Mini Meatloaves

A juicy, flavorful and anything-but-bland meatloaf recipe. The aromatic sauteed onions, garlic and fresh herbs will have your digestive juices flowing by step two. Quick, easy and amazing for leftovers, these individual loaves are great for large families, small families and singles too. Serve with mashed potatoes and brown gravy, a winter salad and green beans, a warm pasta salad or how about with hash browns for breakfast? This recipe works with almost everything.

I used grass-fed, organic ground beef but many other ground meats would work great too. The bacon is a moisture holder, flavour booster and totally tasty! I love using fresh herbs, but if dry herbs is all you have, that’s fine too. I put a couple shakes of Bragg Sprinkle Seasoning in the meat mixture because that stuff is pretty much great in everything, but it’s not necessary if you don’t have it, so I left it out of the recipe.

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You will need:

Skillet (preferably high quality cast iron)
Knife
Mini loaf pan (8 loaves total)

Bowl
Fork or spoon

Ingredients:

• Ground meat, fresh or thawed completely, 2 lbs or about 900g
• Bacon, 8 slices

• Eggs, 2 medium
• Bread crumbs, crushed crackers or ground hazelnuts/almonds, very finely crushed, 1/4 cup (make sure they are gluten-free if you are)
• Onion, 1 large
• Garlic, 3 cloves
• Thyme, 4 sprigs
• Sage, 1 sprig about 7 leaves
• Rosemary, 1 sprig
• Butter and/or Coconut Oil, 2 Tbsp + a bit for greasing the pan
• Salt & Pepper
• Garlic powder, 1 tsp
• Worcestershire sauce, a couple lugs
• Ketchup, garnish – optional mostly for tradition

Prep:

  1. Finely chop onions
  2. Mince together thyme, sage and rosemary
  3. Mince garlic
  4. Grease loaf pan and line each, around the outside with a piece of bacon
  5. Heat oven to 350 degrees F.

Instructions:

  1. Heat 1 Tbsp of butter and 1 Tbsp of coconut oil (or Tbsp of either) in skillet on medium/low heat. Add onions and sauté until soft, a couple of minutes.
  2. Add herbs and garlic to skillet, stir and cook another couple of minutes. Remove from heat.
  3. Put the meat, eggs and bread crumbs into the bowl. Add herb mixture, salt & pepper and about 5 lugs of Worcestershire sauce.
  4. Combine, knead, mix very well with your hands.
  5. Put meat mixture into loaf pan, inside the bacon. You may have to push the meat to fill the space. You want the bacon to be right up against the meat. Don’t overfill the loaves; you’ll want them even or slightly below the bacon.
  6. Put a little squiggle of ketchup and a dash of Worcestershire on top, mostly for tradition. 
  7. Bake: I broiled them for 2 – 3 minutes when I first put them in the oven to crisp the bacon and build a bit of a crust to hold in moisture. Do NOT do this part if you are not fully prepared to watch for the full 2 – 3 minutes, burning things is totally depressing so please watch carefully. If you choose to skip this step, that’s totally cool. If you do this step, after the 2 – 3 minutes, and a bit of browning, return the temp to 350F and cut 5 – 10 minutes off the total time.
  8. Bake: 35 – 40 minutes at 350 F. Check periodically as all ovens are different. It may seem like they are still wet or watery after the 35 minutes, that’s totally cool! Check one inside to make sure it’s cooked to your desired level. Let them sit for a couple of minutes before removing from the pan and most of the moisture soaks back in – JUICY IS AWESOME.

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