Protein-Packed Vegetable Meatloaf
Updated: Dec 27, 2021
It sounds like an oxymoron, but hear me out. This is one of my favourite lunch recipes - and it contains WAY more vegetables than meat. I typically serve with a salad for another hefty dose of greens. Here are some variations so you can make it your own.
First, I rarely use the same ingredients. Suggested substitutions are below and all are AIP friendly. The only thing I recommend you keep is the zucchini. It is a wonderful binder and will help keep the meat together because this recipe does not use bread crumbs or eggs, a lesson taught to me by an Italian friend (Denise A, if you're reading this!).
I also use a mini food processor, so I dice each vegetable at a time and transfer to a large bowl as I work through the recipe. If you have a large food processor, you could probably do half the vegetables at once.
This combination has a savoury sweet taste due to the cinnamon and cloves, but you can also change them up for more traditional flavours.
AND you can bake these in muffin tins, if you don't have a loaf pan. You will need to reduce cooking time to approximately 30 minutes.
2 cloves of garlic
2 cups butternut squash
Half a head of parsley
1 - 1 1/2 lb ground grass-fed beef
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground clove
Preheat oven to 350F. Grease a 9" x 3" loaf pan (or 8x4) with coconut or avocado oil. I also line the bottom of the pan with parchment with the ends extending out so I can easily lift the veggie-meatloaf out of the pan for storage when it's done.
In a food processor, dice all the vegetables. I start with onion and garlic. I then move onto the zucchini, then the squash and finish with the parsley. Put all vegetables into a large bowl.
Next, I add my spices to the vegetable mix. With this recipe, you're using cinnamon and ground clove. Make sure you blend the spice and herbs in well with the vegetables.
Here comes the beef! With my hands, I mix all the ingredients together until it's a large ball or log. That goes into the pan in one piece.
Bake for 45 minutes (or until cooked through). Cooking time can vary by the amount of meat you've added.
And you're done! Serve with salad or roasted vegetables (although I often will grab a piece as a snack). Store in sealed container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
Organic ground turkey or lamb for beef
Sweet potato or carrots for squash
Spinach or baby kale for parsley
Thyme and sage for cinnamon and cloves
Other options: mushrooms or red pepper (pepper is not AIP friendly)