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Mad About "Meat" Loaf Recipe
Mad About "Meat" Loaf Recipe photo by Taste of Home

Mad About "Meat" Loaf Recipe

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Meat loaf will be wearing new accessories this year - spinach, carrots, zucchini and whole grains. Grind the nuts in a food processor but be sure to add a little flour so you don't end up with nut butter. —Susan Preston, Eagle Creek, Oregon
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 30 min. Bake: 50 min.
MAKES:6 servings
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 30 min. Bake: 50 min.
MAKES: 6 servings


  • 1 package (6 ounces) fresh baby spinach
  • 1 cup (4 ounces) shredded cheddar cheese, divided
  • 2/3 cup mashed cooked carrots
  • 1 slice whole wheat bread, torn into pieces
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1/2 cup grated zucchini
  • 1/2 cup tomato sauce, divided
  • 1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped onion
  • 3 tablespoons ground flaxseed
  • 3 tablespoons ground walnuts
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried sage leaves
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper

Nutritional Facts

1 slice equals 198 calories, 14 g fat (6 g saturated fat), 94 mg cholesterol, 451 mg sodium, 9 g carbohydrate, 3 g fiber, 11 g protein.


  1. In a large saucepan, bring 1/2 in. of water to a boil. Add spinach; cover and boil for 3-4 minutes or until wilted. Drain and squeeze dry.
  2. In a large bowl, combine 3/4 cup cheddar cheese, carrots, bread, eggs, zucchini, 1/4 cup tomato sauce, Parmesan cheese, onion, flaxseed, walnuts, oil, garlic, seasonings and spinach. Pat into a greased 8-in. x 4-in. loaf pan; top with remaining tomato sauce.
  3. Bake, uncovered, at 325° for 45 minutes. Sprinkle with remaining cheddar cheese. Bake 4-7 minutes longer or until heated through and cheese is melted. Let stand for 5 minutes before slicing. Yield: 6 servings.
Originally published as Mad About "Meat" Loaf in Taste of Home February/March 2012, p59

Nutritional Facts

1 slice equals 198 calories, 14 g fat (6 g saturated fat), 94 mg cholesterol, 451 mg sodium, 9 g carbohydrate, 3 g fiber, 11 g protein.

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Reviewed Nov. 10, 2015

"Wow! Made this for Meatless Monday and it's a winner. Great ingredients, easy to put together, tasty results. I followed the recipe verbatim and will definitely make it again."

Reviewed Oct. 6, 2014

"Great! You would think it was made with meat. I changed a few things but tried to stick close to the ingredients I changed. I did not use the cheddar or parmesan cheeses. I subbed butternut squash for the mashed carrots. I used 1/4 cup of egg whites, I omitted the walnuts and used 3 tbsp. of bulgur soaked in water to soften up. Thanks for a great alternative from using ground beef or ground turkey. May never go back to "meat" meatloaf again."

Reviewed Oct. 6, 2014

"Terrific! I loved this recipe. My husband couldn't believe there was no meat! My vegetarian teenager liked it, too!"

Reviewed Jan. 31, 2013

"Made this and my 3 kids loved it. Even my husband had no idea that it didn't have any meat in it. Will definitely make again! Delicious."

Reviewed Sep. 17, 2012

"Wow, eating more of a plant based diet, I missed my favorite dish, Meatloaf! This hit the spot! Perfect in every sense. Texture, taste and smell!! I did edit it a little... here were my edits:

*used 5 oz of baby spinach
*used Veggies Shreds instead of real cheese (for both the Cheddar and the Parmesan)
*used 1 cup of mashed carrots
*used 2 slices of HPLC bread from Great Harvest Bread Company
*used 1 cup of Zucchini
*made my own Italian seasoning (equal parts of, basil, oregano, rosemary, marjoram, cilantro, thyme and red pepper flakes)
*did not sprinkle more cheese on top, and did not put it back in the oven for additional time."

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