Hearty and savory Dutch meatloaf recipe

Welcome to my Dutch Meatloaf recipe! As a culinary explorer, I am excited to share this classic dish from the Pennsylvania Dutch region with you. Meatloaf is a true comfort food and has been a staple dish for many families for generations.

But what makes this recipe different from others? For starters, it’s based on an original recipe from 1948, passed down through my family. It’s deliciously tender and flavorful with the right amount of sweetness and tanginess that comes from the use of vinegar, mustard, brown sugar, and tomato sauce.

This recipe is simple to make but delivers amazing results when done right. I’ve worked on it over the years to perfect every element of preparation and cooking. You’ll find that this meatloaf is easy to customize with variations and substitutions suited to your taste buds.

So let me invite you to try something different today: cook up my Dutch Meatloaf and experience the rich flavor profile that makes it one of the best versions out there.

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Dutch Meatloaf
Dutch Meatloaf

If you’re a fan of meatloaf, then you’re in for a real treat with this Dutch Meatloaf recipe. As somebody who has dabbled in countless meatloaf recipes throughout my culinary journey, I must say that this particular one has stolen the spotlight. Here’s why you’ll love it too:

Firstly, the ingredients list features some household staples such as ground beef, bread crumbs, onion and egg. However, with the added kick of seasonings like mustard and brown sugar, this dish brings a unique blend of flavours to your taste buds that will not disappoint.

Another factor to consider is that this recipe comes from 1948 which means it has been tried and tested over time by many generations of cooks. You can trust that by making this Dutch Meatloaf recipe, you are bringing a piece of culinary history to your dinner table.

Furthermore, this recipe is versatile enough to be made on any occasion – be it for a weeknight dinner or as part of your Thanksgiving menu. It’s not only delicious but also affordable, easy to prepare and incredibly satisfying. If you’re looking for comfort food done right – look no further.

In summary, if you’re looking for a hearty family meal that has stood the test of time – then give this Dutch Meatloaf recipe a try. Trust me; your taste buds (and wallet) will thank you for it.

Ingredient List

 The beginning stages: mixing together the ingredients for the perfect Dutch Meatloaf.
The beginning stages: mixing together the ingredients for the perfect Dutch Meatloaf.

Let’s gather the ingredients for this vintage Dutch Meatloaf recipe. You will need:

  • 1 1/2 lbs. ground beef
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 cup fresh bread crumbs
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1/2 can (small) tomato sauce with onion
  • 2 tablespoons mustard
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • pepper to taste

These simple ingredients are easy to find and work perfectly together to make this hearty classic meatloaf. As you prepare your ingredients, don’t forget to preheat your oven to 350 degrees F.

The Recipe How-To


When it comes to the mouth-watering Dutch Meatloaf, there is a lot to love. It’s a classic dish with a rich heritage and deep flavor. In this recipe how-to, I’ll guide you through the steps to create a savory and delightful meatloaf that will delight your taste buds.


  • 1 1/2 pounds lean ground beef
  • 1 cup fresh bread crumbs (or crumbs from 1 medium-sized piece of fresh bread)
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 1 can (14 oz) Hunts tomato sauce
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, lightly mix together the ground beef, breadcrumbs, chopped onion, beaten egg, salt and pepper until well combined.
  3. Shape the meatloaf into a loaf shape either by hand or using a loaf pan.
  4. Then pour over the top of the meatloaf approximately half of can of tomato sauce with onion.
  5. Place the meatloaf in a Dutch Oven or cast iron skillet and bake for 90 minutes.

Let It Rest & Serve Up

  1. After cooking for 90 minutes take out from oven and let rest for at least five minutes before slicing and serving it up.

This recipe is ideal because it takes minimal effort and time to prepare as well as create something that tastes fantastic – perfect for feeding a crowd without sacrificing quality.

So what are you waiting for? Give this classic Pennsylvania Dutch Meatloaf recipe a try and savor every bite!

Substitutions and Variations

 The beauty of using a loaf pan: perfectly shaped slices for serving.
The beauty of using a loaf pan: perfectly shaped slices for serving.

Are you looking for ways to give this classic Dutch meatloaf recipe a unique twist? Here are some substitutions and variations that you can try:

– Lean Ground Beef: If you want to cut down on the fat content of the dish, consider swapping out regular ground beef for lean ground beef. This can also be a healthier option for those watching their calorie intake.

– Tomato Soup: Instead of using tomato sauce with onion in this recipe, try using condensed tomato soup instead. This gives the dish a creamier consistency and adds another layer of flavor.

– Indonesian Meatloaf: Want to take this dish on a world tour? Add different spices and herbs to create an Indonesian-style meatloaf. Use ingredients such as soy sauce, sambal oelek (chili paste), and kecap manis (sweet soy sauce) for a spicy and sweet kick.

– Cast Iron Skillet: Rather than using a dutch oven, opt for a cast iron skillet to cook your meatloaf. The bottom crust will get crispy and add an extra layer of texture to your meatloaf.

– Bacon Meatloaf: Who doesn’t love bacon? Incorporate crumbled bits of bacon into your meatloaf mix before forming it into a loaf shape. This adds smokiness and saltiness to every bite.

– Vintage Matchbook Meatloaf: If you’re feeling nostalgic, experiment with adding vintage cookbook recipes from the mid-twentieth century into the mix. Check old matchbooks or pamphlets in thrift stores or antique shops for more inspiration.

With these substitutions and variations, you can make this classic Dutch meatloaf recipe your own unique creation. Get creative in the kitchen and try different combinations until you find your version of the perfect meatloaf!

Serving and Pairing

 Letting the meatloaf rest before slicing allows the flavors to meld together.
Letting the meatloaf rest before slicing allows the flavors to meld together.

Dutch meatloaf is a savory dish that pairs perfectly with a wide range of sides. There are plenty of excellent options to consider when it comes to choosing the best sides for dutch meatloaf.

Firstly, it’s essential to point out that the robust and full-flavored meat of dutch meatloaf makes it an ideal pairing for hearty vegetables such as roasted carrots, potatoes or beetroots. One can also incorporate slightly sweet vegetables such as pumpkin or squash into the side dish. This will help enhance the richness of the meatloaf and balance out its savory notes.

A creamy starch such as mashed potatoes or macaroni and cheese is another great option to pair with dutch meatloaf. The creaminess of these side dishes helps to cut through the richness of the meatloaf and brings in some contrasting flavors on the plate.

For those who prefer a lighter option, a simple green salad can be an excellent accompaniment. The lightness of the salad balances out the density of the meatloaf while providing refreshing taste buds.

My personal favorite is to serve the dutch meatloaf with some seasoned rice pilaf, which adds a slight nuttiness and provides an excellent contrast both in terms of texture and flavor.

In terms of pairing, a robust red wine such as Cabernet Sauvignon or Pinot Noir pairs well with dutch meatloaf due to its full-bodied flavor profile. However, for a non-alcoholic option, some iced tea or cola would make an excellent choice.

Overall, selecting a side dish that balances out the earthy flavors of this dish can indeed take your dining experience up by several notches.

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 A delicious slice of Dutch Meatloaf, complete with savory seasonings and a crispy crust.
A delicious slice of Dutch Meatloaf, complete with savory seasonings and a crispy crust.

You can absolutely make this Dutch Meatloaf in advance and heat it up the following day. Store the meatloaf in an airtight container for up to four days in the refrigerator.

To reheat, preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit (177 degrees Celsius) and place the meatloaf slice or whole into a baking dish with some additional tomato sauce on top. Reheat until the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees Fahrenheit (74 degrees Celsius). Typically, reheating takes around 20-30 minutes depending on your oven’s efficiency.

If you have leftover meatloaf slices, try pan-frying with some butter until they are crispy on both sides for a breakfast treat or between two pieces of toasted bread for lunch.

Make sure you reheat and store the meatloaf properly. Doing so ensures its freshness and taste. Any leftovers can be utilized smartly, by using complementary ingredients like pasta or even adding to salads.

Tips for Perfect Results

 Adding a layer of tangy tomato sauce takes this meatloaf to the next level.
Adding a layer of tangy tomato sauce takes this meatloaf to the next level.

To achieve perfection in preparing Dutch Meatloaf, one must pay keen attention to every detail of the process. One small mistake can lead to an unpleasant outcome. To help you avoid the most common pitfalls and produce a perfect meatloaf, here are some tips to follow:

First, use fresh ingredients, particularly for the bread crumbs, beef, and onions. Stale or expired ingredients will compromise the taste of your dish.

Second, aim to combine the dry and wet ingredients gently without overmixing them. This will avoid making your meatloaf tough

Third, if your meatloaf has a tough texture, add some milk or more bread crumbs to it before baking. These two ingredients will soften the meatloaf and make it moister.

Fourth, use a dutch oven or cast-iron pan when baking the meatloaf recipe for maximum heat retention and even cooking.

Fifth, allow your cooked meatloaf to rest for five minutes after you take it out of the oven. This will help redistribute any juices that may have accumulated at the bottom.

Lastly, experiment with different herbs and spices to create a personal touch to your Dutch Meatloaf. You can also add other ingredients such as bacon or Indonesian spices for an exotic twist on this Pennsylvania Dutch classic.

By following these tips, you’re assured of crafting deliciously flavored and moist dutch meatloaf that will leave your taste buds craving more.


In this section, we’ll look at some of the frequently asked questions and give you some tips and tricks to make this Dutch meatloaf recipe a success. From substitutions to ingredient swaps, we’ve got you covered so that you can enjoy a delicious meal every time.

What is the secret to moist meatloaf?

When preparing meat dishes, it’s important to ensure they don’t turn out dry and overcooked. One essential tip to prevent this is to include moist ingredients in every step of the recipe. You should never skip adding ingredients such as eggs, ketchup, tomato paste, mustard, Worcestershire sauce, or barbecue sauce. These wet seasonings not only enhance the flavor and texture of the meat but also add moisture to keep it juicy and succulent. Keep this in mind to enjoy a moist and delicious meat dish.

What ingredient keeps meatloaf from falling apart?

Making a meatloaf that is cohesive and doesn’t crumble apart can be a challenge, especially if you don’t use enough binding agents. When preparing a meatloaf, it’s important to include ingredients such as eggs and breadcrumbs as they are essential for holding the mixture together during cooking. If you omit these ingredients, you may end up with a crumbly mess on your plate.

How do you make Elvis Presley meatloaf?

To create this savory dish, begin by dicing 1/4 cup of onion and celery, and mincing 2 cloves of garlic. Heat 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil in a pan and add in 1 pound of lean ground beef. As the meat begins to brown, sprinkle in 3/4 teaspoon of salt and 1/2 teaspoon of pepper for flavor. Next, tear up 3 small slices (or 2 large slices) of bread into pieces and mix them in with the meat.

Why do some people put milk in meatloaf?

When making meatloaf, adding milk is beneficial as it helps the bread crumbs absorb moisture, which prevents the meatloaf from becoming dry. If milk is not your preference, using low sodium beef or chicken stock, water or a non-dairy milk substitute can also be used as an alternative.

Bottom Line

In conclusion, the Dutch Meatloaf recipe is a must-try dish for meat lovers around the world. With its unique blend of spices and ingredients, it has been satisfying taste buds since 1948. Using fresh and high-quality ingredients such as ground beef, bread crumbs, and diced onions will elevate the flavors of this savory dish.

Remember to follow the recipe instructions carefully and consider all the tips provided to achieve perfect results. Whether you’re a seasoned cook or a beginner in the kitchen, this recipe is sure to impress your family and guests.

So go ahead and try out this classic Dutch Meatloaf recipe from 1948. You won’t regret it! Change up your usual meatloaf routine with this deliciously savory, Dutch-inspired twist that will surely delight your taste buds. Enjoy!

Dutch Meatloaf

Dutch Meatloaf Recipe

No ratings yet
Cook Time 1 hr 15 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Dutch
Calories 120.4 kcal


  • 1 1/2 lbs meat, Ground
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 cup breadcrumbs
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 8 ounces tomato sauce with onion
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons mustard
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon vinegar


  • Mix meat, breadcrumbs, 1/2 tomato sauce, egg, salt & pepper.
  • Shape into loaf.
  • Combine remaining ingredients with 1/2 tomato sauce.
  • Pour over meat.
  • Bake at 350 degrees for 75 minutes.

Your Own Notes


Serving: 78gCalories: 120.4kcalCarbohydrates: 21.6gProtein: 4.3gFat: 2gSaturated Fat: 0.5gCholesterol: 31mgSodium: 991.4mgFiber: 1.7gSugar: 5.7g
Keyword < 4 Hours, Dutch, European, Meat, Oven, Weeknight
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