This Sloppy Joe Grilled Cheese combines my award-winning sloppy joe recipe with melted cheddar cheese sandwiched between two slices of Texas Toast. The sandwiches are grilled to perfection, giving each a crispy, golden brown crust, and gooey, flavorful filling. When you can’t decide between a sloppy joe and a grilled cheese sandwich, this recipe lets you enjoy both in one bite! For another flavorful twist on the classic sandwich, try my Minnesota Sloppy Joe, too!

Stacks of cut into Sloppy Joe Grilled Cheese Sandwiches.
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Sloppy Joe Grilled Cheese Ingredients & Smart Substitutions

  • Meat: Ground beef is the base of my sloppy joe recipe. You could also try it with ground turkey or ground chicken.
  • Onion: A little bit of a diced yellow onion adds depth and flavor to the mixture. Red or white onions or shallots would also work. However, you could leave them out if you don’t like onions.
  • Sauce: The sauce for my sloppy joes is made up of ketchup, water, light brown sugar, yellow mustard, garlic powder, salt, and pepper. They are ingredients you probably have on hand and pack the perfect amount of tangy, sweet, and savory flavor. A common addition is Worcestershire Sauce.
  • Bread: This is an indulgent sandwich, so why not use Texas toast? Its thickness helps hold all of that hearty sloppy joe filling and melted cheese! If you don’t have Texas toast, use another sturdy bread like ciabatta or sourdough, just to name a couple.
  • Cheese: Mild cheddar cheese is a good choice for this grilled cheese because it melts easily and is mild enough to not overpower the sloppy joe mix. However, it is so easy to customize the sandwich to your taste preferences! Try your favorite kind of cheese next time!
Sloppy Joe Grilled Cheese Sandwich on a plate cut in half and with chips.

Can I Make The Sloppy Joe Filling Ahead Of Time?

Sure! It doesn’t take long to make the sloppy joe mix, but you can certainly get it made in advance. Once cooked, let the sloppy joe filling cool to room temperature. Then, store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days. When ready to make the grilled cheese, reheat it gently on the stove or in the microwave until warmed through.

Keeping Grilled Cheese Sandwiches Warm & Delicious

Not everyone has a gigantic skillet, so if you are cooking the grilled cheese sandwiches in batches, how do you keep them all warm? To keep the sandwiches warm, follow these tips:

  1. Oven Method: Preheat the oven to a low temperature, about 200°F. Place the grilled cheese sandwiches on a baking sheet and keep in the oven until ready to serve.
  2. Foil Method: Wrap each cooked sandwich in aluminum foil. Arrange them in a single layer in a warm oven or on a warming tray until all sandwiches are ready.
  3. Microwave (Warm Plate) Method: Place the grilled cheese sandwiches on a microwave-safe plate and cover them loosely with a clean kitchen towel or another plate. Microwave them on low power for short intervals (about 20-30 seconds) to keep them warm without overheating.
Sloppy Joe Grilled Cheese stacked on a cutting board with chips and more sandwiches in the background.

What To Serve With Sloppy Joe Grilled Cheese

Here are some of my favorite side dishes to pair with these sloppy joe grilled cheese sandwiches:

Hand holding half of a Sloppy Joe Grilled Cheese.

How To Store Sloppy Joe Grilled Cheese

Although best served hot and fresh, you can save the sandwiches for later if you need to. First, let the grilled cheese cool to room temperature. Next, wrap the sandwiches individually in aluminum foil or plastic wrap. Place them in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days. Reheat the sandwiches in the oven or on a skillet.

Sloppy Joe Grilled Cheese Sandwich on a plate cut in half and with chips.
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Sloppy Joe Grilled Cheese

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Enjoy the ultimate comfort food with this Sloppy Joe Grilled Cheese recipe. Messy (yay!) and flavorful, it's the perfect combination of two classic sandwiches!


Sloppy Joe

  • 1 pound ground beef
  • ¼ cup (40 g) yellow onion, finely diced
  • ¾ cup (180 g) ketchup
  • ½ cup water
  • 1 tablespoon light brown sugar, packed
  • 1 teaspoon yellow mustard
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • salt and pepper, to taste

Grilled Cheese

  • ½ cup (1 stick / 113 g) unsalted butter, softened and divided
  • 10 slices Texas toast
  • 10 slices mild cheddar cheese


Sloppy Joe

  • In a medium skillet over medium heat, cook the ground beef and onions until the beef is no longer pink. Drain grease if needed.
  • Stir in the ketchup, water, brown sugar, mustard, and garlic powder, mixing until combined. Add salt and pepper, to taste. Set aside.

Grilled Cheese

  • Preheat a separate large skillet over medium-low heat.
  • Butter one side of each slice of bread.
  • Working one or two at a time, depending on the size of the skillet, add bread, buttered side down to the skillet. While the bread is cooking, top it with a slice of cheese, ½ cup sloppy joe mixture, and another slice of cheese. Top with another slice of bread, buttered side up.
  • Cook over medium-low heat for 3-5 minutes; then, flip over the sandwich and cook another 3-5 minutes, or until golden brown. Use a spatula to remove from the skillet.
  • Serve warm.

Did you make this recipe?

You can tag me at @iamhomesteader.

What the Test Kitchen had to say about this recipe:


What a great combination! I love everything with our sloppy joe mixture, including this sandwich. Messy, but delicious!


Now this grilled cheese sandwich will fill you up! Grab a fork because you don't want to leave any of it behind (especially the sloppy joe).


This is comfort food at its most delicious! I love the idea, and I think it would be liked by all ages!


This is definitely a filling sandwich! But, so good!


I know my family will love this variety of grilled cheese. I like how it takes a classic and kicks it up a notch with some protein!

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