When it comes to creating a crowd-pleasing dinner dish, meatloaf is almost always a guaranteed winner. I recently made the healthy meatloaf recipe below (with LOTS of hidden vegetables) for a girls night in get-together and I must say the ooh’s and aah’s were oh-so-rewarding!
Whether the girls were oohing over the taste or aahing over the fact that the healthy meatloaf had oh-so-many non-detectable veggies, I’m not really sure? All I know is that meatloaf has now officially been added to my “go to” list of recipes to make when company is coming. As with most of my favorite company recipes, I especially love that my healthy meatloaf recipe can be prepared well in advance (see recipe notes below.)
Perfect (and EASY!) Meatloaf Side Dishes
I served my healthy meatloaf recipe tapas style on small plates with sides of peas and cauliflower- garlic mashed potatoes, which were made with a cashew cream rather than butter and dairy cream.
How To Make Healthy Meatloaf (with LOTS of Hidden Veggies!)
- 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil
- 3 cups chopped cremini mushrooms
- 1 Spanish onion (chopped)
- 6 carrots (chopped)
- 4 stalks or celery (chopped)
- 2 red bell peppers (chopped)
- 2 pounds pastured ground beef
- 1 cup gluten-free rolled oats
- 8 cloves garlic (crushed)
- 2 organic (pastured eggs (such as Vital Farms))
- 1/4 cup tomato paste
- 2 tablespoons organic Worcestershire sauce (such as Annie’s Naturals)
- 1 teaspoon organic Italian Seasoning (such as Simply Organic)
- 1 1/4 teaspoon unrefined sea salt
- 1 cup prepared marinara (my favorite is Rao’s)
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Heat the oil in a large heavy skillet over medium-heat. When the skillet is hot, add the mushrooms, onions, carrots, celery and red bell pepper. Sauté for 7 to 8 minutes, or until vegetables are soft. Transfer the softened vegetables to a large mixing bowl. Add in the ground beef, oats, garlic, eggs, tomato paste, Worcestershire sauce, Italian seasoning, and salt. Use your hands to mix ingredients together.
- Transfer the vegetable-meat mixture to a food processor and process until vegetables are finely chopped and ingredients are well blended.
- Place the vegetable-meat mixture on the center of the parchment paper and shape into a large loaf, about 1-inch thick. Spread the marinara sauce over the meatloaf. Bake for 40 to 45 minutes, or until meat is cooked through and no longer pink. Remove meatloaf from oven and set aside to cool for at least 15 minutes before serving. Serve warm.
Please note, this meatloaf recipe serves a rather large group of 12 people. If you aren’t feeding 12 people, leftovers will keep nicely if stored in a covered container in the fridge for 4 to 5 days. You can also freeze leftovers for up to a month. The third option is to simply cut the recipe in half.
P.S. Do You Have a Favorite Healthy Meatloaf Recipe?
If so, I would love to hear about it! Please feel free to share the recipe or link in the comments below!