Italian Meatloaf With Crispy Pancetta

Serves 6.

Note: Pancetta is a cured but unsmoked Italian pork product made from the same cut as bacon, which can be used as a substitute. Chopping the veggies finely helps to keep the meatloaf from falling apart when sliced. If you have a food processor, you can pulse the vegetables several times to get them finely chopped. From Meredith Deeds.

• 1/2 c. dry breadcrumbs

• 1/3 c. milk

• 1 medium onion, finely chopped

• 1 carrot, peeled and finely chopped

• 1/2 medium red pepper, seeded, finely chopped

• 1/2 c. grated Parmesan cheese

• 1/4 c. chopped basil leaves

• 3 finely chopped garlic cloves

• 2 eggs

• 1 1/2 tsp. salt

• 1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper

• 1 lb. ground beef

• 1 lb. ground pork

• 1 1/2 c., plus 2 tbsp. marinara sauce (homemade or store-bought), warmed

• 3 oz. thinly sliced pancetta*


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, combine the breadcrumbs and milk and let sit for 5 minutes. Add the onion, carrot, red pepper, Parmesan, basil, garlic, eggs, salt and pepper. Stir to combine. Add the beef and pork and, using your hands, mix gently until the mixture is thoroughly combined, but still slightly loose.

Place the meat mixture on an oiled rimmed baking sheet and form into a 9- by 5-inch loaf. Brush the loaf with 2 tablespoons marinara sauce and cover the top with overlapping slices of pancetta.

Bake for 50 to 60 minutes or until an instant-read thermometer registers 155 degrees when inserted into the middle of the meatloaf. Remove from the oven and let rest for 10 minutes. Slice and serve with remaining marinara sauce on the side.

Nutrition information per serving:

Calories XX Fat XX g Sodium XXX mg

Carbohydrates XXX g Saturated fat XX g Total sugars XX g

Protein XX g Cholesterol XX mg Dietary fiber XX g

Exchanges per serving: xx milk, xx vegetable, xx fruit, xx starch, xx carb, xx lean protein, xx medium-fat protein, xx high-fat protein, xx fat.