Basic Meat Loaf (Penny Pincher Series #3)

Cut the meat loaf in half and move it to your platter a half at a time.
My husband loves basic things.  This is his favorite meat loaf.  There is plenty of room for add ons if you like or this is just plain good, economical, and easy!

Basic Meat Loaf Ingredients:

2-2 1/2 pounds lean ground meat (traditional is part pork or veal and beef but part turkey is fine)
1/2 sleeve of crushed saltine crackers
1 large egg
1 large finely chopped onion
2/3 C. ketchup + 1/3 C. for topping
2 T. mustard
1/2 T. salt
1/2 t. black pepper + 1/2 t. for topping
pinch crushed red pepper flakes (optional)

I prefer to mix meat loaf early in the day, then refrigerate to let the flavors melt before baking.  I have also mixed the meat loaf, molded it, and frozen it ready to bake.  Be sure the meat you are using has not been previously frozen if you try this!

If baking now preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Mix all of the ingredients except the + ketchup and + black pepper in the large bowl of a stand mixer and mix just until well blended.

Mold into desired shape.  Top with + ketchup and sprinkle with + black pepper.  Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for 1 1/2 hours until done.

Delicious served with macaroni and cheese and green beans or a side salad.  I like the macaroni and cheese baked in the oven with the meat loaf at the same time!   Delicious meat loaf sandwiches the next day on white bread with mustard.  Just like Mother used to make!

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