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Meatloaf in a Muffin Pan

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Meatloaf in a muffin pan is a fun and easy way to enjoy a classic dish. These individual meatloaves cook faster, making them perfect for busy weeknights. Ready in just 15 minutes, this recipe is sure to become a family favorite!

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Ingredients

  • 1 2/3 to 1 3/4 pounds ground sirloin
  • 1 medium onion, cut into chunks
  • 2 ribs celery from the heart of the stalk, cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 1 green bell pepper
  • 1 large egg plus a splash of milk, beaten
  • 1 cup plain bread crumbs
  • 2 tablespoons grill seasoning (recommended: Montreal Steak Seasoning by McCormick)
  • 1 cup smoky barbecue sauce
  • 1/2 cup tomato salsa
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • Vegetable oil or extra-virgin olive oil for greasing

Instructions

Step 1: Preheat the Oven

  1. Preheat Oven:
    • Preheat your oven to 450°F (232°C).

Step 2: Prepare the Vegetables

  1. Chop the Vegetables:
    • In a food processor, pulse the onion, celery, and green bell pepper until finely chopped.

Step 3: Make the Meatloaf Mixture

  1. Combine Ingredients:
    • In a large mixing bowl, combine the ground sirloin, chopped vegetables, beaten egg with milk, bread crumbs, and grill seasoning. Mix well until all ingredients are thoroughly combined.

Step 4: Prepare the Muffin Pan

  1. Grease the Pan:
    • Lightly grease a 12-cup muffin pan with vegetable oil or extra-virgin olive oil.

Step 5: Form and Bake the Meatloaves

  1. Fill the Muffin Pan:
    • Divide the meatloaf mixture evenly among the muffin cups, pressing the mixture firmly into each cup.
  2. Prepare the Topping:
    • In a small bowl, mix together the barbecue sauce, tomato salsa, and Worcestershire sauce.
  3. Top the Meatloaves:
    • Spoon the barbecue sauce mixture evenly over the top of each meatloaf muffin.
  4. Bake:
    • Place the muffin pan in the preheated oven and bake for 15 minutes, or until the meatloaf is cooked through and the tops are caramelized.

Step 6: Serve

  1. Remove and Cool:
    • Remove the meatloaf muffins from the oven and let them cool in the pan for a few minutes.
  2. Serve:
    • Use a spoon or small spatula to remove the meatloaf muffins from the pan. Serve hot with your favorite side dishes.

Cook Notes and Variations

Cook Notes:

  • Ground Sirloin: Ground sirloin is lean and flavorful, but you can also use ground beef, ground turkey, or a mixture of meats.
  • Vegetables: Make sure the vegetables are finely chopped to ensure they mix well into the meatloaf and cook evenly.

Variations:

  • Cheese-Stuffed:
    • Add a small cube of cheese (cheddar, mozzarella, or pepper jack) to the center of each meatloaf muffin before baking for a gooey surprise.
  • Spicy:
    • Add a diced jalapeño or a dash of hot sauce to the meatloaf mixture for a spicy kick.
  • Herb-Flavored:
    • Add fresh herbs like parsley, thyme, or basil to the meatloaf mixture for added flavor.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1. Can I make these meatloaf muffins ahead of time?

Yes, you can prepare the meatloaf mixture and fill the muffin pan ahead of time. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for up to 24 hours before baking.

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2. How do I store leftovers?

Store any leftover meatloaf muffins in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Reheat in the microwave or oven until heated through.

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3. Can I freeze meatloaf muffins?

Yes, you can freeze cooked meatloaf muffins. Let them cool completely, then transfer to a freezer-safe container or bag. Freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight before reheating.

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4. What can I serve with meatloaf muffins?

Serve these meatloaf muffins with mashed potatoes, roasted vegetables, or a fresh salad for a complete meal.

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5. Can I use different types of meat?

Absolutely! You can use ground beef, turkey, chicken, or a combination of meats.

Quick and Convenient

Meatloaf in a muffin pan is a quick and convenient way to enjoy a classic comfort food. These individual meatloaves cook faster and are perfect for portion control. They are great for meal prep, busy weeknights, or any time you need a delicious and easy meal.

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Tips for Success

  1. Even Portions: Use a cookie scoop or measuring cup to ensure even portions and consistent cooking.
  2. Firm Packing: Press the meatloaf mixture firmly into each muffin cup to help the meatloaves hold their shape.
  3. Caramelized Topping: The barbecue sauce mixture on top adds a delicious caramelized glaze, so don’t skip this step!

Meatloaf in a muffin pan is a fun and easy twist on a classic dish. These mini meatloaves are perfect for quick dinners and are sure to be a hit with both kids and adults. Try this recipe for your next meal and enjoy the convenience and deliciousness of meatloaf muffins. Happy cooking!