Instant Pot Lentil Sloppy Joes

  • Author: Emily Weeks, RDN, LD
  • Yield: 6 1x


A plant-based twist on a comfort food classic! Try these lentil sloppy joes and get a hearty fill of fiber and protein. Seasoned with chili powder and smoked paprika. 



  • 2 tsp. avocado oil
  • 1/2 small yellow onion (diced)
  • 1 clove garlic (minced)
  • 1 cup dried green lentils
  • 2 cups vegetable broth
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 24 oz tomato sauce
  • 1 Tbsp. brown sugar
  • 1 Tbsp. vegan Worcestershire sauce
  • ½ tsp chili powder
  • ½ tsp smoked paprika
  • 6 whole-wheat hamburger buns
  • Onion slices for garnish


  1. Select the sauté setting on an electric pressure cooker. Heat the oil and add the onion and garlic, and sauté until soft, about 3 minutes.
  2. Add the lentils, broth and salt. Cover with and lock down the lid. Pressure-cook for 15 minutes at HIGH pressure.
  3. Once the cook time completes, allow the pressure cooker to release pressure naturally; this takes about 10 minutes. Once all the pressure has released, turn the steam valve to release any remaining pressure. Keep pressure cooker on the “keep warm” setting.
  4. Next add 2oz of tomato sauce, brown sugar, vegan Worcestershire sauce, chili powder, and smoked paprika to the pressure cooker pot. Stir to combine until heated through. If you’d like your sloppy joes more sauce-y, add the rest of the tomato sauce. 
  5. Serve on whole wheat buns with a couple slices of onion.


Stove-top (non instant pot version): 

Add the same amount of broth and lentils to a small saucepan and heat over medium-high heat. Bring to a low boil, then reduce heat to a simmer and cook uncovered for about 18 minutes, or until tender. Then, you can add the cooked lentils to a large saucepan where you can add the tomato sauce and other ingredients. 

Adapted from Minimalist Baker.