High in protein, low in fat, and loaded with flavor. Do you really need another reason to try this incredibly satisfying comfort food?
Turkey Meatloaf with Spinach
(Makes 6 to 8 servings)
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 3 cups chopped onion
- 1 small fennel bulb, finely chopped, about 2 cups
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- 2 teaspoons dried whole basil
- 1 teaspoon dried whole oregano
- 2 teaspoons black pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 2 pounds ground turkey thigh
- 2 eggs, lightly beaten
- 3/4 cup dry whole-wheat bread crumbs
- 5 ounces coarsely chopped fresh spinach, about 3 – 4 cups
- 1 teaspoon salt, or to taste
- 1 cup tomato sauce
Heat olive oil in large skillet. Add chopped onion and fennel and cook over medium-high heat for 6 – 8 minutes, stirring often until softened. Stir in minced garlic, thyme, oregano, peppers, and salt and cook for 1 more minute. Set aside.
Tear off sheet of aluminum foil about 30 inches long and fold it in half to make double-thick rectangle about 12 inches by 15 inches. Use foil to line bottom and sides of crock. The two ends of sheet running up the sides of crock will allow you to easily lift meatloaf out after it is done.
Combine ground turkey, beaten eggs, breadcrumbs, and spinach in a mixing bowl. Add the contents of skillet to bowl and mix well. Form an oval shaped loaf and place it in the foil-lined crock. Spread the tomato sauce on top. Cook on high for 2 1/2 to 3 1/2 hours or on low for 5 to 7 hours, or until meat thermometer inserted in center of loaf reads 165 degrees. Remove loaf by carefully pulling up on ends of foil extending up sides of crock. Allow any liquid or grease to drain off and slide loaf onto serving platter.
Chef’s Notes: Onion, fennel, spinach, and whole-wheat bread crumbs provide good amount of fiber in this loaf. If you don’t like the taste of fennel, substitute equal amount of chopped celery. For a hyper-healthy version, replace 1/4 to 1/2 cup of breadcrumbs with equal amount of oat bran, wheat bran, or freshly ground flaxseeds. All three add additional fiber, and flaxseed contributes a dose of omega-3 fatty acids.
Recipe from Joe Simmer’s HEALTHY Slow Cookin’, joesimmer.com.
Check out another unconventional meatloaf idea (think muffin tins!) at MakeLifeDelicious.com.