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Meatloaf PupCakes with Mashed Potato Frosting

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Jessie turned ten earlier this month and I decided that I was finally, finally, going to throw her the birthday party I’d always wanted to throw her ever since we got her.  I had invitations I meant to use for it so long I finally ended up selling them at our garage sale last year, thinking I would always have too much going on to actually do it.  Ironically, I ended up throwing her a birthday party the year I’m most busy, with a little human puppy taking up most of my time.  Just goes to show, you always have enough time for whatever you put your mind to.

I plan to do a whole separate blog post about the party because it was the sauce, if I do say so myself, but first I wanted to share the recipe I made for the PupCakes.  Rather than make something flour-based, I decided I wanted to go with meat-centric PupCakes because, let’s get real here, it’s a rare dog that prefers a flour & fruit-based treat over a meaty one.  Jessie is alll about the meat.

So I just threw together a bunch of stuff that seemed like it might make good dog-friendly (i.e. no onions) meatloaf into a bowl, mixed it up, and took a tiny taste test after baking.  Wow, I was impressed!  The only salt in the recipe comes from the ketchup, so I thought it would be rather bland, but these are so good I wished I’d made extra to enjoy along with the pups!  I added a mashed potato “frosting” that I thinned with yogurt.  So healthy and delicious, and the dogs devoured them! (Don’t be fooled by Doc giving up his to Jessie in the video, he’s so sweet that if Jessie even looks at him when he has a treat, he drops it so she can have it.  Kind of breaks my heart, actually! lol)  Even the little tiny dogs ate an entire PupCake by themselves. I’d say they are definitely dog-approved. :)

Meatloaf PupCakes with Mashed Potato Frosting

Printable recipe
Printable recipe with picture

1 ½ teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
½ cup finely diced red bell pepper
½ cup finely diced zucchini
1 egg, beaten
1 lb 93% lean ground beef
½ cup quick oats
1 teaspoon parsley flakes
1 teaspoon rubbed sage
1/2 cup ketchup

Frosting
2 large russet potatoes, peeled
1 cup plain yogurt
Milk to thin

Optional garnish: real bacon bits

Remove ground beef from refrigerator to allow the chill to come off while you begin the recipe. Heat oven to 350°F. Line 9 muffin cups with foil liners; set aside.

Heat a skillet over medium-high heat. Add olive oil, red pepper, and zucchini, and sauté until softened, about 5-10 minutes. In large bowl, combine the cooked veggies with the remaining pupcake ingredients until well combined. Roll mixture into 9 large balls and place in prepared muffin cups.

Bake 35 to 40 minutes or until meat thermometer inserted in center of loaves reads 160ºF. Cool slightly in muffin cups.

While loaves are baking, cut potatoes into large chunks. Place in 3-quart saucepan, cover with water, and heat to boiling. Reduce heat; cook potatoes until fork-tender. Drain; return to saucepan. Add yogurt and beat with an electric mixer, adding milk as necessary, until creamy and smooth like frosting.

Place potatoes in a 10-inch decorating bag and snip the tip as large as you want it to come out. Alternatively, you can place them in a Ziploc bag and snip the corner. Remove the pupcakes from the muffin pan and place on serving plate. Starting at outside of each cake and in a circular motion, pipe potatoes onto each meat loaf. If desired, garnish with bacon bits. Serve warm or room temperature.

A Veronica’s Cornucopia original

Roasted Tomato & Portabella Meatloaf

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Meatloaf with mashed potatoes and Italian Green Beans is my ultimate comfort meal.  But for some reason I rarely make it!  In fact, I only have one other recipe for meatloaf on my blog.  What is up with that?  There’s a good reason that I don’t make other favorites like pecan pie and cheesecake – because I puffy heart loooove them would eat way too much of those fat and sugar bombs.  But meatloaf isn’t necessarily unhealthy (you can even use ground turkey if you like!) and is so delicious.  I really need to make it more often.

My first meatloaf sammie! So good.

I adapted this recipe from my Foodie Mama, Marina‘s, recipe, which she adapted from the original Quaker Oats recipe.  I love that about the online foodie world – recipes keep shifting and changing as they pass from person to person.  I didn’t mean to get all fancy pants on my meatloaf, but baby portabella mushrooms were on sale at Aldi (LOVE ALDI!) for 99 cents and I had no idea what I was going to do with them, and when I decided on meatloaf I had no tomato sauce and had to make my own with canned roasted tomatoes (also from Aldi), so this wonderful meatloaf was born.

This is probably my favorite meatloaf I’ve had so far, but I know there are a lot of different ways to make it and I don’t have a ton of versions to compare it to.  It’s got lots of great flavor, the added veggies keep it nice and moist, and we thought the the sweet and sour roasted tomato sauce really put it over the top.  I hope you enjoy it too!

Roasted Tomato and Portabella Meatloaf

Printable recipe
Printable recipe with picture

2 lbs lean ground beef
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 (8 oz) package mini portabella mushrooms, chopped
1 small onion (or ½ of a medium), diced
1 large clove garlic, minced
1 (15 oz) can diced roasted tomatoes, undrained
¾ cup quick oats
1 large egg
1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce, divided
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon black pepper
½ cup ketchup
½ cup brown sugar
¼ teaspoon lemon juice

Take the ground beef out of the refrigerator 30 minutes before starting the recipe.

Heat the oil in a skillet over medium-high heat and add the mushrooms, onion, and garlic. Saute until softened and all the liquid is evaporated; set aside. Place the roasted tomatoes, with the juice, in a food processor or blender and process for about a minute, or until pureed. Spoon out ½ cup of the puree and add the mushroom mixture to the remaining puree. Process until vegetables are very finely chopped, or until pureed if you don’t want to see them in your meatloaf. If you are using a blender, you might have to stop frequently to stir the mixture.

In a large bowl, mix the ground beef with the tomato and mushroom mixture, oats, egg, 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce, salt, and black pepper. Pat into a loaf pan and set aside.

In a small bowl, combine the reserved toasted tomato puree with ketchup, brown sugar, lemon juice, and 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce. Spread ½-2/3 cup of the sauce over the meatloaf and bake for 1 ½ hours, or until a meat thermometer inserted in the center reads 160F. Remove from oven and carefully pour off the liquid; allow to sit for ten minutes before slicing and serving. Refrigerate leftovers and make meatloaf sandwiches the next day. :)

What’s your ultimate comfort food? Here are a few of my personal favorites…

Chunky Chicken Soup

Easy Salisbury Steaks with Onion Gravy

Creamy Green Chile Chicken Enchilada Casserole

Flatlander Meatloaf & Giveaway!

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Last year my cousin, Eric, started up his own barbeque sauce company called Flatlander (you know, because we live in Kansas–the flattest place on Earth!), and I am in love with his products.  There are three: Original Barbeque Sauce, Spicy Barbeque Sauce, and Doo-Dah Rub.  (Doo-Dah is Wichita’s nickname in case you were wondering about that one).  They are all fantastic but I can’t get enough of the spicy sauce.  I went through an entire bottle yesterday!  Sometimes I will just take slices of cheddar cheese and pour some of that sauce on top for a snack, and once I even poured some directly into my mouth.  I’ve never been a huge barbeque sauce lover, but I do love this sauce!

The original sauce is sweet & perfect.  The spicy is mild enough that even people who don’t like heat would enjoy it, but I really like the zip it has compared to the original.  The rub is a blend of spices & sugar and tastes incredible on chicken.  OK, it tastes incredible on everything–it’s very versatile.  I even put it on my green beans once!

My favorite thing to make with the sauce is Smoky Barbecue Chicken Pizza, but it is good on anything.  My most recent creation is this meatloaf, which I named after the company since I used two of Eric’s products in it.  It is a fun twist on traditional meatloaf, with bacon, cheddar and onions in the loaf and barbecue sauce, more cheddar & bacon, and french-fried onions on top.  Paula Deen, eat your heart out!

Flatlander Meatloaf
Printable Recipe

4 slices bread
2 lb lean ground beef
1 ½ cups shredded cheddar cheese, divided
6 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled, divided
1 small onion, chopped
1 (8 oz) can tomato sauce
1 egg, lightly beaten
2 T Doo-Dah rub*
½ t salt
¼ t pepper
½ c barbecue sauce (I used Flatlander’s spicy)
1/3 c French fried onions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Tear the bread slices into small pieces and process in a food processor or blender until fine crumbs.  In a large bowl, mix the bread crumbs with the ground beef, 1 cup of the cheddar cheese, 3 slices of the crumbled bacon, onion, tomato sauce, egg, Doo-Dah rub*, salt & pepper.  Pat it into a loaf pan and spread the barbecue sauce on top.  Bake for 1 ½ hours (or until a meat thermometer reads 160° F), then remove to drain off the fat & juices, then put more sauce if desired & sprinkle remaining ½ cup cheese, 3 slices crumbled bacon & French fried onions.  Bake until cheese is melted, about five more minutes.  Remove and let sit 10 minutes before slicing. 

*If you would like to make this without the Doo-Dah rub, you could try omitting it completely, replacing it with a mixture of 1 T brown sugar, 1 t paprika, 1 t chili powder and 1 t garlic powder, replacing it with your own meat rub, or replacing the tomato sauce with barbecue sauce.

Recipe source: Recipe Rhapsody

If you would like to win a bottle of all three products as pictured above, simply leave a comment below telling me what’s your favorite thing to make (or eat) with barbecue sauce. To gain an extra entry, subscribe by email (box in upper right corner of my blog) or RSS and let me know you did (or already do) in a second comment. Winner will be chosen using a random number generator and will be announced Tuesday, April 20, 2010. Deadline to enter is Monday, April 19, 2010 at midnight.  Sorry, time’s up! Winner below.

Congratulations to Suzie, commenter number 19, who loves bacon-wrapped barbecue shrimp! The sauce is on its way–go wild!

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