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Bacon Cheeseburger Mini-Meatloaves and Cheesy Mashed Potatoes

These mini-meatloaves taste just like a good old-fashioned bacon cheeseburger straight down to the finely diced dill pickle in them! Top them with creamy, Cheesy Mashed Potatoes, a little extra dill pickle and a sprinkling of sesame seeds (instead of a sesame seed bun) and you'll be in seventh meatloaf heaven! Gently adapted from and with thanks to "The Meatloaf Bakery Cookbook" by Cynthia Kallile.
Author Rebecca Lindamood

Ingredients

For the Bacon Cheeseburger Mini-Meatloaves:

  • 1/2 pound 8 ounces bacon, cut crosswise into small slices
  • 3/4 cup finely diced cooking onions
  • 1 1/2 pounds ground chuck
  • 1 cup panko or plain white bread crumbs
  • 1 cup shredded extra-sharp Cheddar plus extra for garnish
  • 1 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese
  • 1/4 cup well-drained finely diced dill pickles plus extra for garnish
  • 1 large egg lightly beaten
  • 1/4 cup milk beaten
  • 1/4 cup ketchup
  • 2 tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 1 teaspoon prepared yellow mustard
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 black pepper
  • nonstick cooking spray

For the Cheesy Mashed Potatoes:

  • 8 Russet potatoes peeled and cut into 2-inch chunks
  • 1/4 cup whole milk warmed in the microwave
  • 4 tablespoons of unsalted butter softened
  • 2 tablespoons plain yogurt or sour cream
  • 1 1/3 cups shredded extra sharp Cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 cup shredded romano cheese
  • kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 375°F.
  • Cook the bacon in a frying pan until crisp. Use a slotted spoon to transfer the bacon to a paper towel lined plate and set aside. Pour off all but about 1 teaspoon of the bacon grease. Add the onion and cook for a few minutes until softened. Set aside to cool to room temperature.
  • Combine the remaining meatloaf ingredients well with your hands in a mixing bowl. Grease 6 large or 12 standard sized non-stick muffin pan. Use your hands to mound the tops of the meatloaves so they're domed.
  • Bake in the oven for 25 minutes (for the standard sized mini-loaves) to 40 minutes (for the large loaves) or until the middle of the interior of the loaves measures 160°F on an instant read or meat thermometer and the meatloaf tops are browned.
  • Remove the pan from the oven and let cool a couple of minutes before trying to remove the loaves.
  • When you can handle the pan, unmold the meatloaf cupcakes and set on a cutting board or flat pan to prepare for "frosting" with the mashed potatoes.

To Make the Cheesy Mashed Potatoes:

  • Cover the peeled and chunked potatoes with cold water in a large saucepan. Bring to a boil, uncovered, over high heat. Reduce the heat and simmer the potatoes until they are fork tender, 10 to 15 minutes.
  • Drain the potatoes in a colander and return them to the hot pan. Add the milk, butter, and yogurt to the potatoes and mash until very smooth. Add the shredded cheeses to the hot potatoes and mash that into the potatoes until melted into the potatoes. Taste the potatoes and adjust with salt and pepper. If you're going to pipe the potatoes onto the mini-meatloaves, you want to be sure you don't have chunks as those could block the pastry tip. If you're going to dollop or spread it on top, you don't need to be quite as thorough in eliminating lumps of potato.

To Serve:

  • Dollop or spread mashed potatoes on top of the meatloaf cupcakes ~OR~ insert any large tip into a 12-inch to 14-inch pastry bag. Fill with the hot Cheesy Mashed Potatoes. Be careful as the bag will be hot to the touch! Pipe the potatoes onto the tops of the meatloaf cupcakes. Serve immediately, topped with extra pickles, shredded cheese and a sprinkling of sesame seeds, if desired.
  • Leftovers, if you have them, can be stored tightly wrapped in the refrigerator for up to 3 days and reheated in either the microwave or a moderate oven (350°F.)