My modified Martha Stewart meatloaf meal costing $1.20 per person

We love meatloaf around here.  I made a very modified version of Martha Stewart’s Meatloaf Recipe. Our large size meatloaf turned out wonderful and was the main feature of our tasty supper for our family of 10 at $1.20 per person!

Meatloaf is one of those meals that you can put together relatively inexpensively but has big bang for your buck.  It’s a true home comfort food!  If you remember to keep to the basic ingredients of meat, bread crumbs, eggs, ketchup like sauce and seasoning — you’ll most likely end up with a wonderful down home meal!

Recipe: Beth’s Modified Martha Stewart Meatloaf Recipe

Summary: Meatloaf is the perfect comfort food that turns simple ingredients into a gourmet taste!  The following recipe is a modified version of the Martha Stewart Recipe.  I modified it to accommodate the ingredients I had and to serve more people. You can find the original Martha Stewart Meatloaf Recipe here.


  • 6 slices of bread
  • 1/2 to 1 cup shredded carrots or squash
  • 1 shredded or minced celery rib
  • 1/2  cup chopped onion
  • 1/2 chopped green pepper
  • 1/2 chopped red pepper
  • 2 minced cloves of garlic
  • 3 lbs of meat (can be a mixture of beef, pork or veal)
  • 3 to 4 eggs (I use 4)
  • Salt and Pepper (I started with a teaspoon each)
  • 1 1/2 cups of ketchup like sauce (if you only have ketchup, add a tablespoon of mustard)


  1. In a large bowl crumble the bread crumbs  and combine with the shredded and minced veggies.
  2. Mix the meat, eggs, ketchup like sauce, salt and pepper.
  3. Add the meat mixture to the bread crumbs and veggie mixture and combine with your hands.
  4. Form into a meat loaf shape.  I always bake my meatloaf in a 9×12 pan so I can make a “less think” loaf that doesn’t take as long to cook.
  5. Pour additional ketchup sauce over the top of your loaf. Or make this sauce for a topping: 3 Tablespoons of ketchup to 2 1/2 teaspoons of mustard and 2 Tablespoons of dark brown sugar. Mix and pour on top of meatloaf.
  6. Bake in a covered dish at 375 for 45 to 60 minutes. Depending on the thickness you make your meat loaf, you will need to adjust the baking time. Thicker loafs longer, and flatter loafs shorter.   Martha’s meatloaf cooks for 90 minutes… but her loaf is much thicker than I make mine.  In an effort to speed the cooking time…I make flatter, longer loafs.  I was short on time this time and made two loafs and put them into two 9×12  pans.
  7. Cook until a meat thermometer inserted in the center reads 160 degrees if you are unsure.

Quick Notes

You can use any kind of ketchup type sauce. I always make my own ketchup sauces out of tomato sauce, brown sugar, molasses, a bit of vinegar, several good squirts of mustard, several dashes of all spice, several squirts of worcestershire sauce.  All these items store well in the pantry (unopened) and are great items to have around for whipping up ketchup and barbecue sauces.


You could add mushrooms if you like.

You can use up summer squash in meatloaf.  I like to shred it.

You can add a 1/2 cup of oats to your meat loaf.

You can add a bit of Tabasco sauce if you like.

Number of servings (yield): 12 to 14

A small family could probably get 3 meals out of this recipe.  I would mix up the meat loaf, use 1/3 of it for baking and freeze the other 2/3 rds of  uncooked meatloaf mix into two meal size portions in freezer bags.  To cook.. thaw and bake as normal.

Meal type: supper

Cost: I estimated that it cost me around $8 for the meatloaf.  The biggest expense is the meat.  I made my ketchup sauce and used inexpensive fresh veggies I bought on sale.  I made a huge pot of mashed potatoes from the potatoes I bought for .20 cents a pound, green beans I canned from our garden last year and corn that I bought on sale for .14 cents a can.    Total cost for this meal was around $12!!!

Serve With: Mashed potatoes, green beans, salad, corn or steamed veggies

3 comments on “My modified Martha Stewart meatloaf meal costing $1.20 per person

  1. I like the sneakyness of the added veggies!  You have to get them in where you can!  Sounds like a great recipe!  I’ll have to give it a whirl!  : )

  2. Adding the summer squash is just an additional way to use up all that summer squash you grew.  I end up putting summer squash in a lot of things actually…..

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