Meatloaf is one of those delicious comfort foods. And it’s delicious. There are many different ways to make meatloaf.

You can pick and choose the different meats that you want to use. The typical one would be ground beef, although ground turkey, veal, pork, venison and poultry are not unheard of.

The type of “binder” that you pick can be as flexible as your taste. These can range from breadcrumbs to oatmeal to eggs to wheat germ to pieces of bread soaked in a liquid of your choosing. The goal here is to make the meatloaf more dough-y in order to hold it’s shape better.

Your choice of fillings can be anything your heart desires. Some of these might include herbs and spices, cheese and vegetables (like celery, peppers and onions).

There are two main families of sauces to choose from to add to your meatloaf: tomato based or gravies. Both are good — so there’s no need to pick sides.

And there are numerous ways to cook your meatloaf. You can cook it in the oven, the microwave and your slow cooker. Though, I must confess, as much as I love my slow cooker, I have not yet tried this in there. (Shameful, I know.)

Now, I’ve talked before about how I started cooking at a young age. This was one of the first recipes that I ever made, and is still one I make today. I have changed very little from it, even after all of these years (which is highly unusual, as much as I love to make recipes my own). After years of making this dish, I think it’s time to share it with you. In mine, I use 2 meats, 3 binders and a tomato base.

I like mine with ketchup

What you’ll need:

  • 1 pound of ground beef
  • 1/2 pound ground sausage
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1/4 cup of parsley
  • 1 cup of oatmeal
  • 1/2 cup of wheat germ (sometimes I add a little more)
  • 10 ounces of evaporated milk
  • 1 egg
  • 8 ounces of chili sauce (this is not chili, or ketchup)
  • 1 teaspoon of celery salt
  • Pepper, to taste

    Sometimes it gets a little crispy around the edges — but it’s still just as good

How to put it together:

  • Combine all ingredients together in a large bowl (mix it with your hands — it’s so much easier)
  • Press into your loaf pan
  • Cook for 1 hour to 1 hour 15 minutes in a 350 degree oven
  • Top with ketchup and serve

    Fresh out the pan and ready for the hubby! — no ketchup

In the past, I have made this meatloaf in mini loaf pans. This has sped up the cooking process and also allowed some people to have items added into their meatloaf that others refused to eat. (This was mainly a problem growing up. Jon pretty much eats what I do now, or will at least give it a try the first time I make it.) Obviously, you will need to keep an eye on things if you are making them for the first time in smaller pans. Every time I made it in the smaller pans, the cooking time was a little bit different. Even the slightest difference in how much I put into the pans would change how long it took to cook. You are forewarned. Just keep an eye on it and you’ll do fine.

I hope you find this comfort food delicious. Let me know how you enjoy this dish. We certainly do.