A comforting, bacon-coated meatloaf might be just the ticket this week.
Meatloaf is like potato salad. Most of us either loved, and are still loyal to, whatever version of the dish we grew up with, or we so seriously disliked it that the feeling lingered well into adulthood.
I was in the latter camp for years. My mother, who was generally an excellent cook, loved to put lots of chunky ingredients into her meatloaf, and one of them was dill pickles. As a child, I found that addition to be a deal breaker.
I was an adult before I realized there are a million delicious ways to make this iconic comfort food, and most of them don’t include pickles.
Since we could all use a little comfort, a Bacon-Coated Meatloaf with Mustard-Brown Sugar Glaze feels like a good choice for dinner.
For this meatloaf, ground beef and pork are combined with eggs, garlic, breadcrumbs and grated carrot and onion. I like to grate the vegetables, as opposed to chopping them, because I want them to melt into the meatloaf, giving it added moisture and flavor without breaking up the texture.
Bacon slices are shingled onto the top of the loaf, which is coated with an easy, and addictively tasty, Dijon mustard and brown sugar glaze.
The glaze is applied again a couple of times during the baking process. This helps to create a nice stickiness to the outside of the meatloaf, which is briefly broiled at the end in order to caramelize the top a bit and crisp the edges of the bacon.
The result is a smoky, savory-sweet dish that will surely become a new favorite, no matter which side of the “love it” or “leave it” fence you grew up on.
Meredith Deeds is a cookbook author and food writer from Edina. Reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow her on Instagram at @meredithdeeds.
Bacon-Covered Meatloaf With Mustard-Brown Sugar Glaze
Serves 6 to 8.
Salty, smoky bacon and a sticky, sweet mustard-brown sugar glaze play together beautifully on this moist, flavorful, old-fashioned meatloaf. From Meredith Deeds.
• 1/2 c. dry breadcrumbs
• 1/2 c. milk
• 2 eggs
• 1 medium onion, grated
• 1 medium carrot, peeled and grated
• 2 finely chopped garlic cloves
• 4 tbsp. Dijon mustard, divided
• 1 1/2 tsp. salt
• 1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
• 1 lb. ground beef
• 1 lb. ground pork
• 1/2 c. light brown sugar
• 1 tbsp. apple cider vinegar
• 8 slices bacon
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Spray a large, rimmed baking sheet with cooking spray.
In a large bowl, stir together the breadcrumbs, milk and eggs and let sit for 5 minutes. Add the onion, carrot, garlic, 1 tablespoon mustard, salt and pepper. Stir to combine. Add the beef and pork and, using your hands, mix gently until the mixture is thoroughly combined, but still slightly loose.
In a small bowl, whisk together the remaining 3 tablespoons mustard, brown sugar and vinegar.
Place the meat mixture on the prepared baking sheet and form into a 9- by 5-inch loaf. Spoon 3 tablespoons of the mustard glaze on top of the meatloaf and brush it all over the top and sides. Cover the top with slightly overlapping slices of bacon.
Bake for 30 minutes, brush 3 tablespoons of the mustard glaze all over the meatloaf. Bake for another 20 minutes and brush with remaining glaze. Continue baking for another 10 to 15 minutes, until an instant-read thermometer registers 155 degrees when inserted into the middle of the meatloaf. Turn the oven on to the broil setting for 5 minutes, until the top of the meatloaf is browned and the edges of the bacon are crispy. Remove from the oven and let rest for 10 minutes before serving.