I LOVE to play in the kitchen….well, at least it feels like playing! I have so much fun inventing new dishes and trying out my own recipes. I love to take a classic dish and put a new spin on it. One of my favorite dishes to play with is meatloaf. Growing up, I wasn’t a huge fan, but as I’ve gotten older, I’ve created a handful of winning new recipes for this tried and true classic.

Last night, I made an Italian style meatloaf. It was perfect served up alongside some vermicelli and spinach. This recipe would also make FABULOUS meatballs!

Here’s What You Need: (I have inherited a habit of not measuring from my father, so I will do my best to approximate.)

1 lb. ground beef

1 c. Italian style breadcrumbs (You can get two huge cans at Costco for 4 bucks. If you don’t have any on hand, you can make your own.)

1/2 c. Parmesan cheese (straight out of the little green shaker)

1 T oregano

1 T basil

1 t garlic salt

1 can Italian style tomatoes

1 egg

sprinkle of spaghetti sauce seasoning envelope

marinara sauce


Mix all ingredients except marinara sauce together in a large bowl. Mix well, making sure to incorporate all spices well. Because you can’t taste your mixture to see if it is well seasoned, you can smell the ground beef mixture. If you can’t smell the seasonings, add a bit more. If your meat mixture seems too wet, add more breadcrumbs. The mix should be moderately stiff. Put your meat mixture into a loaf pan,and top with marinara sauce. (Save the rest of the sauce to go on your noodles that night!) Bake at 350 degrees for a little over an hour. Let rest 5-10 minutes covered in foil prior to serving. (This will help prevent the meatloaf from falling apart.)

You can also make this up in advance. I prepared my meatloaf during nap time (when my kitchen is SO much quieter!) and then baked several hours later.

I hope you will try out a new twist on an old favorite! Happy cooking!