You have to love it when the same 8 simple ingredients make two different meals that everyone in the family is likely to enjoy. That’s definitely the case for the recipe I’m posting today, and the great news is that you are likely to have most of this on hand already:
- Ground chicken
- chopped onion
- dry mustard
- and a little tomato juice
Combine it all in a bowl and it will turn into a wonderful Chicken ‘Meat’ Loaf for a weeknight meal and some very tasty Chicken Sliders to barbeque on the weekend! If you make a double batch, you can have the loaf for dinner and freeze the sliders for later. One prep, one clean-up, and you get two meals!
The inspiration for this recipe is my Mom’s meatloaf. Mom made a very tasty traditional meatloaf that I enjoyed very much. One of the things I like to do with my cooking is to occasionally take those traditional dishes and use some different ingredients. Ground beef was a staple in my Mom’s time and since then we’ve learned that limiting red meat in our diets is a healthy choice. So, a number of years ago, I decided to try ground chicken in Mom’s meatloaf instead of ground beef and I ended up loving it so much, that I always use ground chicken now for this loaf. The tender consistency is very pleasing and it’s lighter tasting than the beef. The dry mustard and the tomato juice add a nice tang and additional flavour.
As with a lot of the things my Mom makes, there is not a recipe written down. She goes a lot by look, feel and taste – and experience! So, when I first started making meatloaf I couldn’t get it to stick together, which was frustrating. The egg and breadcrumbs act as a binder and I seemed to be using the same amounts as my Mom, but my loaf would crumble into pieces every time it was cut, rather than staying in a nice slice that you could easily plate. It would look like ground beef crumble rather than a loaf. I definitely didn’t have the same touch as Mom! So, the solution I came up with was to use two eggs instead of one and ever since then, I can get nice full slices from my loaf.
If you are lucky enough to have leftovers, put the loaf in the fridge for a few hours to get it nice and cold. Then, slice it thinly to use in sandwiches for lunch. It tastes great and is a healthy alternative for anyone who is trying to limit the use of cold cuts.
Another great thing to do with this same recipe is to turn it into chicken sliders.
I love the smaller size of a slider compared to a large burger because it doesn’t look so daunting to eat. And, if you are hungry after one, you can certainly have another! They’re a great size for little kids and adults who may not have a huge appetite. And, those who have a larger appetite can have 2 or 3! When we are cooking these for a crowd, I usually plan for 2 sliders per person and add 2 more to the total. That should account for some people eating one, most people eating 2 and a few might have 3….or more! With this plan, everyone has enough to eat and we sometimes have leftovers also.
I found this handy slider press that gives you the option of 1, 2, or 3-ounce sliders. It’s by a company called Outset and I bought it at Kitchen Stuff Plus. It helps me make the patties the same size each time, which makes the cooking easier too because they’ll all be done at the same time.
This is a long weekend in Canada that is considered to be the unofficial start to summer for most of us, so there are likely to be lots of backyard BBQ’s going on if weather permits…so give this recipe a try and let me know how you like it. This easy and tasty recipe makes a ‘meat’ loaf for 4, or 6 sliders of 3 ounces each. Whip up a batch of sliders. They freeze well too! Click here for the recipe.
Happy cooking, friends! Enjoy the long weekend, fellow Canadians!