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The history of the American staple – meatloaf – offers more than a trip down culinary lane. It provides a glimpse into how advances in technology have shaped the way we eat and prepare food today. Your grandmother’s hand-cranked grinder, the kind that attached to the edge of a table, was key to meatloaf becoming an everyday dish. Cooks relied on it, particularly in the early half of the 20th century, until butcher shops installed refrigeration units that were able to safely store more perishable chopped meat.

Early meatloaf recipes called for veal, which was less expensive than beef at the time. The meat in one widely published version was first cooked then chopped, blended with other ingredients, molded, then cooked again into a loaf. Recipe history indicates that meatloaf as we know it today – blended with bread or cracker crumbs, egg and seasonings, then baked in a rectangular pan – gradually became popular between 1900 and the 1920s.

Among the most popular early recipes were several created by the Quaker Oats Company using their product as a binder in place of breadcrumbs. Binder is an essential meatloaf ingredient because it creates an even, smooth texture. In addition to whole-wheat breadcrumbs, oats or even cooked rice, it can include a generous amount of finely shredded or chopped cooked vegetables like spinach, carrots or onion. Nutritionally smart, the vegetables help keep a meatloaf moist.

How Meatloaf is Made Round the World


The Austrian meatloaf version is called Faschierter Braten. Most of the time it is wrapped in ham before baking it. Often it is served with mashed potatoes (when warm) or with a sauce (when cold).


Danish meatloaf is called forloren hare, mock hare or farsbrød (ground-meat bread) and is usually made from a mixture of ground pork and beef with strips of bacon or cubed bacon on top. It is served with boiled or mashed potatoes and brown sauce sweetened with red currant jelly.


Finnish meatloaf is called lihamureke. It is completely based on the basic meatball recipe. The only spices used are salt and pepper. It is not customary to stuff lihamureke with anything. The usual side dish is mashed potatoes, and lihamureke is usually served with brown sauce.


In Germany, meatloaf is referred to as Hackbraten, Faschierter Braten or Falscher Hase ‘mock hare’. In some regions it often has boiled eggs inside.


In Greece, meatloaf is referred to as rolo (Ρολό) and it is usually filled with hard boiled eggs, although several other variations exist.


Stefania meatloaf or Stefania slices are a type of Hungarian long meatloaf baked in a loaf pan, with 3 hard boiled eggs in the middle, making decorative white and yellow rings in the middle of the slices.


In Italy, meatloaf is called polpettone and can be filled with eggs or ham and cheese.

Jewish cuisine

In Jewish cuisine, meatloaf is called Klops (Hebrew: קלופס‎) and can be served cold or hot. It is sometimes filled with whole boiled eggs. The source of the word might be German, Klops, meaning meatball.


Rolat is a similar dish to the Arab and South-Asian, kofta. Ground beef is rolled and cooked until brown. It can be cooked with vegetables and various sauces.


The meatloaf dish called Embotidot is made of well seasoned ground pork, minced carrots, sausages, and whole boiled eggs. The meat is molded into a roll with the sausages and hard boiled eggs set in the middle. It is then wrapped in aluminum foil (historically, banana leaves) and steamed for an hour. The cooked Embotido may be stored inthe freezer. It is usually served fried and sliced for breakfast.


In Romanian cuisine, there is a meatloaf dish called drob, similar to other minced meat dishes in the region like the Bulgarian Rulo Stefani or the Hungarian Stefánia meatloaf, the major difference being that it is always made with lamb organs (or a mixture of lamb organs and pork or veal) and the hard boiled eggs in the centre of the drob are optional.


Rulo Stefani (Bulgarian: Руло Стефани).The Bulgarian rulo Stefani meatloaf is similar to the Hungarian Stefánia meatloaf, with hard-boiled eggs in the middle.

Czech Republic

In the Czech Republic, meatloaf is referred to as sekaná ‘chopped’. It is optional to put hard boiled eggs, gherkins, or wienerwurst inside.

Greater Middle East

Kafta or kofta is a similar dish which the mixture can be made into hamburgers and kebabs. It usually has parsley in it.

United States

In 2007, meatloaf was voted the seventh-favorite dish in the United States according to Good Housekeeping.

During the Great Depression, cooking meatloaf was a way to stretch the food budget for families, using an inexpensive type of meat and other ingredients, such as leftovers, spices and cereal grains to stretch the meat.

Meatloaf is typically eaten with some kind of sauce or relish. Many recipes call for pasta sauce or tomato sauce to be poured over the loaf to form a crust during baking. The tomato-based sauce may be replaced with simple brown gravy or onion gravy, but the meatloaf is prepared in a similar manner. Barbecue sauce, tomato ketchup, or a mixture of both tomato ketchup and mustard may also be used. American meatloaf may be garnished with ketchup. Another variety of meatloaf is prepared by frosting it with mashed potatoes, drizzling it with a small amount of butter, and browning in the oven.

Meatloaf is normally served warm as part of the main course, but can also be found sliced as a cold cut. Meatloaf can also be considered a typical comfort food and is served in many diners and restaurants today.


The Vietnamese meatloaf version is called “giò”. It’s boiled rather than baked or smoke.

Some Nontraditional Recipes

A popular recipe for meatloaf that utilizes a package of dried onion soup mix has been around for many years. I used this ingredient for a long time in my meatloaves until I became aware of  how much salt was in each serving – 610 mg. While this mix adds great flavor to meatloaf, it also contains many ingredients you do not want to eat if you are cooking healthy. I suggest you read the nutrition label on this package the next time you go shopping.

So I created my own dried onion soup mix, minus all the salt and preservatives, that I keep in the pantry for just such uses. Here is my recipe, in case you would like to make it. A recipe follows that shows how to include this ingredient.

Homemade Dried Onion Soup Mix

You can double and triple this recipe.

  • 8 teaspoons dried onion flakes
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dried parsley
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1/2 teaspoon celery seed
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground pepper

 Mix all the ingredients in a jar with a tight fitting lid.

Healthy Turkey Meatloaf


In mixing bowl combine:

  • 1/3 cup egg substitute
  • 1/2 cup ( 6 oz. can) tomato paste
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon prepared horseradish
  • 3/4 cups oats
  • 5 tablespoons of the substitute soup mix
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon Mrs. Dash Steak Grilling Blend                                                                                                                                                                                                       


Mix in 2 lbs. ground lean turkey breast. Form into a loaf and place in the middle of a roasting pan.

Mix together the remaining tomato paste, 1 tsp. horseradish, 1 tsp. water and 1/2 tsp agave. Spread over the top of the loaf.

I put a selection of cubed vegetables around the loaf, such as butternut squash, sweet potato or fingerling potatoes, onion and carrots.

Bake in a 375 preheated oven for 1 1/2 hours.

Dinner all in one pan! A 1 inch slice has about 250 calories. If I don’t roast it with vegetables, I sometimes add 1 cup of either shredded zucchini or carrot to the meatloaf mix.

The Best Meat Loaf


  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup plain dried bread crumbs
  • 1/3 cup finely chopped celery
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 2 generous tablespoons instant low sodium beef broth powderBuffalo Meatloaf with Spinach and Roasted Baby Potatoes
  • 2 or 3 dashes of hot sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon poultry seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 2 lbs. grass fed ground beef or bison


Combine eggs, bread crumbs, celery, onion, Worcestershire sauce, tomato paste, broth powder and seasonings in bowl and mix well.

Add ground beef and mix well. Shape into loaf. Place into 9 X 13 inch baking dish.

Bake at 350 degrees F. for 1 hour.

Crock Pot Meatloaf

8 servings

Cook Time: 8 hours

 Total Time: 8 hours, 25 minutes


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup horseradish
  • 3 tablespoons chili sauce
  • 2 eggs                                                                                                                             
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon white pepper
  • 1 teaspoon dried marjoram leaves
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/4 cup minced fresh parsley
  • 1 cup soft fresh whole wheat breadcrumbs
  • 2-1/2 lbs. ground turkey


In medium pan, cook onion and garlic in olive oil until tender. Place in large bowl with all ingredients except turkey and mix well.

Add turkey and mix gently just until combined.

Tear off 2- 30″ pieces of heavy duty aluminum foil and fold to make two 2″x 30″ strips. Lay strips in bottom of crockpot in an X pattern, letting the edges hang over the crockpot. Form turkey mixture into a loaf that will fit into the crockpot. Place on top of the foil strips.

Cover crockpot and cook on low for 7-8 hours, until meat thermometer registers 170 degrees. Drain off fat as needed during cooking time using a turkey baster. Use foil strips to lift meatloaf out of crockpot when it reaches 160 degrees F on a meat thermometer. Cover and let stand 20 minutes before slicing. 

Vegetarian Lentil Loaf


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 2 teaspoons chopped garlic
  • 1/2 cup chopped red bell pepper
  • 1/4 cup chopped celery
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
  • 2 cups firm-cooked lentils
  • 1 cup cooked brown rice
  • 1/4 cup chopped dried cranberries
  • 1/4 cup whole wheat breadcrumbs
  • 1 teaspoon chopped basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon chopped thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon chopped oregano
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 2 tablespoons whole wheat flour
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • Salt & freshly ground pepper to taste
  • 1/4 cup ketchup                                                                                                                        


Preheat oven to 350°F. Lightly grease a 9×5-inch loaf pan. In a large sauté pan over medium high heat add the oil; when hot, add the onion and garlic and cook for about 10 minutes or until the onions are translucent. Add the bell pepper and celery; cook, covered, for another 10 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool.

In a large bowl combine the sautéed vegetables with the walnuts, lentils, rice, cranberries, breadcrumbs, basil, thyme, oregano, eggs, flour and milk. Season with salt and pepper, mix well and then spoon into the loaf pan. Brush ketchup on the top of the loaf.

Bake until firm, about 45 minutes.

Italian Meatloaf Roll with Spinach Filling

Servings: 10


  • 1 1/2 lbs. extra lean ground beef or ground turkey breast
  • 3/4 cup Italian style bread crumbs
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/5 teaspoon pepper


  • 1 cup Marinara sauce
  • 1/2 tablespoon mozzarella cheese


  • 1 package frozen 10 oz spinach, defrosted and squeezed dry
  • 1 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese
  • 1 teaspoon dried Italian seasoning
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder


Heat oven at 375 degrees F.

In a bowl combine beef, crumbs. egg, salt and pepper.

Flatten into a 1/2 inch rectangle shape.

For filling.

In a bowl combine, mozzarella cheese, Italian seasoning, salt, garlic powder and spinach.

Cut a piece of foil or wax paper into a 12×8 inch rectangle.

On foil, pat mixture to12x8-inch rectangle. Spread with filling leaving a 1 inch border. Starting at short end, roll up tightly, using foil to start roll and tucking in filling; seal ends. Place seam side down in ungreased 12×8-inch (2 quart) glass baking dish.

Cook for 1 hour. Spread marinara sauce and cheese over top. Bake 15 minutes longer or until thermometer inserted in meat loaf reads 160°F. Let stand 5 to 10 minutes before serving.

Tuscan Meatloaf with Mushroom Sauce

4 Servings


  • 2 oz dried porcini mushrooms
  • 1 lb lean ground pork
  • 1 tablespoon milk
  • One 2-in square of Italian bread, crust removed
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped yellow onion
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons chopped prosciutto
  • 1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1 lightly beaten egg
  • 1/2 cup unflavored bread crumbs
  • 4 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/3 cup dry white wine                                                                                                                               


1. Soak the mushrooms in two cups of lukewarm water for half an hour or more.

2. In a bowl, break up the pork with a fork. In a small bowl, combine the milk and bread, and mash until creamy. Add the milk and bread to the meat, along with the onion, salt, pepper, prosciutto, cheese, and garlic. Mix thoroughly by hand. Mix in the lightly beaten egg. Shape meat into a firm, round ball; then roll this into a loaf about two and a half inches thick. Tap with your palm to drive out any air bubbles. Roll the loaf in the bread crumbs until evenly coated.

3. Drain the mushrooms (reserving the soaking water) and rinse them several times in clean, cold water. Chop the mushrooms roughly and set aside. Strain the soaking water through a fine sieve lined with paper towels. Whisk in the tomato paste and set aside.

4. Heat the oil in a Dutch oven or heavy casserole pan just big enough for the meat. Brown the meat on all sides in the pan over medium heat. Drain off the fat. Add the wine. Increase heat to medium high. Boil wine briskly until reduced one half, turning meat carefully once or twice. Turn heat to medium low and add chopped mushrooms. Add the tomato paste mushroom water to the meat and mushrooms. Cover and cook at a simmer for 30 minutes, turning the meat once or twice.

5. Carefully remove meat to a cutting board. Allow it to cool slightly and settle. Cut into slanted slices about 3/8 of an inch thick. If the sauce seems thin, concentrate it by boiling rapidly for a few minutes. Pour a little sauce on a warm serving platter, arrange the meat slices, then cover the remainder of the sauce.

“The Ultimate Meatloaf cookbook offers recipes from around the globe, from the All-American Meatloaf to Hawaiian Style to the more exotic Greek, Mexican, Indian and Asian twists. While traditional recipes suit the ever-popular protein diet, this cookbook provides vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free, low-salt, and low carb alternatives. Bestselling cookbook author John Chatham provides the authoritative guide on the All American favorites that feature 100 meatloaf recipes from a breakfast to hearty, healthy meals for every appetite and diet plan.”

Before factory farming took hold in the 1960s, cattle were raised on family farms or ranches around the country. Young calves were born in the spring and spent their first months suckling milk and grazing on grass. When they were weaned, they were turned out onto pastures. The calves grew to maturity at a natural pace, reaching market weight at two to three years of age. After the animals were slaughtered, the carcasses were kept cool for a couple weeks to enhance flavor and tenderness, a traditional process called dry aging. The meat was then shipped in large cuts to meat markets. The local butcher divided it into individual cuts upon request and wrapped it in white paper and string. This meat was free of antibiotics, added hormones, feed additives, flavor enhancers, age-delaying gases and salt-water solutions. Mad cow disease and the deadliest strain of E. coli did not exist.

Today’s industrialized process brings cattle to slaughter weight in just one or two years. But it reduces the nutritional value of the meat, stresses the animals, increases the risk of bacterial contamination, pollutes the environment and exposes consumers to a long list of unwanted chemicals, hormones and antibiotics.
That hamburger in the supermarket looks fresh, but it may be two weeks old and injected with gases to keep it cherry red. Take a closer look at that “guaranteed tender and juicy” filet of beef. The juiciness may have been “enhanced” with a concoction of water, salt, preservatives and other additives.
More ominous, the beef also may be infected with food-borne bacteria, including E. coli. Some experts believe this toxic E. coli evolved in cattle that were fed high-grain diets. Every year, hundreds of thousands of pounds of beef products are recalled.

Artificial manipulation of beef begins prior to conception. Many cows are treated with synthetic hormones, such as “melengestrol acetate,” that regulate the timing of conception, allowing all the calves to be born within days of each other — a “more efficient” process. In many ranches, herd bulls have been replaced by artificial insemination, which is a fast way to improve herd genetics. The goal is consistent size, tenderness and marbling.

Hormones are just one way to speed the growth of young calves. Another strategy is to feed them an ultra high-grain diet, the standard fare in most feedlots. One reason calves are switched from grass to grain is that grain is a more concentrated form of energy. Calves fattened on grain reach maturity months ahead of grass-fattened calves. The less time cattle spend in feedlots, the greater the profit they return. Corn is the grain of choice because it’s especially high in energy. But unnatural high-grain diets have a major drawback: They make cattle sick. To prevent or reduce the symptoms caused by grain-feeding, they are given a steady dose of antibiotics in their feed — adding yet another drug to the mix.

Why does grain-feeding cause health problems?

Cattle, sheep and other grazing animals have a specialized stomach chamber called a “rumen.” The rumen is designed to convert fibrous plants such as grasses into a nutritious, easily digested meal. Replace the grass with grain and the rumen becomes too acidic. After several months, the condition can progress to “acute acidosis.” Cattle with acute acidosis develop growths and abscesses on their livers, stop eating, sicken and even die.
Finding an alternative to industrial beef takes effort. The cattle industry is highly consolidated, with the largest 25 feedlot companies now supplying 40 percent of all U.S. beef. The packing industry is even more concentrated. The top four beef packers (IBP/Tyson, Excel/Cargill, Swift/ConAgra and U.S. Premium/National Beef) harvest more than 80 percent of the meat.

What can you do if you want to keep beef in your diet?

Opt for organic. The use of growth-promoting hormones and antibiotics is not allowed in certified organic beef production. Nor is feed made from animal by products, that includes meat, blood and bone meal from chickens, pigs and ruminants. 

Go for the grass. Choose beef from cattle that were 100 percent “grass-fed”. ” These animals are raised on their natural diet of grass from birth to market, and are not routinely given antibiotics and hormones. Look for a comprehensive grass-fed label from the American Grassfed Association.

Look at labels. Check for phrases like “Naturally Raised,” “No Hormones Added,” “Raised Without Antibiotics” and “Never Fed Animal Byproducts.” 

Comb your community. Ask your local producers how they raise their beef.  You can find producers near you at farmers markets and on the Web.

Try or  

I buy my beef from  these two farms: and

 Many mainstream supermarkets now carry organic, grass-fed beef.


Does this mean that beef is totally bad for you?

No, not at all. Beef is a great source of protein, zinc, selenium, iron and B vitamins. The key to enjoying beef and not increasing your risk for cardiovascular disease is to choose grass-fed leaner cuts of beef, such as round steaks and sirloin steaks. Serving size is equally important. One serving size of beef is only three to four ounces, or about the size of a typical deck of playing cards. You might be scratching your head right now, mentally comparing that juicy 10-ounce T-bone steak to a little three ounce piece of steak. While the round steak is a healthier choice, it doesn’t seem like a tasty option, does it?

Well, meat lovers, while your taste buds may not thank you for giving up the T-bone, your heart surely will. Actually, enjoying low-fat beef isn’t so tough (no pun intended) and here are a few healthy recipes with Italian seasonings for making three-four ounces of low-fat beef really seem like a “tasty dish”.  

The fat in grass fed beef has a much different consistency than the fat in commercial, grain fed beef. Because of that, grass fed steaks must be grilled at a lower temperature, more slowly than you would steaks from grain fed beef. Set the grill to medium, and your steaks will be seared on the outside, without risking drying them out and toughening them up on the inside. You will still see the dark grill marks that make the presentation of a grilled steak so inviting. Grilling at the lower temperature, however, you need to know that it will take a little bit longer to get the steaks to the desired doneness, but watch them closely, you don’t want to overcook them.

Sirloin Steak with Bell Peppers

Good served over egg noodles.

4 servings

  • 1 pound sirloin steak, trimmed of fat and cut into 1-inch chunks
  • 2 teaspoons fennel seed, roughly chopped or coarsely ground in a spice mill
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic
  • 1 ½ cups reduced-sodium beef broth, divided
  • 1/2 cup dry red wine
  • 4 bell peppers vary the colors, cut into 1-inch squares
  • Freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 2 tablespoons Wondra all-purpose flour


  1. Rub steak with fennel seed and 1/2 teaspoon salt, turning to coat on all sides. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the steak in a single layer and cook, turning once, until browned on the outside and still pink in the middle, 2 to 4 minutes. Transfer to a plate and cover with foil to keep warm.
  2. Add garlic to the pan and cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add 1 cup broth and wine, scraping up any browned bits with a wooden spoon. Add bell peppers, the remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt and pepper; bring to a simmer. Cover, reduce heat to maintain a simmer and cook until the peppers are tender-crisp, 4 to 6 minutes.
  3. Whisk the remaining broth and flour in a small bowl. Add to the pepper mixture, increase heat to medium-high and bring to a simmer, stirring constantly. Return the steak to the pan. Adjust heat to maintain a slow simmer and cook, turning the meat once, about 2 minutes for medium-rare.


Steaks with Caramelized Onions & Gorgonzola

Serve with garlic mashed potatoes and broccoli.

4 servings

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 2 large onions, sliced (about 4 cups)
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup reduced-sodium beef broth
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, divided
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 1 pound beef tenderloin, (filet mignon) or sirloin steak, 1-1 1/4 inches thick, trimmed and cut into 4 (4 oz.each) steaks
  • 1/4 cup crumbled Gorgonzola, or blue cheese


  1. Heat 1 tablespoon oil over medium heat in a large skillet. Add onions and brown sugar and cook, stirring often, until the onions are very tender and golden brown, about 15 minutes. Add broth, vinegar and 1/4 teaspoon salt and cook, stirring, until the liquid has almost evaporated, 3 to 4 minutes more. Transfer the onions to a bowl; cover to keep warm. Clean and dry the pan.
  2. Sprinkle the remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt and pepper on both sides of each steak. Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon oil in the same pan over medium-high heat. Add the steaks and cook until browned, 3 to 5 minutes. Turn them over and top with cheese. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover and cook until the cheese is melted and the steaks are cooked to desired doneness, 3 to 5 minutes for medium-rare. Serve the steaks with the caramelized onions.

Grilled Filet Mignon with Vegetable Kebabs

This low-fat cut is actually perfect weekday fare: it cooks up fast, stays juicy and carries other flavors perfectly. The kebabs are a mix of lemon, herbs and fresh vegetables. Serve with rice.

4 servings

  • 1 lemon, zested and juiced
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 16 cherry tomatoes
  • 10 ounces white mushrooms, stemmed
  • 1 medium zucchini, halved lengthwise and sliced into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 small red onion, cut into wedges
  • 1 pound filet mignon steak, 1 1/2 to 2 inches thick, cut into 4 pieces
  • 1 tablespoon steak seasoning, such as Mrs. Dash
  1. Preheat grill to high and reduce heat to medium just before placing meat on the grill.
  2. Combine lemon zest, lemon juice, oil, oregano, salt and pepper in a large bowl. Reserve 2 tablespoons of the marinade in a small bowl. Add tomatoes, mushrooms, zucchini and onion to the remaining marinade; toss well to coat. Thread the vegetables on to eight 10-inch skewers. Drizzle the vegetables and steak with the reserved marinade. Sprinkle steak seasoning on meat.
  3. Grill the steak 4 to 6 minutes per side for medium. Grill the vegetable kebabs, turning frequently, until tender and lightly charred, 8 to 12 minutes total. Remove the vegetables from the skewers and serve with the steak.


Italian Beef Skillet

  • Olive oil cooking spray
  • 1 pound beef round steak
  • 2  cups  sliced fresh mushrooms
  • 1  cup  chopped onion
  • 1  cup  chopped green pepper
  • 1/2  cup  chopped celery
  • 2  cloves  garlic, minced
  • 1  14-1/2 ounce can low sodium diced tomatoes
  • 1/2  teaspoon  dried basil, crushed or 1 tablespoon snipped fresh basil
  • 1/4  teaspoon  dried oregano, crushed or 1-1/2 teaspoons snipped fresh oregano
  • 1/8  teaspoon  crushed red pepper
  • 2  tablespoons  grated Parmesan cheese
  • Hot cooked pasta (optional)

Italian-Style Grilled Steak

Yield: 4 servings (serving size: 3 ounces steak, 1 teaspoon oil)

Grilled mushrooms are a good addition.

  • 1 (1-pound) lean beef rib-eye steak, trimmed
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh rosemary
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh thyme
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • Cooking spray
  • 4 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil


Cut beef across grain into 1/4-inch-thick slices. Combine beef, rosemary, thyme, lemon juice, and garlic in a large zip-top plastic bag; seal. Marinate beef in refrigerator 1 hour, turning occasionally.
Prepare grill. Just before adding meat, reduce heat to medium.
Remove beef from bag, discarding marinade. Sprinkle beef with salt and pepper. Place beef on an oiled grill rack.  Cook 1 minute on each side or until desired degree of doneness. Drizzle oil over beef.

Steak Pizzaiola

This is good with a saute of peppers and onions on the side.

4 Servings

  • 1 (1 pound) beef top sirloin steak 
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Salt and Pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 cup marinara sauce
  • 1/4 cup shredded Sargento Italian 2% reduced fat cheese blend
  • 2 tablespoons chopped basil


Brush steaks with olive oil and sprinkle steaks on both sides with salt, pepper and oregano.

Grill over medium heat for 2-4 minutes on each side or until meat reaches desired doneness (for medium-rare, a meat thermometer should read 145°; medium, 160°; well-done, 170°).

Meanwhile, heat sauce in a small saucepan. Spoon over steaks; sprinkle with cheese and basil. 

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