Sunday, April 19, 2015

Meatloaf, Paleo Variety

The other day I was in the mood for some comfort food and thought how delicious a meatloaf would be.  Meatloaf, mashed potatoes with butter, green beans and apple pie a la mode, what a delicious dream that was.  Of course, it would be a paleo nightmare, since the only cave man approved item on the list would be green beans.  The mashed potatoes were totally out but I could substitute a baked sweet potato, and I could have apple pie a la mode as long as it was minus the crust, sugar, and everything dairy.  Green beans were perfectly acceptable as they were, which only left a major reworking of the traditional meat loaf recipe.  To be honest I had no idea if this would work or not, but figured the taste would be fine.  I am very happy I tried it because it turned out fairly well.

                                   Caveman Meatloaf

2 pounds ground beef
1 onion, chopped
4 carrots minced
1/4 cup chopped red pepper
1 zucchini, shredded
1/2 carton mushrooms chopped finely
2 eggs
1/3 cup ketchup ( I used paleo ketchup but any would do)
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon thyme
1 tablespoon dried parsley
dash red pepper flakes

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

In a large bowl, mix all the ingredients together well.  Put the meat mixture in a mound in the bottom center of a 9x13 baking pan.  Form the mound into a loaf.  I will be a little under half the width of the pan and will be about 11 inches long.  You want/need a bit of airspace around it just so it will be a bit sturdier when the cooking is done.  Cook uncovered for about 35 minutes and check for doneness.  The top should feel uniformly solid and should not give much (if any) when touched. Remove from the oven and let it rest about 10 minutes before cutting.  Make sure to use a large metal spatula when serving the meatloaf.  Since this has no bread or oatmeal as a binder it is a little delicate and hard to remove. Of the 3 slices plated, I only managed to keep 2 of them intact.

The taste of this was spot on.  The non- paleo people here loved it and said they would like to have this again soon. I might add a tablespoon or so of coconut flour just to see if that helps hold it together a little better. Or maybe not!  Since I know it is fragile I can just take extreme care when plating it.

This was a veggie dense main dish, but I had been a vegetable slacker all day so I served it with cole slaw, green beans, and a white sweet potato.  If you have never had the white sweet potato before I strongly recommend it.  It is a little less sweet, but still has the same lower starch feel that a traditional one has.  It is also much more fibrous than a white potato.  Maybe it was all mental and just the absence of the orange flesh, but I enjoyed it much more than usual.

And what about that apple pie, well I am just going to save that for a non-paleo day and eat the real thing.  Some things ARE worth waiting for!


  1. I think you just described the perfect meal--that is until you substituted the sweet potato for the regular potato. I don't like sweet potatoes--never have. I wish I did because they are so nutritionally rich and can adapt to so many cooking methods. Oh, well.

  2. I feel your sweet potato disdain. I don't care for them but I am making myself eat them. Not loving it!

  3. Have you tried putting the chopped zucchini your hamburgers? Once you have, it is hard to eat those burgers without it.

    1. I haven't but I will give it a try. I am trying to vegetables to everything I eat and always looking for additional ways to "green" up my food.