Italian Meatloaf – and How To Be Important

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Italian Meatloaf is a different spin on traditional meatloaf!Italian Meatloaf - and how to be Important

My mother and I are the type of people who cook with what we have on hand. So last week she had leftover spaghetti sauce and a husband with a hankering for meatloaf. This recipe for Italian Meatloaf was born and she was shocked when it turned out tasting so incredibly good, and more different from regular meatloaf than she had expected. It even got a compliment from someone who is notorious for complaining!

So she said I just had to make it for y’all. And I listen to my Mama (most of the time). So here it is.


Italian Meatloaf - and how to be Important

Now on to the meatloaf 🙂 You’ll need: spaghetti sauce, oats, egg, bell pepper (or sweet peppers), onion, and 1+1/2 to 2 pounds ground chuck.

Note: The peppers and onion are optional in this. Just go with whatever you want to use or have on hand. Also, you can use ground beef in place of ground chuck, you’ll just have a little grease to strain off. You can also use ground turkey if you like. I’ve made plenty of turkey meatloaves in my life for others, I just prefer beef.

Italian Meatloaf - and how to be Important

Chop your onions and bell pepper if you are using those.

I should have chopped mine finer, sure, but I just chop until I’m tired of fooling with it.

Italian Meatloaf - and how to be Important

Add your oats, spaghetti sauce, beef, and egg to the onion/pepper mixture.

You can use more oats if you have less meat in order to stretch it. You’d be amazed at how far you can stretch your meat in a meatloaf!

Did you see my tutorial where I used leftover shredded chicken and stretched it with crushed saltine crackers and such to make chicken patties? Oh they are so good and they freeze so well, click here for that.

Okay, back on point, Christy. Back on point!

Italian Meatloaf - and how to be Important

Mix that all up with your hands.

I know, some people shudder at the thought of digging their hands into raw ground beef  (believe me, I’ve received emails about it!) but there are so many worse things that we could have to do so just buck up, dive in, and know that this will better prepare you for the storms of life.

And really, if this is the worst thing you have to do all day, you have a pretty awesome life!

Italian Meatloaf - and how to be Important

Press your meatloaf into a lightly greased baking dish.

I ended up with a little extra so I used one loaf pan and one mini loaf pan. Use a knife to cut a slice down the center. This will help it cook more evenly.

Italian Meatloaf - and how to be Important

Take the rest of your  spaghetti sauce (or however much you want) to the top of the meatloaf.

If you don’t have enough leftover spaghetti sauce for this, you can use ketchup.

I love ketchup on meatloaf!

Italian Meatloaf - and how to be Important

Bake at 350 for about an hour, until  juices run clear.

If you have a smaller one, it will be done in about thirty minutes.


Dive in and enjoy… and know that you are important. 🙂

Italian Meatloaf – and how to be Important

Use leftover spaghetti sauce for a deliciously different spin on your traditional meatloaf recipe! This is easy to customize as well.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: meatloaf
Servings: 4
Calories: 539kcal


  • 1 +1/2 -2 pounds ground chuck
  • 1 onion chopped
  • 1 bell pepper or 1/2 cup chopped sweet peppers, chopped
  • 1 cup oats quick or old fashioned
  • 1 egg
  • 2 cups spaghetti sauce reserve 1 cup


  • Place all ingredients into a large mixing bowl and mix well with hands.
  • Press into greased baking dish. Pour reserved spaghetti sauce over top.
  • Bake at 350 for one hour, or until juices run clear.
  • Enjoy!


Calories: 539kcal
Tried this recipe?Mention @southernplate or tag #southernplate!

Always do the right thing. It will satisfy most people and astonish the rest.

– Mark Twain

Submitted by Jim Ferguson. Click here to submit your own. (I always love new quotes!)

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  1. Sunday afternoon ,searching internet. Found you somehow opening pop ups. I have gone and found good stuff. I booked marked everything. This week my family will eat good

    I will let u know how it goes,they all love food, when I make it good, they love the food. I am going for love!

    I use all cast iron cook ware, for health reason, plus cooking even. I am fifth generation on this whole collection. They cook perfect.

    Be back soon.

  2. If you don’t want to touch the raw beef, I’ve got another suggestion. Put your hand in a zip lock bag if you don’t have a plastic glove. It works great!

    Thanks for your wonderful recipes!!

  3. The meatloaf came out very good, we had sandwiches off it for the next 3 days and finally threw the remainder out.. When I go to make it the next time, I will put it into small loaf pans and freeze some of it, then we won’t feel like we have to eat it all week.. there’s just the two of us..I did like the recipe though and wanted to ask you how one would cook the meat loaf in crock pot? Seems like the steam would make it too moist and mushy. How would you lift the meat loaf out of the crock pot without tearing it up? Do you make a cradle out of foil so you can lift it when you are ready to eat it?

  4. Used your Italian meatloaf recipe today with a few changes..didn’t have any spaghetti sauce because I had bought the mild chunky salsa to put in it. Didn’t have fresh bell pepper so I took frozen pepper strips from freezer and used the green peppers out of it, put those in my Lit’le Oscar processor and chopped them and onion up. I used ground chuck, but will add S&P the next time and more oats..Served cole slaw with it and bowties pasta with cream of mushroom soup over it. DH can’t do without gravy..duh! made my cranberry/crushed pineapple jello mold and all was delish.. DH likes cold meat loaf sandwiches, so hope he’ll eat them tomorrow.

  5. What a beautiful post today..but all of your personal notes are that way. You truly are special to all of your followers as well as your family. We feel blessed even though many of us have never met you.

    Do you make any recipes using GS cookies? Somewhere I saw some recipes using GS cookie just a day before the GS had set up their table with GS Cookies at the store. DH likes the Samoa and I like my thin mints and it didn’t take us long to devour both boxes!

    It is so bitter cold, and windy today after having snow all day yesterday and today would be a good soup day. Made chili Sunday and still have some left, think I might freeze that for later. I have the soup vegetables in freezer for making the soup but not the other ingredients until I go to store and I’m not going out in this bitter cold temps today!

  6. Oh Christy how i love your inspirational words..and your super
    Duper good recipes! Something your message brought to my mind is
    A teaching I learned long ago as a child. ..” I know I’m someone special…cause God don’t make junk” Thanks for always making my day and God bless u & ur family during this busy time traveling.

  7. This looks terrific and so easy. Meatloaf is one of my husband’s favorite suppers and one I have learned to make without following a recipe – so we have ended up with a lot of variations. I like the addition of the tomato sauce, so flavorful. (Sometimes, I finely grate a carrot and add that in for texture and a little sweetness, and to get some veggies into my meat-loving better half.) Thanks for the uplifting words, Christy, you always speak to what is on my mind. I enjoy and appreciate seeing your post in my facebook feed every morning!

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