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Best Monterey Jack Recipes


Top Rated Monterey Jack Recipes

Macaroni and cheese is maybe the ultimate comfort food. What’s not to love? It’s an excuse to eat tons of carbs and cheese. While there are countless delicious, ooey, gooey macaroni and cheese recipes, most of them are omitting one ingredient that’s a total game-changer: cream cheese.

There’s nothing like a homemade Buffalo chicken dip, and when it’s loaded with several different types of cheese it’s practically irresistible. Serve this with some tortilla chips or pita bread.Click here for more of the 101 Best Slow Cooker recipes.

The thought of making breakfast in the morning is cause enough to hit snooze. Luckily, these baked taquitos make for an easy breakfast of champions. Customize the recipe to your liking, swapping out what you dislike and putting in what you do.Recipe courtesy of Mexican Please

This ultimate comfort food gets a contemporary twist vegetables, sage, rosemary and a generous topping of panko bread crumbs and Asiago cheese.Recipe courtesy of McCormick.

This quick and easy pizza quesadilla recipe is the perfect way to add some excitement to a school-day lunch.This recipe is courtesy of Food.com.

Chicken enchiladas suizas are the combination of white meat chicken, tart salsa verde, creamy sour cream, and melted Monterey Jack cheese. Enchiladas verdes are similar, but don’t use sour cream in the sauce. Make a delicious chicken enchilada recipe tonight for dinner — it comes together in a jiffy.

This recipe is a great play on the traditional peanut butter sandwich that most children love and enjoy. This particular grilled cheese elevates the original by adding banana and Monterey Jack cheese to create an unexpected flavor combination that creates a new experience for children. (pg 104)

I love to serve the best food possible when I entertain. This dip has never seemed to disappoint my guests. It’s best when served in the winter months, only because it’s a very heavy dish.

Chicken tortilla soup is a classic Tex-Mex dish that’s perfect comfort food on a cold evening. This recipe is from the Junior League of Dallas’ cookbook, “Stop and Smell the Rosemary,” and it has tons of flavor from onion, tomatoes and shredded chicken cooked in a spicy, smoky broth. Serve this over crunchy tortilla chips and top with cheese. Want more heat? Up the amount of spices used.

Add a spicy kick to your next panini. The touch of spicy mustard completes this delicious sandwich.

Technically speaking, baked macaroni and cheese is a casserole. Think about it: baked in one dish, feeds a whole family, totally decadent, and it is comforting. Yep, fits the criteria to us! We promise this recipes will completely make you look at mac and cheese as a main course and not a side!

Who doesn’t love a delicious buffalo chicken dip at a party? It is creamy, delicious, a little spicy, and extremely flavorful. But when it is loaded with a few different types of cheese, this dip can get pretty fattening, pretty quickly. We’ve lightened up this recipe for you so you can thoroughly enjoy this essential party food without the guilt.Click here for more of the 101 Best Slow Cooker Recipes


Easy Creamy Monterey Jack Queso

Nestled among the creamy melted Monterey Jack cheese are delicious bits of sautéed red onion and jalapeño. My other favorite part? The bread crumb topping! Dipping tortilla chips into this Monterey Jack Queso might be my new favorite hobby. Everyone needs a hobby, right? Queso is my hobby.


Recipe Summary

  • 1 cup dry bread crumbs
  • 1 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese
  • 1 (1 ounce) package ranch dressing mix
  • ½ cup milk
  • 6 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves

Preheat an oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).

Combine the bread crumbs, Monterey Jack cheese, and ranch dressing mix in a large bowl set aside. Pour the milk into another bowl, then dip the chicken breasts into the milk. Gently press the chicken into the bread crumb mixture. Arrange the chicken in a 9x13-inch baking dish.

Bake the chicken breasts in the preheated oven until no longer pink in the center and the juices run clear, 40 to 45 minutes. An instant-read thermometer inserted into the center should read at least 165 degrees F (74 degrees C).


The 11 Best Melting Cheeses, Ranked!

There’s nothing quite like a grilled cheese sandwich to simultaneously satisfy your lunchtime hunger pangs and make you feel like a kid again. But this classic isn’t just for youngsters! There are ways to elevate it, to make your grilled cheese sandwich truly amazing. It’s all in the ingredients.

Cheese lover Adrienne Cheatham—who also just happens to be a chef at the Institute of Culinary Education—was more than ready for the challenge of ranking the best cheeses for melting in a sandwich.

“Grilled cheese, to me, is one of the most perfect foods ever created and is truly a gift to mankind,” she says. “Whoever was the first person to make a cheese sandwich, slather it with butter, and toast it until the bread is GBD (golden brown and delicious) and the cheese melts into a pull-able mass should be canonized as the patron saint of all things awesome.”

While Cheatham is always up for a debate about the best type of bread and spread to use in the perfect grilled cheese sandwich, the cheese is obviously the foundation…so let’s start there. Below, she ranks her favorite cheeses for melting from “good enough to use” to best, based on both flavor and melt-ability.

11. Manchego

Manchego is one of Cheatham’s all-time favorite cheeses for snacking, but she doesn’t necessarily recommend it for grilled cheese or other dishes that require melting. Why? Well, it’s because the elements that make Manchego so delicious at room temperature—namely, its flavor, texture, and funkiness—are often most pronounced in more aged versions. According to Cheatham, aged cheeses don’t melt especially well…but if you’re Manchego-obsessed, you can probably still make yourself a pretty good sandwich out of it.

Murray's Young Manchego, $13.30/lb from Murray's Cheese

A younger Manchego is best for melting.

10. Muenster

Although Muenster melts well, Cheatham says that it tends to lose a lot of its flavor in the melting process. The texture is so great, though, that she’ll often include it on a hot sandwich with other ingredients. It’s just not ideal for a basic grilled cheese.

9. Raclette

Raclette melts well, has a slightly more pronounced flavor, and still has a subtle, creamy quality for anyone who doesn’t love a funky taste. Cheatham also highly recommends raclette for grilled sandwiches with other ingredients.

Electric Raclette Maker, $139.95 from Williams Sonoma

A more traditional way to enjoy gooey raclette.

8. Provolone

Cheatham calls Provolone a “largely underrated cheese for grilled cheese.” She suggests stacking a few slices on your sandwich for some serious cheesy stretching after melting. It has a mild flavor, but is still on the nutty side and pairs particularly well with butter.

7. Monterey Jack

Monterey Jack lends itself especially well to grilled cheese because of the way it melts. Also, if you like a little extra flavor in your sandwich, you can opt for the pepper Jack variety for some heat.

6. Fontina

“Melts like a champ!” Cheatham says. If that endorsement isn’t enough, she also recommends pairing it with acidic ingredients like tomato or cornichon on your sandwich… although it’s pretty delicious on its own, too.

5. Gruyere

Gruyere is a go-to ingredient in many melted-cheese dishes (like macaroni and cheese) for a reason! It melts well and has amazing flavor after grilling. Expert tip: when making your grilled cheese sandwich with Gruyere, start with your pan on a low temperature to ensure that you don’t burn the bread before the cheese melts.

4. Comté

If you love the way Gruyere melts but want to try something with a little extra flavor, you may want to give Comté a shot.

3. Taleggio

Cheatham calls Taleggio a “true grilled cheese star.” There’s a wide range of Taleggio varieties out there, so you can find something with just the right amount of funk for your palette. Keep in mind that the flavor becomes more subtle when melted, “leaving you with a beautiful melt and enough flavor to stand up to the bread, but not too much to drown it out,” Cheatham says.

2. American Cheese

There’s nothing especially refined about American cheese, but you grew up eating it on your sandwich for good reason. It melts easily and tastes creamy and even now, one bite of that simple grilled cheese sandwich will take you right back to your childhood.

1. Mild Cheddar

“Winner winner, chicken dinner!” Cheatham says. “While I love sharp cheddar, it doesn’t melt as well as mild cheddar, becoming oily and chewy instead of gooey. Mild cheddar brings the perfect melt and perfect flavor that you can let shine on its own.”


Mexican Chicken & Rice Casserole

As the weather cools down, our minds turn to comforting, hot casseroles. We’re making this one Mexican-style, with chicken, rice, black beans, cilantro and authentic spices. To shake things up, we’re also adding beautiful, Italian-variety kale to the mix, and topping the casserole with shredded Monterey Jack (a mild American cheese). In the oven, the cheese melts down to a wonderfully crispy crust—while beneath, the vibrant flavors of the filling come together deliciously. Dig in, chefs!

Title

Preheat the oven to 450°F. In a medium pot, combine the rice, 2½ cups of water and a big pinch of salt. Heat to boiling on high. Once boiling, cover and reduce the heat to low. Simmer 10 to 12 minutes, or until the liquid has been absorbed and the rice is tender. Remove from heat and fluff with a fork.

While the rice cooks, wash and dry the fresh produce. Peel and thinly slice the garlic. Peel, halve and thinly slice the onion. Remove and discard the kale stems roughly chop the leaves. Drain and rinse the beans. Thinly slice the cilantro leaves and stems.

In a large, high-sided pan (or pot), heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil on medium-high until hot. Add the garlic, onion and spice blend season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, 2 to 4 minutes, or until softened and fragrant. Add the ground chicken season with salt and pepper. Cook, frequently breaking the meat apart with a spoon, 4 to 6 minutes, or until lightly browned and cooked through.

Add the diced tomatoes, kale, beans and ½ cup of water to the pan of chicken season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, 4 to 6 minutes, or until the kale has wilted and the liquid has thickened season with salt and pepper to taste. Transfer to the pot of cooked rice.

To the pot of cooked rice, chicken and vegetables, add the crema, ¼ of the cheese and all but a pinch of the cilantro. Stir to thoroughly combine season with salt and pepper to taste. Transfer to a baking dish. Evenly top with the remaining cheese.

Place the casserole in the oven and bake 12 to 14 minutes, or until the cheese is browned and bubbling. Remove from the oven and let stand for at least 2 minutes before serving. Garnish with remaining cilantro. Enjoy!

Tips from Home Chefs

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Preheat the oven to 450°F. In a medium pot, combine the rice, 2½ cups of water and a big pinch of salt. Heat to boiling on high. Once boiling, cover and reduce the heat to low. Simmer 10 to 12 minutes, or until the liquid has been absorbed and the rice is tender. Remove from heat and fluff with a fork.

While the rice cooks, wash and dry the fresh produce. Peel and thinly slice the garlic. Peel, halve and thinly slice the onion. Remove and discard the kale stems roughly chop the leaves. Drain and rinse the beans. Thinly slice the cilantro leaves and stems.

In a large, high-sided pan (or pot), heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil on medium-high until hot. Add the garlic, onion and spice blend season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, 2 to 4 minutes, or until softened and fragrant. Add the ground chicken season with salt and pepper. Cook, frequently breaking the meat apart with a spoon, 4 to 6 minutes, or until lightly browned and cooked through.

Add the diced tomatoes, kale, beans and ½ cup of water to the pan of chicken season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, 4 to 6 minutes, or until the kale has wilted and the liquid has thickened season with salt and pepper to taste. Transfer to the pot of cooked rice.

To the pot of cooked rice, chicken and vegetables, add the crema, ¼ of the cheese and all but a pinch of the cilantro. Stir to thoroughly combine season with salt and pepper to taste. Transfer to a baking dish. Evenly top with the remaining cheese.

Place the casserole in the oven and bake 12 to 14 minutes, or until the cheese is browned and bubbling. Remove from the oven and let stand for at least 2 minutes before serving. Garnish with remaining cilantro. Enjoy!


Copycat Panera broccoli cheddar soup

Who needs just one recipe for broccoli cheddar soup in their lives? Clearly, it's a hearty, comfort food that's deserving of at least a few different versions in your recipe lineup. Plus, if you love Panera's creamy and delicious version, you definitely need to give this copycat recipe a whirl. It takes almost an hour to make, and it requires multiple steps, including blending the soup to make it especially creamy, but the result is almost exactly the same as the restaurant's fan-favorite. Plus, with the two cups of shredded, sharp cheddar cheese that's included in the recipe, it will definitely deliver your cheese fix.


My family especially loves chicken casserole recipes. How about yours?

I&rsquom always trying new chicken casserole recipes and I&rsquove hit on a good one right here.

Side note: An all time favorite casserole of ours is this tamale casserole. It&rsquos made with a cornbread base and topped with chicken.

It&rsquos a bit of a riff on something I saw in a Taste of Home magazine for Monterey Spaghetti &ndash I&rsquove added chicken and omitted the Parmesan, because I&rsquom the boss of my life.

Don&rsquot want to brag, but I make a pretty good boss.

This isn&rsquot your traditional chicken spaghetti recipe, but I think you&rsquore going to fall head over heels in love with it.

This chicken casserole was super easy to toss together and even my youngest ate it, despite all of the green stuff lurking in her noodles. She side-eyed me the whole time, but we made it through dinner without incident.

I&rsquoll take what I can get, you guys.

I really love the Monterey jack cheese in this &ndash it&rsquos mellow and creamy and just plain works. You could swap it out for something with a stronger flavor, like Gruyere or Swiss or maybe even a white cheddar, but I think it&rsquos pretty perfect as it is.

My husband likes more mild cheeses, so this one was a big hit for him too.

The crunchy fried onions are top just really put the whole thing over the top.

If you have onion haters in your life, leave them out of the casserole entirely and just sprinkle them over individual portions. (You can probably tell that I have an onion hater in my life.)

You know the drill &ndash give this a try, snap a photo, tag me on Instagram, and hashtag it #bunsinmyovenrecipe. I can&rsquot wait to see those gorgeous casseroles coming out of your ovens!

For more recipes and videos like this, be sure to follow me on Facebook!

Speaking of chicken casserole recipes, check out my Doritos Chicken Casserole and French Onion Chicken! Or for more pasta, try my chicken Florentine pasta!


Jack Cheese Recipe

MA 11 Mesophilic starter culture can be used to make a variety of semi-soft and fresh cheese including Cheddar, Colby, Monterrey Jack, Feta and Chevre.

Liquid Animal Rennet

This single strength liquid animal rennet is the highest quality form of rennet available on the U.S. market today and is NON-GMO. Liquid rennet is easy to measure and add to.

Cheese Salt

This cheese salt absorbs easily and contains no iodine. Iodine will kill the lactic bacteria in the aging process. Lactic bacteria is important for proper aging of cheese. Cheese Salt does not dissolve too.

Calcium Chloride

Calcium Chloride will help with store bought milk, cold stored raw milk and goats milk produce a firmer setting curd. A firmer curd is easier to cut and produces a larger yield.

Equipment

  • Good Thermometer
  • Knife to Cut Curds
  • Spoon or ladle to Stir Curds
  • Large Colander
  • Cheese Cloth
  • Two Boards
  • 4 Pound Weight
  • 25 Pound Weight

Tel-Tru Thermometer

This Tel-Tru thermometer, made in the USA, from the highest-quality stainless steel is both accurate and easy to use. Complete with a sturdy pot clip and large two inch dial, checking the.

Curd Knife 14"

This curd knife is essential in the cheese making process. With a long 14" blade it is easy to evenly cut curds, so whey can expel. Having no sharp edges.

Stainless Steel Skimmer

This stainless steel skimmer is a staple for all cheese makers. The slotted design lets whey drain from the curds, as they are scooped out of the pot, and placed into draining.

Cheesecloth

Cheesecloth is used for draining large curd cheese, lining hard cheese molds when pressing cheese and for bandaging finished cheese. This durable cloth is 100% cotton, can be reused and is machine washable.

Heat Milk & Add Cultures

We began with 5 gallons of local milk (whole pasteurized milk from your store will work just fine).

We then heated the milk to 88¡F and added 3/8 tsp of culture MA011 but one of the culture packs C101 will work just as well. It was then allowed to ripen for 60 minutes.

To heat our milk, we made a water bath in the sink by filling our sink with hot water and submerging the pot with milk. This heating method helps maintain a steady temperature without having to adjust the heat on a stove top.

Coagulate with Rennet

Next we added 2.5 ml or 1/2 tsp of calf rennet which formed a solid curd in about 40 minutes.

Cut the Curds

Once the firm curd was established it was cut to 1/2" cubes then let rest for about 5 minutes before stirring for another 20 min. At this point the curds are extremely fragile and must be handled with care.

Stir the Curds

We then began a long slow stirring while we slowly raised the temp to 100F over 40 minutes. This step dries the curd out by removing the whey from the curd.

Following this we stirred slowly for another 30 minutes as we watched the individual curds become smaller and toughen up a bit.

Our final step in the kettle was to 'pitch' or let the curds sink to the bottom for 25-30 minutes with gentle stirring every 3 to 5 min. Here they will now not lose as much moisture but will continue to produce lactic acid.

Check Final Curd Moisture

Our final step was a simple texture test as shown above. Ricki takes up a small handful of curd and squeezes to compact. If it breaks apart easily with the thumb into individual curds it is ready if it sticks together let it set for another 10 minutes.

Drain the Curds

Let the curds settle to the bottom of the pot. Now remove the whey down to the curd level.

The curds can now be transferred into a colander lined with cheese cloth.

Once transferred, add about 2.5-3 tbs salt and mix in well.

After salting the ends of the cloth are brought together and the entire curd mass is shaped into a nice round ball pulling the cloth up and consolidating it as the whey runs off.

Pressing

Next a board is placed on your draining surface under the ball of curd. The top is then tied off with string and the extra cloth is carefully spread evenly over the surface.

Another board is place on top and a light weight of 4-8 lbs is carefully balanced on top.

This will be the weight for about 1hr and then a weight of about 25 lbs will be used for another 4-6 hours. At this point remove all weight and let the cheese rest at

Aging

The next day the cheese surface is allowed to dry off for another 1-2 days establishing a firm rind. It then goes to a cooler cave (54¡F) where it continues to dry off more. After about 5-8 days and the rind becomes quite dry, a light coat of olive oil* can be applied and repeated every 3-5 days for about a week.

Following this a good brushing every 3-7 days until a firm coat is established and apply a bit more oils as needed. This cheese will be ready in 3-8 months.

*Ig Vella at Vella Cheese applies a mixture of oil, red pepper, and cocoa to the rind for a really nice brown crust and a very rustic looking cheese


Mexican Hominy Casserole Ingredients

Although hominy may not be something you’ve thought about using in a casserole before, but the ingredients can easily be found. Look for hominy at your local grocery store in their Mexican food area or canned vegetable area. They can usually be found in the same area as the green chilies, which is convenient since you need those too! This is a simple easy to through together recipe. In no time at all you’ll have it done!

  • Hominy: This recipe calls for two cans, I used one can of white hominy and one of golden hominy. But you can use whichever works for you, or what you can find. Be sure to rinse and drain your hominy before using.
  • Sour Cream: Creates a creaminess and gives it a slight tang of yumminess.
  • Can Diced Green Chilis: You can buy green chilis in various degrees of heat. Buy the one that suits you best.
  • Monterey Jack Cheese: It has a good subtle but flavorful taste, which is perfect with the hominy.
  • Parmesan Cheese: Adds a bit of saltiness and sharpness to the dish.

Best Meatloaf Recipe

I’ve always liked meatloaf, whether it be with a delicious glaze or with mashed potatoes and brown gravy. I’ve ditched the meatloaf seasoning packet and progressed past the egg, onion, bread crumb classic, and graduated to this amazing meatloaf supper. I originally found it in my Cook’s Illustrated newsletter.

This meatloaf is always a huge hit. Fabulous flavor, smells awesome while cooking, and everyone loves it. A definite keeper with a permanent home on my master list of ground beef dinner ideas!

Ingredients for the Best Meatloaf

The list of ingredients with their measurements are listed at the end in the printable recipe card. Below are my notes and substitution suggestions.

  • Monterey Jack cheese, grated on small holes of a box grater, but Mozzarella will work just as well.
  • Butter, margarine will work too.
  • Vidalia onion is my favorite, but yellow onion works as well.
  • Celery and fresh garlic are minced up and cooked with the onion.
  • If you don’t have fresh thyme leaves you can substitute 3/4 teaspoon of dried thyme instead.
  • Regular paprika is fine, but smoked paprika would add a fun flavor element!
  • I always have those little cans of tomato juice, but if you don’t you can literally squeeze some juice from a fresh tomato or buy the can and freeze the leftovers. Another option is to make a Bloody Mary!
  • I prefer unsalted low-sodium chicken broth, but you could use vegetable broth or beef broth instead.
  • For binders, you will need large eggs and some unflavored gelatin powder.
  • Added flavor comes from the soy sauce and Dijon mustard. I wouldn’t substitute the mustard, but you could use Worcestershire sauce in place of the soy sauce. They have a different flavor profile, but for this recipe, it will totally work.
  • Instead of bread crumbs, I use crushed saltine crackers. Could you use bread crumbs? Sure, I don’t see why not.
  • Fresh parsley leaves are very inexpensive, usually around a dollar at the grocery store. I would suggest using fresh if you can instead of the dried variety. If you must use dried, measure out half of what the recipe calls for.
  • Regular table salt and freshly ground black pepper are used for seasoning.
  • I’ve found that a combination of ground sirloin and ground beef chuck work best.

Ingredients for the glaze:

  • 1/2 cup ketchup
  • 1 teaspoon hot sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1/4 cup cider vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons packed light brown sugar

Helpful Kitchen Tools

Recipe Tips:

  • Just a note about choosing your ground beef. You’ll notice in the printable recipe that I suggest both ground sirloin and ground chuck. This has been my favorite combination, but you can use one type of ground beef with a fat content of roughly 85/15. You want some fat for juiciness and flavor, but not too much that it’s a greasy mess. In addition, meat with too high of a fat content will shrink, a lot.
  • Don’t over mix the meat, it will make your meatloaf tough. Use a fork, or a wooden spoon, but only mix until everything comes together, you don’t want to compact it and smash it all together. A few squeezes at the end with your hands will help bind the proteins. This will help the meatloaf stay together so it won’t fall apart when cooked.
  • I use a meatloaf pan with a drip insert. If you haven’t heard of one of these, and you like to make meatloaf, you should have one. It’s basically an 8ࡪ loaf pan, but there’s an additional insert pan with drain holes that you place inside the main pan. The meat cooks in the pan with the drain holes, this allows the fat to drip down away from the meat, landing in the pan below. There’s one at Amazon here, I’ve had mine for several years.
  • Run a butter knife around the edges, assuming you used the pan I mention above, especially if there’s any fat that pooled around the top and didn’t drip down. This sometimes happens as the meat cooks, it blocks the crevice along the side. Just jimmy the knife around the loaf and let the fat fall down the side of it so it can drain.

How to Make Delicious Meatloaf

  1. Adjust oven rack to middle position heat oven to 375 degrees. Spread cheese on plate and place it in the freezer until ready to use.

  1. Heat butter in 10-inch skillet over medium-high heat until foaming add onion and celery and cook, stirring occasionally, until beginning to brown, 6 to 8 minutes. Add garlic, thyme, and paprika and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Reduce heat to low and add tomato juice. Cook, stirring to scrape up browned bits from the pan, until thickened, about 1 minute.
  2. Transfer mixture to a small bowl and set aside to cool.

  1. Whisk broth and eggs in large bowl until combined. Sprinkle gelatin over liquid and let stand 5 minutes. Stir in soy sauce, mustard, saltines, parsley, salt, pepper, and onion mixture.

  1. Crumble frozen cheese into coarse powder and sprinkle over mixture. Add ground beef mix gently with hands (I used a wooden spoon, a fork works well too, just don’t over mix it) until thoroughly combined, about 1 minute.

  1. Shape meat mixture into a loaf, or use a loaf pan with a removable draining bottom like mine. Brush with glaze.

  1. Bake until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the center of loaf reads 135 to 140 degrees, 55 to 65 minutes. See my note #6 above if you are using a meatloaf pan. Remove meatloaf from oven.
  2. Let meatloaf cool about 20 minutes before slicing.

Leftover meatloaf is one of my favorite things. I can’t wait to have some for lunch tomorrow on two slices of white bread with some mayo.