Slow Cooker Meatloaf

Photo Credit: Dessert Now Dinner Later

Now’s your time to kick back and take a nap while your Slow Cooker Meatloaf practically cooks itself for dinner. Slow cooker recipes are beyond simple to prepare, and then you just throw it in the pot and forget about it until the bell rings hours later. This meat loaf slow cooker recipe yields eight healthy slices of meatloaf, so you can feed the whole family and have leftovers afterward. This can also be a fun recipe for kids to make, and it’s often reported that even the pickiest youngsters will enjoy eating it too.

Before we begin, let’s talk a bit about food safety tips and how you can best prepare your slow cooker meals, especially when they contain meat. You’ll want to ensure that your slow cooker is totally clean and ready to go before you fire it up. Next, you’ll want to keep all of the ingredients chilled in the fridge until the very last moment because harmful bacteria tend to thrive in warmer temperatures. You’ll also want to thaw any of the frozen ingredients beforehand as you don’t want frozen food to lower your slow cooker temperature and increase bacterial growth potentials. In the case of this slow cooker meatloaf recipe, you’ll want to make sure you shape the loaf into a uniform size so it will cook thoroughly and evenly. Be sure to leave the lid on your slow cooker for the entire duration of cooking time, so you won’t cause the temperature to drop inside the pot. Opening the lid can add thirty to forty minutes to your cooking time, not to mention turn the pot into an optimal bacterial breeding ground. Once your meatloaf is fully cooked and happily served, you’ll want to refrigerate the leftovers within two hours – or less, if at all possible. Anything that’s been out of the pot longer than that will need to be disposed of, for precautionary reasons. Never reheat your leftover food in the slow cooker as the temperature will be too low to destroy any bacterial growth. Use your trusty oven or stove top, instead.

A few other helpful tips for cooking meatloaf in your slow cooker are: you can use unbleached parchment paper in the bottom of your pot so your meatloaf won’t stick and it will be easy to lift out. It'll also be easier to clean your cooker afterward. This meatloaf recipe includes a delicious meatloaf sauce to go on top as well as to dip in while eating. Be sure to refrigerate half of your sauce without letting it come into contact with the meat, and this way you’ll have a safe, healthy dipping sauce for later. Slow cookers don’t always cook meat loaf to crispy perfection because of the steam build-up during the cooking process. If this is the case, you can broil your meatloaf for two or three minutes to create a lovely crust on top. Finally, for this particular meatloaf recipe, use a four-quart slow cooker for best results. Many thanks to Amber over at the Dessert Now, Dinner Later website, for sharing this yummy slow cooker meatloaf recipe.*

Nutrition Facts for: Slow Cooker Meatloaf From Dessert Now Dinner Later
Ingredients: Eggs, milk, ketchup, Dijon mustard, hot sauce, brown sugar, dried parsley, dried thyme, salt, pepper, dried minced onions, garlic, Italian bread crumbs, lean ground beef, brown sugar, Worcestershire sauce, balsamic vinegar.
* Percentages (%) are based on a 2000 calorie diet * The entire recipe has been calculated for 8 servings. * Per Serving:Calories 149, Calories from Fat 48, Total Fat 5.3g 8%, Saturated Fat 2.0g 10%, Cholesterol 99mg 33%, Sodium 367mg 15%, Potassium 303mg 9%, Carbohydrates 4.6g 2%, Dietary Fiber 0.2g 1%, Sugars 3.6g, Protein 19.7g, Vitamin A 4%, Vitamin C 5%, Calcium 4%, Iron 62%

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