Everyone has a favorite classic dish. As a child meatloaf was certainly far from my favorite, but for most American’s, including my husband, meatloaf is an absolute favorite. Meatloaf is a classic here in the states, but really it isn’t an American dish. There is a version of meatloaf made in a number of different cultures and it is thought to date back to as early as 5th century Rome. It’s no wonder most people love meatloaf, because clearly it’s stood the test of time. In the US, meatloaf became a family staple during the depression. During that time a family could really stretch a dollar by making the now “classic” version meatloaf with leftover ground meat, grains, bread or crackers to bind the dish and some sauce to top it off.
Like I stated before meatloaf certainly isn’t my favorite dish, but since my husband really loves it I figured I like to make a healthier alternative that I really enjoy as well. Meatloaf is a meal I really don’t think of during mid summer, but once fall starts to roll around I begin to think about making things like chili, soups, casseroles and meatloaf.
The weather is started to turn to fall and for some reason that makes me think of heartier meals. That also means that here broccoli and cauliflower are in season.
I try my best to use seasonal vegetables and if sometime I’m making isn’t in season I will use frozen. Yes, we are normal and use frozen vegetables from time to time and I don’t see anything wrong with that. Sometimes it can be a real time saver to use some flash frozen veggies. For this dish I did use fresh vegetables and instead of using fatty ground beef or pork, I swapped it out for lean turkey. To make my version of meatloaf a cheaper dinner and in a no food waste style, I used what I had leftover or in our pantry. What did I have? I had panko breadcrumbs, an egg, onion, garlic, my always favorite beef bone broth, and olive oil. This is not a textbook classic American meatloaf, but as we learned earlier there really isn’t such a thing.
The meatloaf I made was juicy, amazing and definitely would have gotten the great grandmother seal of approval. This coming from an I don’t like meatloaf kind of girl! I do love ketchup. I like it almost as much as I like dill pickles, but since my husband hates pickles I went for the ketchup. My version of classic meatloaf is one covered in ketchup, so I stick with that. If you don’t remember a meatloaf with ketchup, don’t like ketchup, or think it’s too much sugar or too processed, make a homemade gravy or use whatever else you like instead.
From trial and error, I’ve learned the best thing about meatloaf is it’s easy to swap in and out whatever you have available, hence one of the reasons it can be so cheap to make! I don’t think I’ve ever ruined a meatloaf by using different ingredients. I do like it best with ground turkey, bone broth and obviously ketchup, but you can use other ingredients, like gravy instead of ketchup or oats instead of breadcrumbs, and make a fabulous meal. I’d say that meatloaf classically goes with mashed potatoes, but to make it a more well rounded meal and a less carb heavy, I serve it with veggies.
A simple vegetable is my favorite. I use whatever vegetable I have on hand for almost every meal I make. The easiest way I cut down on time making dinner is by chopping and roasting my veggies with a little olive oil! You can do this with almost any vegetable fresh or frozen. For this dinner I made roasted cauliflower and broccoli. Thirty minutes later and I have a fall meal ready to enjoy that is not only a cheap dinner, but simple, healthy and delicious. Enjoy!
Turkey Meatloaf with Roasted Vegetables
Time: 30 minutes
Ingredients for Turkey Meatloaf:
- 1lb ground turkey
- 1/4 cup panko breadcrumbs
- 1 egg
- 1 small onion
- 2 cloves garlic
- 2 tbsp bone broth
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- ketchup (for topping)
Ingredients for Roasted Veggies
- 2 bunches of broccoli
- 1 head of cauliflower
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- Salt and pepper
- Balsamic Vinegar
Turkey Meatloaf Directions:
- Preheat your oven to 350°F and line a bread pan with 1/2 tbsp olive oil
- Head the other 1/2 tbsp of olive oil in a sauté pan over medium heat
- Dice onion and garlic and add to heated the sauté pan. Cook stirring until onion are soft.
- In a medium size mixing bowl add in egg and beef bone broth. Whisk together.
- Add ground turkey, bread crumbs, cooked onions and garlic to mixing bowl and mix all ingredients together with hands.
- Once all ingredients are mixed evenly spread turkey mixture into your oil lined bread pan.
- Cook for 10 minutes, remove and drizzle ketchup over entire loaf.
- Cook an additional 10 minutes or until fully cooked.
Roasted Broccoli and Cauliflower Directions:
- Preheat oven to 350ºF
- Line baking sheet with olive oil
- Wash and remove broccoli and cauliflower stems
- Chop up broccoli and cauliflower into florets
- Place on baking pan and roast for 20 minutes
- Remove from oven and plate.
- Top with salt and pepper and drizzle with balsamic vinegar