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Slow Cooker Meatloaf Recipe

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Slow Cooker Meatloaf is a classic comfort food that’s easy to prepare and full of flavor. Cooking meatloaf in a slow cooker ensures it stays moist and juicy while allowing the flavors to meld together beautifully. In this blog post, we’ll walk you through the ingredients, instructions, and tips for making the perfect Slow Cooker Meatloaf. Additionally, we’ll provide variations and address frequently asked questions to ensure you achieve the best results.

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Ingredients

For the Meatloaf:

  • 2 pounds ground beef
  • 1 yellow onion, minced (use some for glaze below)
  • 12 ounces dried stuffing mix
  • 1.5 cups milk
  • 2 eggs
  • Salt and pepper to taste

For the Glaze:

  • 1.5 cups ketchup
  • 1/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons minced onion (from above)
  • 2 teaspoons white vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon yellow mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper

Instructions

Step 1: Prepare the Meatloaf Mixture

  1. Soak Stuffing Mix: In a large mixing bowl, combine the dried stuffing mix with the milk. Let it soak for a few minutes until the milk is absorbed.
  2. Mix Ingredients: Add the ground beef, minced onion, eggs, salt, and pepper to the bowl with the soaked stuffing mix. Mix everything together until well combined. Avoid overmixing, as this can make the meatloaf tough.

Step 2: Shape the Meatloaf

  1. Shape Loaf: Shape the meat mixture into a loaf shape and place it in the bottom of your slow cooker.

Step 3: Prepare the Glaze

  1. Mix Glaze Ingredients: In a small bowl, combine the ketchup, light brown sugar, minced onion, white vinegar, yellow mustard, and pepper. Stir until well mixed.

Step 4: Cook the Meatloaf

  1. Add Glaze: Pour about half of the glaze over the top of the meatloaf, spreading it evenly.
  2. Cook: Cover the slow cooker with the lid and cook on low for 6-7 hours or on high for 3-4 hours, until the meatloaf is cooked through and the internal temperature reaches 160°F (71°C).

Step 5: Finish and Serve

  1. Add More Glaze: About 30 minutes before the end of the cooking time, pour the remaining glaze over the meatloaf.
  2. Rest: Once cooked, let the meatloaf rest for a few minutes before slicing.
  3. Serve: Slice the meatloaf and serve hot, with your favorite sides. Enjoy!

Cooking Notes and Variations

Cooking Notes

  • Meat Mixture: You can use a combination of ground beef and ground pork for extra flavor.
  • Stuffing Mix: The dried stuffing mix adds great flavor and texture to the meatloaf. You can substitute it with bread crumbs or crushed crackers if desired.

Variations

  1. Cheesy Meatloaf: Add 1 cup of shredded cheese to the meat mixture for a cheesy twist.
  2. BBQ Meatloaf: Substitute the ketchup in the glaze with your favorite BBQ sauce for a smoky flavor.
  3. Vegetable Meatloaf: Add finely chopped vegetables like bell peppers, carrots, or celery to the meat mixture for added nutrition and flavor.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q1: Can I use ground turkey instead of ground beef?

A: Yes, you can use ground turkey or a mixture of ground turkey and ground beef. Adjust the cooking time as needed to ensure the meatloaf reaches an internal temperature of 165°F (74°C).

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Q2: How do I store leftovers?

A: Store any leftover meatloaf in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Reheat slices in the microwave or oven before serving.

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Q3: Can I freeze this meatloaf?

A: Yes, you can freeze cooked meatloaf. Allow it to cool completely, then wrap it tightly in plastic wrap and aluminum foil. Freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight before reheating.

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Q4: What can I serve with meatloaf?

A: Meatloaf pairs well with mashed potatoes, roasted vegetables, green beans, or a fresh salad. It’s also delicious with a side of garlic bread.

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Q5: Can I make this meatloaf in the oven?

A: Yes, you can bake this meatloaf in the oven. Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C). Place the meatloaf in a loaf pan or on a baking sheet and bake for 1 to 1.5 hours, until the internal temperature reaches 160°F (71°C). Add the glaze during the last 15-20 minutes of baking.

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Slow Cooker Meatloaf is a classic and comforting dish that’s easy to make and full of flavor. With its tender texture and delicious glaze, it’s sure to become a family favorite. Follow these simple steps and tips to create a hearty and satisfying meal that your loved ones will enjoy. Serve this delicious meatloaf with your favorite sides for a complete and comforting dinner!