Not-Meatloaf, a veggie variation (Twelve Months of Healthy Eating)

Whoohoo!  The end of my Twelve Months of Healthy Eating Project is getting close!

The November recipe in the Healthy Eating Calendar was for Turkey Meatloaf.  How appropriate with Thanksgiving.  I knew this one was going to be a challenge for me to modify, since I’ve never been a fan of nut loaf, lentil loaf or any of the other vegetarian variations on meatloaf.  The only one I’ve ever liked was in the Amy’s frozen meal and I haven’t had it in over 4 years.

november calendar

So off I went, trying to find a variation of meatloaf that I like.   It took a bit of practice…Ok, so maybe more than a bit of practice. There were four failures along the way and then three tests of the final recipe to make sure I liked it.  We’ve been eating a lot of not-meatloaf.  And I’m still arguing over who gets the leftovers.  It’s pretty darned good stuff!

Not Meatloaf In Johnna's Kitchen

This Not-Meatloaf can be made in two sizes:  a standard 9 x 5 loaf pan to make one big meatloaf (which slices nicely for meatloaf sandwiches) or eight mini loaves.  You can use either the separate mini pans or a handy pan like this one that has eight minis all in one.  I like to make the minis, serve two for dinner, two for next-day leftovers and freeze the remaining four for another time.

Not-Meatloaf, a veggie variation


  • 2 stalks celery, finely chopped
  • 1 small yellow onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon grapeseed or olive oil
  • 2-15 ounce cans garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 1/4 cups gluten-free oats
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped walnuts
  • 1/2 cup cooked lentils (I use Melissa's steamed lentils)
  • 3 Tablespoons gluten-free soy sauce, Tamari or Bragg's Aminos
  • 2 Tablespoons ketchup (or 1 Tablespoon ketchup and 1 Tablespoon gluten-free BBQ sauce)
  • 1 Tablespoon yellow mustard (prepared mustard, not mustard powder)
  • 2 teaspoons dried parsley or 2 Tablespoons fresh parsley, finely chopped
  • 2 teaspoons poultry seasoning
  • Additional Ketchup and BBQ sauce for top (1/4 cup to 1/2 cup)


  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. In a small skillet, saute celery, onion and garlic with oil until onions are transparent.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, mash the garbanzo beans with either a fork or a potato masher.
  4. Add all other ingredients, except the additional ketchup and bbq sauce for the top.
  5. Stir well to combine. Prepare baking dish with cooking spray or oil of your choice.
  6. Press mixture into either a standard size loaf pan OR eight mini pans.
  7. It is important to compact the mixture tightly or it will not slice after cooking.
  8. Top with additional ketchup or ketchup/bbq sauce mix. For a standard loaf size, I use a total of 1/4 cup. For the eight minis, I use a total of 1/2 cup.
  9. Bake at 375 degrees, 55 to 65 minutes for standard loaf size, 35 to 40 minutes for minis.
  10. Allow to cool for 5 minutes before removing from pan to serve.
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Santa hasn’t dropped by with plane tickets to the last island yet, so I’m guessing I’ve got just one more month to go in the Healthy Eating calendar project.  Unless someone drops by Fausto’s and brings back a 2014 calendar for me, it’s just December that remains.  It’s going to be a tough one, as December is bagels topped with salmon, eggs, cream cheese and herbs.  Got any suggestions?

Here are the other months in my Healthy Eating calendar project:

January: Hummus Wrap with spicy orange cashew creme

February: Pumpkin Kale crockpot chili

March: Spinach Artichoke Panini

April: Weeknight Vegetable Stir Fry

May: Double Bean Salad

June: Double Blueberry Shakes

July: Mini Tomato Basil Pizzas

August: Dairy-Free Raspberry Ice Cream

September: Pesto Stuffed Mini Potatoes

October:  Hearty Mushroom and Veggie Soup


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    • says

      Thanks, Deborah! I hope you love the pan. It gets lots of use in my kitchen, especially this time of year. It’s perfect to bake mini loaves of quick breads to share with neighbors and friends.

        • says

          I haven’t tried it with an egg replacer yet. Our hens aren’t laying much in this brutal cold so I may have to soon! If I had to choose a place to start, it would be with flax eggs. If you try it, share with us how it turns out!

  1. says

    What an accomplishment on doing all these months! I admit that I’d missed a few of these posts so I wasn’t sure where you stood. I think I’ll tell hubby that we have to go to KW to pick up a calendar for you. ;-) Do you think that will fly? :-)

    Since I’m such a fan of chickpeas, I know I’d love these Not Meatloaves!


    • says

      Thanks for your kind words, Shirley. It has been such a fun series and I’ve thought many times about that fun trip to Key West and all of the terrific people I bumped into there. I would really appreciate it if you would make a trip to Key West to get next year’s calendar for me, but think it would be even more fun if I could tag along. ;)

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