Set a large pot over medium-low heat. Add a few drops of extra-virgin olive oil, and saute the garlic for a minute or two until just fragrant and very light golden brown. Add ground beef, increase heat to medium/medium high, and cook until no longer pink, breaking apart and stirring as meat cooks. Drain grease from meat.
While meat is browning, make sauce. In a medium bowl, stir together tomato sauce, ketchup, brown sugar, Worcestershire sauce, mustard, garlic powder, onion powder, and freshly ground black pepper, to taste, until well combined. Pour over browned meat, stir, and simmer for a few minutes until heated through (or longer, if you have time, to allow the flavors to meld).
Serve on hamburger buns or rolls with sliced pickles on top.
This Sloppy Joe sauce is intended to be slightly sweet, but it's really a matter of taste. If you prefer a more savory sauce, feel free to use less brown sugar. Additionally, you may use unrefined sugar (or even a squeeze of honey) in place of the brown sugar, if you wish.
If you like your Sloppy Joe meat with onions and peppers, you may dice up half an onion and half a bell pepper and cook them in a tablespoon of olive oil until softened (about 5 to 10 minutes) before browning the beef. Remove the onions and peppers from the pot and proceed with the recipe, cooking the meat and then stirring the onions/peppers back in at the same time you add the sauce.