Meatloaf is a dinnertime staple for many families. A favorite of adults and children alike, meatloaf can be prepared however cooks see fit, making it a versatile dish for family dinners. Parents who want to enjoy meatloaf with their families and do so while promoting healthy diets can try the following recipe for “Turkey, Vegetable & Oat Mini-Meatloaves with Marinara Sauce” from Michelle Dudash’s “Clean Eating For Busy Families” (Fair Winds).
Turkey, Vegetable & Oat Mini-Meatloaves with Marinara Sauce
Expeller-pressed canola oil spray
1 8-ounce package crimini (baby bella) mushrooms (about 21/2 cups)
1 small yellow onion, cut into eighths
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon extra-virgin oil
1 cup dry rolled oats
2 large eggs
1 pound lean ground turkey (or beef or bison)
13/4 cups pasta sauce, divided
3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon Italian herb seasoning
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Preheat oven to 375 F. Coat a 9 x 13-inch baking pan or 6 mini loaf pans with spray. Pulse mushrooms in a food processor until finely chopped and add them to a large bowl. Repeat with onion and garlic.
Place a large frying pan over medium heat and add oil. When oil is shimmering, add vegetables and sauté for 7 minutes or until water releases and evaporates completely, lowering the heat as necessary. Set aside.
Process the oats until they are of a fine consistency. Whisk the eggs in the bowl used for the vegetables. Add processed oats, turkey, 3/4 cup of pasta sauce, cooked vegetables, vinegar, Italian seasoning, salt, and pepper and stir together with a fork until blended.
Scoop the mixture into 6 mounds on the pan or into each mini-loaf pan, about 3/4 cup each. Shape each mound into a 4 x 2-inch loaf. Spread remaining 1 cup of pasta sauce on top of the loaves, distributing evenly. Bake on middle rack for 25 minutes, turning pan midway through cooking, until loaves are firm or a thermometer inserted in the middle reads at least 165 F. Allow loaves to rest for 5 minutes before serving.
Recipe Notes: You can finely chop vegetables with a knife rather than using a food processor if you prefer.
Whole oats can be added to the meat mixture for a more rustic texture.