Keto as a Way of Life
Keto Homestyle Meatloaf Recipe
Meatloaf is one of thos dishes that I MUST try when I see it on a menu at a restaurant.
How well I like the meatload will determine how good I think the restaurant is.
I love the stuff, so it has to be right to satisfy my delicate, manly sensibilities.
That means I’m a pretty picky meatloafer! The problem with meatloaf on Keto, though, is that most recipes call for carb-laden fillers like bread crumbs, crackers, of even croutons. That’s not to mention the sugary ketchup-based sauce that’s typically poured on top.
For a long time after we started Keto, I was resigned only to have meatloaf for the occasional cheat meal.
And then we ran across a recipe for Keto meatloaf on Pinterest!!!!
*** Queue the Choir of Angels! ***
Rebecca and I both were excited to try it, but we weren’t entirely happy with that recipe. It was missing some requirements I have for a ‘good’ meatloaf.
Meatloaf has to have a good, crumbly texture, but still hold together. It also has to be meaty and yummy with a touch of caramelized sweetness from the sauce which should be lightly crusted on top.
To be ok for Keto, meatloaf also has to substitute the carby bread crumbs inside with another filler that will act as a binder as well as a moisture-soaking agent.
Recipe Development Begins
With these requirements in mind, Rebecca and I set out to create our own Keto Meatloaf recipe. In addition to the other requisites I mentioned, we wanted a recipe that we enjoy eating, and that we’re proud enough of to share with our readers.
After a few weeks of trial and error, we landed on a keto meatloaf recipe that we really like and we’re excited to share it with you.
We hope you enjoy it as much as we do.
For this recipe, I used the 73% / 27% lean / fat ground round. For Keto, you can’t beat the extra fat.
Don’t worry about this meatloaf being greasy though. The dry ingredients we’re going to use will soak up the fat as the meatloaf cooks and give the dish a good texture. It won’t come out greasy, and there won’t be as much run off on the pan as you might think.
We like to get our ground beef from Porter Road. They are a local butcher (local to us anyway) and they do meat right!
A Nashville-based business that sources their meat from select local farmers.
They process all their products themselves and sell those products online to make great meat available nationwide.
We were attracted to them at first because they're local to us.
We continue to support Porter Road because their service and products are amazing!
The Dry Ingredients
This one gets its own heading because it’s important.
To stand in for the usual, bread-like fillers that normally go into a meatloaf, we turned to three Keto Kitchen Staples that are pretty easy to get, especially online. Using these, we put together a dry combination that works well.
Made of blanched and ground up almonds, this flour offers texture, flavor and substance to baked items.
Since there is no gluten or binding agent in almond flour, you typically have to use eggs in combination with this ingredient in your recipes.
We've tried a few different brands, and they're all good quality, but for the price, we like Blue Diamond. As I write this, it's $.28 cents/oz on Amazon versus $.52/oz for Anthony's and $.66/oz for Bob's Red Mill.
Ground Flax Seed
Flax seed is one of the essentials of Keto baking. It adds a depth of flavor to breads/muffins. With only 1 net carb per 2 tablespoons, it’s a great addition to any recipe that might use flour or meal.
We like it because it’s also a good source of Magnesium and Omega 3 fatty acids.
For more on Flax Seed, check out our blog post about it, "Why Flaxseed is Good for Keto and Great for You"
Also known as brewer's yeast, this is an inactive yeast that is normally used to add a slightly toasted, mildly cheesy flavor to a recipe.
A lot of people use nutritional yeast in salads for texture and flavor.
I use it in my Jack Daniels BBQ Sauce where it rounds out the flavor, giving it depth and character while picking up some of the slack left by the absence of the not so keto molasses.
Notes on the Method
Mixing the Ingredients:
There’s nothing fancy about this. You put all the ingredients in a large bowl and mix them together.
Let me encourage you not to get in there with your hands and just squeeze and squish things together. The warmth of your hands, an agitating the meat too much will cause weird things to happen with its proteins. It will get tacky and the end product will turn out a bit dense. You’ll lose that bit of crumbly texture that meatloaf should have.
It’s best to mix everything with a metal spoon. And only mix until everything is well combined. Try not to over mixture in order to prevent that tacky texture.
Meatloaf never looks very appealing at this stage. But from humble beginnings often come great things!
Forming the Loaf:
There are a couple ways to do this.
- Dump the meat mixture out onto a foil-lined baking sheet and form it into a loaf with your hands. You could also form it into a football if you’re serving this for game day. Or form it into anything. The sky’s the limit!
- My preferred method is to lubricate a bread loaf pan using butter, lard, or non stick spray, and dump the meat mixture into it. Press the meat into all the corners and edges and smooth out the top. This method suites my OCD because I won’t stand there for 20 minutes trying to get the thing into the perfect loaf shape.
Pro Tip: You still don’t want to over work the meat here. Just like with mixing, make sure to minimize how much you agitate the meat, especially with your warm hands.
This is easy. Bake your meatloaf in a 350 F degree oven for 40 minutes. An instant read thermometer inserted into the center of the loaf should read pretty close to 160 at this point.
Brush the top and sides of the meatloaf with your keto ketchup to make a glaze and put it back in the oven for 10 – 15 more minutes. Keep an eye on it after 10 minutes to make sure the glaze doesn’t get done past what you like. The meatloaf is done when your instant read thermometer reads 165+.
NOTE: I’ve accidentally let my meatloaf get as hot as 180 F before. That won’t really hurt it, especially using a higher fat meat. Your glaze will get pretty dark though.
IMPORTANT NOTE: This is meat. Let is rest for at least 5-10 minutes before you serve it. The juices inside the loaf need to settle in and the proteins need to relax a bit. If you eat it right out of the oven, you’ll not only burn your mouth, your loaf will fall apart, and you won’t get that texture you’ve been working so hard to get.
Thanks for Reading
We hope you enjoy our Keto Homestyle Meatloaf Recipe. If you give this recipe a try, please let us know how it works out for you. Please drop us a line in the comments below, send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org or join us on our Facebook Page where we share and discuss Keto recipes all the time.
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Keto Homestyle Meatloaf Recipe
Hearty, flavorful meatloaf without the carby fillers, topped with a slightly sweet and spicy sauce that's sure to satisfy.
- 1-1/2 pounds Ground Beef 73% / 27% lean/fat
- 3/4 cup Ketchup divided, sugar free
- 1/2 cup White Onion minced
- 1/4 cup Almond Flour
- 1/4 cup Ground Flaxseed
- 1/4 cup Nutritional Yeast
- 2 Large Eggs
- 1 tbsp Worcestershire Sauce
- 2 tsp Garlic Minced
- 1 tsp Dried Thyme
- 1 tsp Black Pepper
- 1 tsp Pink Himalayan Salt
- 1 tsp Paprika
- 1/2 tsp Cumin
Preheat Oven to 350 degrees F.
Set aside 1/4 cup of ketchup
Combine the rest of the ingredients in a large mixing bowl.
Using a metal spoon, combine the ingredients until mixed well.
Do NOT over mix. This prevents the meat from getting a tacky texture.
Shape the meatloaf onto a foiled-lined sheet pan. Do this free form OR use a loaf pan prepared with nonstick spray; then turn the formed loaf out onto the foil-lined sheet pan.
Bake for 40 minutes.
Check temperature with a meat thermometer; meatloaf should be about 155-160F degrees.
Brush the top and sides of the meatloaf with the reserved 1/4 cup of ketchup.
Put back in oven and bake at 350 for 10 more minutes.
Meatloaf is done at 165F degees.
Remove from oven and let rest for at least 10 minutes before cutting to serve.
Servings: 8 slices. Approx. 5.5 oz each.
Macro calculations are per slice and based on cutting 8 slices from the loaf.
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