To say that this Summer has been one of rest and relaxation would be a big, fat lie. So far, this particularly hot and muggy season has been nothing but exhausting; new job, new house, new projects, and new routines (if you can call anything in our life right now “routine”). I’m not complaining (ok, maybe a little), everything that has happened has been needed, somewhat planned for, but it has wreaked havoc on daily life in our family.
Our kids, who are now almost 9 (!), have been staying with my parents quite a bit. My parents have become the babysitters I desperately needed when we lived a couple states away with two babies on my hip. We still desperately need them and I am thankful for their help. The biggest downside to all of this (besides trying to figure out when “family-time” is supposed to happen) has been figuring out meal time. There have been week-long stretches where my family hasn’t eaten a single meal at home. The amount of food that we have purchased from restaurants has gone through the roof and my poor children have eaten so many hamburgers that they are now firmly against hamburgers for any meal at any time in the near future. They are hungry for routine and a home-cooked meal…and so am I.
So, I have decided that no matter how late dinner is going to be, we will eat dinner at home as much as we can. This also means that quick and easy are absolutely necessary. With a little kid-friendliness and a splash of healthy stuff, these mini-meatloaves are a great way to return to routine and they come together in about 30 minutes.
- 1 ½ pounds ground beef (chuck or round, preferably)
- ¼ cup rolled oats
- 1 large carrot, finely shredded
- 1 small onion, finely diced
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
- ½ cup shredded cheese
- 1 t. kosher salt
- ¼ t. pepper
- ½ t. garlic powder
- ¼ t. dry mustard
- ½ cup ketchup
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Put the oats in a blender and pulse until you have a fine powder. Add the beef, ground oats, carrot, onion, egg, cheese, and seasonings to a large bowl and combine with clean hands until everything is well incorporated.
- Line a baking sheet with foil and spray with cooking spray. Divide the meat into 7 even portions and shape each portion into a torpedo-like shape. Place each meatloaf onto the baking sheet and bake for 20-30 minutes or until a thermometer registers 160 degrees. Top each loaf with a spoonful of ketchup and return to the oven for an additional 2-3 minutes. Serve and enjoy!