There’s a family history about Granny Smith’s Meatloafies. My mother loved the outsides of meats – the outside cut of the roast, the edges on a good meatloaf – so when I made meatloaf for her, I made individual-sized “loafies” so she could have more of the tasty crust.
Along the way, I discovered another benefit: mini loaves also cook much faster! That meant I could have supper on the table in less than an hour, so the “loafies” became my family standard. Mom loved ketchup, too, so there’s a nice slug of it in the mix. Of course, she always wanted more on the side.
This meatloaf, which includes thyme and a grated tart apple (we prefer Granny Smith in here, hence the name) has a terrific flavor and rustic texture that’s perfect hot or cold.
My mom said so, so you know it’s true!
a note on the stuffing mix
My grandmother used stale bread soaked in milk; my mom used cracker crumbs. I’ve found the best shortcut ever is to use herb-seasoned stuffing mix – basically irregular shreds of bread, dried, with herbs.
Granny Smith’s Meatloafies freeze well in either baked or unbaked state. To freeze unbaked, place the shaped loafies on their pan directly into the freezer, loosely covered with waxed paper. When they are completely frozen, put in a zip-top freezer bag, label and date. Best used within 6 months. To bake from frozen: add 15 minutes cooking time (at least) and rely on your instant-read thermometer to know when they are completely cooked.
Granny Smith's Meatloafies
- 2 lb ground sirloin (90-93% lean)
- 1 to 1½ cups herb-seasoned stuffing mix (shreds, not cubed)
- 1 medium Granny Smith apple, peeled & grated
- 1 small onion, grated
- 3 eggs
- 1 tsp salt
- ½ cup ketchup (or a bit more, to taste)
- 1½ tsp dried thyme
- Preheat oven to 350˚F. For easiest cleanup, line a jelly roll or half-sheet pan with aluminum foil or parchment paper, making sure the lining comes up the sides of the pan.
- Mix all ingredients together in a large bowl, and stir gently just until combined. Don’t squeeze the mixture; too much compression makes a tough result.
- Form the mixture into 6 to 8 oval “loafies”. Wet hands with cool water to keep it from sticking to your hands. Space the individual loaves on the baking sheet.
- Bake 25-30 minutes, until cooked through. Check the internal temperature: it should be 160-165 for mini loaves. Let them rest 5 minutes before serving. You’ll want to let them cool completely to get nice even slices for the best meatloaf sandwiches.