When it comes to a hearty, satisfying meal that people of all ages love, meatloaf is hard to beat. You can serve it in a variety of ways, even substituting mushrooms and lentils for vegetarian and vegan options, but there’s nothing like the classic loaf made with ground chuck, yellow onions, and plenty of flavor-enhancing ingredients. Here, follow Food Network star Ina Garten’s recipe for the perfect Meat Loaf.
• 1 tablespoon olive oil
• 3 cups chopped yellow onions (3 onions)
• 1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme leaves
• 2 teaspoons kosher salt
• 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
• 3 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
• 1/3 cup canned chicken stock or broth
• 1 tablespoon tomato paste
• 2 1/2 pounds ground chuck (81 percent lean)
• 1/2 cup plain dry breadcrumbs
• 2 extra-large eggs, beaten
• 1/2 cup ketchup
1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit.
2. Heat the olive oil in a medium sauté pan. Add the onions, thyme, salt, and pepper and cook over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, for 8 to 10 minutes, until the onions are translucent but not brown. Off the heat, add the Worcestershire sauce, chicken stock, and tomato paste. Allow cooling slightly.
3. In a large bowl, combine the ground chuck, onion mixture, breadcrumbs, and eggs, and mix lightly with a fork. Don't mash or the meatloaf will be dense. Shape the mixture into a rectangular loaf on a sheet pan covered with parchment paper. Spread the ketchup evenly on top.
4. Bake for 1 to 1 1/4 hours, until the internal temperature is 160 degrees Fahrenheit and the meatloaf is cooked through. (A pan of hot water in the oven, under the meatloaf, will keep the top from cracking.) Serve hot.
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