Add Liquid Smoke To Upgrade The Flavor Of Canned Sloppy Joes

Sloppy Joe sandwich and chips
Sloppy Joe sandwich and chips - Lauripatterson/Getty Images

Canned sloppy Joes are a pantry staple for millions of cooks across the country. But if your taste buds are a little tired of the same old sandwich filling, you'll be thrilled to know we've rounded up plenty of simple ways to upgrade your sloppy Joes. Among this list, those looking to amp up the barbecue flavors in their sloppy Joes should reach for the humble, sometimes forgotten bottle of liquid smoke.

For those who aren't familiar with liquid smoke, it's quite literally what the name suggests. Smoke particles are captured by air condensers into which smoke from real wood chips or sawdust is directly pumped. After being captured, they're mixed with water for easy integration into recipes. In general, water and smoke should be the only ingredients in quality liquid smoke — no additions like molasses, vinegar, or food coloring. To use it in sloppy Joes, simply add a bit of the flavorful liquid to the mixture as it warms up. Those who haven't tried it might be surprised by the potency of the "smoke," meaning you'll only need a couple of drops. Start small to ensure you don't overwhelm your other flavors. The result is a perfect hint of smoke that contrasts nicely with the savory-sweet flavor of the sauce.

Read more: 6 Canned Meats You Should Buy And 6 You Shouldn't

Versatile And Simple Boosts To Taste

Smoker releasing smoke
Smoker releasing smoke - Rasa Petreikiene/Getty Images

One of the best benefits of adding liquid smoke to sloppy Joes is its versatility. It works well whether you prefer the worst-ranked or best-ranked canned sloppy Joe sauce, from classics like Manwich to store brands or even artisanal-style versions. Plus, it takes just seconds to do and is very affordable, with each long-lasting bottle of liquid smoke typically costing just a few bucks. Vegetarians can even get in on the flavor-filled fun with Mashed's vegan sloppy Joes recipe. While these are made from scratch rather than taking advantage of the simplicity of the canned version, they're just as delicious and packed with protein as traditional ground meat ones.

If you're all out of liquid smoke but are still craving that smoky flavor, there are alternatives that will do in a pinch. These include smoked paprika, canned chipotles, or chipotle flakes. So don't settle for the same old sloppy Joe flavor you've had a million times before. Break out that little bottle of liquid smoke and see the major difference a few tiny drops can make for your next sandwich.

Read the original article on Mashed.