Sloppy Joes may give you flashbacks to an elementary school lunchroom, but they are a fun meal that everyone will enjoy. This is also a recipe that keeps well in the refrigerator, so go ahead and enjoy those leftovers!
This dish is not only delicious, but it’s also teeming with nutrition, as it’s high in antioxidants thanks to the canned tomatoes. Lycopene is a carotenoid that gives tomatoes their red color, and has been shown to reduce the risk of heart disease and certain cancers. It also has the ability to neutralize free radicals within the body to prevent oxidative stress, which helps prevent damage to our cells and our DNA. While lycopene is present in other fruits such as watermelon and pink grapefruit, tomatoes (which are the second most consumed vegetable second to potatoes in the U.S.), account for more than 85% of the lycopene in the American diet. Interestingly, cooked tomato products may hold particular significance, as the lycopene from cooked and processed tomatoes is more bioavailable than that of fresh tomatoes. Heating or processing breaks down the tomato cell matrix and promotes isomerization of lycopene from all-trans isomers to the more bioavailable form of cis-isomers. Research shows that single daily servings of processed tomato products produce significant increases of lycopene concentrations in blood and buccal mucosal cells in healthy adults.
So, go ahead and try out these Sloppy Joes; we promise you won’t be disappointed!