Easy, healthy and delicious Sloppy Joe Lettuce Wraps – made with lean ground turkey, black beans, and packed with flavorful vegetables smothered in a sweet and tangy sauce…
We’ve only been in school for one week and already I’m seeing our after school schedule fill up. How is that even possible with only one child at home?
The summer is officially over. Our older kids are settling back into their college routines and our house has become strangely quiet again. This time of the year is always a little bittersweet for me. The excitement of school starting up again makes me a little, okay I’ll say it…happy! Not that I’m excited that my kids are leaving me for the day so I can get more work done or anything. Well, maybe just a little.
I’m more excited about the fact that they’re excited about going back to school. A new school year means new notebooks, sharpened pencils, new backpacks and brand new experiences with new subjects and teachers. I’m not, however, ready to jump into the afterschool craziness.
Our youngest daughter, who isn’t really young anymore, is entering eighth great, EIGHTH!! I can hardly believe it! It’ll be a fun school year for her. She’s finally an “upperclassman”, if you can call it that in middle school. It’s a year of changes for Colleen too. Colleen is our child who loves to take on as much as she can and completely throws herself into new activities. When she decides to do something, she works hard on it until it’s perfect. We’re starting to see it with her newest activity, tennis. After dancing for eight years, Colleen has decided to hang up her pointe shoes and take up tennis. I was completely heartbroken when my daughter told me at the beginning of the summer that this was going to be her last year of dance. I knew she loved dance but I could also understand that she was ready to try something new. Seeing her want to learn a new skill makes me proud of her and I know that ballet has given Colleen grace, confidence and poise which she will use all her life.
With our new fall schedule filling with various tennis activities, I need recipes that are easy to make and that my entire family loves. This Sloppy Joe Lettuce Wrap recipe is one that I’ll be making often. I can make it in 30 minutes and it tastes great! Perfect for crazy school nights.
These sloppy joes not only taste great but they’re healthy too. Lean ground turkey mixed with sweet and crunchy red peppers, onions, black beans, carrots and zucchini. Yes, carrots and zucchini! Talk about flavor! The carrots gently soften when they sloppy joe mixture is cooking and adds a lovely sweet and still crunchy taste. The zucchini softens slightly and goes great with the other flavors.
This recipe happens to be one I’ve been making for years. I discovered Ellie Krieger’s Sloppy Joe recipe about five years ago and over the years, it’s quickly become a favorite meal at our house. I love how the sweet sloppy joe sauce in this recipe is made from simple and healthy ingredients like, tomato sauce, tomato paste, red wine vinegar, worchestershire sauce and molasses. Combined with a few flavorful spices, the flavor is fantastic. One of the changes I made to her recipe is in the form of the added vegetables. There’s lots of crunch and flavor in every bite.
Instead of using ground beef, I like to use lean ground turkey and instead of spooning the sloppy joe mixture onto a bun, I use large lettuce leaves. Without a bun, there’s the added benefit of fewer carbs and calories.
Sloppy Joes are most definitely a kid friendly food. This non-traditional sloppy joe recipe is a healthier option that everyone will love.
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Healthy Sloppy Joe Lettuce Wraps
- 1 pound lean ground turkey
- 1 onion diced
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 2 carrots chopped
- 1 red pepper diced
- 1 medium zucchini diced
- 1 15- ounce can black beans drained and rinsed
- 1 1/2 cups tomato sauce
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 2 tablespoons molasses
- 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
- 1 tablespoon worcestershire sauce
- 1 teaspoon mustard powder
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 6 - 8 leaves large lettuce
- Brown the ground turkey and the onion in a large skillet over medium-high heat for about 5 minutes or until cooked.
- Add the garlic, red pepper, carrots and zucchini and cook 5 minutes more, stirring occasionally.
- Stir in the rest of the ingredients, reduce heat to low, simmer for 10 minutes more.
- Place a half-cup scoop of the mixture onto the center of each lettuce leaf, roll and serve.
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