I love this recipe because I can make several loaves and freeze them for the next time I need them. This is a Pillsbury recipe that I have adapted over time when I figured out what ingredients worked best for our busy family.
I make three loaves and freeze them because ground pork comes in 1 1/2 lb packages, which makes the recipe a little challenging when it only calls for 1 lb of pork and 1 lb of ground beef. I buy a 3 lb package of lean ground beef (bonus: it’s cheaper to purchase this way anyways!) and make three loaves, freeze them, then they’re ready for later! If you do freeze these, the best way I’ve found to freeze them is to wrap the loaf in saran wrap, then wrap in foil, then place in a sealed Ziploc freezer bag.
If you’re not a fan of ground pork, 2 lbs of ground beef works or you can even just use 1 lb of beef and halve the entire recipe.
- 1 can (14.5 oz) diced tomatoes with Italian herbs (or use regular diced tomatoes and substitute your own herbs
- 1 lb lean (at least 80%) ground beef
- 1 lb lean ground pork
- 1/3 cup marinara sauce
- 1/3 cup Italian style bread crumbs
- 1 egg, slightly beaten
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon pepper
- 1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese (2 oz)
- 2 plum (Roma) tomatoes, chopped (optional)
- shredded fresh basil leaves (optional)
Heat oven to 375°F. Line 15x10x1-inch pan with foil. Place broiler pan rack or metal cooling rack in pan. For this part I usually just use a broiler pan to let any drippings go to the bottom of the pan.
Place diced tomatoes in blender or food processor. Cover; blend on high speed about 5 seconds or until tomatoes are still slightly chunky. In large bowl, mix beef and pork. Stir in tomatoes, marinara sauce, bread crumbs, egg, salt and pepper just until combined. Shape mixture into 9×5-inch loaf. Place loaf on rack in pan.
Bake 1 hour. Top with cheese. Bake 15 minutes longer or until no longer pink in center and meat thermometer inserted in center of loaf reads 160°F. Let stand 5 minutes before serving. Garnish with plum tomatoes and basil (optional).