It seems every family has their own version of meatloaf.
This has always been one of my favorites but this time we improvised.
The Good: Simple, tasty and cheap, it is hard to go wrong with a good meatloaf.
The Bad: Every family has their own style of meatloaf so sometimes its hard to make one you know everyone will be familiar with.
The Ugly: If you're looking to go on a diet, do not use ground beef! There is a lot of fat released from the meat but if you are just looking for great tasting comfort food you are in for a treat!
Suggestions before starting:
Due to the oils released from the meat I always cover my pan with foil with a very light layer of cooking spray before starting so it is easier to clean.
The recipe below has saltines, onion and spices; however, if you followed the Stuffed Pork Tenderloin and had a lot of extra stuffing leftover, you can substitute most of the ingredients with the stuffing you had leftover. The fresh spices are incredible but you can also use dried herbs. The bread crumbs just make the meat softer. For a harder meatloaf use the saltines.
When making this, if you think the measurements do not look how you would like them to, change it. Add anything you want and as much or little as you like. That's the great thing about meatloaf, it can be made however you would like. I have seen people add celery, peppers, salsa, raisins... you name it!
To mix/combine means use your hands in this recipe. I always sit the ingredients out early so they will be at least luke warm. Otherwise this can be painfully cold. Dish soap is the best cleaner to cut the grease off your hands afterward.
I always mix the seasonings together before mixing in order to make sure they are evenly spread. If using fresh spices make sure they are minced first. If using dried, just use more than you would if fresh.
For a healthier option: do not be afraid to try Turkey meat. It will just be a little dryer. When using ground chuck we tend to get 80% lean.