Meatloaf is always one of those quick and easy meals that doesn’t take much to make but there are about a bazillion ways to make it. (Is bazillion a word? Spell check isn’t changing it for me!)
Even with those numerous versions, I have never had it anywhere outside my family with mozzarella cheese inside, and I won’t eat it any other way. For me, the cheese is what makes it so good.
So maybe no one else does this and I am giving away a ‘secret family recipe’. If so, sorry family!! Then again, it isn’t the first family recipe I’ve posted (Chicken a la Gurnham & Christmas Sandwiches).
This recipe makes a huge loaf, and it reheats really well for leftovers the next day. We often make this during the week so we have leftovers for lunch for a day or two, especially when we were both working outside the house.
The trick to this is to use either a silicone mat or aluminum foil to roll the meatloaf. Once you have all the cheese inside, it’s not easy to use your hands to fold it over properly. I’ve always used aluminum foil, but in my efforts to cut waste we will be using our silicone mat next time.
Step by Step
Preheat the oven to 350F. In a large mixing bowl, mix the ground beef, bread crumbs, eggs, parsley, onion, pepper, spaghetti sauce, onion powder, and garlic powder.
You can try to use a spoon but I find it’s best to get down and dirty and use your hands to mix everything thoroughly.
Spread the meat mixture out onto a large silicone mat or piece of aluminum foil. Again, a rolling pin usually sticks to the meat, so your hands work the best.
Place the cheese down the center of the meat, leaving about 1/4″-1/2″ around the edges.
Use the mat or foil to roll both sides of the meat together. I find it works best to bring one side up to just past center, then bring the other close to it. Peel the foil away from the bottom side, and lay the top over the exposed meat. Then press to seal the meat together.
Roll up the ends of the meat and press to seal so the cheese doesn’t leak out from the sides, either.
Cover the entire thing with tomato paste. Make sure to get the top and all of the sides.
Carefully move the entire thing to a baking dish or a cookie sheet with sides (to catch any juices). Bake for about 40-45 minutes, until the meat is done. Use a meat thermometer to check the doneness as the spaghetti sauce and tomato paste will make the meat look red when you cut into it. Just make sure the thermometer is reading the meat and not all the way through to the cheese.
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- 2 lb ground beef
- 1 cup bread crumbs
- 2 eggs
- 1 1/2 tsp parsley
- 1/4 cup onion (chopped)
- 1/4 tsp pepper
- 3/4 cup spaghetti sauce
- 1 tsp onion powder
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 3 cups mozzarella cheese (shredded)
- 6 oz tomato paste
- Preheat oven to 350
- In a large mixing bowl, combine the ground beef, bread crumbs, eggs, parsley, onion, pepper, spaghetti sauce, onion powder, and garlic powder
- Roll out meat mixture onto a piece of aluminum foil until about 1/4″ thick
- Pour cheese down the center of the meat
- Use foil to roll both sides of meat on top of each other, then peel the foil and seal the meat
- Roll up ends so cheese doesn’t leak
- Cover with tomato paste
- Put on baking sheet and bake for 40-45 minutes or until meat is done