Perfect Meatloaf

Meatloaf is one of those recipes that a lot of people don’t cook because the word “loaf” doesn’t sound that appetizing.

About 10 years ago when I was starting to get interested in cooking, I stumbled upon Paula Deen’s meatloaf recipe.


Over the past decade I’ve made little tweaks to my liking. So this recipe is a spin-off of the Southern Cooking Queen Paula Deen’s Old Fashion Meatloaf.

First I sauté onion, bell pepper, and garlic in a skillet with olive oil until tender.

PD doesn’t cook them so they have a bit of crunch in the meat. I don’t like the crunch.

Also, if you are in a pinch, use Guidry’s seasoning if you don’t have time to chop veggies.

Add the veggies in a bowl with ground beef, egg, seasonings, tomato sauce, and bread crumbs. Stir to combine. (PD uses oats instead of bread crumbs and diced tomatoes instead of tomato sauce.)

Form into a loaf in a casserole dish or pan. If you have a rack, even better!

Next, make “the sauce.” Paula Deen came up with the perfect ratio of mustard, ketchup, and brown sugar. No tweaks made to “the sauce.”

It is perfect as it is.

Bake in a preheated oven at 375 degrees for 1 hour.

I was entirely too lazy to take it out of the pan and take a pretty picture of it.

Is there ever really a pretty picture of meatloaf?

But OMG is it delicious!!!


JuJu’s Perfect Meatloaf

1/3 cup onion, finely chopped

1/3 cup green bell pepper, finely chopped

3 cloves garlic, minced

1-1.25 lb ground beef (I use 80/20)

1 egg

3/4 tsp kosher salt

1/2 tsp Tony Chachere’s or your favorite Cajun seasoning

1/4 tsp black pepper

8oz. can tomato sauce

1/2 cup Italian bread crumbs

1/3 cup ketchup

2 tbsp. brown sugar

1 tbsp. yellow mustard

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Saute onion, bell pepper, garlic in a little olive oil until tender.

Add veggies to a bowl with beef, egg, seasonings, tomato sauce, and bread crumbs.

Form into a loaf in a greased pan.

In a small bowl, stir together ketchup, brown sugar, mustard.

Spread on top of loaf.

Bake for 1 hour.


For Paula Deen’s similar recipe, click HERE.

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