This is a recipe repost from my original blog, Bakin’ and Eggs. I am slowly migrating my favorite recipes over to this site. This chicken meatloaf has been a favorite for almost five years!
One of my favorite things that my grandmother cooked when I was growing up was meatloaf. It was a traditional beef-based meatloaf. She topped it with mushrooms and I loved to dip it in ketchup. Yep, it’s the most simple meals that stand out in my memories.
I don’t make meatloaf often but when I do it’s usually a variation that is far from what I used to eat at my grandmother’s table. I first made this stuffed meatloaf a years ago after spotting it on Pennies On A Platter (which is now rebranded to Seeded at the Table). I’ve made quite a few changes to the original recipe over the years and put my own twist on it.
What I enjoy most about this dish is that the individual elements come together for a delicious flavor combination. The chicken mixture is seasoned with herbs and garlic and then stuffed with cheese and spinach and topped with marinara sauce and more cheese. Who can resist anything that’s stuffed and topped with cheese! Despite the cheese, it’s a relatively healthy take on meatloaf and also makes for a great spin on Italian night. I usually serve it with an extra drizzle or marinara, pasta and a green vegetable or salad. The leftovers reheat wonderfully.
Mozzarella and Spinach Stuffed Chicken Meatloaf
(Recipe adapted from Seeded at the Table)
1 pound ground chicken
1 cup marinara sauce, divided
1/2 cup bread crumbs
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
1 tablespoon fresh parsley, diced
1/2 large onion, finely diced
2 garlic cloves, smashed and minced
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
1/2 teaspoon fennel seed, crushed (optional)
1 (10 ounce) package frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained (squeeze all the water out)
1 1/2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese, divided
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 9-inch loaf pan with foil, shiny side down.
In a large bowl, combine chicken, 1/4 cup marinara sauce, bread crumbs, herbs, fennel, garlic, onion, eggs and parmesan cheese and mix well.
Press half of chicken mixture into loaf pan, creating a one-inch indentation down the center. Leave one-inch thickness on all sides. Mix together spinach and 3/4 cup mozzarella cheese and spoon into the indentation. Cover with remaining chicken mixture and seal edges.
Top with remaining 3/4 cup marinara sauce and 3/4 cup cheese and bake for 50-60 minutes, or until internal temperature reaches 160 degrees. Let stand for 10 minutes and then lift out of loaf pan using foil edges. Slice and serve with additional marinara sauce, if desired.
Yield: 6-8 servings