Oliver Clark's Meatloaf

January 8, 2010

Test Kitchen-Approved

Author Notes: One of my New Year's resolutions this year was to cook simpler food more often. This was great news for my fiancé, who is a real meat-and-potatoes guy. Knowing that my fiancé's mother's meatloaf is pretty much his favorite meal in the world made me more than a little nervous, so just to be safe, I turned to a recipe written up by Jonathan Reynolds in an article about his friend, the actor (and excellent home cook) Oliver Clark. The resulting meatloaf was certainly the most tender and juicy of its kind that I have ever produced, and I was assured that it almost—but not quite—lived up to my future mother-in-law's famous version. Merrill Stubbs

Serves: 6 to 8


  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • Salt
  • 6 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 pound ground chuck
  • 1 pound ground pork
  • 1 pound ground veal
  • 1/2 cup dry bread crumbs
  • 1/8 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/8 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 pinch cayenne
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/3 cup grated Parmesan
  • 3 tablespoons ketchup, plus more for glazing
  • 1 tablespoon mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons crème fraîche (or whipped cream cheese)
  • 3 large eggs, lightly beaten
In This Recipe


  1. Heat the oven to 350°F. In a medium sauté pan, warm the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and a large pinch of salt and cook, stirring frequently, until the onion has begun to soften and lightly caramelize, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and continue to cook until both the onion and garlic are soft and golden brown (be careful not to burn the garlic), about another 5 minutes. Set aside to cool while you prepare the rest of the ingredients.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the rest of the ingredients except for the eggs. Add a few good pinches of salt. Then, as Jonathan Reynolds recommends, "paw at it with two forks, combining thoroughly but not overmixing." Gently stir in the eggs and the browned onions and garlic, mixing just until combined.
  3. Gently shape the mixture into a rough football and nestle it snugly into a loaf pan, patting it down so the top is fairly flat. Bake in the middle of the oven for 40 minutes, then brush the top lightly with ketchup and return to the oven for 10 to 20 more minutes. The meatloaf is done when the internal temperature reaches about 145°F. Let the meatloaf rest for about 10 minutes before slicing and serving.

More Great Recipes:
Meatloaf|Beef|Meat|Pork|Serves a Crowd|Make Ahead|Thanksgiving|Weeknight Cooking|Winter|Christmas|Entree

Reviews (5) Questions (2)

5 Reviews

meme S. February 4, 2018
MINOUCHKA -- I too, use bread soaked in milk au lieu of dry bread crumbs. And au lieu of dried basil and thyme, I use 1/2 tsp. of Italian seasoning dried leaves, or more to taste. This recipe is always my go-to, and always be a winner. MM-GOOD!
mrslarkin May 7, 2017
Ive Made this meatloaf many times. It's delicious. Easily adaptable. We love it!
ghainskom October 21, 2014
Nice with potatoes and vegetables.
ghainskom July 30, 2014
Made this yesterday. It was a rather spontaneous decision so I did with what I had: half/half chuk/pork, shallots for onion, breadcrumbs from rest of the 4-hour baguette (https://food52.com/blog/10044-dan-leader-s-4-hour-baguette), dried oregano instead of dried thyme, and goat cheese instead of creme fraiche. Boy I think it's time to grocery shop. But the meatloaf was TDF and a hit by the kids too. Will do it again for sure! We hat patatas bravas (https://food52.com/recipes/24321-patatas-bravas) on the side too, which was a good match.
JenOzmun2010 December 9, 2013
"Wow" is what my husband said. That's pretty good actually. :-) Really, really good. Followed it to the letter and it is really good.