Meatloaf Is A Tried And True Fall Favorite



Meatloaf is a traditional American recipe that is perfect for fall family dinners. There are about as many meatloaf recipes as there are kitchens in America. If you can grind it up and it will hold a loaf shape, it's been made into meatloaf.

Enjoy these recipes and enjoy experimenting with them. And remember, leftovers are always wonderful in lunch boxes as a meatloaf sandwich.

Microwave Meatloaf

This recipe breaks the rule about not cooking meatloaf in a loaf pan. The microwave cooks this meatloaf recipe to perfection; it remains very moist and juicy.

1 pound ground chuck

1 egg

2 tablespoons quick cooking oats

1/4 cup minced onion

1 (8-ounce) can tomato sauce

1/4 teaspoon dried thyme leaves

1/4 teaspoon dried marjoram leaves

1/4 teaspoon garlic salt

Dash white pepper

1 tablespoon brown sugar

2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce

2 teaspoons prepared mustard

Combine meat, eggs, oats, onion, half the tomato sauce, thyme, marjoram, garlic salt, and pepper in a large bowl. Gently shape into a 8-by-4-inch loaf. Place into a 9-by-5-inch glass loaf pan, making sure the meat mixture doesn't touch the sides of the pan. Cover pan with microwave safe waxed paper. Microwave at high power for 5 minutes, then carefully pour off juices.

Combine brown sugar, Worcestershire sauce and mustard with remaining tomato sauce. Spoon this mixture over the meat loaf, making sure to evenly coat top and sides. Return pan to oven, rotating one half turn. Cover pan with microwave safe waxed paper and cook at 30 percent for 17 to 20 minutes or until an instant read meat thermometer inserted in the center of the loaf registers 170 degrees. Cover with foil and let stand 5 minutes on a solid surface before serving. (The temperature of the meat loaf will rise about 10 degrees during standing time.) Makes 6 servings.

Crockpot Turkey Meatloaf

A spicy turkey meatloaf cooks to perfection in your slow cooker. Serve it with instant mashed potatoes for an excellent work-night meal.

2-1/2 pounds ground turkey

1 medium finely chopped onion

2 eggs

1/3 cup milk

2 tablespoons prepared horseradish

2 tablespoons chili sauce

1 cup soft breadcrumbs

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 garlic cloves, minced

1/4 cup minced fresh parsley

In large bowl, combine all ingredients except turkey and mix well. Add turkey and mix gently just until combined.

Tear off 2 30-inch pieces of heavy duty aluminum foil and fold to make two 2-by-30-inch strips. Lay strips in bottom of crockpot in an X pattern, letting the edges hang over the crockpot. Form turkey mixture into a loaf that will fit into the crockpot. Place on top of the foil strips. Cover crockpot and cook on low for 7 to 8 hours, until meat thermometer registers 170 degrees. Drain off fat as needed during cooking time. Use foil strips to lift meatloaf out of crockpot. Cover and let stand 20 minutes before slicing. Makes 8 servings.

Southwest Slow Cooker Turkey Loaf

Since turkey has less fat and can be drier than beef loaves, the crockpot is the perfect place to cook it. This moist loaf is low in fat and high in flavor.

2/3 cup salsa

1 egg, slightly beaten

1/4 teaspoon pepper

1/4 teaspoon salt

1-1/4 pounds ground turkey

In medium bowl, combine salsa, egg, pepper, salt and mix well. Add ground turkey and combine. Form into a 6-inch round loaf and place loaf on a rack or balled up foil balls in a 3-quart crockpot. Cover slow cooker and cook on low for 4 to 5 hours, until turkey is thoroughly cooked. Makes 4 servings.

Brown Rice Meatloaf

Instant brown rice adds flavor and moistness to traditional beef meatloaf, along with red bell peppers and Parmesan cheese. It is needed in this recipe because it has to soften while the meatloaf bakes. Regular rice would just stay too hard.

1/4 cup finely chopped onion

1/4 cup minced red bell pepper

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 tablespoon olive oil

1/2 cup uncooked instant brown rice

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon white pepper

1 egg, beaten

1/4 cup ketchup

1/4 cup milk

1-1/2 pounds ground beef

1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In heavy skillet, cook onion, bell pepper, and garlic in olive oil until tender. Place in large bowl along with rice, salt, pepper, eggs, ketchup, and milk and mix well. Add beef and cheese and mix until combined. Form into loaf shape on broiler pan.

Bake at 350 degrees for 55 to 65 minutes or until internal temperature registers 160 degrees. Let loaf stand for 10 minutes before slicing. Serves 8.

Recipes courtesy of Busy Cooks

Meatloaf-making tips

  • Don't handle the mixture too much. Excess handling will compress the meat, making the meatloaf tough.
  • For a nice crusty exterior and moist interior, don't use a loaf pan to hold the meat during baking. Form the loaf and place it on a broiler pan or rack so the fat can drain away as it bakes. When meatloaves are placed in a loaf pan, they tend to steam instead of bake.
  • Any meatloaf recipe can be made into individual meatloaves; cut baking time in half and check the internal temperature to make sure the meat is cooked properly.
  • For best texture, don't use more than 3/4 cup of filler ingredients per pound of meat. Filler ingredients include chopped vegetables, bread crumbs, crushed cereal, oatmeal, etc.

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