I grew up on this meatloaf recipe. In our house my dad always made the meatloaf. It was his dish. My mom would try to replicate it, but it was never the same. It’s my ultimate comfort dinner. He got this recipe from an old Joy of Cooking cookbook that had been passed down from my grandma.
He says the key to a good meatloaf is the Ritz crackers and adding water to the sides of the pan before it bakes. First you mix all of the ingredients into a bowl then form it into a ball. Roll the “meatball” into some crushed Ritz crackers, and then form the ball into a loaf in an 8×8 pan. (I like to top the loaf with more Ritz for an extra crispy crust.) Then pour 1 cup of water around the loaf, and bake at 350 for around 1 1/2 hours.
What’s the best way to reheat meatloaf? Definitely in a pan with some butter in it to crisp up the sides!
Can you freeze meatloaf? For sure! It can freeze up to four months. I would slice it before freezing so you can cook each slice without reheating the whole loaf. To reheat plop the slice in a pan with a lid on the stove until it’s heated through, or even faster … microwave it for a few minutes.
What can you serve with meatloaf? The options are endless! Our personal favorite is Creamy Mashed Potatoes and some roasted vegetables!Print
Meatloaf with a Crispy Cracker Crust
This meatloaf is a classic comfort food.
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
- Total Time: 1 hour 40 minutes
- Yield: 6 1x
- 2 lbs ground beef (lean or chuck work fine)
- 1 1/2 cups medium onion, chopped fine
- 1 1/2 cups crumbled crackers, reserve 1/2 cup for rolling (Ritz are the best!)
- 2 Tablespoons ketchup
- 2 Tablespoons Dijon mustard
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 1/2 cup milk
- 1 egg
- 3/4 cup water
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
- Mix all ingredients EXCEPT 1/2 cup of cracker crumbs and water.
- Form the mixture into a ball and roll it into reserved 1/2 cup of crumbled crackers.
- Pat the ball into an even loaf shape in an 8×8 dish. (Feel free to add any extra cracker crumbs to the top of the loaf!)
- Pour 3/4 cups of water around the meatloaf, then bake for 90 minutes
- Leave the loaf in the juices when serving so it doesn’t dry out!