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Healthy Recipe Doctor

with Elaine Magee, MPH, RD

Elaine Magee's blog has now been retired. We appreciate all the wisdom and support she has brought to the WebMD community throughout the years.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Meatloaf Makeover!

A couple of weeks ago, I asked members on my WebMD Food & Cooking Exchange to vote on which of my favorite recipes they wanted me to share:

And much to my surprise, meatloaf won! My money was on the cookie or brownie recipe. Many meatloaf recipes can cause problems for people with IBS (irritable bowel syndrome) because they are often high in fat (some contain sausage or ground pork), or spicy, or both.

The meatloaf recipe below is a light but flavorful version of this American classic. Compare the two versions.

The original recipe (with half regular ground beef and half ground pork, whole milk cheese, egg and added salt) contains:

350 calories
22 grams fat
10 grams saturated fat
120mg cholesterol
600mg sodium

The light version (with ground sirloin, reduced fat sharp cheddar, egg substitute and no added salt) contains:

230 calories
9 grams fat
4.5 grams saturated fat
75mg cholesterol
360mg sodium


  • Calories are cut by 34%
  • Total fat is cut by 59%
  • Saturated fat is cut by 55%
  • Cholesterol is cut by 38%
  • Sodium is cut by 40%

So, as promised…here’s my favorite lightened meatloaf recipe (and I’ve lightened quite a few).

Elaine’s Favorite Meatloaf Au Gratin


Photo: Elaine Magee

If you want to make two smaller meatloaves instead of one larger one (so you can freeze one), use two, 1 1/2-quart baking dishes and make two smaller meatloaf domes instead of one.


2 pounds ground sirloin or other extra lean ground beef
1/4 cup egg substitute
1 cup reduced fat sharp cheddar cheese, divided use
1 small onion, chopped
1/3 cup plain bread crumbs (Italian bread crumbs can be substituted if that’s what you have in your pantry)
1 1/2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1 tablespoon Dijon or prepared mustard
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1 cup marinara sauce, pizza sauce or tomato sauce


1. Preheat oven to 350-degrees. Coat a 2-quart baking dish with canola cooking spray.
2. In large bowl, combine ground beef, egg substitute, 3/4 cup of the cheese, onion, bread crumbs, Worcestershire sauce, mustard and pepper. Mix well with hands or wooden spoon.
3. Form meat mixture into a dome and bake for 50 minutes. Pour the marinara sauce over the top of the meatloaf and sprinkle with the remaining shredded cheese. Bake an additional 8-10 minutes. Cut into the center to make sure the meatloaf is cooked throughout.

Yield: Makes 8 servings

Nutritional Analysis per serving: 230 calories, 28g protein, 9g carbohydrate, 9g fat, 4.5g saturated fat, 3g monounsaturated fat, 1.5g polyunsaturated fat, 75mg cholesterol, 1g fiber, 360mg sodium. Calories from fat: 35 percent. Omega-3 fatty acids = .1 gram, Omega-6 fatty acids = 1 gram

Weight Watchers Points = 5

Bon appétit!

Share your favorite meatloaf recipe on the Food and Cooking Exchange.

Posted by: Elaine Magee, RD at 10:25 am

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