I never had much desire to eat meatloaf, let alone make it – I (very wrongly) assumed it was dry and dull. When I became a mom I thought this was a recipe I should know how to make, although I’m not sure why I associate meatloaf with motherhood. Anyway, a few days ago I found myself in the kitchen. The toddler was napping and the newborn in my arms,I decided this was the perfect time to experiment with loaves of meat.
Determined to put my updated spin on the recipe, I played around with a few ingredient combinations until I found one that was not only tasty and moist but, most importantly, had both my toddler and my fiance asking for seconds. The addition of apple, pumpkin, and sausage may seem out of the ordinary – and they are – but it’s these “secret” ingredients that I credit my newfound love for this dish. Meatloaf traditionalists may be skeptical – but give them a few bites – and I can almost promise my fall-inspired ingredients will win them overts. Enjoy!
Active Time: 15 min
Total Time: 1 Hour 15 Mins
Makes: 5-6 servings
- ¼ CUP PUMPKIN PUREE
- ¾ CUP MILK
- 1 LB GROUND BEEF
- 1 LB GROUND SWEET ITALIAN PORK SAUSAGE
- ½ LARGE ONION, SMALL DICED
- ½ LARGE APPLE, SMALL DICED
- 1 TBS GARLIC, MINCED
- ½ CUP BREADCRUMBS
- 3 TBS FRESH HERBS SUCH AS SAGE AND PARSLEY, CHOPPED
- 1 EGG
- Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees.
- In a small bowl, mix together the pumpkin puree and milk. Set aside
- In a large bowl, add all the remaining ingredients, adding the pumpkin-milk mixture as well. Mix all ingredients to combine thoroughly.
- Split mixture amongst two loaf pans and bake for 1 hour until an internal temperature of 160 degrees. Serve warm.
- You may want to peel and/or grate the apple for a finer texture within the overall loaf, but I chopped relatively small and the baking softened the apple enough that I liked the texture of the final product.
- Sage compliments sausage and pumpkin nicely, and it’s what I had in my garden, but other herbs that could work fine include oregano, thyme, and rosemary.
- Serve with a fall-inspired side like acorn or butternut squash to complete the meal.