Friday, April 2, 2010

Meat Loaf - The Cupcake Way

No, this is not an April Fools Joke...well...it started out as one, but this is a real post about meat loaf made like cupcakes.

I saw these meatloaf cupcakes with mashed potato frosting on Isha Foss Events via Be Different Act Normal.  I thought the kids would get a kick out of it for April Fools Day.  Mine don't look quite as glamous as Isha's, but I was still happy with how they turned out.
The kids were super excited when we announced we'd be having cupcakes for dinner.  They were a little taken aback when they realized they weren't normal cupcakes...but in the end they said they were yummy.

Instead of using the recipe posted with the original idea, I turned to...none other than my favorite Healthy cookbook..."Quick and Healthy Recipes and Ideas" by Brenda J. Ponchtera, pg. 199.  The recipe on Isha's site called for several specialty-type ground meats and some yummy but fattening things, and I wasn't going to go buy expensive meat for an April Fool's Joke.

We had plenty of ground turkey in the freezer though, and that's what Brenda's recipe called for.  We almost always buy ground turkey because it's the cheapest way to get lower fat ground meat.  You can get ground beef for cheaper than turkey, but only at the higher fat contents.  I buy my ground turkey in 4 packs at Costco and put them in the freezer.  It's the cheepest way to buy lower-fat ground meat that I've found so far.

Now I'm guessing that most of you aren't going to go to the trouble of piping bright pinky-purple-beet-juice-tinted mashed potatoes on top of your meat loaf, but there are still advantage to making it cupcake version.  (If you want directions for the beet-tinting, you can follow the link above.)

  • They come already packaged in easy to measure serving sizes.  One serving is 2 meat-cakes and 205 calories if you make it with turkey and it can fit right in with a 400 calorie meal.  If you've got some veggie side dishes, though, you'd probably be satisfied with one meat-cake anyway.

  • They cook faster as cupcakes.
Meat Loaf

    1 1/2 lbs extra lean ground beef (9% fat or less) or ground turkey (7% fat)
    1/4 cup egg substitute (equal to 1 egg)
    1/2 cup chopped onion
    1/2 cup chopped green pepper
    1 Tbl. dried parsley
    3/4 cup finely chopped celery
    3/4 cup oatmeal
    3/4 cup skim milk
    1/2 cup catsup
    1 tsp. dry mustard
    1/2 tsp chopped garlic
    1 tsp salt (optional)
    1/2 tsp ground pepper

    To make it, you stir all those yummy things up in one bowl.  I sprayed the cupcake tins with non-stick cooking spray.  Then I filled them all the way up with the meat mixture.  You might want to leave about a 1/4 inch empty at the top though, because mine bubbled over a bit.  The recipe says to cook at 325 for an hour.  I cooked them at 350 for somewhere between 35 and 45 minutes, since they were in cupcake form.  The nutritional info does not include the mashed potatoes...or the beet juice coloring.

    Yield: 8 servings (I got 15 cupcakes out of it.)
    One serving is 1/8 the recipe or 2 cupcakes
    Calories per serving: turkey 205; beef 230
    Fat: 9 grams (turkey); 11 grams (beef)
    Exchanges 2 medium fat meat, 1 vegetable, 1/2 starch

    And just for cuteness factor...here's my littlest darling enjoying her beet-tinted mashed potatos and a beet.
    And in case you were curious about how her fat-free birthday cake turned out, here's a picture.
    And if you want more details about how it was made, you can click here.

    2 comments:

    Kathy Haynie said...

    I love the idea of meat loaf that will cook in a shorter amount of time! How many times have I checked meatloaf after an hour, to find that it's still pink in the middle...

    Thanks for a healthy meatloaf recipe, Polly! I haven't cooked it in years, due to the baking/time issues, and the fat content. This looks like a much better way to go.

    Katie said...

    Seriously. I haven't made meatloaf in forever for the same reason. Maybe we'll make it as cupcakes sometime though. That would make it much more doable. And great job on the caterpillar cake! :)

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