Tender Italian Style Meatloaf

Ontario, Canada

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Juicy Italian meatloaf is a tender, flavorful dish made from a combination of ground beef and Italian sausage. It’s basically a big giant meatball cooked in a rich tomato sauce and covered with a thick layer of cheese, so delicious! And let’s not forget about leftovers the next day, sliced and grilled for tasty brown bits, topped with roasted sweet peppers, sautéd mushrooms and onions, a little melted cheese for a warm yummy sandwich, throw in a side of potato salad. Perfect lunch time snack, don’t you think? So let the fun begin friends!

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Ingredients: Sauce

  • 1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 – 28 oz can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 – 15 oz can tomato sauce
  • 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • To save time, get a quality store bought tomato sauce

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Ingredients: Meatloaf

  • 1 sleeve of salted crackers
  • 3/4 cup whole milk
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 lb lean ground beef
  • 1 lb sweet Italian sausage, casings removed
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 cup finely diced onion
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp Italian seasoning
  • 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 2 tbsp chopped fresh basil

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Instructions:

  • To make the sauce, heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat
  • Add garlic and cook for 1 minute
  • Add remaining ingredients and simmer for 5 to 8 minutes
  • Or just heat your store bought tomato sauce
  • Set aside, to cool
  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees
  • Lightly grease a broiler safe 9″ by 13″ pan
  • Place crackers in a large zip-lock bag and crush with a rolling pin
  • Stir together the crackers, milk, and eggs in a large bowl
  • Let sit 5 minutes
  • Stir again so that it forms a paste

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  • Add all remaining ingredients to the bowl
  • Except cheese and basil
  • Mix thoroughly
  • Transfer mixture to prepared dish and shape into long oval
  • Pour sauce over meatloaf
  • Cover with foil and bake for 1 hr
  • Uncover and sprinkle with cheese
  • Place under broiler until cheese is melted
  • Let rest 10 minutes
  • Spoon off any  excess grease from tomato sauce
Slice meatloaf and sprinkle with basil. Serve with creamy mashed potatoes, fresh vegetables, extra sauce and crusty bread for a truly blissful experience!

Enjoy!

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