Side Orders: Give meatloaf a delicious, cheesy center

Anne Braly

Meatloaf is pure comfort food, and there are so many ways to make it - from a simple ground beef and onion recipe to meat that's been stuffed with onions, peppers and other delicious ingredients.

photo Anne Braly

I've always heard of cheesy meatloaf and have added cheese to the mix, but it never seems to be enough. The cheese taste just never comes through. Recently, though, I tried a new recipe my sister emailed me that uses a whopping three cups of cheese. Rather than mixing it in with the ground beef and other ingredients, the ground beef is patted out and the cheese is scattered all over the top. Then it's rolled, so with each slice comes a gooey, wonderful cheesy center - almost like a cheeseburger, but oh so much better. However, if a cheeseburger is what you're after, use the meatloaf the next day. It turns an ordinary meatloaf sandwich into an extraordinary burger-type meal. You can even add pickles to the meatloaf when you cook it to make it taste even more like a cheeseburger if you like pickles on your burgers.

Cheesy Rolled Meatloaf

2 pounds ground beef

3/4 cup fresh bread crumbs

1/2 cup minced onion

2 eggs, beaten

1 1/2 teaspoons salt

1 1/2 teaspoons ground black pepper

3 cups shredded cheddar cheese

Heat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, combine the beef, bread crumbs, onion, eggs, salt and pepper, and mix well. Pat out meat mixture into a 14- by 18-inch rectangle on a piece of wax paper. Spread cheese over the meat, leaving a 3/4-inch border around the edges. Roll up jelly-roll fashion to enclose the filling and form a pinwheel loaf. Press beef in on both ends to enclose the cheese. Place in a 10- by 15-inch baking dish. Bake for 1 hour, or until internal temperature reaches 160 degrees.


I hate going to the trouble to get my food processor out just to grate cheese, like for today's meatloaf recipe. Not only is it a pain, you end up with several items needing cleaning. The other option is using my old cheese grater, which does a good job, but not nearly as well as the latest in graters from Chef'n.

The company's new Tower Grater has three grating surfaces: fine, coarse and normal-size cheese shavings. It also allows cooks to remove individual graters to grate directly over food, just as servers do with parmesan cheese in Italian restaurants. It's three-sided with a solid bottom that encapsulates the shavings until you're ready to release them.

The Tower Grater is definitely not your grandmother's cheese grater. If that's whose grater you've been using - and that's exactly whose I was using before owning this one - don't you think it's a little dull by now? It can be found online at for $39.95. That may sound like a steep price for a cheese grater, but when you'll get it, I think you'll find it an upgrade that's worth the money.


During the Lenten season, seafood takes the spotlight at Bonefish Grill every Friday through April 19. The restaurant will be serving a special Angler's Catch featuring tempura-style, hand-battered crispy cod, sea scallops and shrimp served on a bed of french fries with house-made coleslaw and a side of cocktail and tartar sauce for under $20.

I didn't say anything about it being healthy, just delicious. If you're looking for an option on the healthful side, try one of these seasonal specials served daily: Grilled Salmon Superfood Salad, Saigon Scallops and Shrimp, Caribbean Cobia or any of its Fresh-Cut Filets - tilefish, Arctic char, mahi mahi, wahoo, halibut, rockfish, grouper, dover sole, corvina, ahi tuna steak, sea bass, redfish and salmon, served with a variety of signature sauces, including mango salsa, herb pesto, Pan Asian Sauce, lemon butter or Oscar-style.

Bonefish is in the Hamilton Place neighborhood at 2115 Gunbarrel Road.

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