This recipe for ultimate meatloaf begins with a mixture of sautéed vegetables, combines both pork and beef, and finishes with a glaze on top. For a dish that doesn’t excite many people, this one will make you a fan. Whether it’s made for a weeknight meal or a weekend celebration, it’s a great recipe for any dinner!
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Have a parchment-lined baking sheet prepared and set aside.
Roughly chop the onions, carrots, and celery. Clean and quarter the mushrooms. Add the prepared vegetables and garlic to a large food processor, or work in two batches if too large for one batch. Fill the processor and pulse the vegetables until they are finely minced, 10-15 pulses. Without a food processor, the vegetables can be minced by hand.
In a 4-quart saucepan, warm 2 tablespoons of butter over medium heat. Once the butter is warm, add the prepared vegetables and salt. Sauté the mixture until the vegetables are cooked down and begin to brown, 8-12 minutes. Add the minced thyme and tomato paste and stir into the vegetables. Cook the tomato paste until it darkens and starts to coat the bottom of the saucepan, 4-6 minutes. Once the tomato paste is cooked, remove the mixture from the heat to cool.
In a large bowl, beat the eggs until smooth. Add the ground beef, ground pork, Worcestershire sauce, breadcrumbs, Dijon mustard, salt, black pepper, beef stock, and cooled vegetable mixture. Stir to combine, and ensure the mixture is well mixed with no pockets of unmixed meat or vegetables.
Pat the mixture into a loaf shape on the prepared sheet pan, roughly 12 inches by 9 inches. Mix together the ketchup and Dijon mustard and brush the top of the meatloaf. Bake in the preheated 350°F until the center reaches 160°F, 45-60 minutes. Once baked, remove from the oven and cool for 15 minutes before slicing and serving.
When processing the vegetables, make sure that they are finely diced but do not become a paste. If the vegetables are processed for too long, they’ll break down further than is desirable for this recipe, and too much water content will be exuded, making them pasty. Process the vegetables until they are crumb-like in texture.
Make sure that the cooked vegetable mixture cools down to approximately room temperature before adding it to the meat mixture. In terms of food safety, adding a hot mixture to the meat could make for an unsafe environment.
While it’s optional, mixing together the ingredients with your hands will ensure an evenly combined mixture. If using a spoon to combine everything, pockets of meat or vegetable may remain unmixed. But if using your hands, you can feel the texture of the entire mixture and will find any unmixed sections.