Taco Meatloaf

It never ceases to amaze me how when the weather changes so does one’s palate; as in digital shift.  For me gone are the days of tossed green salads at home to be replaced by soup.  Where I could not bear to turn on the oven for months, I cannot fathom going without eating something warm and soul-satisfying once a chill is in the air.
Though an omnivore I typically don’t eat a lot of red meat.  No big thing behind it, it just works out that way.  When I had a recent household request for Meatloaf it just felt like, well, so much ‘meat’.  I love the classic diner combo with mashed potatoes but it was a bit too much for me edging back into cold weather foods. 
Loving anything with Mexican seasonings I pulled up a meatloaf version up from an old local cookbook, Colorado Collage (part of a series from the Denver Junior League) which I adatped to end up with this.  This meatloaf is the best of both worlds to me; a good hearty meatloaf but with a Mexican twist I love so much.  The recipe makes two meat loaves so is great for a big group, leftovers or to freeze one for later!
Boulder-Locavore-taco-meatloaf-459
TACO MEATLOAF
In this age where we are madly trying to strip fat from our diets we need to remember much of the flavor in ground meats is FROM the fat!  I did not want a meatloaf swimming in fat and elected to taper the amount of fat in the ground beef (extra lean and lean) and let the sausage provide most of the fat along with the cheddar cheese on top.  As I wrote it up I wondered about adding in some chorizo for the sausage too!
Ingredients:
·         1 tablespoon olive oil
·         1 medium yellow onion, chopped
·         1 red pepper, cored and chopped
·         3 large garlic cloves, minced
·         1-2 fresh jalapeno or Serrano peppers, cored and diced (remember to wear gloves!)
·         1-2 tablespoons chili powder (pick the amount of heat you want)
·         1 teaspoon salt
·         2 teaspoons Mexican oregano
·         2 teaspoons ground cumin
·         1 28 ounce can peeled, crushed tomatoes , drained
·         1 pound ground sirloin
·         ½ pound ground round or ground chuck
·         ½ pound spicy Italian breakfast sausage
·         1 cup dried bread crumbs (if making gluten free use gluten free bread)*
·         2 eggs, lightly beaten
·         1 cup corn kernels, fresh or frozen and defrosted
·         8 ounces sharp cheddar cheese, grated
·         3 scallions, sliced thinly
*you can always make your own Bread Crumbs by processing dried or stale bread in a food processor until forming crumbs.  I do this often with the end of homemade gluten free bread loaves and store them in the freezer for use.

 

1.      Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2.      In a large, heavy pan heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Sauté the onion, bell pepper, garlic, jalapenos or Serrano chiles, and seasonings until beginning to soften and onion becomes translucent (about 5-7 minutes).

3.      Add tomatoes and cook at low temperature, covered, for 10 minutes stirring occasionally.  Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly.
4.      In a large bowl combine the ground beef, sausage, vegetable mixture, bread crumbs, eggs, corn and green onion; mix until fully combined.
5.      Divide evenly into 2 9×5 loaf pans.  Bake for 50 minutes.  Drain any juices, spread grated cheddar cheese evenly on the tops of the loaves and bake until melted.  Allow to cool slightly before serving (10 minutes).

Comments

  1. says

    This looks absolutely amazing and hearty. Just screams fall. We were just sitting around at Thanksgiving (Canuck version) and talking about how to jazz up meatloaf. Think I'll pass this one on to my brother who doesn't care for traditional meatloaf. Good jazzing on your part. Love it!

  2. Sue Troller says

    Yum! Can't wait to try this – boring meatloaf be gone. And the cheese heads in my household will surely be thrilled.

  3. says

    You know how you find a great recipe or two in a cookbook that you go back to over and over but sort of ignore all the rest? Well, that's me and Colorado Collage…I've never seen this recipe and yet it sounds terrific. I haven't made meatloaf in years. Maybe this will be my 'What's old is new again' moment.

    I know the Denver Junior League cookbooks seldom disappoint; all are favorites of mine.

  4. says

    Yum! I love it when someone takes a classic and puts a new twist on it! This looks delicious… I have my share of boring meatloaves and I would definitely makes this. I'm still waiting for the cool air to kick in here… lucky!

  5. says

    My boyfriend wont touch a meatlaof – has he ever tried one – nope, just knows they are yucky. I am going to have to force this one on him because it sounds amazing! He will just have to deal ;)

  6. says

    Where did you find that cowboy boot napkin????? Love it.

    I made meatloaf last weekend and was thinking about turning it into a Mexican version. Glad to hear there's a recipe in Collage. Love those cookbooks. Great photos Toni.

  7. Mary Ann says

    This looks great… I’ve been making something similar for years but instead of the individual seasoning and veggies I just use a jar of salsa mixed with the meat, sausage, egg and breadcrumb, and I add the shredded cheese right in the mix. very yummy!

    • Toni | Boulder Locavore says

      YUMmy Mary Ann! It’s lightly snowing here. The Yankee Beware soup is gone and your version sounds fantastic. Going to rummage through my pantry now with fingers crossed to whip up something similar!

  8. Shannon Russell says

    I made this for my picky family using ground beef and chorizo and they all went for seconds. No more dry meatloaf .

    • says

      Hi Liz. You certainly could try something like beans as a replacement for corn (I’d go for black beans, pinto beans or kidney beans). The corn contributes to the texture and flavor but if you don’t like it or cannot eat it, by all means try beams! Let me know how it turns out!

  9. Pam says

    This sounds yummy! What do you think of grinding/crushing up tortilla chips to use in place of the bread crumbs? Or maybe half bread crumbs, half tortilla chip crumbs?

    • says

      I think it’s completely brilliant and you should forego the bread crumbs all together and use the corn/tortilla chips ground up. And then I think you should invite me over for taste testing! Please ‘report back’ with the results. I think it will be fantastic!

  10. carol says

    this does look good! and the kids get tired of the “same ole” meatloaf. i think i would add a few cornchips to the topping tho… next to bacon, cornchips make everything better!! hahaha!

  11. kylee says

    I made this tonight for dinner, as directed, and when I pulled them out at 50 minutes, they were not even close to being done. I put them back in for another hour.

    • says

      Hi Kylee. I’m so sorry to hear this. I’ve made this meatloaf more times than I can count, as have other readers, with no issue. I’m happy to try to help figure out what happened if you like. May I ask if you made any substitutions to the recipe? Is your oven calibrated so you are sure it is baking at 350 degrees? If you can fill me in more I’m happy to work with you. Feel free to respond here or email me too!

  12. kylee says

    I used everything the same except the tomatoes. They were in puree cause thats all I could find. Im thinking because of the extra “moisture” from the puree thats way. Also, when I dished it out it wasnt your typical meatloaf. It didnt stay together, again I think because it was to wet. I knew it was going to be wetter so I added extra bread crumbs. My husband still loved it, but I told him that if I still use the tomatoes in the puree, I wont use nearly as much. Trial and error, it still tasted good!!

    • says

      I think you are on the right track. It’s amazing how additional moisture can change cooking time and consistency. It should turn out as shown in the photos which gives you a frame of reference.

      I’m glad your husband still liked it! Next time it will taste great and look better too!

Trackbacks

  1. […] Ingredients 1 tablespoon olive oil 1 medium yellow onion, chopped 1 red pepper, cored and chopped 3 large garlic cloves, minced 1-2 fresh jalapeno or Serrano peppers, cored and diced (remember to wear gloves!) 1-2 tablespoons chili powder (pick the amount of heat you want) 1 teaspoon salt 2 teaspoons Mexican oregano 2 teaspoons ground cumin 1 28 ounce can peeled, crushed tomatoes , drained 1 pound ground sirloin ½ pound ground round or ground chuck ½ pound spicy Italian breakfast sausage 1 cup dried bread crumbs (if making gluten free use gluten free bread)* 2 eggs, lightly beaten 1 cup corn kernels, fresh or frozen and defrosted 8 ounces sharp cheddar cheese, grated 3 scallions, sliced thinly Instruction See full instructions on : Boulderlocavore.com […]

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