Maybe your mom made meatloaf, maybe you ate it in school or at diners, or perhaps you discovered it later in life in its arguably greatest form: the sandwich. (It’s all coming back to me now.) Fortunately, there is now a meatloaf for everyone. While totally American, meatloaf has been food-blogged to include every possible ethnic variety, from Greek to Cajun.

These are all warm and comforting dishes that are totally budget-friendly and make excellent leftovers. Ignore the name, and think of meatloaf instead as a giant meatball! Fine, maybe that’s weird. Just scroll through and tell me you aren’t salivating. Meatballs had their moment, bacon has had its moment, let’s give ourselves a meatloaf moment. At 2 a.m., bathed in the blue light of the open fridge door, eating it cold. With ketchup. Meatloaf always shows up to that moment. Paradise by the fridge light.
Header photo and recipe of Spicy Meatloaf Sandwich from CHOW

1. Chicken Meatloaf

This one is drop-dead easy, and good for you! If you can make a boxed cake, you can make meatloaf. Just dump all of your ingredients into a bowl, stir, and bake.
Photo and recipe from CHOW

2. Thanksgiving Meatloaf

This seasonal favorite combines the greatness of Thanksgiving leftovers and meatloaf sandwiches into one loaf pan. In the immortal words of Uncle Jesse, “Have mercy!”
Photo and recipe from Wishful Chef

3. French Onion Soup Meatloaf

Soup and meatloaf—it could be weird … like your mom dating your teacher. But here, it works by adding cheese and caramelized onions, keeping the meat incredibly moist and tender. Two out of three ain’t bad.
Photo and recipe from Cupcakes & Kale Chips

4. Zucchini Meatloaf

This recipe is the perfect example of stealth health. Hiding zucchini in a classic like meatloaf is perfect for the vegetable-averse spouse—and you’d do anything for love.
Photo and recipe from Diet Taste

5. Buffalo Chicken Meatloaf

Need I say more? Double the recipe and keep one in your freezer for when you’re craving wings. Heaven can wait.
Photo and recipe from Eclectic Recipes

6. Bacon-Cheddar Meatloaf

Meatloaf is one of the few foods that is actually traditionally bacon-wrapped; this recipe doubles down and adds cheese too. Essentially a cheeseburger you can eat with a fork and knife, plus a side of green beans. Because, why not?
Photo and recipe from CHOW

7. Greek Meatloaf

This meatloaf borrows the Greek flavor profile to lighten up the rich meat with mint, salty feta, and oregano. Sub ground lamb for a truly stunning dish.
Photo and recipe from Heather Christo

8. Cowboy Meatloaf

Instead of breadcrumbs, this recipe toasts up some cornbread for a perfect salty sweetness. And it’s called “Cowboy”! A dead ringer for love.
Photo and recipe from Thrifty Shopaholic

9. Beef Wellington Meatloaf

It’s just fancy meatloaf WRAPPED IN PASTRY! Now you’re getting on my level, meatloaf.
Photo and recipe from Tasty Kitchen

10. Cajun Meatloaf

This recipe based on Paul Prudhomme’s version is supposedly the recipe to convert meatloaf’s haters. Bathing this dish in a Tabasco mixture at the end oughta do the trick.
Photo and recipe from Casual Kitchen

11. Harlem Meatloaf

No, no shake involved in making this dish. The secret weapon in this recipe is dill pickle relish, meaning this meatloaf only gets better as it sits in your fridge allowing the flavors to deepen.
Photo and recipe from CHOW

12. Vegetarian Meatloaf

Meat left this recipe like a bat out of hell, but for the vegetarian in your life, you’re willing to get creative. Including cook a meatless meatloaf with mushrooms, nuts, and wild rice or lentils for crying out loud.
Photo and recipe from The Kitchn

Vanessa W. Simmons is a former cook living in San Francisco, helping to run a food business. She’s probably hungry, but if not she could eat.
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