Monday, January 17, 2011

Quinoa Chicken Meatloaf

Recently I saw some fellow Nashville food blog friends (Leah of So How’s It Taste & Beth of Eat.Drink.Smile) discussing meatloaf.  I suggested they try the Buffalo Chicken Meatloaf, if they were looking for a variation on your standard meatloaf.  Of course that got meatloaf on my mind.  Even if this sounds dorky, I love meatloaf.  Besides the Buffalo Chicken version, I have a standard Turkey Meatloaf recipe I’ve made many times (hmm… perhaps I should consider updating the picture…).  Meatloaf is such great comfort food, especially in these cold winter months.  Whaddya know a little bit later in the day I was browsing Tastespotting and saw a Quinoa Turkey Meatloaf.  Lawd, if that doesn’t have “Erin make this” all over it, I don’t know what does.  As it were, I also caught a sale on ground chicken, so meatloaf it was!

I personally really liked this meatloaf, and The (soon-to-be my) Mr did too.  I gauge his opinion based on whether or not he went back for seconds, and if he ate leftovers the next day.  He did both.  Now, the consistency is a bit different than your standard meat loaf.  Of course cooked quinoa is quite a bit moister than breadcrumbs or ground oatmeal (which is what I usually put in meatloaf).  It seemed to hold together better than the Buffalo Chicken version did too.  The cumin & jalapeno definitely added some unique flavor.  I think there are many variations you could do with spices on a quinoa/poultry loaf.  I’m really glad I made this, as it was delicious, healthy, comfort food.  I haven’t figured out the nutritional info on this, but considering the ingredients I’m betting they’re really good!  High in protein!

*I’m adding this to both the Chicken & Turkey categories, because obviously you could use either one.


Quinoa Chicken Meatloaf


Canola spray
2 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
1 large onion, finely chopped
1 medium jalapeño, seeded and finely chopped
1 Tbsp ground cumin
1-1/2 cups cooked quinoa (1/2 cup quinoa cooked with 1 cup of water)*
1 lb ground chicken
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
2 Tbsp tomato paste
1 Tbsp tomato ketchup
1 large egg
1 tsp coarse sea salt
1 tsp fresh black pepper


Preheat oven to 375°F. Coat a 9-inch loaf pan with cooking spray, and set aside.

In a small frying pan, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and jalapeño to the pan, and cook, stirring frequently, for 3-4 minutes, until the onion is soft. Stir in the cumin, and cook for one minute. Remove from heat.

In a large mixing bowl, combine the onion mixture and the remaining ingredients. Mix thoroughly, and transfer to the loaf pan. Bake for one hour. Turn the oven off, and let the meatloaf sit in it for 10 minutes. Then, remove from the oven, and let the meatloaf cool for 5 minutes before slicing and serving.

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10 Responses to “Quinoa Chicken Meatloaf”

  1. 1
    Laura — January 17, 2011 @ 8:40 am

    My husband loves meatloaf, and I am not usually a huge fan. This recipe looks good to me. Thanks for posting! I think I’ll try it soon.

  2. 2

    What an interesting twist on meatloaf! I bet the quinoa was a welcomed addition!

  3. 3
    Tony M. — January 17, 2011 @ 10:41 am

    Can’t wait to make this – yum!

  4. 4
    Rachel — January 17, 2011 @ 10:44 am

    Very interesting, I’ll have to try it!

    I’ve recently started a blog similar to “Erin’s Food Files” Please come and take a look, and give some feedback.


  5. 5
    Blog is the New Black — January 17, 2011 @ 1:11 pm

    I love mloaf and I love using chicken or turkey to make it healthier. I like the idea of using quinoa to add some protein!

  6. 6
    Jessica — January 17, 2011 @ 11:07 pm

    I am definitely putting this on the menu for after the move! Sounds delicious and you know I love me some Meatloaf too.

  7. 7
    Tammi Kibler @keenonquinoa — January 18, 2011 @ 3:28 pm

    I have been meaning to make a quinoa meatloaf, and this one looks delicious. I will have to watch for a sale on ground turkey or chicken.

  8. 8
    Chris at Hye Thyme Cafe — January 21, 2011 @ 1:38 pm

    Now that’s funny…I randomly picked up some ground turkey yesterday thinking I would attempt some sort of Turkey Meatloaf today or tomorrow. I was thinking about what to put in it earlier and was batting around the idea of quinoa, then all of a sudden this post popped up in my Google Reader “recommended items” list. LOL – Might have to give yours a shot (with turkey rather than chicken). Thanks! 🙂

  9. Pingback: Loaf « WannaBe Chef

  10. 9
    Susan — January 30, 2012 @ 5:01 pm

    My kids LOVED this! Making this again this evening! Thank you!

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