Old-fashioned Loose Meat Sandwich Recipe: Take a Trip Back to the '90s by Donna John

Old-fashioned Loose Meat Sandwich Recipe: Take a Trip Back to the '90s

Who doesn't love The Conners? I won't get into why Roseanne was canceled, but during the show's fifth season, Roseanne and her sister, Jackie, opened the Lanford Lunch Box and served their famous loose meat sandwiches.

During that season, I cut out a recipe for Roseanne's loose meat sandwiches from a local magazine and started making them for my kids. On nights when we had karate, baseball practice, acting lessons, gymnastics and Girl Scouts, this ground beef recipe was a lifesaver – quick and kid-friendly. This ground beef sandwich is about to find its way back into the recipe rotation again.

Photo: The recipe Donna John cut out of a magazine back in the early '90s

The quick and easy loose meat sandwich is made with ground beef, half an envelope of dry onion soup mix and water. That's it. Simmer the meat until the water has evaporated and the meat is cooked through. Serve the seasoned ground beef on hamburger buns with your desired toppings. We like cheese, chopped onion and pickles. My kids always added mustard or ketchup. Serve for lunch or dinner with potato chips, french fries or tater tots. Bring the '90s to your next sandwich night!

Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 0 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Servings: 4 to 5 sandwiches


  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1/2 an envelope of dry onion soup mix
  • 1/4 cup water
  • hamburger buns
  • toppings: cheese, chopped onion, pickles, ketchup, mustard

Here's how to make it:

  1. In a skillet, cook the ground beef until almost brown.
  2. Add the onion soup mix and water. Cover and continue to cook until meat is done and water has evaporated. 
  3. Serve on hamburger buns with optional toppings.

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Elisa Schmitz
Oh wow, Donna John ! What a tasty blast from the past. Love the recipe clipping! 😀
Tiffany Zook
We can eat these during the premier!
Donna John
Yes! That's already the plan. :-)
Yeeeeeees! “Roseanne” is my favorite show of all time! I will be watching!
Nicole DeAvilla
What a trip through time! -- and what a great sandwich - for all you meat eaters (like the rest of my family)! :)
Melissa Hurt
I bet we could whip up a version with green or brown lentils, eh?
Donna John
Of course! Two of my kids are vegans, so need to learn these tricks. :-)
AJ Rogers
Hmmm... Think I'll have to try these!!
Gwen Johnson
Such a funny show! We eat sloppy joes every once in a while. This seems like a great change up.

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