Not quite my mom’s recipe. Make it your own. I served it with wild rice and green beans!
If you’re running out of food ideas, call some family for backup. Flavor this however you want. I provided several suggestions.
- About 1 lb ground protein (beef, chicken, lamb, turkey, whatever you’ve got. If vegetarian protein or lamb, add about a half cup of olive oil, butter, or coconut oil.)
- 1 egg per lb of protein
- 3/4 cup breadcrumbs (can just be crushed up crackers) per lb of protein
- 3/4 cup milk, cream, or water (for soaking the breadcrumbs) per lb of protein
- (I used 1 1/3 lbs ground beef, crushed up crackers, cream, 1 egg, and 1 egg yolk)
Possible Fillings (1-2 cups per lb of protein):
- sautéed onion
- sautéed peppers
- sautéed mushrooms (drained)
- pickled garlic
- (I used sautéed onion)
Possible dry Seasonings 1/2 cup total per lb of protein, excluding salt. Any combination of the following:
- Garlic powder
- Red pepper flakes
- Parsley (fresh or dried. optional)
- Salt to taste*
- (I used paprika, garlic powder, pepper, and fresh parsley)
Possible wet seasonings 1 cup total per lb of protein. Any combination of the following:
- Soy sauce
- Fish sauce (or other umami enhancement)
- Worcestershire sauce
- BBQ Sauce or Ketchup or Teriyaki sauce
- Gochujang paste (I LOVE GOCHUJANG)
- (I used soy sauce, fish sauce, Worcestershire, BBQ sauce, and Gochujang)
Coating (enough to glaze your loaf of any combination of the following):
- BBQ sauce
- Teriyaki sauce
- (I mixed BBQ sauce and spicy mustard)
Don’t use every seasoning you have, but have a lot of fun with the experimentation.
- (If applicable) Completely defrost your ground protein and place into a large bowl.
- Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.
- Cook your fillings in a small amount of cooking oil.
- Soak your breadcrumbs (or crushed crackers. I love using crushed, buttery crackers) in liquid until soft. Add to the large bowl.
- Beat egg(s) in a separate bowl and add to the mixture. Incorporate well.
- Incorporate dry seasonings, wet seasonings, and fillings. I did this by hand.
- Test your mixture by thoroughly cooking a small pinch of it in a pan for 5 minutes (or until cooked through) and then tasting. Decide what you need to add, if anything. Too dry? More wet ingredients. Too sour? More BBQ sauce or ketchup. Falling apart? More egg. Find your balance of sweet, tangy, and salty.
- When satisfied with your test-meatloaf, transfer the mixture from the bowl to a large pan and form it into an even loaf.
- Bake for about 25 minutes per pound of meat, or until the internal temperature follows these guidelines: https://www.foodnetwork.com/grilling/grilling-central-how-tos/articles/meat-and-poultry-temperature-guide . I was using 1 1/3 lbs ground beef, so I baked for 35 minutes.
- Make your glaze by either only using a sweet sauce or mixing a sweet sauce with a saltier, tangier component like fish sauce or mustard.
- Take the meatloaf out of the oven, thickly coat with your glaze, and bake for another 5-10 minutes, until the glaze somewhat solidifies. I baked for about 7 minutes.
- Take out of the oven, wait 10-15 minutes, and slice!
Meatloaf keeps exceptionally well in the fridge and possibly tastes even better leftover than fresh. Definitely look up the cook time and safe internal temperature for your particular kind of ground protein!