Homemade is Better—Meatloaf

This week I was looking for a comfort food to make.  I decided to ask the kids what I should make, my youngest said meat and potatoes and my oldest said meatloaf with mashed potatoes.  There’s little doubt that I’m raising Albertan kids.

I quickly whipped out my meatloaf recipe and ran to the store to get what we needed.  I had ground beef and bacon thawing in the sink under cool water already, so I didn’t require many other ingredients.

I like to add a few extras to a basic recipe I’ve had for years.  One of those extras is a whole pound of bacon and about a tablespoon of bbq sauce.  I mix the bbq sauce into the meatloaf to give it a slightly smokey flavour.  It’s just a hint, but its there.  Another trick I like, but don’t use often, is to make it all on a sheet pan and not in a loaf pan.  This helps the bacon to crisp up more.  The alternative is a reverse sear.  You remove the loaf when it is 90% done, and fry the bacon wrap in a skillet until it crisps up.  I’m okay with not always doing this, because I fry it up the next day and get the same results.

I also like to have leftovers, and I prefer to have a large piece of meatloaf in front of me.   My recipe calls for a slightly larger amount of ingredients, and cooks for about an hour and half, then rests for ten minutes.  I add my sauce throughout the cooking as well, so I don’t just get sauce all at once.  Another option is to cook the sauce on the side and add it on top after.  I have also been known to add cheddar cheese throughout my loaf.  I’ve even experimented with putting some right in the middle so it melts and spreads when you cut into it.  I usually do this if I’m going for more of a cheeseburger flair.  I have always appreciated the variety of avenues that meatloaf can take you down.

I hope you enjoy this one!

Meatloaf

Ingredients:

3 lbs ground beef
2 cups milk
2 cups bread crumbs
2 eggs
1 large onion
1.5 tbsp kosher salt
1 tbsp black pepper
1 tbsp bbq sauce
1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
454 – 500g of bacon
2/3 cup ketchup
¼ mustard
¼ brown sugar

Directions:
  • Preheat your oven to 350F.
  • Mix the breadcrumbs, milk, meat, eggs, onion, salt, pepper, Worcestershire, and BBQ sauce in a large mixing bowl. You want a moist, but not spreading loaf.  It should hold a shape but relax slightly.
  • Mix the ketchup, mustard, and brown sugar.
  • Grab a sheet pan and a bread loaf pan.
  • Layer the bacon into the pan. I start with the ends, then move to the middle section.  I lay them so that there is half a slice out the ends, and then end to end across the middle.
  • Pile in your meat, and if you have any bacon remaining lay it on top on the loaf then fold the outer pieces onto the loaf.
  • Bake in your oven on a sheet pan for 45 minutes, then cover with half the sauce. Continue to add the remaining sauce every 20 minutes until the internal temperature reaches 155F.
  • Once the loaf is finished you can remove it from the oven and allow it to rest for 10 minutes.
  • If you want to crisp up the bacon more, skip resting it and heat a frying pan on medium high heat.
  • Once the pan is ready add the while loaf and cook until the bacon gets crispier.
  • Allow it to rest for 10 minutes.
  • Cut it into slices and enjoy!
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