Saturday, December 1, 2012

The Best Meatloaf

Courtesy of

I'll admit.... I'm not really a fan of meatloaf.  I mean, before becoming a veg-head, I'd eat it when my mom made it. I always covered in tons of ketchup to make it palatable and only ate it because the wrath of my mom wasn't worth risking.

As a wife and mom myself, I never really consider making it.  I tried it once a while ago and it was a disaster.  So, when I was, yet again, panicking at 3:00 about what to make for dinner, I surprised the heck out of myself by thinking "Hey, frozen ground beef.... MEATLOAF!"  Abe even had a pause of surprise in his voice when he called to ask what was for dinner.

I found a recipe that had a lot of great reviews and seemed to have a lot of flavor to it and wished for the best.

It was a huge hit!!  Abe's exact words were "Wow, this is.... great!"  Jimi gave me a thumbs up while munching away and went back for a second serving.  Adam told me it was yummy.  Ava played with her food, like usual, and then begged for a yogurt once the dishes were done.  That's another story for another setting....

I messed up slightly with the seasoning, so I'm going to write the recipe the way I made it.  Base recipe is from

The recipe calls for patting out a free-form loaf instead of using a loaf pan.  My limited experience with meatloaf seems to agree. I just put it on plastic to keep the bits together and smushed out the shape best I could (throwing away the plastic, of course).  I resisted the urge to add more binders, as I knew that would make the loaf more dense. 

Oh and don't be like me and forget that you need to defrost the meat before making the meatloaf.  I rarely make anything with ground beef and it's always tacos which can be defrosted as you cook.  Oops.  Thankfully the microwave did a good job of defrosting on the spot.

The Best Meatloaf

1 tablespoon butter
3 celery ribs, finely chopped 
1/2 large onion, finely chopped 
2 pounds lean ground beef 
3 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce, divided
1/2 cup Italian-seasoned breadcrumbs (or any kind of breadcrumbs with some Italian herbs added)
1/3 cup ketchup 
2 teaspoons Creole seasoning (I used Cajun as that's all I had)
1 teaspoon Greek seasoning
1 teaspoon garlic powder
2 large eggs, lightly beaten 
1 (8-ounce) can tomato sauce (I used spaghetti sauce)
3 tablespoons tomato paste
1 tablespoon ketchup 

Melt butter in a medium nonstick skillet over medium heat; add celery and onion, and sauté 7 minutes or just until tender.

Stir together celery mixture, ground beef, 2 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce, breadcrumbs, and next 5 ingredients in a large bowl. Shape into a 10- x 5-inch loaf; place on a lightly greased broiler rack.

Place rack in an aluminum foil-lined broiler pan.

Bake at 350° for 45 minutes. Stir together remaining 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce, tomato sauce, tomato paste, and 1 tablespoon ketchup until blended; pour evenly over meatloaf, and bake 10 to 15 more minutes or until no longer pink in center. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.

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