Meatloaf is a staple in the home. We eat it all the time, and often when we do, have leftovers. Since we don’t want to put it to waste, we’d of course like to find a way to preserve this meatloaf for future consumption. How do we go about doing this?
Meatloaf, either cooked or raw, can spoil quickly when left alone to set at room temperature. It is wise to preserve it as soon as possible to prevent food waste.
Whether cooked or raw, it is definitely possible—even recommended—to preserve your meatloaf immediately. Usually the best option is to place your meatloaf in the freezer for best results. Before starting the process, we must keep in mind some things to preserve it successfully.
Can You Freeze Meatloaf?
Meatloaf can be frozen either cooked or uncooked, but it requires different procedures depending on whether it is cooked or not.
If you’re planning to serve the meatloaf to many people at once, it’s best to freeze it in one piece to lessen the amount of exposed surfaces.
On the other hand, if you want to consume the meatloaf sporadically, cut it up into individual serving-size pieces. That way, when you cook or reheat the meatloaf, you don’t have to keep freezing the leftovers.
In freezing meatloaf, it’s best to use a cling wrap or aluminum foil as these will best preserve the meatloaf and help prevent freezer burn.
Also, label the meatloaf after wrapping it to avoid confusion between it and the other food items you may have frozen or preserved in your fridge.
After freezing, it’s best to defrost the meatloaf in the fridge before baking or heating to make it easier to heat and prevent burning the food when heating.
How to Freeze Meatloaf
When the meatloaf is unbaked, here’s what you have to do to freeze it properly:
- First, you need to flash freeze the meatloaf to avoid it lumping together. To do this, line the pieces on a baking tray or cookie sheet, equally spaced out. Place in the freezer for two hours, then take them out.
- Place the meatloaf in a freezer-safe storage container or wrap them up in aluminum foil or cling film.
- Place in the freezer.
- This will be good for up to four months.
- To cook, bake it for 1 and a half hours. To thaw, place in the fridge for 24 hours.
For cooked meatloaf, here are the steps for effective food preservation:
- Allow the food to cool then flash freeze the meatloaf.
- Place in a freezer-safe container or wrap in aluminum foil or cling film.
- Place in the freezer.
- This will be good for four months.
- To reheat, place it in the oven for one hour. To thaw, place in the fridge for 24 hours.
And you’re done! This meatloaf will be safely and properly preserved for future use.
Cooked Meatloaf Recipes
There are many recipes that you can make from leftover meatloaf! One of the unique yet delicious meatloaf quesadilla recipe, which combines traditional quesadilla with meatloaf:
Another recipe you can make is the meatloaf pasta sauce, which you can then use with a number of pastas like spaghetti, penne, and macaroni. Here is the yummy recipe used for this sauce:
And lastly, here’s a recipe for a dish you can bring with you anywhere! Sandwiches are often a great alternative for meals because you can pack it and carry it anywhere, so here is a hearty recipe for meatloaf sandwiches: