The Loose Meat Sandwich: Try Out This Delectable Midwestern Classic

Loose meat sandwich, also known as a tavern sandwich

The loose meat sandwich is a classic American comfort food that dates back to the 1920s. It’s believed to have originated in the state of Iowa and is also known as a tavern sandwich. It is made with seasoned ground beef, onions, and spices served on a hamburger bun. The sandwich is popular in the Midwest and is a favorite of Midwesterners everywhere.

This easy sandwich is perfect for a quick lunch or dinner. And now you can make it at home with just a few ingredients and minimal cooking time. Here’s how:


  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 cup diced onion
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 4 hamburger buns

Optional garnishes:

  • Sliced pickles
  • Shredded lettuce
  • Sliced tomatoes
  • Mustard
  • Ketchup

Kitchen Equipment Needed:

  • Skillet
  • Spatula


  1. Begin by heating the olive oil in a skillet over medium heat.
  2. Once the oil is hot, add the diced onion and sauté for 2-3 minutes or until the onions are soft and translucent.
  3. Add the ground beef to the skillet and cook until the beef is no longer pink.
  4. Add the garlic powder, salt, pepper, and Worcestershire sauce and mix to combine.
  5. Cook for an additional 5 minutes or until the beef is cooked through.
  6. Serve the beef mixture on hamburger buns with the desired garnishes.

For a spicy version, you can add a teaspoon of your favorite hot sauce to the beef mixture before serving.

That’s it! Your loose meat sandwich is now ready to be enjoyed. Enjoy it with your favorite side dish and a cold glass of your favorite beverage. Need bevvy ideas?

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