These Easy Mini Meatloaves for Babies (with Oat Flour) are the ultimate comfort food for the entire family! This recipe is a variation from the traditional meatloaf, so you can cook once for the baby and the whole family!

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Mini Meatloaf Recipe

This meatloaf recipe uses simple ingredients and makes a delicious main dish for busy weeknights. I used to cook a regular size meatloaf for the family, but when my little girl was getting ready to start solids, I thought about adapting it to cook once for everyone.

The easiest way was to split this delicious recipe into mini meatloaves or mini meatloaf muffins. This way, I could add all the ingredients except for the salt, separate the portions for the baby, and season with salt for the rest of the family.

Reasons to Love These EASY Mini Meatloaves for Babies (with oat Flour)

  • Great recipe to cook once for the baby and the family.
  • Iron-rich meal, essential when starting solids.
  • Customizable: You can use a muffin pan, mini loaf pan, or regular loaf pan.
  • Freeze well in an air-tight container.
  • Great for Baby-Led-Weaning: Cut into fingers for baby to hold using a palmar grasp (6+m), or into small pieces (9+m).
  • Leftovers can be used to make other meals such as spaghetti bolognese, sandwiches, and beef quesadillas.
Baked mini meatloaves with glaze
7

Ingredients

Read the recipe card at the end of this post for ingredient quantities and instructions!

  • Ground beef: I like using ground beef that is 85% or 90% lean meat. Avoid using super lean meats (95% lean meat) as they will turn into dry meatloaves.
  • Yellow onion: Finely cut; I recommend using a food processor to chop the onions and garlic to ensure the best results.
  • Eggs: To bind the mini meatloaves. Use large eggs.
  • Garlic cloves: minced or add to food processor with the onion.
  • Tomato paste: Choose one that only has tomatoes in the composition and unsalted.
  • Fresh Parsley: Or use dry parsley and reduce the amount by half.
  • Milk: Used to add moisture to the meat mixture.
  • Oat flour: Adds nutrition and structure to the meatloaf mixture. To make oat flour, add quick oats or old-fashioned rolled oats to a food processor and blend until a fine flour is formed. To see alternatives, go to serving suggestions and substitutions.
  • Salt: Omit for babies < 12m old.
  • Smoked paprika, Paprika, and Rosemary: Added for flavor. I love adding smoked paprika to recipes!

Step-by-Step Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
  • Grease a mini loaf pan with non-stick cooking spray.
  • Add onion and garlic cloves to a food processor and chop them into small pieces. You may use a knife to cut the onion into small pieces and a garlic press to mince the garlic.
  • In a large bowl, add all the ingredients (except the salt) and mix well using your hands.
  • Separate a portion for the baby and add to the greased mini loaf pan (gently press meat to hold its shape)
  • Add salt to the rest of the meat mixture and divide it into equal portions in the mini loaf pan.
  • Add to the preheated oven and bake for 30 minutes or until the internal temperature has reached 160F (according to the meat thermometer).

Recipe Tips

  • If using a regular-size 9×5 loaf pan, increase the baking time to 1 hour. This can be done once your baby has turned one year old and can have salt added.
  • You may add a glaze if desired (for kids and adults). See the recipe card for ingredient details, and if you choose to do so, remove the meatloaves at ½ time, add the glaze, and return to the oven to finish cooking.
  • Do not overmix: This can result in a denser than ideal meatloaf.
  • If making a regular-size 9×5 meatloaf, line the loaf pan with parchment paper for easier removal and let it rest for 10 minutes before slicing.

Tools Needed

Serving Suggestions and Substitutions

These mini meatloaves are so adaptable. Here are my favorite ways to serve this easy dinner recipe to babies and toddlers:

Meatloaves How to

You can make the following substitutions:

  • Garlic: You can substitute it with garlic powder instead of fresh garlic. Use 2 tsp garlic powder equivalent to 4 fresh garlic cloves.
  • Oat Flour: Replace with the same amount of Panko breadcrumbs, or use oat flour and nutritional yeast in the same amount.

Storage Instructions

Let the mini meatloaves cool down completely and transfer to a Ziploc bag. Remember to add a description and date.

Let them defrost overnight in the fridge, or add them to the microwave to defrost/reheat.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the best meat for Meatloaf?

I like using 85% or 90% lean meat. This level of fat, paired with the rest of the ingredients, will lead to a juicy and moist meatloaf. Do not use meats that are over 95% lean.

Is oatmeal better than breadcrumbs in meatloaf?

Oats are a healthier option; they add the right texture to bind the ingredients together and have no sugar added (especially good for babies and toddlers). Alternatively, you can use panko breadcrumbs and nutritional yeast.

What can I use instead of breadcrumbs in meatloaf?

I have used the following with success: Oat flour, nutritional yeast, and panko Japanese breadcrumbs.

Recipe Card

Baby Mini Meatloaves

Easy Mini Meatloaves for Babies (with Oat Flour)

These Easy Mini Meatloaves for Babies (with Oat Flour) are the ultimate comfort food for the entire family!
5 from 2 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: dinner, lunch, Lunchbox
Cuisine: American, Brazilian
Keyword: comfort food, mini meatloaves for baby, quick and easy dinner, weeknight dinner
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 8 mini meatloaves
Calories: 274kcal
Author: Carol Pecora

Equipment

Ingredients  

  • 2 lbs ground beef 85%-90% lean
  • 1 onion medium
  • 2 eggs large
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste 100% tomatoes (unsalted if serving to babies <12m old)
  • 3 tbsp fresh parsley
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • 2/3 cup oat flour or panko breadcrumbs / or 1/3 cup oat flour + 1/3 cup nutritional yeast
  • 1 1/4 tsp salt omit for babies <12m old
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp rosemary or Italian seasoning
Optional Glaze (Omit for babies <2 years old)
  • 1 cup tomato sauce
  • 1 tbsp dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp vinegar
  • 1 tbsp brown sugar

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
  • Grease a mini loaf pan with non-stick cooking spray.
  • Add onion and garlic cloves to a food processor and chop them into small pieces. You may use a knife to cut the onion into small pieces and a garlic press to mince the garlic.
  • Add all the ingredients (except the salt) in a large bowl and mix well using your hands.
  • Separate a portion for the baby and add to the greased mini loaf pan (gently press meat to hold its shape).
  • Add salt to the rest of the meat mixture and divide it into equal portions in the mini loaf pan.
  • Add to the preheated oven and bake for 30 minutes or until the internal temperature has reached 160F (according to the meat thermometer).

Notes

  • If using a regular-size 9×5 loaf pan, increase the baking time to 1 hour. This can be done once your baby has turned one year old and can have salt added.
  • You may add a glaze if desired (for kids and adults). Mix the glaze ingredients together, remove the meatloaves at ½ time, add on top, and return to the oven to finish cooking.
  • Do not overmix: This can result in a denser than ideal meatloaf.
  • If making a regular-size 9×5 meatloaf, line the loaf pan with parchment paper for easier removal and let it rest for 10 minutes before slicing.

Nutrition

Nutrition Facts
Easy Mini Meatloaves for Babies (with Oat Flour)
Amount per Serving
Calories
274
% Daily Value*
Fat
 
14
g
22
%
Saturated Fat
 
5
g
31
%
Trans Fat
 
1
g
Polyunsaturated Fat
 
1
g
Monounsaturated Fat
 
6
g
Cholesterol
 
116
mg
39
%
Sodium
 
493
mg
21
%
Potassium
 
512
mg
15
%
Carbohydrates
 
10
g
3
%
Fiber
 
1
g
4
%
Sugar
 
2
g
2
%
Protein
 
26
g
52
%
Vitamin A
 
387
IU
8
%
Vitamin C
 
4
mg
5
%
Calcium
 
48
mg
5
%
Iron
 
3
mg
17
%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Tried this recipe?Rate in the comments and tag @goldenbearmama on Instagram!

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