This classifies as a victory. There was one Maid-Rite sandwich shop in Rockford when I moved here in the '90s. Since it closed I've really missed them.

Sadly, there are some people that have never enjoyed the loose-meat heaven that is a Maid-Rite sandwich. The sandwich originated in Iowa.

When I moved to Rockford, there was only one Maid-Rite restaurant left and it was in the shopping center at the corner of E. State Street and Mulford Road.

Is this the Maid-Rite Sandwich recipe you've been looking for?

Honestly, I wasn't all that excited when a coworker suggested we go get lunch from Maid-Rite. He asked if I was familiar with the place and I wasn't. He said they were delicious and that they were like a Sloppy Joe.

That was a horrible description.

My mom made the most amazing Sloppy Joe sandwiches so I was looking forward to trying one. He was right that it was mashed-up ground beef, but it was nothing like a Sloppy Joe. Where was the sauce that dripped off the bun? It was loose meat, but the sandwich was dry as hell. The only Sloppy Joe similarity was that meat fell off the sandwich with every bite.

Once I added mustard to the Maid-Rite, it was perfect. I also liked to add extra pickles.

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If you could never quite get your homemade Maid Rites to taste the same, maybe you were missing a key ingredient.

I saw a post in the Facebook group, Growing Up in Rockford IL, that shared a Maid-Rite recipe that was originally printed in the Rockford newspaper.

  • 1-1/2 pounds of ground beef
  • 1 can of chicken broth
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Crumble ground beef. Cook real slow until most of the red is gone but the meat is not browned. Drain fat. Add broth and seasonings and cook until most of the liquid is gone.

Serve with dill pickles and finely minced onion on buns

Dede Woelky via Facebook
Dede Woelky via Facebook

In the comments on the Facebook post (link above), you'll find a few more modifications from other Maid-Rite fans and former employees that are worth checking out if it still doesn't taste quite 'rite' to you.

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