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Let me introduce myself. My name is Mark Sisson. I’m 63 years young. I live and work in Malibu, California. In a past life I was a professional marathoner and triathlete. Now my life goal is to help 100 million people get healthy. I started this blog in 2006 to empower people to take full responsibility for their own health and enjoyment of life by investigating, discussing, and critically rethinking everything we’ve assumed to be true about health and wellness...

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January 02, 2016

Lasagna Meatloaf

By Worker Bee
29 Comments

Primal

Lasagna meatloaf has all the delicious flavor of lasagna, without the noodles. Cheese is optional, and although it adds creamy mozzarella flavor, the meatloaf is more than satisfying without it. Marinara sauce, basil and oregano, onion and garlic…this all-beef meatloaf has it all. Plus three ingredients that hold the loaf together perfectly: eggs, finely chopped mushrooms, and gelatin.

Eggs are always used to bind meatloaf. This recipe only uses two. Raw mushrooms, very finely chopped (use a food processor) look a lot like breadcrumbs and in this loaf, have a similar job. They help the meat bind together, while also adding flavor and moisture. Powdered gelatin is the final binding agent, helping to give the meatloaf a sliceable texture. This trio—eggs, mushrooms, and gelatin—can be used with any meatloaf recipe.

Serve lasagna meatloaf with a spoonful of your favorite marinara sauce and fresh Italian herbs for a low-carb Italian meal.

Servings: 4

Time in the Kitchen: 30 minutes, plus 1 hour and 15 minutes to bake

Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, plus more to brush loaf pan (30 ml)
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 4 ounces sliced cremini or button mushrooms, very finely chopped (use a food processor) (113 g)
  • 3/4 cup marinara sauce (180 ml)
  • 2 eggs, whisked
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano (10 ml)
  • 1/4 cup roughly chopped fresh basil (60 ml)
  • 1 cup grated mozzarella cheese (optional) (90 g)
  • 2 pounds ground beef chuck (900 g)
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt (10 ml)
  • 3/4 teaspoon powdered gelatin (7 ml)

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 350 °F/176 °C.

Brush a loaf pan with olive oil.

Warm the olive oil in a skillet and sauté the onion and garlic over medium heat until soft, 5 minutes.

In a large bowl, mix together onion, garlic, mushrooms, marinara sauce, eggs, oregano and basil (and cheese, if using).

Add the ground beef to bowl and sprinkle salt on top.

Primal

In a small bowl, mix 1 tablespoon/15 ml water with the powdered gelatin. Let sit 1 minute then pour in 2 tablespoons/30 ml of hot water. Mix well and pour over the ground meat.

Use your hands to gently but thoroughly mix the ground meat with everything in the bowl.

Pack mixture into the loaf pan. Place the loaf pan on a rimmed baking sheet. Bake until meat loaf is firm to touch in center and has pulled away from sides of pan, about 1 hour and 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and let the loaf rest 15 minutes. Pour off liquid. Turn the pan over to carefully remove the loaf.

Serve with warmed marinara sauce, fresh basil and oregano.

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29 Comments on "Lasagna Meatloaf"

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Shary
Shary
8 months 25 days ago

Hmm… Looks pretty good, Mark, but why call it Lasagna Meatloaf? Lasagna is all about the noodles. I’m in favor of letting primal foods be what they are instead of trying to turn them into a substitute for something else.

Mary Milliron
Mary Milliron
8 months 15 days ago

This looks very similar to our households standard comfort food, we call it “Italian Meatloaf”. And to Elizabeth, if you want to omit the marinara finely chop a nice apple of choice. It’s delicious!

Coco
Coco
8 months 25 days ago

I’m thinking of trying it without the marinara sauce. I hope it will not affect the recipe too much. Thanks!

Elizabeth
8 months 24 days ago

I’ve never made meatloaf before but this sounds amazing. I’m going to try it, minus the cheese

Peggy
Peggy
8 months 24 days ago

This looks delicious … except that I’m allergic to mushrooms.

Do you think minced black olives would work similarly in this recipe?

pam
pam
8 months 23 days ago

minced olive sounds great. (i have made meat balls using minced olive before)

cheers,

KC
KC
8 months 23 days ago

I’m allergic also. I’m trying it now with minced olives. I’ll let you know how it turns out!

Peggy
Peggy
8 months 23 days ago

I made this tonight, substituting two 2.5 ounce cans of black olives, minced, and not only did the hubby go back for seconds, he said this is “definitely” a keeper recipe.

Thanks!

Susir
Susir
8 months 23 days ago

mmmmmm….meatloaf is always a favorite in our house. Will definitely be trying this one!

Ann
Ann
8 months 23 days ago

4 servings – really? That is a huge chunk of meat loaf and a lot of calories!

Anonymouse
Anonymouse
8 months 23 days ago

Um, Ann, you might have missed the point.

Mark, this sounds amazing! I think I might add raw spinach leaves, as well.

Ann
Ann
8 months 23 days ago
Oh – no! I missed the point. I’m hear to learn…Well, I went ahead and made this for my family tonight. I have to admit that I am a serious cook and foodie but want to change our diet. This meatloaf was OK – very high is sodium, and a 1/4th of this recipe is 1/2 lb of meat, 1/4 cup cheese, 1/2 egg … It is a huge portion. I doubled the recipe and made one loaf (we ate about half) and then a bunch of small servings in muffin tins. I pressed a large thumb print and added… Read more »
Myles
8 months 22 days ago
We know 🙂 Salt doesn’t matter a whole lot (Mark addresses this in a blog post). Given the fact that over 70% of sodium comes from processed food intake, maybe sodium is a proxy for processed food intake. As far as calories? If I were to give you 300 calories of gasoline, vodka, steak, or spinach, would those have different effects? Yes! Gasoline would kill you, vodka would make you drunk, steak would be yummy and filling, and you would be eating the spinach with the steak, well, if you hadn’t drank the gasoline. And on the jarred marinara, he… Read more »
Ann
Ann
8 months 22 days ago
I think I understand but what I was questioning was the amount of the serving size. 8 oz of raw chuck is 580 calories and 46 grams of fat. When you add the 4 oz of cheese per serving that’s an additional 360 calories and 28 grams of fat. Then you add in the other ingredients and your meal is HUGE. This meatloaf alone is about 1000 calories per serving. That is what I am having trouble understanding. No matter how you look at it – it is not healthy unless you are training for a triathlon 🙂 My husband… Read more »
Caroline
Caroline
8 months 22 days ago
Hi Ann, I think people will adjust serving size to suit their requirements. Eating the primal way tends to make calories less important (have a read of the ‘start here’ parts of this site, as well as work by, for example, Gary Taubes, who wrote Good Calories, Bad Calories). Eating adequate quantities of good fat and protein, along with plenty of vegetables means that many of us are full enough to resist or see no need for the multiple baked goods and desserts that make up the SAD, Standard American Diet. This works for people like me who used to… Read more »
Lora
Lora
8 months 22 days ago
And another thing… since eating Primal, I tend to eat only one big meal a day, because I am simply not hungry for anything else. (I am a 46 yr old woman, and pretty fit from walking/hiking) So a big serving of this recipe plus lots of veggies will do me for the day. I hope you do read the “Start Here” and I also really recommend Mark’s book The Primal Blueprint, or for a quicker overview, his 21-Day Total Body Trasformation. And you are here at the right time, as his 21 day challenge is just starting, and can… Read more »
Lizzy
Lizzy
8 months 22 days ago

Just stuck this baby in the oven! Can’t wait to try it out! Thanks for the awesome recipe.

Ann
Ann
8 months 22 days ago

Thank you all so much! I read a lot of the website (not blog) info but it’s time to read some books too. And maybe the challenge too…

Monikat
Monikat
8 months 21 days ago

I just tried this and it’s delicious, my whole family loved it, and it was EASY to make! Some of the other recipes I’ve tried are great but involve lots of steps. This was a cinch.

I did not use the word “lasagna” though, or my kids would have rebelled when they didn’t see noodles. Just “meatloaf.”

primalplum923
primalplum923
8 months 21 days ago

Made this last night. I used 1/4 pork, 1/4 chicken Italian sausage, 1/2 beef and swapped out the marinara for my usual paleo BBQ sauce. I used to make meat loaf all the time until we went paleo. This is the first paleo version that holds together! The only thing I’ll do differently next time is take the loaf out of the pan and put it on the roasting tray for the last 15-20 minutes. There was a lot of fluid from the ‘shrooms. Great recipe, Mark!

Brian
Brian
8 months 20 days ago

Why do so many recipes call for try to bind with warm gelatin, when it first starts to have any binding properties at below room temperature?

Brian
Brian
8 months 20 days ago

Why do so many recipes call for trying to bind with warm gelatin, when it first starts to have any binding properties at below room temperature?

Coco
Coco
8 months 19 days ago

I think it’s because it starts to gel at below room temperature but it can be a thickening agent at higher temperature. Like corn starch or tapioca starch. Maybe I’m completely wrong though.

Michelle
Michelle
8 months 15 days ago

This was disappointing, especially for the amount of effort it took and dishes it created. It wasn’t bad, it just wasn’t especially good.

It also didn’t hold together well – fell to pieces like all bread-free meatloaf I’ve tried. We’re at high altitude if that makes any difference.

Still, it was something different – thanks for the recipe.

Marcia
Marcia
8 months 11 days ago

I made it last night. Tasted great but mine came out a creepy grey color. Didn’t brown at all in the pan. Way too wet from the mushrooms. I will try it again and reduce the mushrooms first in a pan to release their water. I ended up chucking in some coconut flour to help bind because mine came out like a thick, unappetizing slurry. It sliced beautifully in the morning when it set up. Sadly, it was still rather grey in color.

Vicky
Vicky
8 months 10 days ago
HELP PLEASE This might be a strange question, but being from a non-meatloaf consuming family (I don’t think it’s very common in the UK) I have only ever eaten meatloaf twice, both were Primal and both made by me, but I’m not sure if I got the them right. What sort of texture should meatloaf have, is it dry or moist? crumbly or squidgy? I didn’t love the ones I made and I don’t know if I got it wrong or is it just something you love if you’ve grown up with it? So lovely people, any advice on what… Read more »
Evie
Evie
8 months 3 days ago

Meatloaf should be firm and not fall to pieces, I think the eggs bind it together you could also line the loaf tin with turkey bacon or Canadian bacon then put meatloaf mixture into tin the mushrooms I would leave out because of water content but you could serve them as a side.
Almond or coconut flour could be used instead of breadcrumbs.

Trish
Trish
7 months 19 days ago

Late to the party but I just made this tonight–very moist and flavorful. My husband loved it so I think this will go into regular rotation!

Kerri
Kerri
26 days 17 hours ago

Hi all,

Just found this recipe. Is there anything to substitute eggs with? I’m allergic to them & would love to try this. Let me know!

Thank you

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