Heart healthy Meatloaf with Zucchini will be a family favorite comfort meal.
Last night I was thinking about what I was going to write about this recipe and thought about how I came upon the recipe for Meatloaf with Zucchini. I have really good memories of this particular time but whenever I tend to think back to when my little one as a baby, it is hard not to remember the post partum depression that I had. Those are the times I’d rather forget. If you are thinking about the type of PPD that the mother wants to hurt the baby, that is not what I had. That is a whole other ball game. I was lucky that my family caught it very quickly, and I was diagnosed within three weeks of my little one being born. It is a time I absolutely hate to think about and was not particularly happy when my brain decided to take a walk down this particular memory lane.
I am not a crier. In fact I really hate crying. I don’t like to cry in movies, books, commercials, anything. It’s just not me but with PPD it felt like I was crying all the time. PPD was like living in a hyper sensitive world where even the littlest thing felt so huge and heavy. If my little one cried, it felt like the world was ending. I could not stand to have her out of my sight, and I couldn’t sleep or eat and could never relax. Thanks to some medication and a good therapist who assured me I wasn’t crazy, I got better rather quickly.
It took us a long time to get pregnant and it was a big adjustment. I went from being a career woman to an older mom who felt like life was totally out of control. There was no way I could go back to work so I decided to try to be a stay at home Mom. In the beginning there really wasn’t a choice. There was no way I could go back to work with PPD. So now I had to figure out things to do with my baby and me. I tried a number of Mom’s groups and finally settled on one.
Wait for it! I’m getting to the meatloaf. One of my favorite parts of the Mom’s club was a once a month meeting at Super Suppers. I’m not sure any of these are left. It was where you could go and prepare meals for your family. All the prep work had been done and you just needed to assemble the meal. The lady who ran it always made the most delicious sangria and snacks. It was so fun and a great way to cook. One of the meals was a meatloaf from the American Heart Association and was zucchini meatloaf.
My family, even my little one, loved it. She is a huge meatloaf fanatic but loathes zucchini. She will totally clean her plate with this meatloaf. Even though she knows zucchini is in it, she doesn’t complain about it at all. The zucchini just melts into the loaf and gives wonderful moisture. She requests meatloaf on a regular basis. When I was taking a walk down memory lane, I realized this recipe shows we’ve come full circle. My little one loves to make this meatloaf with me. She will happily add all the ingredients to the bowl and is on pins and needles until dinnertime. We went from a time that I could not really take care of her to a time where we are happily cooking and being together.
I had being working on a new meatloaf recipe and I didn’t make a sauce for that one. My little one totally called me out on the carpet. Where is the sauce? She wants this meatloaf. She doesn’t care if we eat it every week. My hubby and I could eat something different every night for dinner and never repeat. So if I make something more than once every few months that is a big deal. If I ask her what she wants for dinner, it is either this, Slow Cooker Shredded BBQ Chicken or meatballs (I haven’t shared that recipe yet but will soon). Try it on your family. It will become a family favorite.
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Happy Healthy Eating,
Meatloaf with Zucchini
- 1 cup grated zucchini squeezed dry
- ½ cup uncooked rolled oats not quick cooking
- ¾ cup chopped onion
- ¼ cup egg substitute or 2 egg whites
- 2 tbsp grated Parmesan cheese
- 2 tbsp fat-free milk
- 2 tbsp chopped cilantro or parsley
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1 tsp reduced sodium Worcestershire sauce
- ½ tsp dried basil
- ½ tsp dried oregano
- ¼ tsp kosher salt
- 1 lb extra lean ground beef 93% lean
- ¼ cup Ketchup
- 1 tbsp brown sugar
- 1 tsp Dijon mustard
- 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
- 1 tsp horseradish
- ¼ tsp dried basil
- ¼ tsp dried oregano
- ¼ tsp kosher salt
Preheat oven to 350°.
Spray a wire rack with cooking spray and place on a baking sheet.
In a large bowl, mix together zucchini through salt.
Add ground beef and mix until just incorporated.
Place on wire rack and form into a loaf shape.
Bake for 1 hour.
In a small bowl, mix ingredients for topping.
Brush onto meatloaf and cook for another 10-15 minutes or until meatloaf is 160°.
Let sit for 5 minutes.
I calculated 5 Weight Watcher Smartpoints.
Adapted from American Heart Association Meatloaf with a Twist
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