Saturday, August 22, 2015
Maid-Rite Copycat (Loose Meat Sandwiches)
The classic Maid-Rite is a loose meat sandwich made with perfectly seasoned, tender slow-cooked ground beef served on a warm slightly sweetened bun. We have tried to replicate it for years and at long last, we have the perfect crock pot recipe and it is one to keep! If you have never tried one, run (do not walk) to your kitchen and make this!
A few years ago Chad and I traveled to Iowa for his high school reunion. It was a much anticipated trip. I have wanted to see Iowa for years, not just for the corn (although I would fly out just for that). Ever since I first met him he had spoke of his favorite places in Cedar Rapids, so we had a long list of things to see and do. Visiting a Maid-Rite restaurant was at the top of the list.
I remember hearing all about Maid-Rite's in just about every conversation about Iowa for as long as I have know him. Interestingly, Maid-Rite has been an Iowa tradition since 1926 (and a mid-west staple for many years). A Maid-Rite is a loose meat sandwich made with perfectly seasoned tender slow cooked ground beef served on a warm bun.
First of all, it is definitely NOT a sloppy joe. It is an unformed burger, featuring beef slow cooked in seasoning liquid leaving you with the most tender seasoned beef. Simply served on a warm slightly sweet bun. It is the most spectacular simple sandwich you will ever sink your teeth into. Truth be told, I didn't 'get it' until I had my first sandwich.
Many family members have tried to replicate the magic that is the Maid-Rite. Many have failed. My father-in-law like the rest of Chad's family, grew up on Maid-Rite's Loose Meat Sandwiches and a few months back he informed my husband that at long last, he had a recipe that was the best Maid-Rite he had ever eaten, perhaps better than the original.
I was so excited to get to work on the recipe. A few tweaks here and there and Chad was over the moon! SCORE. The sandwich starts with lean ground beef, slow cooked in a mixture of onion, beef and chicken broth with vinegar, brown sugar and a hand full of other flavorful ingredients that are cooked in a crock pot, tenderizing the meat and infusing the flavors from the broth right into the beef.
Scoop your beef onto a warm bun and you have a Maid-Rite even better that the original. Customize your sandwich by choosing your toppings. I am a cheese gal, so I love cheddar cheese, onion, pickle and ketchup on mine. I realize that ketchup was not traditionally served with a Maid-Rite until recently, but I am a rebel like that!
Use you imagination and custom create your own favorite! Maid-Rite's and sweet corn are the plan for our party. Perfect combo.
With love from our simple kitchen to yours.
RECIPE AT THE BOTTOM
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Check out our favorite copycat recipes: Click on the image or the link and it will open each one in a new tab.
Cinnabon Cinnamon Rolls Copycat Recipe is a sweetened roll with a thick cinnamon-sugar filling and a cream cheese frosting that you are likely to remember long after the cinnamon roll is gone!
Red Lobster Copycat Cheddar Bay Biscuits are light and flaky, garlicky cheddar drop biscuits glistening with butter and speckled with parsley. Slightly crisp on the outside and perfectly tender on the inside. Perfectly moist, tender and delicious.
Copycat Texas Roadhouse Rolls - fabulous tender sweet rolls slathered in butter that are perfect enough to be a meal in itself. OK, so I am an admitted carbivore. But these are the most delicious dinner rolls. Perfectly sweet and tender.
Maid-Rite Copycat Recipe
SERVES 8-12 | ACTIVE TIME 10 Min | TOTAL TIME 4 Hours 10 Minutes
Recipe adapted from Grandpa Jerry
1 cup warm water
1 tablespoon dried minced onion
1 teaspoon low sodium beef base (or a bouillon cube)
1 teaspoon low sodium chicken base (or a bouillon cube)
2 tablespoons packed light brown sugar
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
1 tablespoon low sodium soy sauce
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
3 pounds lean ground beef, uncooked
8 hamburger buns
Optional toppings: cheese, ketchup, pickles, onions, mustard
Set slow cooker to high. Add all ingredients (except beef). Stir to combine. Add beef and stir until all combined and beef is completely coated.
Cover and cook for 1 hour. Stir occasionally to break up ground beef. Uncover after 1 hour of cook time. Continue cooking on high for 2 ½ - 3 hours (with the lid off), until most of the liquid has cooked off. Continue to stir occasionally and break up any chunks of beef.
Using a slotted spoon, serve a heaping spoonful on a warm bun and load it up with your favorite toppings. We love cheese, ketchup and pickles!
Serve and enjoy!
Recipe developed by Donna Elick - The Slow Roasted Italian
Copyright ©2014 The Slow Roasted Italian – All rights reserved.
Originally published 4/25/14