Bacon Wrapped Meatloaf with Caramelized Onions

The more I cook, the more I realize how much I absolutely love cooking comfort food.  And eating comfort food.  I really love eating comfort food.  And I’ve been doing a lot of it lately. This meatloaf has been one of our favorites.


Covering your dinner with bacon can’t be a bad thing.  This meatloaf is covered in 10 strips of bacon which give it great flavor and create a great slicing guide.  I got this recipe from The Pioneer Woman, my go-to for comfort food.  Try her pot roast!  It makes me smile just thinking about it.  The only change I made to this meatloaf was to add some caramelized onion.

I’ve made this twice now.  The first time I followed the recipe exactly, but felt that the bacon was kind of soggy.  So the next time I baked the meatloaf without the sauce at the beginning of the cooking time at an attempt to crisp it up a little before putting the sauce on.  I think it was better, not so much that I could definitely tell a difference but enough that I will do it that way in the future.  Either way the bacon is a great addition and makes this meatloaf spectacular.  It would still be good without the bacon, so leave it out if you must.

I don’t have a roasting pan.  Not sure why.  I should probably get one.  So I baked the meatloaf on a shallow baking pan lined with parchment.  It releases a lot of juice, so I soaked it up with paper towels after it came out of the oven.  I can see why a roasting pan would be helpful, but don’t fret if you don’t have one.  You don’t need it.

This would easily feed 8 people, possibly 10.  Ben and I can easily make 3 meals out of it.  Sliced for dinner the first night, then meatloaf sandwiches for lunch or dinner a couple of times.  Few things can beat a meatloaf sandwich on some soft white bread.  Enjoy!

Bacon Wrapped Meatloaf with Caramelized Onions

From The Pioneer Woman



  • 1 medium yellow onion, halved and sliced thin
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 cup milk
  • 6 slices white bread
  • 2 pounds ground beef (I used 1 pound of 85/15 and 1 pound of 93/7)
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 teaspoon seasoned salt
  • 3/4 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/3 cup minced Italian parsley
  • 4 whole eggs, beaten
  • 10 slices Thin/regular Bacon


  • 1 to 1 1/2 cups ketchup
  • 1/4 to 1/3 cup brown Sugar
  • 1 teaspoon dry mustard


  1. Caramelize the onion: Heat 1 tablespoon of butter and drizzle of olive oil over medium heat in a skillet.  Add the sliced onion and stir the onion to coat with butter.  Sprinkle with kosher salt and a generous pinch of sugar.  Let cook, stirring occasionally and monitoring the heat so the onions do not burn, 10-15 minutes.  Onions should be brown and soft.  If the onions begin to crisp and burn and there is no moisture left in the pan, add a few teaspoons of water.  Remove from the pan from the heat and let cool.
  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Pour milk over the bread slices. Allow it to soak in for several minutes.
  3. Place the ground beef, milk-soaked bread, onion, Parmesan, seasoned salt, salt, black pepper, and parsley in a large mixing bowl. Pour in beaten eggs.
  4. With clean hands, mix the ingredients until well combined. Form the mixture into a loaf shape on a broiler pan, which will allow the fat to drain. (Line the bottom of the pan with foil to avoid a big mess!)
  5. Lay bacon slices over the top, tucking them underneath the meatloaf.
  6. Cook meatloaf for 15 minutes.
  7. While the meatloaf is cooking, make the sauce: stir together ketchup, brown sugar and mustard in a mixing bowl. Pour 1/3 of the mixture over the top of the bacon. Spread with a spoon.
  8. Bake for 30 minutes, then pour another 1/3 of the sauce over the top. Bake for another 15 minutes. Slice and serve with remaining sauce.


Barbecue Quesadillas

When it rains it pours when it comes to leftovers in our house.  Last night, for example, we had 3 different choices for dinner using leftovers.  It can get a little boring when its the same meal that’s just been reheated.  Leftovers are a lot more bearable when you can make something new out of them.  This is what I did with some leftover turkey from Rudy’s BBQ.  Mmm.  Rudy’s.

Along with the turkey I had barbecue sauce, tortillas, shredded Mexican blend cheese, half of a red onion, and half of a red bell pepper, all left over from other meals.  Since this was kind of a last minute dinner and I wasn’t sure exactly how it was going to turn out, I didn’t really measure anything.  If you’re not comfortable with that kind of cooking, this is a great way to start.  The best way to get better at cooking without a recipe is to practice.  Just use your judgement and use what you like.  If you have barbecued brisket or chicken instead, then use those.  I used a Mexican blend of shredded cheese, but cheddar, monterey jack, or pepper jack would all work.  If you don’t like onions, don’t use them.  If you like green bells instead, use those.

I’ve learned that when making quesadillas, like pizza, do not overdo it on the fillings (toppings for pizza).  It can be a mess to flip over, and if the filling to crunchy tortilla ratio is off, they aren’t as tasty.  Also, make sure to get your pan hot and use some kind of fat (butter is best in my opinion) even if its just a little bit.  It makes for a much crunchier exterior.  Enjoy!

Barbecue Quesadillas

Serves 3-4


  • 6 flour tortillas
  • 2-4 tablespoons butter
  • 1 1/2-2 cups chopped barbecued turkey (brisket or chicken)
  • 3-5 tablespoons barbecue sauce
  • 1/2 red onion, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 bell pepper, thinly sliced
  • 1-2 cups shredded cheese
  • sour cream (optional)


  1. Mix the turkey with the barbecue sauce, adding 1 tablespoon at a time until the meat is lightly coated. (Add more if you like.)
  2. Heat a skillet over medium heat.
  3. Lay out half of your tortillas and begin evenly layering cheese, turkey, onions, bell peppers and more cheese.  Top with another tortilla.
  4. Melt some butter (I use between 1/4 and 1/2 tablespoon) in the hot skillet.  Carefully transfer one quesadilla to the skillet and cook for 3-4 minutes until the bottom is nicely browned.
  5. Spread a little more butter on the top tortilla before flipping, being careful not to let too many toppings escape.
  6. Cook for another 3-4 minutes until the other side is browned and the cheese has melted.  Transfer to a plate.
  7. Repeat with the other quesadillas.  You can keep these warm in a 200°F oven on a cookie sheet.
  8. Cut into quarters and serve with sour cream if desired.