So, last week, DH actually did all of the grocery shopping because I was tied up at work. Like a typical guy, he stocked up on ground beef (to give him credit, he also got lots of my faves…lol). In an attempt to healthify my standard meatloaf, I decided to use vegetables for at least half of the mixture. I think I succeeded, the final result was absolutely delicious, true to the original, and had lots of color. DH really loved it, and meatloaf is one of his favorites, so I think I passed the test. Anyway, I can usually make a meatloaf from start to finish in less than an hour, so it’s always a viable option for a midweek meal. The trick is not to use a loaf pan. I always use a regular baking dish, because it allows more of the heat to circulate around the meatloaf, thus cooking it quicker. Give it a try, it’s really a very well-rounded, protein-rich choice to refuel your body midweek.
Cheddar Cheese (I always use extra-sharp)
Start by preheating your oven to 400 degrees, then finely chop all of your veggies.
Place the vegetables in a large bowl with the beef, an egg, a good shake of oats, tomato sauce, mustard, worcestershire, herbs, salt and pepper.
Now, if you’re anything like me, you will remove your rings and dig in with your paws, but if you must, you can use an apparatus. That takes too long for me, plus, it’s easier to tell if everything is well incorporated when you’re using your hands. Anyhoo…gently mix until everything is combined. Then, transfer to a baking dish and use your hands to form the meat into a loaf shape.
Transfer to the oven, and cook until top is nicely browned and the loaf has rendered quite a bit of its fat. At this point, you can remove from the oven and top with cheese.
Return to the oven and bake until cheese is a crust of brown, bubbly, goodness. Then remove from the oven and allow to rest for a few minutes before serving.
Drain the fat from the pan, slice, and serve. I served with buttermilk cheddar mashed potatoes and steamed peas and carrots…a classic, all-American meal. ENJOY!