September brings us solidly into back-to-school territory, and whether or not you have kids in school, I’m a firm believer that we all need a few comfort meals at our disposal any night of the week. The stressful nights need a dinner just like this.
This meatloaf uses a packet of French onion dip mix for ultimate nostalgic flavor AND as a huge time saver – no chopping of anything, thank you very much. The result is an ultra-moist, totally foolproof meatloaf that comes out perfectly every time.
Bonus: French onion dip usually comes in boxes with two packets, so you can use the other for similarly old school French onion dip and potato chips this weekend while you watch football.
French Onion Meatloaf
Prep: 20 minutes Cook: 1 hour Serves: 4-6
- 2 pounds ground beef
- 1/3 cup panko bread crumbs
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 2 eggs
- 1 onion soup dip mix packet
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- Kosher salt
- 1/4 cup ketchup
- 2 tablespoons balsamic glaze (I get mine at Trader Joe’s!)
Preheat the oven to 375F. Prepare a medium sized baking dish with some cooking spray. In a large bowl, combine the panko and cream and let sit for 5 minutes to soften.
Add the eggs, onion soup, and Worcestershire to the bowl and stir to combine. Add the ground beef and mix using your hands, working quickly and gently just until everything is combined.
Carefully form the meatloaf into a gentle oval shape in the baking dish. Keep the overall mixture somewhat loose; just working toward an even oval without pressing too much. Sprinkle the top of the meatloaf with kosher salt.
Stir together the ketchup and balsamic glaze, and spread that over the top of the meatloaf – it’s ok if some drips down the edges.
Bake the meatloaf for 1 hour or until the internal temperature reaches 165F. Let the meatloaf rest for 10 minutes out of the oven before slicing and serving with the pan drippings.
Use any kind of beef you like! I find that really lean beef (90% or higher) yields a less juicy and more dry meatloaf, so keep that in mind. that said, ground turkey (not ground turkey breast) and super lean beef can be used if needed.
Don’t obsess about the panko – use regular breadcrumbs if that’s all you have. I cook this in a flat baking dish (any size larger than 8 inches or so works fine!) instead of a loaf pan because I like the crispy edges that the open air of the oven gives. If you prefer to cook this in a loaf pan you can, just add about 10 minutes to the cooking time and/or use a meat thermometer to be sure the meatloaf is cooked through.
Make Ahead: The meatloaf can be made in advance and reheated like you would leftovers. Additionally, you can form it in advance and keep it in the fridge covered with plastic wrap for up to 3 days, then uncover, add the ketchup sauce, and bake on the night you’d like to eat it to save some time.
Serving: I love this meatloaf with a quick cooking green veg and plain white rice (to catch all the drippings from the meatloaf!). After 30 minutes of cooking the meatloaf, start some white rice per the package directions; it’ll be done right about the time the meatloaf is. For a green veg (think broccolini, thin green beans, asparagus), heat a skillet with olive oil over medium heat. Sauté the greens for 5 minutes until just slightly browned at the edges and bright green everywhere else, then add 1/2 cup water and continue cooking until the vegetable is soft and most of the water has evaporated. Sprinkle with salt and squeeze lemon wedge over top, then serve.
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