Photo: Johnny Autry; Styling: Leigh Ann Ross
Hands-on Time
55 Mins
Total Time
1 Hour
Serves 6 (serving size: 1 slice meat loaf and about 2 tablespoons sauce)

This dish contains many of the flavors of sauce Bolognese, the classic Italian ragù of pancetta, a mixture of ground meats, and aromatic ingredients stewed together. Round out the meal with polenta. Garnish with chopped fresh rosemary, if desired.

How to Make It

Step 1

Preheat oven to 350°.

Step 2

Place bread in a food processor; pulse 10 times or until coarse crumbs measure 3/4 cup. Arrange breadcrumbs on a baking sheet; bake at 350° for 8 minutes.

Step 3

Heat a small skillet over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add pancetta; sauté for 2 minutes. Add 1/2 cup shallots and carrot; sauté 8 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add tomato paste; cook 1 minute. Add wine; cook 2 minutes or until liquid almost evaporates, scraping pan to loosen browned bits. Remove pan from heat; cool 5 minutes. Combine the breadcrumbs, pancetta mixture, milk, and next 6 ingredients (through veal) in a large bowl; gently mix until just combined.

Step 4

Transfer mixture to a 9 x 5-inch loaf pan coated with cooking spray; do not pack. Bake at 350° for 40 minutes or until a thermometer registers 160°. Let stand 10 minutes; cut into 6 slices.

Step 5

To prepare sauce, melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Add cremini mushrooms and 2 tablespoons shallots; sauté for 6 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add flour, and cook for 1 minute. Add 1 cup beef broth; cook for 2 minutes, stirring frequently. Stir in half-and-half, 1/4 teaspoon black pepper, and dash of salt. Cook for 30 seconds. Serve with meat loaf.

Ratings & Reviews

carolfitz's Review

March 08, 2013
Good meat loaf & sauce. Made to recipe, prepping pancetta mixture in the morning with final assembly in the evening. We cooked the carrots til they were tender (longer than called-for), otherwise made to recipe and baked free-form rather than in a tin. For the mushroom sauce, we deglazed the pan with a couple glugs of wine, otherwise followed directions. Nice change-up but the sauce really doesn't carry forward the bolognese theme, do you think? Served with riced potatoes & carrot, roasted brussels sprouts and more of the wine used in cooking.

StephMerrifield's Review

August 28, 2012
Truly outstanding and better than meatloaf. We followed instructions exactly with two minor changes- no veal, more of other two and 1/8 cup of red wine with sauce as well. I don't think either of these changes made big impact- this is just a great recipe as is! Sauce is good but meatloaf was good without it too (we served our sauce on the side)

MargaretK's Review

February 20, 2012
Really tasty and juicy. I cooked this exactly to the recipe and my husband and I loved it. The mushroom gravy on top is an excellent touch.

emanymton03's Review

September 25, 2013