First, let me preface all of this by saying “I don’t like meatloaf.” I really don’t. In all of my nearly 29 years I have tried it numerous times and have never enjoyed it. After much deliberation, Jason decided that the reason I didn’t enjoy traditional meatloaf is because I was getting hung up on the eggs and squishy bread of it all. I just can’t do it.
However, in recent months I have experimented with making our own meatballs instead of buying them frozen from the grocery store. My version came out just as good, if not better than the mass-produced kind. Then I figured that if I can enjoy meatballs, I can transport the same basic idea to a loaf form and like it as well. Jason and Frank both love meatloaf, and I very much wanted to be able to make it for them and enjoy it too.
Here we go, delicious meatloaf without all the bread…
1 pound ground beef
1/2 cup oats (it’s what I use in my meatballs, and they basically disappear within the meat)
1/2 tsp. seasoned salt (we love Lawry’s around here)
1 tsp black pepper
1 Tbl. dried parsley (or a small-ish handful of fresh parsley)
2 Tbl. dried chopped onion (or about 1/2 of a fresh onion minced up small)
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 cup parmesan cheese
1 egg, beaten (I know I said I don’t like the eggyness, but it needs just one to hold it all together)
3/4 cup milk
Toss everything in a bowl and either do it the way my grandmother did and mash it around with your hands (eew!) or like me and just use a big spoon to stir it well until everything is combined and distributed evenly.
Dump out the mixture onto a cookie sheet (one with sides please, not the flat kind) and form it into a log. The pan I used in this picture is 9″ x 13″. I’d approximate that my loaf was about 5″ x 9″ because it didn’t take up all of the pan. That’d be like a weird meat sheet cake and I really don’t want to go there.
Mix up the following:
3/4 cup ketchup
3 Tbl. brown sugar
1/2 tsp. dry mustard
1/2 tsp. chili powder (or kick it up to cayenne pepper if you want some heat)
Spread 3 tablespoons over the top of the meatloaf and bake it at 350° for 30 minutes.
Spread another 3 tablespoons over the top and sides of the partially-baked meatloaf and bake it for another 20 minutes.
Allow the meatloaf to rest for a few minutes before you slice into it. Serve the remaining sauce alongside for dipping or warmed up on top.
This went over REALLY WELL with my family tonight and I loved it too. Jason even took the leftovers back to work with him tonight. This served three adults (2 healthy slices each) with 2 more slices for leftovers, or you could say it provides four servings. 😉
I know a bunch of you out there love meatloaf just the way your mom and whomever else made it, but if you’re one of those like me who prefers not to eat a meaty bread pudding, give my recipe a try.