium. Simmer, uncovered, for 10 to 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat and adjust seasoning to taste. Let it sit for at least 15 minutes before serving on buns.

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