Onion Soup Mix Is The Ingredient You're Missing For Incredible Meatloaf

Sliced meatloaf on a plate
Sliced meatloaf on a plate - Arina P Habich/Shutterstock

It's hard to beat a recipe for classic meatloaf. Although meatloaf might not be regarded as the fanciest meal, it is a flavorful, filling dish that is perfect for a weeknight dinner or potluck party. Plus, it's incredibly comforting during those cold winter months. Although plenty of meatloaf recipes exist, it's possible that you haven't heard of one secret ingredient you should be adding to the mixture: onion soup mix.

If you want to add savory, salty flavor to your meatloaf, don't hesitate to grab a packet of concentrated onion soup. A packet of the powdered mix is a total game changer when it comes to flavoring your meatloaf. A lot of meatloaf recipes list diced white onions as an ingredient. Using concentrated onion soup mix is a surprisingly flavorful way to incorporate both the spicy bite of an onion and the savory flavorings like paprika, black pepper, and bullion that are in the soup mix.

Read more: 15 Tips For Making The Best Meatloaf

A Simple Way To Boost Flavor

Meatloaf over mashed potatoes
Meatloaf over mashed potatoes - Lauripatterson/Getty Images

Meatloaf is an easy dish that requires few ingredients. In addition to ground meat, meatloaf recipes typically call for a binder such as eggs, breadcrumbs, sometimes a liquid like milk or water, and various seasonings for flavor. You can avoid the fuss of gathering, measuring, and adding various seasonings by adding a simple packet of onion soup mix to the ground meat mixture.

It's easy: Fold the soup mix into the meat, then add the other ingredients, form the meatloaf, and bake it as usual. If you're one of the legions of meatloaf fans who think it's not true meatloaf without a ketchup glaze, layer it on top of the loaf when it still has 20 minutes to 30 minutes left to bake.

One thing to remember if you add onion soup mix to your meatloaf is to be careful to not over-salt the dish. Concentrated onion soup mix tends to have a lot of sodium, with one packet totaling more than 2,000 milligrams. Adding additional salt to the ground meat mixture could make your meatloaf too salty. Also, since seasoned bread crumbs are often heavily salted, consider using plain bread crumbs instead. And don't add more than one packet of soup mix unless you're doubling the recipe.

Choose Fattier Ground Meats

Sliced meatloaf on a dish
Sliced meatloaf on a dish - Vaaseenaa/Getty Images

In addition to the seasoning, the meat you use matters. Using a mix of ground meats, such as beef, pork, and lamb or veal, is recommended to have enough fat and texture to keep meatloaf from either drying out or becoming mushy or greasy. Many grocery stores sell a ground meat mixture containing all three in one package, so the extra work is already done for you. If you stick with using only ground beef, go for beef that's 80% to 85% lean. The extra fat in this beef will add flavor and keep the meatloaf from drying out.

Even if you add the onion soup mix, don't be hesitant to add some chopped sweet or yellow onions to the mixture as well. The onions will soften as the meatloaf cooks and provide another layer of texture to the dish. A handful of crumbled bacon added to the meatloaf mix -- or even draping entire strips of bacon over the top of the loaf before baking -- contributes the salty, meaty umami that bacon is loved for. You can even take meatloaf in an entirely new direction by adding salsa or taco seasoning.

Humble meatloaf doesn't demand a lot of ingredients or effort to create a family-filling dinner. Adding a packet of onion soup mix is a tasty and easy way to step up your meatloaf game.

Read the original article on Daily Meal.