In the world of comfort food, meatloaf has to rank in at least the top five. It is inexpensive, easy to prepare, popular with just about everyone, and makes great sandwich leftovers the next day. In our household meatloaf may be at the top of the list since I know The Picky Eater loves it. Plus I can make it healthier with the right ingredients, such as leaner ground sirloin, or even ground pork or turkey added to the mix.
Now I've discovered a way to make meatloaf weeknight-dinner heaven by using my slow cooker. Just mix up your favorite meatloaf recipe, put it in the cooker, turn it on low, and head out the door. You will return home to the wonderful aroma of meatloaf that is ready to serve. Just microwave some baking potatoes and cook-up a favorite vegetable (we like green beans) to complete the meal.
I adapted this recipe from the mini-meatloaf one I posted this past summer. It took about 6 hours to cook. There are a couple of tips to remember: Spray the slow cooker with non-stick cooking spray or rub with oil before placing the meatloaf inside. Plus keep the meatloaf away from the sides of the slow cooker, which means you need to shape the loaf to conform with the shape of your cooker.
This recipe will be a regular addition to our weeknight meal plan.
Slow-Cooker MeatloafServes 4, with leftovers
1 1/2 pounds ground beef1 egg
1 1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
1/3 cup Italian bread crumbs
1 tablespoon minced onion
1 clove garlic, minced
3 tablespoons ketchup
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
Salt and pepper, to taste
For topping:1/2 cup ketchup
1 tablespoon brown sugar
2 teaspoons dry mustard
Spray the inside of the slow cooker with non-stick cooking spray or rub with oil.
Place the ground beef into a large bowl. Add the remaining ingredients and mix until just blended. Shape into a loaf that will conform to the shape of the slow cooker without touching the sides. Place inside the slow cooker.
In a small bowl, whisk together the topping ingredients until well blended and spread over the top of the meatloaf.
Put the lid on the slow cooker and turn it to the low temperature setting. Allow the meatloaf to cook for 6 to 8 hours, or until it reaches an internal temperature of 160 degrees.