I know what you are thinking...meatloaf muffins? Gross! I know it sounds weird, but you have to try them. I'm talking about this recipe. Go, check it out...I'll wait until you come back!
Okay, you're back! I love all things Rachael Ray. I try to make a few of her 30 minute meal recipes at least a few times a month. Whenever I ask C what he wants for dinner the next week, this one is high on his rotation. We make it a lot! Let me start by saying that I am not a meat"loaf" fan, I can't stand the look of the sliced meatloaf strategically placed on a plate. I never have been, probably never will be! But these little guys are so stinking cute, and cooking them in a muffin pan allows for extra crispiness all the way around, similar to the top of the meat"loaf."
When I make the recipe, a usually only use 1 pound of meat, 1/2 an onion, and 1/2 a bell pepper. We still end up with 12 meatloaf muffins which is enough for the three of us to have dinner, C to have leftovers for work and Little Man and I to split a few for lunch the next day. It says a lot about this recipe that I will eat it the next day. I'm kind of a leftover snob. Plainly put, I don't like them. Especially leftovers that have any kind of meat in them. Luckily, C doesn't mind taking my home cooking to work the next day for lunch. But these guys, I could eat over and over! There's just something about them!
The recipe also calls for BBQ sauce. I have only ONE brand of BBQ sauce that I will buy, and that's STUBBS brand. That's right the Stubb's based in Austin, Texas. You can find it in most grocery stores, but if you can't you can buy it online here. Trust me on this, you need this sauce in your life! It's the only one you need! As a side note, I have very high standards for my BBQ. There are only four place that I have found that I truly like. Two of them are in my hometown, one of them is owned by our friends parents, and the other one is Stubb's. I'm always on the hunt for good BBQ near by and have yet to find one that doesn't require me to be in the car for at least 45 minutes! Stubb's also sells marinades and rubs, both of which we love. C used them to smoke a chicken recently and it was fantastic. (And no, I'm not being paid by Stubb's to promote their products) Enough about the sauce!
The recipe also has a link for fancy green beans and potatoes. I usually crack open a can of green beans and whip up some instant mashed potatoes for us instead of going through all that effort. We are fine with canned vegetables and instant potatoes, but if you aren't then by all means make RR's.
Verdict: Obviously we love these! When something makes it into our dinner rotation, it has to meet strict standards. This one has it all...it's quick (making them into muffins cuts the time down to 20 or so minutes), it's tasty (see above) and all three of us will eat it. It's not easy to find good recipes that will satisfy the picky appetite of a one year old! Go, make these tonight!
One last word of warning, spray the heck out of your muffin tin. Spray it many times...you will regret it if you don't. The clean up from this dinner is atrocious. I usually soak the muffin pan overnight to make my life easier. I've thought of purchasing disposable muffin tins everytime I make this dinner, but always forget when I'm grocery shopping. Don't let that deter you from trying the recipe though, it's totally worth the effort! Enjoy!