Who in the world doesn’t love meatloaf?! And crossing over into my love of vintage kitchen clutter, I total feel like that classic image of a well put together smiling domestic housewife as I pull a piping hot homemade meatloaf from my oven. Okay, that may not be everyone’s idea of ‘cool,’ but it serves well as my own inspiration…at least part of it.
Out of the vintage dream clouds and back to the meatloaf- every recipe I’ve ever come across lists milk and egg. Or at the very least egg. Of course, egg is a basic binder for baking. But because my son is highly allergic to both dairy and egg, I took to experimenting and perfecting a yummy meatloaf for my family that was safe for everyone.
Bonus- I’ve recently been introduced to “clean eating” and while I am not a saint at it by any means, I have made better efforts to go as clean as possible and still serve our fave dishes. I do use canned products, but I try to choose low sodium options and keep it to cans of which I can easily identify all of the ingredients. I am NOT labeling this as a clean recipe AT ALL. It’s a loaf of store bought shredded cow from lord knows where. …Just saying, I’m working on stuff.
Clean (or rather “healthier”) eating can come with some complaints from the kiddos. They actually love carrots, which I use, but I like that I can “hide” the veggies in this…even tomatoes and onions which they would otherwise pick out of any meal. I totally “teehehee” to myself every time they tell me how scrumptious my meatloaf is. They’re eating peas as a side too, so double score for Mom.
Also (Sorry, I have to have 400 reasons for everything. It’s more dramatic that way) We are not a gluten free family but I do try to avoid “bad carbs” (mostly white bread) when possible, so I found that oats, which are way lower on the glycemic index, are a fabulous substitute for the traditional breadcrumbs that are put in meatloaf.
(Side note: my mother <who is Okinawan> uses cooked rice in place of bread crumbs for her meatloaf, which has always been my favorite. Give it a try sometime!)
So, I present to you a Meatloaf that
– Is Dairy, Egg, & Gluten FREE
– Is made with all (for the most part) natural ingredients
– Contains VEGGIES in disguise
– Does not have a hidden processed carb source
– Is delicious…duh
– Makes me feel like a well put together smiling domestic goddess, aka supermom
– Ground Beef 2-2.5lbs (I guess you can use turkey and ruin it if you want to)
– Bacon. Yes, bacon. It’s clean, right? It’s pig!
– Oats about a cup
– Onion about half of a small, or more depending on your taste
– Carrots shredded
– Garlic cloves pressed
– Seasoned Salt and any other spices of your preference
– Can petite diced tomatoes
– Can tomato paste
– Mom heart
– Preheat oven to 375 degrees
– Prep that stuff (see pic)
I chop onions super small for less kid fuss. And I think that hand shredded carrots work better than the preshredded you can buy in a bag. I ended up using about ¾ of the onion in the picture and 2 of the carrots. “Eyeball it” queen in the house!
– I put half (or one pack <mine were about 1.3lbs each>) of ground beef in my Kitchen Aid,
then add my veggies, some salt, the can of diced tomatoes,
then start with about 2/3 cup of oats.
I put the second half/pack of beef on top of it,
add my attachment and turn that bad boy on.
If it’s too wet I add more oats a bit at a time.
– Dump it in a dish (Vintage Pyrex if you have one…it will taste better) and shape that puppy.
Give it a few good slaps, whack it,
take out your frustrations…Dang trash still hasn’t been taken out. Who left that popsicle wrapper on the table?! Why is there playdoh in my carpet!!??? WHAT PART OF NO DON’T YOU UNDERSTAND????!!!! until firmly set in your desired shape.
– I’m not sure why but at some point somewhere in my life I was instructed to poke holes in the top. I do so with a chop stick. <Okinawan mom…I was raised with and always have chop sticks> It’s probably pointless but I do it so I have to list it as a step.
– Slather tomato paste on top. I like the one with basil and oregano but you can season regular paste.
– Bacon time!!!
Who knows, this meatloaf may really be gross but you can’t tell because it’s drenched in lip-licking bacon! Whatever works, right?! p.s. this recipe will splatter bacon grease all over your oven.
– Bake at 375 for one hour. Sit. You can sit!
If I were a real cook I would tell you to insert a thermometer and verify that internal temperature reaches 160 degrees fahrenheit . But really I go by the bacon crisping on top and my gut. That’s rumbling by now. Sometimes I give it a few more minutes. You can always got the “cut it open and make sure it’s not bleeding” route too.
I call this stage (above) “Glorious Grease” for obvious reasons. DON’T PANIC! And for the love of Pete don’t you dare gag. It’s Oooo, Kaay. I transfer it into a clean dish. So for the record don’t put this recipe in a loaf pan! It will float out and run away.
For sides I chopped up some Yukon gold potatoes and tossed them in the wok <again, Okinawan raised, wok is normal in my kitchen, not sure about yours> with a tad of olive oil and the left over onions I didn’t use in the meatloaf.
Once cooked down I gave ‘em just a little mash.
Then rounded off the gorgeous meal with pretty green peas! Served on vintage dishes of course.
There’s no real pictures of me because unlike the gorgeous retro house wife, I haven’t had time to shower today let alone fix my hair or put makeup on. I’m wearing an oversized tshirt of my husband’s and I broke a sweat the moment the oven heat hit my face. But my kids are rockin the perfect response.
Well, half of them anyway. The toddler is teething and went to bed early and the teenager refused to have a picture taken. And the hubby…took his in to where his football game is playing. Alright, fine, we’re a far cry from those old ads I love to stare at…but my meatloaf is PERFECT.
And truth be told, my family really is too.