Helllooo D&Deeders! (D&D readers?) hah :o) The day has finally arrived–I made something that did not come from Giada. In fact, this recipe is as pretty un-Giada as you can get. I love this recipe. It’s easy, cheap, filling and leftovers are super. The full recipe can be found here. I mean, I could re-write the whole thing out for you, but this isn’t that kind of blog :)
- 1 pound ground chuck Note: I use 80/20 for meatloaf, but I’m going to switch it up to a leaner % next time I make this.
- 10 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled Note: I’ve used this and omitted this; good either way, but bacon always adds a little something.
- 1 (8-ounce) package sharp Cheddar, grated Note: Fat free shredded cheddar.
- 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
- 1/4 cup bread crumbs, toasted Note: I just used store bought plain and Italian, whatever you’ve got.
- 1/4 cup mayonnaise Note: I used fat free.
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/3 cup ketchup
- 2 tablespoons prepared mustard
- 1 (3-ounce) can French fried onions Note: I have not used these in this recipe before.
- Optional: Finely chopped celery
Paula says to put the meat in the bowl and mix in the next eight ingredients (down to the ketchup, not including it). However, I’ve heard (from Giada haha!) that you should mix the ingredients without the meat first and then fold it in to avoid over-mixing the beef. She was making turkey meatballs and apparently it makes them hard. In general, over-mixing anything (cookies, bread, etc) can make it dense and is just bad news. This is a great recipe for kids to help with because they love getting their hands into things (at least my kid does), especially gross stuff (at least mine :)). So put the stuff in there and let them get dirty! I also made some bongos for A :)
As previously noted, I used fat free mayonnaise and cheese. You get used to the taste, really. Most things you can’t even tell the difference. I do all the grocery shopping so it isn’t a problem getting it in the house. I think A has only had like five real cheese grilled cheese sandwiches (unless you count at restaurants) in her whole life! If you buy it they will eat it…or starve ;) I cook the bacon extra crispy so that it crumbles nicely, but if you’re trying to eat a little healthier by all means leave it out! I just didn’t happen to have any this time. Bacon always adds that little something extra to a dish but it’s not a deal breaker in this case. I hope to try some bacon and chocolate recipes soon so we’ll see how that goes! :)
When I first made meatloaf I always used 93/7 ground beef and I couldn’t figure out why my meatloaf was so dry! So I switched to a fatter, greasier, unhealthier cut (is the percentage of ground beef a cut?) of meat and that definitely did the trick. I also have always had issues with the actual cooking of meatloaf. I bake it as directed but it’s always still a little pink the middle, which freaks everybody out. This time, after the prescribed hour, I turned the temperature down to 325° and let it sit for about 10 more minutes; turned out great. I also used to make it with bread on the bottom to absorb the grease, but I think C got a piece of grease-soaked bread and now refuses to eat it made that way lol. I invested the $9 and bought a meatloaf pan with drainage holes in the bottom that fits into a regular loaf pan (it came with it, a twofer!). Problem solved! Delicious.
Husband rating: 7. C actually said it was too soggy. Oi, that boy! Next time I will try a leaner percentage of ground beef. I also prefer to call it “moist,” not soggy :)
Would I make this for someone else?: Yes. This is a great recipe to make the night or two before (like lasagna) and send to the person cold for them to bake for themselves, fresh.