Granny's basic, easy meatloaf recipe
1/2 Cup tomato juice
1/4 Cup ketchup
1 Tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1/2 tsp each salt and pepper
1 cup bread crumbs
1/2 cup quick cooking oatmeal
6 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 Cup fresh parsley or 1/4 cup dried
1 carrot, minced
2 ribs celery, minced
1/2 green pepper, minced
1 onion, minced
1 pound ground beef
Preheat oven to 350º. Mix together the eggs, tomato juice, ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, salt, and pepper. Stir in the bread crumbs and oatmeal.
You can chop the vegetables by hand or in a food processor. Then mix them into the mixing bowl and stir well. Finally, add the meat and mix together with your hands. (If you’d rather use a mixer, just be sure not to over-mix.)
Spray a loaf pan with cooking spray and spread the meat in it. For added flavor, top the loaf with onions, bacon strips, green pepper slices, etc.
Meatloaf Tips and Hints
For a firmer texture to your meatloaf, use ground meat that has been run through the grinder at least 2 or 3 times.
The higher the grade of ground meat, the less fat and shrinkage will result. However, keep in mind that less fat means less flavor and moistness.
Ground chuck is the grade of choice for the most flavor.
Do not use too much of the bread crumbs. An excess can make the loaf spongy.
Add tomato sauce to the meat mixture for added moisture.
Do not over-knead the mixture or texture will be lost. Mix just enough to combine the ingredients.
Use about 1/2 cup filler per 1 pound of meat. This filler can be bread crumbs, mashed moist bread, oat bran, grated potato, grated carrot, mashed potatoes or wherever your experiments take you
In place of bread crumbs, add a mashed wet slice of white bread and a tablespoon of salad oil.
Add 1/3 cup of vegetable juice, wine, beef broth, or beer to the mixture for added flavor
Add a cup of grated cheese to the meatloaf mixture before baking, and another 1/2 cup over the top of the loaf during the last 15 minutes of baking.
Soft bread crumbs make a more tender, juicier loaf than dry crumbs. You can briefly soak dry crumbs in a bit of milk before adding.
One cup of finely grated potato or carrot (or a mixture of both) can be added to the loaf in place of 1/4 pound of the meat to reduce the meat content.
To minimize cracking, smooth the top of the loaf by rubbing in a little cold water.
For individual servings that bake quickly, mound meat mixture into greased muffin tins, which should be baked at 350º for about 20 minutes.
Meatloaf baked in a standard 4-inch by 4-inch by 8-inch loaf pan should be baked at 350º F. for 1 to 1-1/2 hours.
Let the meatloaf stand about 20 minutes or longer after removing from the oven and before serving. This helps it set and makes it easier to slice.
Raw meatloaf mixture can be wrapped in foil and frozen to use later. Just thaw in refrigerator for 24 hours and bake as directed.
Quick & Easy Meatloaf
1-1&1/2 lb. ground beef
1 tsp. minced garlic
1/2 c. chopped onion
1 can Manwich
1 box Stove Top stuffing
Hint: Place Stove Top stuffing in gallon sized ziplock bag. Seal bag and use a rolling pin to crush. (this is optional, but I think the bread crumbs are a bit too large in the finished meatloaf when added straight from the box)
Combine all ingredients in a large bowl.
Place in loaf pan and add favorite topping—or just plain ketchup.
Bake at 350º for 40 to 50 minutes.