Welcome to the world of delectable and hearty meatloaf, the quintessential comfort food that satisfies taste buds and tummy, no matter what. As a culinary explorer, I have been on a quest to find the ultimate meatloaf recipe that becomes your all-time favorite. And lo and behold, I have discovered a Down-home Meatloaf Recipe that fits the bill!
Meatloaf is an ubiquitous dish loved by people from all walks of life, rich or poor. It is a classic dish that has stood the test of time and has been passed down through generations. Every family has its own version of meatloaf, often with awonderful story attached to it.
But what makes this recipe different? First of all, it incorporates traditional ingredients such as ground beef, ketchup, eggs, and bread crumbs as well as green pepper, onion, and milk in perfect harmony. Secondly, it is simple to make with minimal prep time ensuring you spend more time enjoying the savory results. Finally, it can be easily customized to suit your preferences with suggested variations.
This meatloaf recipe will bring back fond memories of Sunday dinners at grandma’s house or Friday night dinner at home with the family. It will give you that taste of home-cooked goodness and satisfy those cravings for delicious soul food. So come along for a journey into Southern-inspired home-style cooking with our Down-home Meatloaf Recipe!
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
Are you in the mood for a nostalgic, comforting meal that reminds you of home? Then this down-home meatloaf recipe is for you. There’s nothing quite like the smells and flavors of a classic meatloaf dish fresh out of the oven. It’s not only delicious, but it’s also budget-friendly and easy to make.
The combination of ingredients in this meatloaf recipe is unbeatable. The savory ground beef mixed with ketchup, mustard, and milk creates a juicy, flavorful loaf that will have your taste buds dancing with every bite. The inclusion of finely chopped onions and green peppers adds a touch of texture and taste that elevates this dish to new heights.
But this recipe isn’t just your typical meatloaf. It’s a southern-style home-style classic that has been passed down through generations of cooks. This means that it’s not just any ordinary meatloaf; it’s a piece of history and tradition that has stood the test of time.
You’ll love this meatloaf recipe for its versatility too. You can customize it to fit your taste preferences by adding different seasonings or swapping out ingredients. Whether you want a spicy kick or a more savory flavor, this recipe can be easily tailored to suit any palate.
So if you’re craving something comforting and familiar, try making this homemade meatloaf sandwich or enjoy it as a dinner during the week. Be warned that once you try this recipe, it may become a regular addition to your meal rotation.
The key to a delicious meatloaf is selecting the right ingredients. For this Down-home Meatloaf, you will need:
- 2 pounds of ground beef
- 1 and 1/2 cups of bread crumbs (see note 1)
- 1/2 cup of milk
- 2 eggs, lightly beaten
- 1 small onion, finely chopped
- 1 green bell pepper, finely chopped
- 2 tablespoons of ketchup
- 1 and 1/2 teaspoons of salt
- 1/4 teaspoon of ground black pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon of ground mustard
- 1/8 teaspoon of rubbed sage
- For the bread crumbs, you can either use store-bought or homemade. Plain dry bread crumbs work best. You can also use oats instead of bread crumbs for a healthier version.
Make sure all the ingredients are at room temperature before starting to cook.
The Recipe How-To
Now that you have all the ingredients, it’s time for the most exciting part, making the meatloaf. Don’t worry, it’s an easy recipe to follow with a few helpful tips along the way.
Here’s how to make the Home Style Meatloaf recipe:
Step 1: Preheat your oven
First, preheat your oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) and grab a loaf pan.
Step 2: Mix ingredients
Next, in a large bowl combine 2 pounds of ground beef, 1 1/2 cups of bread crumbs (see note 1), 1 cup of milk, 2 eggs, 1 small, finely chopped onion, 1 small, finely chopped green pepper, 2 tablespoons of ketchup, 1 tablespoon of mustard, 1 teaspoon of salt and K’ black pepper’.
Then add K teaspoon rubbed sage’. Mix all ingredients until they are well combined.
Step 3: Put mixture into loaf pan
Press the meat mixture into a 9×5-inch loaf pan and smooth out the top with a spatula.
Step 4: Bake
Bake at 350 degrees in a preheated oven for about 1 hour or until the internal temperature reaches 160°F as read on a meat thermometer.
Step 5: Rest and Serve
Once removed from the oven, allow your Home Style Meatloaf to rest for about five minutes before serving. You can slice it up like bread in even portions or you can make homemade meatloaf sandwiches.
Note: The total cooking time will vary depending on your oven’s size and type. so always check your meatloaf regularly
Substitutions and Variations
Meatloaf is one of those classic dishes that can be easily customized to suit individual tastes. If you’re looking to switch things up, here are a few substitutions and variations you can make to this down-home meatloaf recipe:
For the beef: You don’t have to limit yourself to ground beef. You can use ground turkey or chicken instead for a lighter version. You could even try mixing two types of meats.
For the vegetables: If you don’t like peppers, you can swap them out for other vegetables such as carrots, mushrooms, or zucchini. These will add flavor and nutrition to your meatloaf.
For the binder: Instead of using bread crumbs, try substituting them with rolled oats or crushed crackers. This can result in a slightly different texture and taste.
For the sauce: While ketchup is the classic topping for meatloaf, there are plenty of other sauces you can experiment with. Try adding some soy sauce or Worcestershire sauce to your ketchup before pouring it over the loaf.
For a glazed meatloaf: Add 1/4 cup of brown sugar into your ketchup-glaze mixture for a sweet and savory glaze on top.
For a homemade meatloaf sandwich: Slice up leftover meatloaf into thick pieces and layer them between two slices of bread with lettuce, tomato, and your favorite condiments!
These are just some suggestions for customizing your meatloaf recipe. Let your imagination run wild and experiment with different seasonings, herbs or spices to create the perfect flavor combination that suits your taste buds!
Serving and Pairing
Now that you have made a delicious meatloaf, it’s time to serve it up for a meal to remember. This classic comfort food lends itself to all sorts of pairings, sides and sauces.
First off, let’s talk about sides. Meatloaf is perfection with mashed potatoes, but don’t underestimate the power of roasted vegetables, mac and cheese, green beans or even a salad. The possibilities are endless! Consider your options and choose what feels right for you.
As for sauces, the go-to pairing is ketchup of course. But if you’re feeling adventurous and want to switch things up, try making a homemade BBQ sauce or mustard-based glaze. These tangy condiments will take your meatloaf game to the next level.
When it comes to pairing beverages with meatloaf, consider serving it up with a full-bodied red wine such as Cabernet Sauvignon or Syrah. The tannins in these wines will cut through the richness of the dish while complementing its savory flavors. If you’re not a wine person, opt for a cold beer instead.
For lunchtime leftovers (if you’re lucky enough to have any), I recommend making yourself a homemade meatloaf sandwich. Served between two slices of toasted bread with some mayo and lettuce – this is one sandwich that is sure to hit the spot.
Meatloaf is one of those dishes that everyone seems to enjoy. It’s easy to make, versatile and brings back fond memories of meals shared with family and friends. Whether you’re making an old fashioned southern meatloaf or experimenting with new variations, be sure to serve it up with love and enjoy every bite!
Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating
One of the best things about meatloaf is that it makes for great leftovers! In fact, some would argue that it tastes even better the next day. If you’re planning ahead, this recipe can be made in advance and stored in your refrigerator or freezer until mealtime.
To make-ahead: Prepare meatloaf according to instructions and carefully press into a loaf pan. Cover the dish with plastic wrap or aluminum foil and store it in the fridge for up to two days before baking. For longer storage, you can freeze the uncooked meatloaf in a freezer-safe container for up to two months.
To reheat: If you’re reheating individual slices or servings, just pop them in the microwave for a minute or two until heated through. For large portions, heat your oven to 350°F and place the leftover meatloaf in an oven-safe dish. Cover with foil and bake for about 20-25 minutes or until heated through.
To store: Wrap leftover meatloaf tightly with plastic wrap or aluminum foil and store it in the refrigerator for up to three days. Be sure to use an airtight container or wrap to prevent odors from seeping into the food.
Whether you’re making this classic home-style meatloaf as part of meal prep or simply have leftovers, reheating it is a breeze. Just keep it properly stored in your fridge or freezer and you’ll have a delicious meal ready to go whenever you need it!
Tips for Perfect Results
Making meatloaf may seem like a simple dish to put together, but producing a tender and juicy meatloaf requires some tips and tricks. Here are some guidelines that I have learned over my years of making meatloaf.
First, be careful not to overwork the meat mixture. Although it may seem tempting to mix for a long time, handling the meat too much will make it tough and chewy as opposed to tender and succulent. It’s best to use a light touch when blending the ingredients, mixing only until everything is evenly distributed.
Secondly, if you’re using ground beef with a higher fat content, consider adding another ingredient like breadcrumbs, oatmeal or quinoa to soak up the excess grease while maintaining moisture. If you’re using leaner beef or ground turkey, try adding milk or canned tomatoes to keep it moist.
Thirdly, allow the meat mixture to rest before shaping into a loaf. Letting the mixture sit for at least 20 minutes before putting it in the oven will give the ingredients time to meld together and create more flavor.
Lastly, don’t be afraid of seasoning! Meatloaf can handle bold flavors, so don’t hesitate to add your favorite spices or herbs for depth of flavor. You can also swap out ingredients according to your taste preference. Instead of ketchup, try BBQ sauce or mustard for a different kick.
By following these simple tips for perfect results, any home cook can elevate their meatloaf game and create an unforgettable meal that’s both classic and flavorful.
As with many recipes, there may be some questions that arise while preparing or making adjustments to this down-home meatloaf. To help ensure your meatloaf-making experience goes smoothly, we’ve provided some frequently asked questions and their answers below.
What is the secret to moist meatloaf?
One key tip to enhance the juiciness and flavor of your meat is to incorporate moisture into every step of the cooking process. Don’t forget to utilize ingredients such as eggs, ketchup, tomato paste, mustard, Worcestershire sauce, and barbecue sauce – or a combination of them – to add depth of flavor and keep your meat moist throughout the cooking process. By doing so, you’ll ensure that each bite of your dish is wholesome and satisfying.
What do you put in meatloaf to keep it from falling apart?
If you want your meatloaf to hold together, it’s important to use the right ingredients. Adding eggs and breadcrumbs to the mixture acts as a binder, making it stick together during the cooking process. Without these binding agents, your meatloaf is likely to fall apart. So, make sure to prioritize the use of these key ingredients in your recipe.
How do you make Paula Deen’s meatloaf?
Let’s kick off this delicious meatloaf recipe by preheating our oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Grab a large bowl and mix together ground beef, salt, pepper, onion, bell pepper, egg, tomatoes, and oats until the ingredients are evenly combined. Meanwhile, in a separate bowl, blend ketchup, brown sugar, and mustard to make the perfect topping to add an extra layer of flavor to the meal.
Now, transfer the meat mixture to a greased loaf pan and smooth out the top. Pour the topping generously over the meatloaf and bake in the preheated oven for about an hour, or until the internal temperature reaches 160 degrees Fahrenheit.
Pro Tip: You can doctor up this recipe by adding ingredients like Worcestershire sauce, garlic powder, or hot sauce to the meat mixture to give it a unique and flavorful kick.
Once the meatloaf is done, take it out of the oven and let it cool for a few minutes before slicing into it. Serve it up with your choice of sides like mashed potatoes, roasted vegetables, or a mixed greens salad. Enjoy!
Should meatloaf be baked covered or uncovered?
When it comes to preparing meatloaf, there are two options available: covered or uncovered. Choosing to cook your meatloaf uncovered is perfectly fine; however, if you’re worried about it scorching, you can opt to cover it with foil for the first 45 minutes of cooking and then uncover it for the remaining 15 minutes to achieve a golden brown crust on top.
In conclusion, there is no denying that a perfectly cooked home-style meatloaf is a classic dish that deserves a spot in everyone’s recipe collection. With its savory flavor, moist texture, and versatility, this dish is sure to become an instant hit at any dinner table.
This recipe is great for beginner cooks who want to experiment with simple yet satisfying dishes or for those who simply want to recreate that comforting taste of their childhood. Follow the directions carefully and use high-quality ingredients to achieve the best results.
Overall, this recipe screams comfort and love from the South. Don’t be afraid to add your own twist and make it your own as you go along! So why not grab your apron and get started on whipping up this delicious meal today? Trust me, your taste buds won’t regret it.
Down-home Meatloaf Recipe
- 2 eggs, beaten
- 1/4 cup milk
- 2 cups soft breadcrumbs
- 3/4 cup finely chopped onion
- 1/3 cup finely chopped green pepper
- 2 tablespoons prepared horseradish
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 1 teaspoon ground mustard
- 2 lbs ground beef
- 1/4 cup ketchup
- In a bowl, combine the first 8 ingredients. Crumble beef over mixture and mix well. Press into a greased 9 x 5 x 3 inches loaf pan. Bake at 350 for 1 hour. Spread with ketchup bake 15-20 minutes longer or until a meat thermometer reads 160 and meat is no longer pink. Let stand 10 minutes before slicing. Loaf may be frozen for up to 3 months.
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Mishra Vikas is a digital nomad who loves to explore the world and learn about its cultures. As a programmer, backpacker, and cook, he enjoys sharing his adventures and cooking up delectable dishes. Writing about his experiences, creating tasty recipes, and discovering new places are some of his favorite activities. He’s an avid traveler and passionate chef, always on the lookout for an exciting new journey.