Classic Meatloaf

This was one of my favorite childhood meals: meatloaf, mashed potatoes, and green beans. And afterwords? A chocolate chip cookie.

Both ground sirloin and ground chuck work well here, but avoid ground round—it is gristly and bland. Meatloaf needs fat in order to not crumble and fall apart, which is why ground pork is added. The mix doesn’t need to be 50/50, but the pork needs to make up at least 30%.

You can also skip the glaze entirely and cover the meatloaf with slices of bacon instead. If you weave the bacon into a lattice, you’ll be a hero on Instagram.

To lower the carbs, use a sugar-free ketchup (like Primal),  brown sugar-style Swerve, powdered onion and garlic, heavy cream instead of milk, and 1/4 cup of pesto instead of bread crumbs.

Serves 6 to 8

1 cup ketchup or chili sauce
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
2-1/2 tablespoons cider vinegar
1/2 teaspoon hot sauce (I use Cholula)

2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
(Alternative: a 1-cup mix of diced onions, carrots, mushrooms)
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 large pasture-raised eggs, lightly beaten
1-1/3 cups fresh whole wheat bread crumbs
(Alternative: 2/3 cup crushed Saltine crackers or quick oatmeal)
1/2 cup organic whole milk or plain yogurt
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
1/2 teaspoon hot sauce (I use Cholula)
1/3 cup finely chopped fresh parsley
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 pound ground pasture-raised beef
1 pound ground pasture-raised pork

For the glaze: Mix all ingredients in a small saucepan and set aside.

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Line rimmed baking sheet with foil.

Sauté onion and garlic until softened and translucent. Set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk eggs, then add milk (or yogurt), thyme,  Dijon mustard, Worcestershire sauce, hot sauce, parsley, salt, and pepper until well blended. Add onion-garlic mixture. Add ground beef and pork, mixing by hand quickly and lightly until just combined. Don’t overwork, it will make the meatloaf tough.

On the lined baking pan, shape the mixture into a 9″ x 5″ loaf. Pour one-quarter of the glaze over the top of the loaf, spreading evenly.

Bake until glaze has set, about 45 minutes. Top with another one-quarter of the glaze and continue to bake until second coat has set and loaf registers 155 degrees with an instant-read thermometer, about 15 minutes longer. Cool 15 minutes before serving to allow the juices inside the meatloaf time to redistribute and settle.

While the meatloaf is cooling, heat the remains glaze and reduce it until it has thickened slightly.

Cut the meatloaf into thick slices and serve with the glaze, passed separately.