Do you love meatloaf? It’s one of those traditional, hearty American dishes that always hits the spot. But have you ever tried a meatloaf with a gooey, melted mozzarella surprise inside? If not, get ready to have your taste buds blown away.
This recipe is not your average meatloaf recipe. In fact, it’s the ultimate indulgence for cheese lovers – a mozzarella stuffed meatloaf that will make your mouth water just thinking about it. The combination of lean ground beef and bulk Italian sausage creates a bold and delicious flavor profile that pairs perfectly with the cheesy goodness inside.
Plus, this recipe is versatile enough to make your own variations that suit your taste buds, so you can experiment until you find the perfect stuffing combination. So roll up those sleeves and let’s start baking! Trust me, once you try it, there’s no going back to plain old meatloaf.
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
Listen, I don’t want to brag, but this string cheese meatloaf recipe is out of this world. If you’re a fan of meatloaf, then you’re going to love this one. And if you’re not a fan of meatloaf, well, let’s just say that this recipe has the power to convert even the biggest meatloaf skeptic.
First of all, who doesn’t love cheese? And when you combine it with savory ground beef and Italian sausage- it’s a match made in heaven. Oh, and did I mention that there are cheese sticks stuffed right into the middle of this meatloaf? Yeah, you read that right. The molten, oozy mozzarella string cheese becomes melty and gooey as it bakes inside the ground beef mixture- and every bite is like biting into a cloud of cheesy goodness.
Trust me; this is not your average meatloaf recipe. With just the right amount of seasoning- dried rosemary, garlic cloves- and lightly beaten eggs mixed in-seasoned breadcrumbs acts as a binder making for an ultra-moist result. It’s easy to make and incredibly flavorful with turkey bacon wrapped around each slice guarantees richness when it’s baked perfectly in preheated oven 350 F for about an hour.
Oh, and did I mention how versatile this recipe is? You can pair this meatloaf with almost anything – from creamy mashed potatoes and roasted veggies to a hearty side salad or spaghetti tossed with the remaining half cup meatless spaghetti sauce divided over each slice. Trust me; once you try this recipe, you won’t look at meatloaf the same way again!
Here’s what we’ll need to make this Mozerella String Cheese Meatloaf Recipe:
- 1 pound lean ground beef
- 1/2 pound bulk Italian sausage
- 2 pieces mozzarella string cheese, cut in half lengthwise
- 1 cup seasoned bread crumbs
- 2 cloves minced garlic
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
- 1/2 cup meatless spaghetti sauce, divided
- 1 1/2 tsp dried rosemary
- 2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
Note: Feel free to adjust the ingredients according to your taste. If you like your meatloaf spicy, you can add red pepper flakes or chili powder. You can also substitute the ground beef with ground pork or turkey for a healthier option.
Make sure you have everything ready before starting the recipe for a smooth cooking process. In case some of the ingredients are not available, check out our Substitutions and Variations section for alternative options.
The Recipe How-To
Now for the good stuff! Here is the step-by-step guide to making mozzarella string cheese meatloaf recipe.
- 1 pound lean ground beef
- ½ pound bulk Italian sausage
- 2 sticks mozzarella string cheese, cut in half
- 1 cup meatless spaghetti sauce, divided
- 1 lightly beaten egg
- 1 1/2 cups seasoned bread crumbs
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 1/2 teaspoons dried rosemary
Meatloaf Mixture Step-by-Step
- Preheat the oven to 350°F.
- In a large bowl, combine the seasoned breadcrumbs, minced garlic, and dried rosemary.
- Add in the lightly beaten egg, and mix until thoroughly combined.
- Add in the ground beef, Italian sausage, and ½ cup of meatless spaghetti sauce.
- Mix well until combined evenly.
- On a parchment-lined baking sheet or a loaf pan (9 x 5 x 3 inches), press down half (or most) of the meat mixture to make a base layer.
- Place the halved mozzarella string cheese evenly along the length of one end of meat-loaf.(leave some space at both ends intact)
- Place Press remaining meat mixture on top and around the stuffed ingredients, covering cheese completely enveloped with meat.
- Pour remaining spaghetti sauce over top of meatloaf
- Bake 55–60 minutes for a fully cooked loaf(It takes less time If you’re making mini-meatloaves).
- Check internal temperature reaches up to 165°F (use instant-read thermometer).
- Remove from oven and let rest for at least five minutes before slicing.
Stuffed Meatloaf Variations
You can experiment with different variations of this recipe by adding your favorite ingredients into the meat mixture or swapping out ingredients to suit your preferences.
Mozzarella-Stuffed BBQ Meatloaf
Mix your favorite BBQ sauce into the meatloaf mixture and substitute smoked gouda cheese for mozzarella cheese.
Bacon-Wrapped Mozzarella-Stuffed Meatloaf
Wrap strips of bacon around the stuffed meatloaf before putting it in the oven for an added flavor and texture.
Use ketchup instead of spaghetti sauce inside and outside plus adding extra shredded cheddar cheese as well as bacon bits
Tips for Perfect Results
Here are a few tips when making this mozzarella string-cheese stuffed meatloaf recipe:
- If you’re using fattier ground beef, consider decreasing or omitting any additional oil or butter in your recipe.
- Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for three to four days or frozen for up to three months.
- If you have extra time before cooking, let the stuffed loaf sit at room temperature
Substitutions and Variations
Now, let’s talk about the wide range of options you have when it comes to substitutions and variations in this recipe. The cheese stuffed meatloaf is nothing but versatile, ready to adapt to your specific needs and preferences.
If you’re looking for a healthier version of this recipe, you can swap the bulk Italian sausage for ground pork or turkey. Additionally, you can use ground chicken instead of lean ground beef to make it even leaner.
Vegetarians can enjoy this recipe too. If this is your case, you can replace the meat mixture with a cup of cooked quinoa, black beans or lentils. This will not only keep it vegetarian-friendly but also add some extra nutrients to the dish.
For those who want an extra flavor kick in their meatloaf can experiment with different types of cheese to stuff into the center. Pepper jack cheese and sharp cheddar would be great options for a tasty twist on this recipe.
If you’re looking to get creative with your string cheese meatloaf, consider adding some bacon around it or serving them as mini meatloaves instead! You can also try different sauces on top like a tangy BBQ sauce for a stuffed BBQ meatloaf version or ketchup mixed with mustard for a cheeseburger-inspired version.
Another exciting variation could be making different types of stuffed meatloaf recipes with mozzarella, like an Italian meatloaf that features classic Italian ingredients such as sun-dried tomatoes, fresh basil, and grated parmesan.
But whatever substitution or variation you choose, remember to stick with the measurements and instructions provided in this recipe article as they ensure a perfect result every time.
Serving and Pairing
When it comes to serving this delicious string cheese meatloaf recipe, there are several options that will certainly leave everybody sitting at your dinner table satisfied.
One of my personal favorite ways to serve this dish is alongside a pile of creamy garlic mashed potatoes or roasted vegetables, such as broccoli and carrots. The tender and juicy texture of the meatloaf with the melted cheese inside pairs perfectly with the smooth texture of the mashed potatoes, while the rich flavor is balanced by the crispiness of the roasted veggies.
If you want to take it up a notch and add some more flavors to your meal, try serving it with a side of tangy tomato-based sauce or some refreshing salad greens topped off with a light vinaigrette. Alternatively, you can dip each slice into some warm marinara sauce, add more shredded cheese on top, and even sprinkle some freshly chopped herbs like basil or parsley.
For a perfect wine pairing, I would recommend going with a glass of medium-bodied red wine like Cabernet Sauvignon or Pinot Noir. They have enough structure to complement the rich and savory flavor of the meatloaf without overpowering it. Alternatively, if you prefer beer instead, choose something that has a stronger hop profile like an amber ale or an IPA to balance out the cheese inside.
No matter what way you choose to serve and pair this string cheese meatloaf recipe, your taste buds will surely be in for a treat!
Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating
So, you’ve enjoyed your delicious string cheese meatloaf, but now you’re wondering what to do with the leftovers. Fear not, fellow foodie, for I have just the tips you need to make your eating experience a hundred times better.
Firstly, let’s talk about making this recipe ahead of time. The great thing about this dish is that it can be prepared in advance and stored in the refrigerator until you need it. Simply cover the meatloaf in foil or cling wrap and keep it stored in the fridge for up to 2 days before cooking.
When reheating, make sure to cover the meatloaf with foil and heat it up in a pre-heated oven at 350°F (175°C) for approximately 20-25 minutes or until heated through. You can also heat it up in a microwave if you’re short on time, but I wouldn’t recommend this option as it might cause the cheese inside to melt too much and lose its original shape.
But let’s say you still have some meatloaf left even after reheating. No problem at all! You can freeze the leftovers by cutting them into slices or individual portions and wrapping them tightly with cling wrap or freezer paper. When ready to eat again, take out of the freezer and let it thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating as described above.
Another delicious way to use leftovers is by making sandwiches or burgers out of them. I personally love adding some fresh salad leaves and a bit of BBQ sauce to my leftover meatloaf sandwich – simple yet so satisfying!
And there you have it – everything you need to know about storing and reheating your string cheese meatloaf recipe leftovers. Trust me, there won’t be any leftovers by the end of this meal!
Tips for Perfect Results
Hey there, newbie chef. I’m here to offer you some insider tips that are going to take your string cheese meatloaf from good to downright amazing. After all, the devil’s in the details, and these tips will help ensure that your cheese-stuffed beef sausage creation comes out looking and tasting perfectly every time.
First things first, before doing anything else, make sure you have all of your ingredients at room temperature. This is crucial for ensuring that your ingredients mix together evenly and smoothly, and it also shortens the cooking time by about 10% so you won’t have uncooked spots in the middle of the loaf. Trust me; taking the extra step to let those egg and meatloaf sit out on the counter will save you a lot of time and stress in the long run.
Another tip I have for you is to use a mixture of Italian sausage and lean ground beef instead of just one or the other. This gives your meatloaf a more complex flavor profile while keeping it moist and tender, so your guests will be like “Wowzers!” with every mouthful. Don’t overdo it with exotic meats, though; we’re making a stuffed beef sausage meatloaf after all.
When it comes to the cheese stuffing, don’t skimp on the mozzarella string cheese – this is what makes our meatloaf recipe stand out from all others! And don’t forget to seal off both ends of the cheese so that none leaks out while cooking causing disappointment. Cut each string cheese stick in half lengthwise and place two halves per row (or as needed) in your meat mixture spread across width-wise (use one end of each half to get complete coverage), then fold over the sides of your mixture like a burrito ensuring both edges are sealed tight and no air pockets remain.
An essential tip when working with minced garlic is that it must be added to moist ingredients–which means adding it directly onto dry bread crumbs is not going to cut if if you want that delicious garlic-y taste through-out – combine it with an egg and/or milk first in a separate bowl prior to mixing them into our seasoned breadcrumb mixture.
Finally, don’t skimp on letting that perfect loaf settle before slicing; give it 15-20 minutes after pulling it from the oven before cutting into it. Not only will this allow flavors to meld together even more but will also help prevent spills- which in this case would mean melted mozzarella oozing off into places where no one wants it!
With these practical tips under your belt, you’re all set to make a perfect string cheese meatloaf that everyone will love!
Now that you’ve got the String Cheese Meatloaf Recipe’s breakdown from ingredients to serving suggestions, it’s time to address some common queries that you might have. Here are some frequently asked questions, with my personal tips and recommendations, to help make your string cheese meatloaf journey smoother.
What is the secret to moist meatloaf?
If you want to make your meat dishes extra succulent and flavorful, moisture is key. At every step of your recipe, make sure you add in some kind of wet seasoning to keep the meat juicy. You don’t want to skip out on adding ingredients like eggs, ketchup, tomato paste, mustard, Worcestershire, barbecue sauce, or any combination of these. These ingredients not only provide a rich taste and texture, but they also help lock in the moisture, making your meat dishes more enjoyable to eat. Keep this helpful tip in mind the next time you cook up a meaty masterpiece.
What ingredient keeps meatloaf from falling apart?
If you’ve ever made meatloaf that crumbled way too easily, chances are it lacked sufficient binding agents. The absence of eggs and breadcrumbs, which serve as the glue that holds the meat mixture together, can cause your loaf to fall apart. Including these ingredients is crucial as they work wonders in keeping the meatloaf intact as it cooks.
What can I use in meatloaf instead of breadcrumbs?
As a curious food enthusiast, I’ve discovered a savvy trick for making flavorful baked dishes like meatballs and meatloaf. It involves replacing traditional bread crumbs with crushed-up crackers, such as salty saltines or buttery Ritz, which not only act as a binding agent but also add an extra zing to the dish. This substitution proves to be just as efficient as using bread crumbs, and it’s a great way to elevate your culinary creations.
Why do you put milk in meatloaf?
When preparing meatloaf, some ingredients are added to ensure the right consistency and texture. Milk, for instance, is typically used to moisten the bread crumbs that are then blended with meat. However, if you prefer not to use milk, there are various alternatives you can try such as low sodium beef stock, chicken stock, water, or a non-dairy milk replacement.
After following this recipe for string cheese meatloaf, you’ll discover that it is so much more than just an ordinary meatloaf. With the addition of the mozzarella string cheese, this meatloaf turns into a favorite for everyone.
This recipe has been crafted to perfection with a combination of ground beef, Italian sausage, garlic cloves, dried rosemary and of course mozzarella string cheese. You’ll love the taste and texture of this homemade classic dish that will make you feel like royalty every time!
The substitutions and variations included in this article will help you switch up the recipe if need be to accommodate your preferences. The serving and pairing suggestions will also help you enjoy this dish with a wide array of complementary foods.
Make-ahead, storing and reheating tips ensure that all the hard work you put into making this delicious string cheese meatloaf lasts as long as possible. You can savor its rich, cheesy texture days later by reheating it just right.
Now that you have become an expert in cooking the famous cheese stuffed meatloaf, spread the love by sharing your success story with your loved ones. Don’t forget to check out other recipes on Recipe Food Blog to discover more culinary adventures for your taste buds. Happy cooking!
String Cheese Meatloaf Recipe
- 1 cup meatless spaghetti sauce, divided
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
- 1 cup seasoned bread crumbs
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 1/2 teaspoons dried rosemary, crushed
- 1 lb lean ground beef
- 8 ounces bulk Italian sausage
- 3 pieces mozzarella string cheese
- in bowl, combine 1/2 c spaghetti sauce, egg, bread crumbs, galric and rosemary.
- Crumble meat over mixture and mix well.
- Presss half into greased 8x4x2" loaf pan.
- Place two pieces of cheese, side by side, near one end of loaf.
- Cut the remaining piece of cheese in half.
- Place side by side on opposite end of loaf.
- Top with remaining meat mixture.
- Press down firmly to seal.
- Bake uncovered at 350 for 1 and 1/4 to 1 and 1/2 hours or until meat is no longer pink and a meat themometer reads 160°F
- Drizzle with the remaining spaghetti sauce.
- Bake 10 minutes longer.
- Let stand for 10 minutes before slicing.
Your Own Notes
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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.