Individual Salsa Turkey Loaves

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by Amy on May 24, 2010 · 23 comments

Let’s face it. Meatloaf just doesn’t photograph well. (The food, not the performer…although I think it’s safe to say that the camera isn’t very kind to him either.) It also has an unappealing name. Meat. Loaf. Not very inviting.

So it gets dissed a lot. But I think unfairly.

It’s such an easy-all-American-kitchen-sink type of meal. And in essence, isn’t it just like a gigantic hamburger minus the bun?

I’ve made so many different versions over the years; one with feta cheese, one with parmesan. One with ketchup, one with tomato sauce. One with carrots, one with rice. One with bacon, one with mushrooms. The list goes on… But salsa? No. Salsa has never ever occurred to me.

Sister Jen told me about these. Keeping in mind, I am a fan of meatloaf – sister Jen is not. If she was endorsing these, I knew they had to be really good.

In the immortal words of Jon Lovitz, in a Friends guest appearance, “Well, slap my ass and call me Judy!” Salsa in meatloaf is fantastic.

And as I’ve clearly pointed out, there are no rules with meatloaf. This particular recipe actually called for ground beef, but I used ground turkey. It also included Chipotle salsa, but you could use a milder variety if you or your young’ins are sensitive to spicy.

So there you have it. Good, fast, and cheap. What’s not to like?

Print this recipe (originally from Cooking Light)

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{ 23 comments… read them below or add one }

Amy May 31, 2010 at 8:46 pm

Dani – Yep, beef/brown sugar/ketchup…traditional and yummy. Totally with you on the sandwich, too. So I’ll have to think of a way to work that quote into a Zebra Sounds comment. Hmm. I’m so glad I could amuse you! My work here is complete.


Dani H May 31, 2010 at 5:11 pm

{giggling uncontrollably} Amy please Please PLEASE use this line sometime on Zebra Sounds ~
“Well, slap my ass and call me Judy!”

I swear if you don’t, I will.

My mother showed me how to make her meatloaf enough times that neither one of us wrote the recipe down. I guess I should do that. It’s the all beef kind with ketchup and brown sugar topping and there’s no better sandwich than cold meatloaf the next day. (But we use Miracle Whip, not mayo, and old-fashioned white sandwich bread.)


Amy May 27, 2010 at 4:46 pm

Greg – No doubt! And they’re feisty…er…passionate.


sippitysup May 27, 2010 at 4:25 pm

Meatloaf brings out your family like never before! GREG


Amy May 27, 2010 at 10:14 am

Ameena – Thank you so much for the kind words and for stopping by! Let us know if you end up making it and how it turns out.


Ameena May 26, 2010 at 9:39 pm

Back when I ate meat I used to LOVE meatloaf!! My hubby and daughter would probably love this too. Thanks for the great recipe and the amazing photographs!


Amy May 26, 2010 at 10:17 am

Lora – Hee hee. Ya, the comment thread is definitely a little time travel machine back when we were growing up around the dinner table. It wasn’t much different. I have nothing but fun family dinner memories. And that’s the way it should be! Food is fun.


Lora (Tripping with Kids) May 25, 2010 at 11:24 pm

Amy, love your comments about the food about as much as I love the recipes. Never thought of it before, but it IS hard to find a flattering side on a meatloaf. Besides, I get to know your family more and more each week. The banter at the dinner table must have been such a riot growing up. Anway, I digress. Love meatloaf and look forward to these simple and simply delicious variations!


Amy May 25, 2010 at 10:24 pm

Juliana – I wish it was MY idea. But at least I can share it with everyone else!

Dad – Mayo rocks!


Dad May 25, 2010 at 6:50 pm

Amy, you really don’t want to know why. Take my favorite hamburger. If it’s my favorite hamburger, you’re certainly not going to improve it by diddling around with it. Hamburger, bun, onion, sliced pickle, a little catchup. You, who would put mayonnaise hamburger! Haley, it’ll be great if you to grow up and be like Mommy. but remember, she’s wrong, so wrong.


Juliana May 25, 2010 at 4:44 pm

What a great idea…individual meatloaf and looks even better with salsa.


Amy May 25, 2010 at 3:49 pm

Mom – You’ve mentioned Nan’s meatloaf so many times over the years, but I fear I’ll never get to try it. Did she ever give you the recipe?

Jay – Ooooh, Jay. Blue cheese. Good call. Although, I’d have a hard time getting that one past the kids.

Jen – Great idea to make extra and freeze for later. But not everything keeps well, so this is good to know. I haven’t had Mom’s rice pilaf in… I can’t even remember, it’s been that long. I love that rice. Love. Recipe, please.

Dad – I know you have great hatred for meatloaf. But I don’t understand why. Take your favorite hamburger and instead of grilling it, bake it. Same thing. As Haley would say “Your wrong. I’m right. Goodbye.”

momgateway – Thanks. I hope you try them. Glad you stopped by!

Natasha – Thanks! It certainly is a great way for portion control.


5 Star Foodie May 25, 2010 at 12:57 pm

I love the idea of serving individual meatloaves with salsa, very yummy!


momgateway May 25, 2010 at 12:52 pm

Single serve meatloaves are so unique and convenient…lovely!


Dad May 25, 2010 at 12:19 pm

Meatloaf as a singer is pretty bad. Meatloaf as a food is really bad. Take the meat out, put in some turkey (like Meatloaf), throw some salsa on top, ruin perfectly good bacon, and … a pig with a mustache is still a pig that drinks milk. “Meatloaf. Meatloaf. Meatloaf. The word’s lost all its meaning.” (Jon Lovitz paraphrased.)


Jen May 25, 2010 at 10:58 am

What timing for this post. I made these last night (the ground beef and chipotle salsa version), and they are seriously one of the easiest things I’ve ever made…ever, and they are SO tasty! I trippled the recipe, so I could freeze some and have insta-meal in a couple of weeks (they freeze and defrost very well).

I paired them with Mom’s rice pilaf (you know, Ame, the one with the consume and onions) and the baby sweat peas. Yum.

Looks like I’ll be making a blue cheese stuffed version some time soon as well. :o)


Jay May 25, 2010 at 10:42 am

As the recipient of my wife’s (Jen…Sister to Amy…Giver of yummy goodness) wonderful cooking, I can attest these little meatloafs are “lip smacking good.” And, the spinoff possibilities are endless. I’m still hoping for a blue cheese stuffed variety.


Mom May 25, 2010 at 8:27 am

Ah, meatloaf and childhood memories. Nan made the best meatloaf ever and was so delicious the next day for sandwiches. Unfortunately, I never make it because just the sight of it makes your father’s stomach turn. Can’t wait to read his comment on this one!


Amy May 24, 2010 at 10:55 pm

Paul – Hm. I thought I had. But clearly I haven’t. Clearly you would have remembered. One of these days I am going to make the bacon and cheese soup that you beg for, just to see you wet yourself.

Pam – Ya, welcome to my world. Under a rock.

Cheryl – Awesome! Report back.

Joanne – Seems like everyone hates meatloaf because of how their mom used to prepare it. And you don’t like ketchup! I did not know this…


Joanne May 24, 2010 at 7:10 pm

My favorite burger has salsa infused into it so I can see just how delicious this would be.

Ironically, I’m a fan of all meatloaf except for my mother’s. I think it’s that I don’t like ketchup so I always just use tomato puree instead. But she doesn’t.

I’m with Paul. We need to see that bacon version.


Cheryl May 24, 2010 at 4:38 pm

I am all over this one. Just printed it out.


pam May 24, 2010 at 4:32 pm

Salsa with meatloaf!!! Of course! Why didn’t I think of that.


Paul May 24, 2010 at 4:25 pm


No bother. These are yummy.


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