Mini Turkey Meatloaf with Roasted Red Peppers, Spinach & Feta


I am pretty surprised myself that I’m proudly posting a recipe for meatloaf. What a frumpy food! I associate meatloaf with flavorless, dense, brown, sad clumps of meat stuffed with artificially-sweetened ketchup and some misery. That’s my dramatic way of saying that I don’t really like meatloaf. My first, and most intelligent, issue with it is that meatloaf is kind of a gross name. 


Once I get past the name, the other, less important issue is the flavor. I made some major switches to the standard meatloaf to lighten it up and add some fresh herbs, veggies, and cheese. This meatloaf is ground turkey-based and features sauteed baby spinach, roasted red peppers, onion, and garlic together with some Italian spices to make the flavors more pronounced: 


I went with individual servings of meatloaf for a couple of conveniences. 
  • First, I think the single-servings would be perfect to customize for picky eaters (aka husbands and children), adding veggies or swapping out cheeses as needed. 
  • Second, we can’t eat all of this at once, and the individual portions are perfect for freezing. I can thaw them out as needed and spice up salads and to serve as a sandwich. 
  • Third, and my guiding reason behind the mini loaf concept, is that I had been dying, just dying, to use this beautiful {gold} miniature loaf baking sheet that we received for our wedding: 


I will say this: if it is possible for a dowdy old meatloaf ever to be considered “cute,” then I think these mini meatloaves deserve that designation. They’re kind of precious, but maybe in the same way that Mops is kind of cute sometimes. I’ll leave that up to you.


I served my miniature turkey meatloaf (meatloaves? meatloafs? Whatever) on top of some sauteed sweet potato and zucchini. I haven’t the faintest idea why my husband sometimes challenges me to go 24 hours without serving a sweet potato. Or, why he thinks I would ever accept that challenge. 


 Turkey Meatloaf with Roasted Red Peppers, Spinach & Feta
Makes 6 mini meatloaves or 1 large meatloaf

You will need:
  • 1/2 cup onion, chopped
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil 
  • 1/2 tsp. minced fresh garlic
  • 1/4 tsp. each sea salt and black pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups baby spinach, chopped
  • 2/3 cup roasted red peppers
  • 1/8 tsp. onion powder
  • 1/4 tsp. each dried rosemary, oregano, basil, and red pepper flakes
  • 20 ounces (1.25 pounds) lean ground turkey
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 1/2 tsp. lemon zest
  • 1/2 cup plain bread crumbs
  • 1 tbsp. dried parsley
  • 1/2 cup crumbled feta

Method:

  • Preheat oven to 350 and spray or lightly grease a loaf pan (or six wells in a mini loaf pan). 
  • Heat olive oil, garlic, onion, salt, and pepper in a large skillet on medium heat for two to three minutes. 
  • Add chopped baby spinach, roasted red peppers, onion powder, and remaining spices. Cook for three to five additional minutes, stirring occasionally. Turn off heat. 
  • In a large bowl, mix ground turkey, egg, lemon zest, bread crumbs, parsley, and feta. Stir in sauteed veggies. 
  • Pack meat mixture into six wells of a miniature loaf pan or into a large loaf pan. 
  • Bake at 350 for 30 minutes (for mini meatloaves) or 60 minutes (for one large meatloaf). 
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