“Meatloaf, smeatloaf, double-beatloaf. I hate meatloaf.”
Meatloaf has gotten a bad rap. I admit, as a kid, I refused to touch the stuff. It always makes the think of the kid brother Randy from the movie The Christmas Story.
Now that I am an adult responsible for feeding a grown man and two small men-children whose appetites grow more voracious every day, I’ve come around to the idea of meals like meatloaf.
As a side note – you moms of teenage boys, I welcome any tips you can provide because I am terrified what the next 10 years is gonna do to my grocery budget!
This past summer, I tried this recipe for Bacon Bourbon BBQ Chicken Kebabs from Host the Toast. One of the ingredients is homemade bacon paste.
Bacon paste, y’all. If that alone doesn’t sell you, you have no soul.
Her recipe is excellent by the way, but since then I’ve been wanting to try bacon paste in meatloaf.
It took me a couple tries to get this Barbecue Bacon Meatloaf just right. I tried my usual recipe first, which includes chopped onions and bell peppers in the mix. In the end, there was too much going on. I wanted the bacon flavor to be more of a lead player in the recipe. The texture wasn’t right either. I wanted something more dense that held together better. This time around I decided to KISS – keep it simple, stupid.
A simple recipe was definitely the way to go. The meatloaf held together beautifully, even after I transferred it to a cutting board, sliced it, and plated it. The salty bacon paste provides not only delicious flavor, but prevents the meat from drying out (because no one wants to eat dried out meatloaf). I feel like I put this to the true test because the meatloaf you see above was made before lunch so I could photograph it. I reheated it later that evening for dinner and it was still moist and delicious.
Instead of baking this in a bread pan, I formed it into a loaf on a foiled lined baking sheet. This allowed for even cooking and transformed the homemade Bourbon Peach Barbecue Sauce I slathered all over the top into a gooey sweet crust.
I can honestly say, this is my go-to meatloaf recipe from now on. The only thing I would change? Next time, I’ll double the recipe!
Barbecue Bacon Meatloaf
- 3 slices of bread torn up into small pieces
- 2 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 3/4 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 2 tablespoons paprika
- 3 tablespoons packed dark brown sugar
- 6 slices raw bacon
- 1 pound ground beef
- 3/4 cup milk
- 1 egg
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- ½ teaspoon dry ground mustard
- ½ cup barbecue sauce
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Process bread in a food processor until it becomes course crumbs. Pour bread crumbs into a large mixing bowl and set aside.
Combine salt, pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, brown sugar, and FIVE slices of the bacon in the food processor. Combine until the mixture forms a thick paste.
Scrape the paste out into the mixing bowl with the breadcrumbs. Add the ground beef, milk, egg, Worcestershire, and mustard. Mix until ingredients are evenly combined.
Form beef mixture into a loaf on a greased cookie sheet. Spread the barbecue sauce over the top. Bake for I hour and 15 minutes or the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees F.
In the meantime, chop the remaining strip of bacon and fry it until it is crisp. Drain on a paper towel.
Allow the meatloaf to rest for five minutes before serving. Top with the crispy bacon bits.