Slow Cooker Turkey Meatloaf
My whole family enjoys a good meatloaf. They really don't take long to prepare, but baking one takes awhile. I'm all about using my crockpot so I can set it and even leave the house if I need to without worrying. I start it right after I pick up the kids from school (around 2) it's done in time for dinner at 5.
I adapted this simplified slow cooker version from one of Rachael Ray's fantastic recipes. You could choose to saute the vegetables before adding to the raw meat, but it really isn't necessary. Minced white mushrooms are used to help the meatloaf stay moist and their flavor is undetectable in the final product. That said, using a crockpot to cook this will help maintain the moisture, so you could leave them out if you choose. Be sure to use either fresh leaves or ground thyme for a stronger flavor (dried flakes don't seem to do much to season the mixture).
Like the recipe but don't have a slow cooker? No problem! Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place meat mixture into a loaf pan. Bake for 1-1.5 hours, or until internal temperature reaches 160 degrees.
Serve with salad, roasted veggies or cauliflower mash (faux mashed potatoes) to keep this meal low in carbs.
Slow Cooker Turkey Meatloaf
By Krista Smith, NTP
Prep time: 20 min
Cook time: 3 hours
Bacon grease, olive oil, refined coconut oil or avocado oil (to grease bottom of crock)
1 lb. (16 oz.) organic ground turkey (a 20 oz. pkg. works also)
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 medium red onion, minced
6 large white mushrooms, minced*
1 large egg
1 T ground thyme
1 T tomato paste
1 tsp salt
½ tsp pepper
*Mushrooms are optional. They hold fat into the meat, preventing dry out and take on the flavor of the other ingredients. I'm serious, no one notices they're there! Since this is a crockpot version, you will still have a great result if you decide to omit them.
Grease the inside of the crockpot with bacon grease (or alternative oil). Set aside.**
In a large bowl, place the turkey, garlic, onion, mushrooms, egg, tomato paste and sprinkle spices on top. Using your hands (I love food-safe disposable gloves for this!) mix just until the egg and spices are well-incorporated into the meat. Do not overmix.
Using your hands, carefully place the meat mixture into the center of the crock. It will be very soft and mushy. Form it into an oval loaf approximately 2” tall, 6” long and 4” wide.
Cover and cook on low for 3 hours, or until meatloaf is firm and no pink remains. Serve immediately. Use mustard as a condiment, if desired.
Store leftovers in fridge in an airtight container for up to 4 days.
**To bake instead, preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a loaf pan and place mixture inside. Bake for about 1-1.5 hours (or until internal temp reaches 160 degrees)