Meal time is so SUPER crazy around, here, but we've managed to find our rhythm, again.
I hated meatloaf growing up, but this is one of the first meals I learned to make (the right way) when Ben and I were first married. It's packed full of flavor, freezes well, and compliments all your favorite feel-good side dishes. Now, we make meat "cakes" because - well - it just makes life easier for mom and dad! The boys pick up the entire (or three) meatcake and dip away.
They only takes about 15 minutes to throw together, but a solid 40-50 minutes to bake. Often times I will pre-make the night before, so I can pop them in when we get home from school.
Here is what you'll need:
20 min prep/50 min bake at 350
Yields 1 bread pan loaf or 10 cupcakes (we double our recipe!)
1 beaten egg
1/4 cup fine bread crumbs (I keep Italian style on hand)
1/4 cup milk, water, or apple juice (whatever you have)
1/4 cup onion finely chopped
1/4 cup celery finely chopped
1/4 cup green pepper finely chopped
1/4 cup carrot finely chopped
2 Tbsp of fresh parsley or a good shake of dry
1/2 tsp dried sage
1/2 tsp dried thyme
1/2 tsp dried bail
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1 lb of ground beef
For the sauce:
2/3 ketchup + 1/3 mustard + 1/3 bbq sauce + a sprinkle of brown sugar (sometimes I use chili sauce or spicy brown mustard if I have it. Just mix it all in a bowl until it tastes tangy).
In a mixing bowl combine all the ingredients well (I use my food processor to shred the veggies).
These two are always willing to lend a hand!
You can press your mixture into a bread pan or portion it off into cupcake pans/stones like we do!
Bake for 40-50 minutes at 350 degrees. Top them with sauce as soon as you pull them out of the oven and it will melt in and get nice and gooey while you start plating dinner (this takes time in our house).
I leave the boys' sauce free because they all have personal dipping preferences!
And...I don't have a finished product picture because I had two crabby babies and many finger-lick'n six year olds in my meatcakes by this time. You'll have to visit other sites for pretty food pictures!
Edie curled her nose and pushed her plate away, Baby Brother downed a full meatcake, himself, and the boys made sure there were no leftovers.
I hope your pans are as empty as mine with this one!