Monday, September 27, 2010

Meatloaf with Tomato Gravy

As fall quickly sneaks up on us, warm hearty comfort foods come to mind.  What could be more comforting than a homemade hot from the oven juicy meatloaf smothered in tomato gravy?
My notes to you...
In my opinion a good meatloaf is soft and tender, yet still firm enough to slice.

When I make any type of meatloaf I always mix the ingredients together before adding the meat to ensure even seasoning throughout the loaf.

When shaping the meatloaf push in the sides and slap the top until you get your desired shape.  The pushing and slapping is not only therapeutic, it removes the air pockets from your loaf which makes it easy to slice.  If your meatloaf crumbles when you slice it, it simply means that you need to push and slap it a little more the next time.

I like to top my meatloaf with thin strips of bacon.  Thin because it molds itself to the loaf while getting crisp, at least on one side, while basting the meatloaf with delicious smoky bacon flavor.  Thicker bacon will just get rubbery. You could precook your bacon to medium then place it on your meatloaf, if you want a crispier bacon.

There are several ways to drain the oil from the meatloaf.  Pour it off, dab it up with paper towels or with stale bread slices.  A trick I learned is to take stale bread (ends don’t work as well) and place it around the meatloaf before placing it in the oven.  The bread slices will absorb the oil as the meatloaf cooks.  Then all you have to do is remove the oil soaked bread slices and toss them out.


3              pounds                 ground beef
½                                         onion, chopped small
1              clove                    garlic, minced
1              cup                       Italian dry bread crumbs
1              tsp.                       kosher salt
¼             tsp.                       black pepper
½             cup                       milk
1              Tbsp.                    mayonnaise or 1 egg
2              Tbsp.                    ketchup
4              strips                     thin bacon

Sweat the onions and garlic over med-low heat in a little oil to soften. (cook onions for the tomato gravy at the same time)

Place the bread crumbs in a large mixing bowl and add the softened onions and garlic.  Mix to coat with bread crumbs.  Add salt, pepper, milk, mayonnaise and ketchup and mix well.

Add ground beef and mix to blend with the seasonings.

Shape loaf and place in a 9 X 13” baking dish.  Place the bacon strips over the top of the meatloaf and bake in a 350 degree oven for 1 hour.  Remove from oven and drain oil from pan.  Pour tomato gravy around the meatloaf and not on the bacon or it will get soggy.  Return to the oven and let bake for another 15 minutes.


½                                         onion, chopped small
1              clove                    garlic, minced
14           oz. can                  Italian stewed tomatoes, crushed (1/2 cup liquid removed)
10           oz. can                  tomato puree
2              Tbsp.                   brown sugar
1              Tbsp.                   cider vinegar
¼             tsp.                       kosher salt
¼             tsp.                       black pepper
1              tsp.                       Worcestershire sauce

For thicker tomato gravy remove ½ cup of liquid and discard.  For looser gravy add the liquid. 

Sweat the onions and garlic in a little oil to soften

Place the stewed tomatoes in a med sauce pot.  Mash the tomatoes with your hands or a potato masher.  Add the rest of the ingredients to the pot and heat to allow flavors to blend.  Set aside.


  1. This meatloaf is delicious, and I especially liked the tomato gravy!

  2. Do you ever send recipe out by mail

    1. Hi Ida, no I don't. But you can copy it here :)