Hungry for Meatloaf?

DP wants us to teach something we really know. Hmm, so much, so much to choose from… Oddly, my recipe for meatloaf came to mind. I say, “Oddly,” because when I married, I married into a family that prized cooking above just about any other skills, except they were very fond of being able to sew, both the men and women. But the talk that revolved around food was a constant.

In my family, my mother kept things pretty simple. So simple in fact that my husband said I had 10 recipes and they all began with the same five ingredients. Well, you get good at it apparently. The one meal I made that his family raved over and ate every morsel, asking for seconds and thirds was my meatloaf, mash potatoes and gravy, served with a toss green salad. I was completely stunned and taken aback by their reaction. Who knew meatloaf was a favorite of people? I always considered it a meal you ate when you were broke. Perhaps it has something to do with being a comfort food.

The biggest difference between my meatloaf and others is there is no filler. By filler, I mean bread crumbs, crackers, oatmeal, whatever (pronounced “Whatevah” and throw your hand out as you say it). This would have been considered a sin in my family to add anything like that to meatloaf. So, here you go:

1 lb. ground beef (hamburger – 85%, 15% fat or however they rate it these days – you need a bit of fat for flavor)
one onion – chopped
one green bell pepper – chopped
2 eggs
1 16 oz can of Hunts Tomato Sauce

In a big bowl, combine the hamburger, the chopped onion and green pepper and break the two eggs and toss the yolk and egg whites straight into the bowl (throw out the shells). Plunge your hands into that bowl and knead the contents until evenly distributed. Pat it into shape, plunk it into an oven-safe dish with some high sides – high being enough to hold the can of Hunts Tomato sauce without it spilling over. Pour the Hunts Tomato Sauce over the top. Put it in the oven at 325 or 350 degrees and check it in 45 minutes. Depending on your oven, it might take an hour. You can fuss with it by ladling the sauce over the top every 15 minutes, but if you just leave it alone, no harm no foul. Take it out of the oven and let it sit while finishing up the mash potatoes and salad. Your gravy is the hot tomato sauce poured over slices of the meatloaf and mash potatoes.

Re the mash potatoes: I used to make mine from scratch until I discovered the tubs of mash potatoes located in the meat or dairy section of your market. Takes about 10 minutes to heat ‘em up in the microwave for perfect mash potatoes and you can choose whether you want regular or garlic. I am a regular mash potatoes creature.

There you go. A guaranteed hit, provided you like meatloaf. Makes great sandwiches if anything is left.

39 thoughts on “Hungry for Meatloaf?

  1. Thanks for the recipe and the awakening on the tubs of mashed potatoes. I have been making my mashed from scratch – - – and by “scratch” I mean heating some milk, cutting open the paper envelopes of taters (sometimes with cheddar or garlic) and stirring the mess until it turns into concrete. MMMMmmmmmmmm Good.

    • Wally, you are going to love those tubs – they probably do come with cheese as well. Plus, if they’re having a sale, you can freeze ‘em. :) When you make this, come on back and let me know what you think. Good eatings. Best ~ HuntMode

  2. I L-O-V-E meatloaf :D, I sometimes hard-boil 4 or so eggs, peel them and place them in line along the meat bead, ready to be rolled into a loaf before baking. When you cut slices for serving the effect is so pretty :D

    • Ina, I suspect there are as many recipes for meatloaf as there are people who love ‘em. It’s the first time I’ve heard of hard boiled eggs with meatloaf! So glad you commented!

      • Yes I agree, no meat loaf is the same as the other – at least that’s my experience, everyone’s seems to taste differently when I’ve tried them. Agree! :D

      • I think meatloaf is like sweet and savory pies– so many cultures have their own versions.

        I remember my mother saying that she asked her mother why she put grated carrot into meatloaf. My grandmother said she didn’t know, but after Mom did some research, she found it must be a Scandinavian thing, specifically, Danish. My mom’s parents do a lot of things that are very Danish, but they don’t usually recognize it as such.

        • Jak, there’s a tale that is probably famous about why families prepare the recipes as they do – something about always cutting off an end on a roast… the truth was back at the beginning, the original cook didn’t have a big enough pot…:)

  3. I still prefer making my own mashed potatoes, just because I get a kick out of mashing them.
    Looks like a great, simple recipe. I sometimes add Worcestershire sauce to mine as well.

    • EG, out of curiosity, do you make bread? If not, I think you would really enjoy it. Not the kind out of the bread machine, but truly from scratch, where you have to knead it. Generally, if you are in a mood to punch something, that is the time to make bread as it will be at its lightest when done!

      • To date, I’ve made one loaf of bread. I occasionally bake cookies and sesame sticks.
        I also just got a bagel recipe from another blogger that I’d like to try.
        Bread from scratch is fun, but tiring!

  4. I always considered it a meal you ate when you were broke. Perhaps it has something to do with being a comfort food.

    This reminded me of meeting up with one of Cimmy’s younger brothers and his wife at a funeral for her uncle (as mentioned on my “A Hero’s Journey: Death Is Not The End” post). He started talking about “a really great chili restaurant”, and in my mind, I kept wondering, “why in the world would somebody rave about a cheap meal easily made at home?” The notion that it was a comfort food again seemed to be the answer. (p.s. bro-in-law and missus live in Seattle)

    And then of course, I remember reading about meatloaf being served in fancy restaurants, and watching Charlie Rose interview a chef that made fancy macaroni and cheese. *shrug* So again, your thoughts take me back, and I too wonder…

    • Exactly, Jak! I was talking with a friend tonight and she said it was the forbidden foods that called out to her… Frozen TV dinners, lamb – served only when her father was on a business trip because he hated lamb. Yum! Casseroles – I never had casseroles growing up or, we didn’t call ‘em that. :) I just found about tuna casserole three years ago.

  5. Pingback: Daily Prompt: Teach Your (Bloggers) Well | Chronicles of an Anglo Swiss

  6. The recipe looks delicious and quite manageable. Cooking is not my thing, but one dish that I do frequently and to an acceptable standard is mashed potato. The secret I have found is making sure you choose the right type of potato.

    • C.R., I know potatoes of different colors, regions and styles produce different tastes, but out of family custom, my hand goes for that big bag of brown potatoes – I think they’re Russets. I do like the rose colored ones for boiled potatoes and the whitish ones for roasted… but, in truth, it’s whatever is handiest. Oh, there is a marvelous type that comes individually wrapped in some sort of celephane – here, they cost a $1.00 a piece. They are designed to be cooked in the microwave for 7 minutes and they come out perfectly!

  7. Good to read this. A couple of weeks ago I made spaghetti and meatballs for our family Thursday night dinner (per request of young ones). I made chicken balls because my daughter doesn’t eat beef. I was short on time and decided to throw the chicken balls raw into the spaghetti sauce. I didn’t even use an egg. They were so soft and lovely I have been considering making a meatloaf in pasta or tomato sauce hoping it will do the same to the ground beef as happened to ground chicken. So now I have proof.
    Thank you for this recipe. :-) I agree there are as many varieties of meat loaf as there are imaginations.

  8. Hunt, It sounds great, and I would be dead man walking if I suggested to my wife, who by the way makes a great damn meatloaf herself. But like a few others I really like the potato in a bucket thing myself. I am one of those that actually enjoys’ instant mashed potatoes from a box. Salt pepper and gravy will solve a lot of issues. Thanks for the great recipe and the wonderful story that came with it. Please take care, Bill

    • Bill, I am not sure I ever noticed the difference myself, at the risk of bringing fire down from the sky on my heresy. The one major difference seems to be whether they have lumps or not. I can’t stand lumpy mash potatoes! :)

      • Hunt, I am in total 1000 pct agreement, I hate truly hate finding a lump in my mashed potatoes, but having said that, I suffer thru those lumps at Thanksgiving, she likes the lump texture, I want them fluffy. Oh well I lose. Take care, the meal still sounds great!!!! Bill

        • My husband and his family didn’t feel they were legit without lumps… (I won that one because I made ‘em!).

          I wonder if there’s a correlation between husband and wives that opposite attracts with mash potatoes and/or the feet inside or outside of the covers?!

        • Hunt, I am not in a position to talk about those correlations, we have lumpy potatoes, and we both have our feet under, except from time to time I kick my feet out. Bill

          • See, there you are. My husband’s words, “My dogs have to breathe, Huntie!” Luckily, we had a down comforter so he could breath and I could snuggle cold feet. :)

  9. This sounds like a great recipe Huntie! I do put filler in my meatloaf, I like to vary the filler by using flavored crackers like veggie thins or bacon crackers. It changes the flavor & makes for a good change! Hubby loves my meatloaf & I didn’t think it was all that special.

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