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Jan 28, 2005 11:33 AM

Surprisingly great vegetarian meatloaf recipe.

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I first tasted this interesting meatloaf-substitute at Ananda Fuara, a vegetarian restaurant in San Francisco. The neatloaf (ha ha, Neatloaf) is amazing: juicy, soft, and tasty. I've passed this on to one friend, who passed it on to another, and all three of us love it.

They serve it with a side of mashed potatoes, or as a sandwich on wheat/nut bread with lettuce and tomatoes. Both ways are great. I googled this recipe, and I've added a few changes that worked in my oven.

4 eggs

1/4-1/3 C onion powder

1 C ricotta cheese

1/2 package firm tofu

1/4 vegetable oil

1/3 C onions, chopped

1/2 cup brown rice (soak before cooking so the rice is on the soft side)

1/2 tsp oregano

1/2 tsp basil

1/4 tsp rosemary (use fresh spices if available)

4 cups Special K (weird, huh? But it works! I think Corn Flakes or Rice Krispies would work too, but Special K is almost like a combination of the two)

1 1/2 tsp garlic

I have made these changes with success:

use any kind of tofu, from silken to firm. Don't use extra firm--it's dry.

when you don't have enough onion powder, use twice as much fresh onion.

when you forget to cook the brown rice, just substitute with tofu and/or cereal.

use a different rice.

add a cup of spinach that's been cooked and had the water squeezed out.

use marjoram in place of basil.

I haven't tried it yet, but I bed drained cottage cheese would work.

Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Sauté onions and garlic. If you're using dried herbs, add them now. Beat eggs in a large bowl, then add all ingredients except Special K. If you're using fresh herbs, chop them finely and add here. Mix well, then add Special K. Don't worry that the cereal is getting soggy; in fact, I'd let it sit a few minutes to soak in some moisture. Put mixture in a greased pan, and bake for 1 hour. Prepare the following sauce (it's a super easy BBQ sauce), and pour over the neatloaf after one hour. Poke some holes into the top to let the sauce seep in, if you wish. Bake for 10 more minutes.

1/2 C ketchup

1/8 C Dijon mustard

1/3 C molasses (or corn syrup, or melted brown sugar)

1/8-1/4 C apple cider vinegar (to taste)

pinch cayenne pepper

Mix well.

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    Caitlin McGrath

    Is that reakky supposed to be 1/4-1/3 CUP onion powder?

    3 Replies
    1. re: Caitlin McGrath

      Yeah, I thought it was weird too. I usually put less than 1/4 cup, or substitute more fresh sauteed onion.

      Man, I didn't realize my paraphrase of the recipe sucked so much. Sorry for all the confusion, everyone. Please post back and let me know if you liked what you made!

      1. re: nooodles

        Is there a substitue foe the Ricotta cheese? I would like to try a vegan version.

        1. re: velorutionary

          I have not tried a version without ricotta and eggs. The recipe has always been very forgiving no matter what I add/don't have, so I would try it if I were you.

          The main three things are: tofu and cereal for texture, and egg for binding. Everything else is for flavor/to taste.

          Maybe if you replace ricotta with tofu, and then find some kind of binder to replace the eggs? You would know better than I what kind of egg substitutes are out there.

          Please post back and let us know how it turns out!

    2. This looks interesting, just need some clarification. How much vegetable oil? The recipe just says 1/4, no indication as to 1/4 what, tsp, tbl, cup, bushel etc. Also it is not too clear about what to do with the rice. The recipe states soak before cooking, is that cooking separately in water or tossing in with the neatloaf and cooking? Lastly, it appears the Special K gets put in as flakes and is not crushed or anything, like that, please confirm.

      1 Reply
      1. re: Jambalaya

        Sorry about the vagueness.

        1/4 cup oil

        well-cooked brown rice

        slightly crushed special K (this is more preference than anything else. Just don't crush it into powder).

      2. this sounds so good, thanks for posting. i am going to make it this weekend. just to be sure: you cook the brown rice before adding to the loaf, correct?

        1 Reply
        1. re: Leah

          YES! Make sure the rice is thoroughly cooked before you add it. It won't really cook any further in the loaf.

          The first time I did this I added some undercooked rice, thinking that the time in the oven would cook it further. I was wrong.