Inspired by Maid-Rite in Iowa, Loose Meat Sandwiches are simple yet so very delicious. Make a batch in 10 minutes or less! Also slow cooker friendly.
I am lucky that my brother chose to marry a gal who turned out to be one of my very best friends.
I'm even luckier that said gal, Erin, is from Iowa.
Because of all these preceding events, Erin's mom ended up coming up from Iowa to Milwaukee and made me (well, all of us), Loose Meat Sandwiches.
Considering my profile as a high-level carnivore, I was pretty excited.
Her Loose Meat Sandwiches, so very delicious, are inspired by an Iowa restaurant chain called Maid-Rite.
No one knows the exact Rite-Maid loose meat sandwich recipe, and the only ingredients everyone seems to agree on beef, salt, and pepper. Some cooks add Worcestershire sauce, mustard, soy sauce, paprika, or sugar.
They look a lot like Sloppy Joes but without the Sloppy. There is no sauce to speak of, yet the beef is decidedly seasoned.
In other Midwest states, you may find them under other names such as a Tavern Sandwich, a Steamer, a Big T, or a Tastee.
And they are ready in 10 minutes or less! Seriously. You can also them in a slow cooker (see recipe notes). So easy! SO DELICIOUS.
I could actually just eat the meat plain. And I have.
Loose Meat Sandwich Recipe (Maid-Rite Copycat)
- 1 pound ground beef (85/15 recommended)
- 1/4 cup water
- 1 tablespoon yellow mustard
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1/2 cup finely chopped onion
- 4 hamburger buns, split for serving
- Ketchup, mustard, mayonnaise, pickles for serving
- In a large skillet, combine beef, water, mustard, sugar, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1 teaspoon pepper. Simmer over medium heat until the beef is cooked through, about 5 minutes, breaking up clumps of meat with a spoon.
- Drain the fat if desired (I don't, and it is closer to the original recipe if you don't, but you can if you want). Stir in onion.
- Serve meat on buns with toppings on the side such as ketchup, mustard, mayonnaise, and pickles.
- Inspired by Maid-Rite. Adapted from Cook's Country Eats Local.
- To make Loose Meat Sandwiches in a slow cooker, brown beef and add to slow cooker. Add all remaining ingredients except buns to slow cooker. Cover and cook on LOW for 2 to 3 hours. Serve in buns.