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Meatloaf Cupcakes

Category: Dinner
Source: Kristen J. Gough

How do you make kids eat something they loathe? Reinvent it. These meat muffins really do look like dessert cupcakes, but eat like a meal. Serve them in cupcake papers to add to the effect.

Prep Time: 40 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Number of Servings: 4-5
Ingredients: Muffins
1 Tbsp. vegetable oil
1 small onion, diced
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. onion powder
1 1/2 tsp. cider vinegar (optional)
2 eggs
1/2 cup milk
2 tsp. Dijon mustard
2 tsp. Worcestershire
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
1/4 tsp. Tabasco
2 lb. ground meat (I use half beef, half pork)
1 1/3 cups breadcrumbs or Panko crumbs (preferred)

Mashed potato 'frosting'
4 medium-sized potatoes (I prefer Yukon Gold)
1 large sweet potato
6 Tbsp. butter, melted
1/4 cup sour cream
3/4 to 1 cup milk
Salt and pepper to taste
Directions: Muffins
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. In a medium-sized skillet pan, saute the onion in the heated oil until they soften. Allow to cool to room temperature.

In a small bowl, mix together the eggs, milk, mustard, spices, Worcestershire, Tabasco and vinegar (if using; I like the slight kick it gives). In another large bowl combine the meat, Panko crumbs (available in the Asian foods section of the grocery store), and onions. Gently blend in the egg mixture using a wooden spoon.

Lightly spray the muffin tin cups with cooking oil. Loosely pack meat into each cup and fill to the top. Bake the muffins for 20 minutes and then check for doneness by inserting an instant-read thermometer; the temperature should read 160 degrees F.

Allow the meat muffins to cool in the pan. Carefully drain off the fat and then remove the muffins to a baking sheet.

Mashed potato 'frosting'
Using a grater remove the peels from the potatoes. Cut the potatoes into equal chunks about 1 inch thick. Add the cut pieces into a medium-sized cooking pan filled 2/3 of the way with water.

Once all of the potatoes are added to the pot, cook the potatoes at high heat on the stovetop. Add 1 Tbsp. of salt to the cooking water. Bring the potatoes to a gentle boil and continue cooking until they are fork-tender.

Remove the potatoes and place them into a large mixing bowl. Add half of the milk and then blend using a handheld mixer on high power. Add the butter and sour cream and then blend more. Gradually add in the rest of the milk until the potatoes become airy and whipped. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Place the whipped potatoes into a pastry bag fitted with a large-sized star tip.

After placing the meat muffins onto a baking dish, pipe the potatoes on top. Start on one end of the meat muffin and swirl around the outside and then keep swirling until you reach a tip at the top. Broil the muffins until the potatoes are just browned.

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