Trying new foods is a good thing and when new foods are old standards with a new twist, its even better! While my spicy meatloaf is by no means unique, its got some added elements to make it healthier and packed with flavor.
I was inspired by a recipe I saw in one of my new favorite magazines Eating Well. They show us that eating healthy can still be eating delicious. And in my book that’s a win-win!
Let’s start by getting our ingredients together aka mise en place. The recipe called for lean ground beef and lean pork but I went with standard ground chuck and ground pork, because fat does add flavor and most of it cooks out during the roasting process. The problem with starting with super lean meats is they become very dry in the cooking process. You just want to limit how often you eat fatty meats, saving it for special flavorful occasions.
The meatloaf mixture was very wet when I made it and was tempted to add in dry breadcrumbs, but I’m glad I didn’t. The meatloaf was not as rigid as a standard meatloaf, which in my estimation was a very good thing. I wound up cutting it with a serrated knife which did a great job. I think the only problem I had with it being too moist was including all the milk from soaking the breadcrumbs. Make sure to squeeze out the milk from your bread crumbs when making this spicy meatloaf. I also added in some beet greens with the collard greens and the only problem with that was that the red from the beet greens bled in spots making Lisa think it was raw…..sigh. But that’s a story for another day!
You do want to make sure you always temp anything you make with ground meat and your thermometer must read at least 165 degrees. My spicy meatloaf was reading 175 when I took it out of the oven.
The flavors were amazing and not only did Lisa go back for seconds, she wanted to have the leftovers for dinner the next night. I did manage to save some for a cold meatloaf sandwich and ended up just eating it without bread, which definitely says a lot for the meatloaf!
- 1 pound ground chuck
- 1 pound ground pork
- 12 ounces collard greens washed and chopped
- 1 cup diced onion
- 4 cloves garlic finely chopped
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 tablespoon hot sauce (optional)
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
- ½ teaspoon cumin
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1½ cup fresh breadcrumbs
- ½ cup milk
- 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
- ¾ cup ketchup
- preheat oven to 350 degrees
- In a large hot saute pan add olive oil, garlic, onions, collard greens. Season with sea salt and black pepper to taste. Saute about 2 minutes or until the collards are bright green.
- Add hot sauce, Worcestershire and spices and continue to saute until greens are wilted.
- Transfer mixture to a large bowl and allow to cool.
- Combine bread crumbs and milk and allow to set for 5-10 minutes
- Add beef, pork, breadcrumbs (squeeze out all of the milk and discard before adding bread crumbs), ½ cup ketchup, eggs and ½ teaspoon salt to the greens.
- Mix together thoroughly but gently. Do not overmix, the meatloaf will get tough.
- Form meat into a loaf in a large prepared baking dish or sheet. Use parchment paper or spray dish with pan spray prior to placing meatloaf in pan.
- Bake meatloaf for 30 minutes, then remove from oven and brush the top with the remaining ketchup.
- Continue baking at 400 degrees for 30 minutes. Make sure to check your internal temp with a thermometer, it must read at least 165 degrees to be fully cooked.
- Let meatloaf rest for 10 minutes before slicing.