I hated meatloaf growing up. And since I hated it growing up, I never ate again.
Just kidding. I didn't hate meatloaf. I just thought I did. I hated meatloaf night. Not meatloaf. What I hated was peas. Those little round peas in the silver can. We called them 'sugar peas' but google is telling me they're called 'early peas'. Whatever they are, I hated them. And I still do. But each time my mama served meatloaf, we had mashed potatoes and those horrible, wretched, squishy, murky, God-awful peas. So my 6-year old brain made the connection and decided I didn't like meatloaf.
Once I figured out I didn't hate meatloaf I started eating it again. I ate some I liked and some I didn't. I started asking questions and paying attention to how folks made it and decided to try it out.
Since I like my meatball recipe so much, I started with it as a base. And, oh my blog! I'm telling you, this makes the best meatloaf! Ever! Sometimes I make it with onion only and sometimes I add spinach, peppers and/or carrots but as for the base recipe? This is spot on!
I like a meatloaf that will slice (not crumble) because when I learned that I actually did like meatloaf, I also learned that I really like meatloaf sandwiches. I like to heat a little oil in a skillet and pan-fry thick slices until they've got a little "crust" to them then dress those bad boys like burgers.
My Best Meatloaf
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
1 teaspoon parsley
1 tablespoon worcestershire sauce
1 onion, grated
Other veggies if desired*
2 1/4 pounds ground beef
1/2 grated parmesan cheese
1/2 cup dried bread crumbs
1/4 cup ketchup
3 tablespoons barbeque sauce
Spray a baking pan with cooking spray. Gather mixture into your hands and shape into a loaf (as best you can). Place loaf into pan and finish shaping, patting it until it is uniform in size.
Bake at 425 for 15 minutes (to sear) then reduce heat to 350 degrees and continue cooking for one hour. Combine ketchup and barbeque sauce. Baste meatloaf with ketchup mixture then cook for an additional 10 minutes. Remove meatloaf from oven, cover loosely with aluminum foil and let rest for 15 minutes before serving.
*Grate (or process in a food processor) whichever vegetables you like and add up to 1 cup to the meatloaf. I've added spinach, carrots, red and green peppers over the years.