Meatloaf and Roasted Veggies

I have heard so many horrible stories about meatloaf. Everyone either loves it or hates it, and unfortunately it's usually because they experienced a LOT of bad meatloaf growing up.

My mom makes the best meatloaf. Really. And it's probably because it's not just a chunk of meat. The problem is my meatloaf recipe isn't so much a recipe as a bunch of suggestions, so I'm going to try my best.

Yep, that's a lovely meatloaf. Seriously. You're going to need:
  • 1 pound of ground beef, leaner is fine
  • 1 egg
  • 1 handful bread crumbs, plain or Italian.
  • 2 handfuls oatmeal
  • 1/2 a large onion or 1 small, diced fine
  • Worcestershire sauce, about a teaspoon, maybe more. DO NOT OMIT. 
  • Ketchup, 1-3 Tablespoons, however much seems appropriate.
  • Seasoned salt, about a teaspoon.
  • Italian seasoning, about a teaspoon
  • Pepper, about 1/4 teaspoon.
  • Milk, if your mixture is a little dry.
  • More ketchup, or bacon strips.
  • Fillings such as bell pepper, mushrooms, cooked diced bacon, shredded cheese, etc. This is a good time to use up the leftover cheeses in the fridge. I like cheddar, Monterrey jack, or even mozzarella and parmesan.
Pre-heat the oven to 350*.

Mix the first 10 ingredients together. Your meatloaf should look wet at this point, kind of soggy. That may not help very much. If it looks dry add a splash of milk and mix. It should look moist. A lot of people hate this word. You can add diced bell pepper into the meat mixture if you want, but I don't particularly like it this way.

I then sort of smash my meatloaf up the sides of the mixing bowl to create walls, sort of, and fill the center with cheese or veggies, whatever you think you'd like. I usually just use some leftover cheese, about 1/4 a cup. If you use too much it might leak out.

Fold the edges of the meatloaf over and press everything together to hold the fillings in. 

Turn your meatloaf over and place it on a piece of aluminum foil sprayed with cooking spray in a baking dish with sides, it's going to release some juices and you don't want it to run over the pan. You can cover the meatloaf with bacon or ketchup at this point, however much you like. If I'm doing the ketchup method I like to add it about halfway through the cooking time so it doesn't get too dry.

Bake for 30-45 minutes on 350*. If your cheese starts to ooze out it's probably done. I told you it's more of a list of suggestions than a recipe. The aluminum foil helps here since you may want to drain off the excess fat before serving.

My mom always serves meatloaf with some combination of mac and cheese, mashed potatoes, or beans and cornbread. Cornbread goes with everything.

Roasted vegetables! These are my go to with meatloaf.

I love them, and I cook them so many different ways. This is also sort of just a list of suggestions.

Here we have:

  • 4 large carrots peeled and diced
  • 1 large onion, large diced
  • 3 cloves of garlic, smashed
  • 2 parsnips, peeled and diced
  • 3-4 Tbsp. olive oil
  • Seasoned salt, OR Kosher salt, paprika, ground mustard, garlic powder, and onion powder, OR steak seasoning.
  • Italian seasoning, maybe.
  • Pepper
Toss all ingredients together and bake in a baking dish or (for extra crispiness) a cast iron skillet for 30-45 minutes. I usually do about 400* but they can cook at the same temperature as the other things in the oven, if need be. Cook until fork tender. 


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