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Makeover Li’l Cheddar Meat Loaves

My husband goes wild for my mini meat loaves, but this family-favorite recipe wasn’t very healthy when I first received it. The Taste of Home Test Kitchen experts slashed the calories and fat while keeping the original’s tender and delicious qualities. —Jodie Mitchell, Denver, Pennsylvania
  • Total Time
    Prep: 15 min. Bake: 25 min.
  • Makes
    8 servings


  • 2 large egg whites, beaten
  • 3/4 cup fat-free milk
  • 1 cup shredded reduced-fat cheddar cheese
  • 3/4 cup quick-cooking oats
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 medium carrot, shredded
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 pound lean ground beef (90% lean)
  • 2/3 cup ketchup
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons prepared mustard


  • In a large bowl, whisk egg whites and milk. Stir in the cheese, oats, onion, carrot and salt. Crumble beef over mixture and mix well.
  • Shape into eight loaves; place in a 13x9-in. baking dish coated with cooking spray. In a small bowl, combine the ketchup, brown sugar and mustard; spoon over loaves.
  • Bake, uncovered, at 350° for 25-30 minutes or until no pink remains and a thermometer reads 160°.
Nutrition Facts
1 meat loaf: 187 calories, 7g fat (3g saturated fat), 36mg cholesterol, 550mg sodium, 18g carbohydrate (11g sugars, 1g fiber), 15g protein. Diabetic Exchanges: 2 lean meat, 1 starch.

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  • janetlutter
    Apr 29, 2018

    Very easy and everyone in the family liked them. Good make ahead recipe for a weeknight meal.

  • Kurtbeattie
    Feb 16, 2016

    I was trying to find something for my 3 old son to like.... and he enjoy it alot plus my wife enjoy also i have to say it was so easy to make

  • sjmdam
    Apr 11, 2014

    delicious moist I made the normal version that bryteyz posted as well. loved it

  • katiebrownky
    Nov 3, 2013

    These are wonderful! I've made them several times and always a hit! I do us 1lb lean ground beef just for the ease of buying the meat, but it doesn't seem to make a difference. I also make these in a muffin tin. I've made them in a jumbo muffin tin (6 servings) and in a regular muffin in (12 servings). Perfect portions each time this way. Anyway you decide to make them, they are delish!

  • KuipoBakes
    Feb 20, 2013

    I added a bit of Worcestershire to the ketchup topping. My family loved it. My husband liked that it tasted like a cheeseburger instead of traditional meatloaf, something different.

  • Maryrose90
    Jan 24, 2013

    <p>My husband was craving meatloaf but so many recipes have so much fat. I found this recipe and he loved it! Ate 2 more slices for midnight snack and 2 more the next morning for breakfast. Good thing I made two! I was in a rush so I prepared with onion soup mix and omitted the additional seasoned salt and divided the recipe between two meatloaf pans rather than mini loaves. I also omitted the carrots only because I was out. Recipe was great without the carrots but next time I will add to up the "healthy content."</p>

  • GranBTX
    Dec 30, 2012

    Re-vamped this original recipe myself quite awhile ago and no-one can tell the difference - I usually mix the meat: 1/2 super lean beef and 1/2 either the 99% FF ground turkey or ground chicken breast - works beautifully!!

  • jwagner831
    Sep 13, 2012

    I have made the original recipe and we actually prefer this one. It is more moist and it seems the flavor of the meat shines through more without so much sweet sauce. We really enjoyed it and will make this version again for sure.

  • Briadona
    Aug 22, 2012

    I too printed out the Original recipe and plan to make soon. The original listed here in the comments calls for 1 teaspoon salt. My copy says 1/2 teaspoon think that would be enough with only 1 pound of meat and the cheese.

  • logansmom8
    Mar 13, 2012

    This has become a standard in my house. Probably one of my most requested from my hubby and 3yr old son.