I've made this meatloaf several times, since I first posted it. It's such a comforting dish. This is a more recent photo, where I made individual "mini meatloafs" so that I can reduce the cooking time to 20 minutes.
I had no idea that this meatloaf recipe would become my #1 most viewed blog post of all! Every day, people are internet searching for "The Best Meatloaf Recipe" and this is where they end up. I'm so glad that you found me! I have made so many different meatloaf recipes, over the years.
For years, I made the Quaker Oats version, with canned cream of mushroom soup. Truth be told... I think it's yummy. But that was BEFORE I swore off processed foods and canned cream soups.
This recipe is one I've made for several years. It's from Food Network, "Sarah's Secrets". Unfortunately Sarah Moulton's show is no longer on the air, but I still love this recipe!
The secret is using a mixture of beef, veal and pork. NOTE: I understand if you don't want to use veal. I only buy grass fed, free-range red meat, these days. If you don't want to use veal, use beef and pork. There is such a different flavor and texture, compared to using just ground beef. If you use all-beef, then the meatloaf tastes like a big burger. If you use turkey, the meatloaf will be very dry-- unless you use a panade. At that point, you've changed the recipe so much, that I cannot guarantee success! What makes this recipes so full of flavor is the marjoram and thyme. I like the idea of cooking the onion and garlic, instead of adding them to the mixture raw. I'm not wild about hot sauce, but it works in this recipe.
If you hate meatloaf.... I hope you will reconsider this version. If you have your own recipe, and believe yours is the best ever--stick around. I want to share a tip that I learned on America's Test Kitchen (Cook's Illustrated). It changed how I cook my meatloaf, and it makes cleanup so much better.
Ready? You'll need a baking sheet, foil and a cooling rack. Trust me.
The full recipe is on the bottom of this page.
In a skillet, with a little olive oil, you cook 1 1/2 cups onion and 3 garlic cloves, until tender-- about 5 minutes. Set it aside to cool.
In the meantime, get your other ingredients going. You'll need a large bowl for the mix, and a separate bowl to mix eggs, milk and hot sauce.
I have ground beef, ground pork and ground veal, homemade breadcrumbs, fresh chopped marjoram (you can use dried), thyme, parsley (use fresh, not dried...it makes a difference), salt and pepper.
You can skip this step, but I already have the skillet that I cooked the onion with. I make a little patty so I can taste it. Hmmm, a little more salt and pepper. Hot sauce is perfect. We're ready to make meatloaf...here comes my tip!
This is a meatloaf pan. I loved it, at one time. You'd fill the pan on the left with ground beef and fit it into the pan on the right. The grease drips below. Brilliant! Well... let's revisit that idea.
America's Test Kitchen is right-- the meat cooks and steams and you don't get that beautiful even crust all the way around. Here's how I do it, now. I should sell these pans on eBay. Just kidding. I don't use them anymore, though.
I line my roasting pan with foil, place the cooling rack on top. I cut a piece of foil a little larger than my loaf. I poke holes all the way around, so that fat can drip below.
There. I'm ready to make the glaze.
Three ingredients-- ketchup, brown sugar and apple cider vinegar. Whisk it together, and...
Glaze that meatloaf! Now that I'm not using a pan, I can glaze it all over!
Bake this at 350F for 45 minutes, and then glaze it again (sorry, no photos...I was busy making garlic mashed potatoes and glazed carrots).
The meatloaf should be ready when it reaches an internal temperature of 160F. Mine took one hour and 15 minutes, unlike the original recipes says to cook for an hour. Plan for that, okay?
If you must have gravy, go for it! We don't need it. We love the glaze on this meatloaf. Mashed potatoes are the way to go!
These glazed carrots were so good...and, I don't like cooked carrots! ( I posted how I made these by clicking here)
This dinner was outstandingly delicious, if I do say so myself. It felt so good to eat solid food again.
I know what's for lunch tomorrow... oh yeah! Meatloaf sandwiches. Unless my son has a midnight snack.
Here's an individual serving, that I recently made. I kind of like this new variation.
An updated posted, with all new photos can be viewed here: