Nutrient-Dense Meat Loaf


Recipe by Amanda DeLaura

Did you know that beef liver is rated as one of the most nutrient-dense foods? Unfortunately, it has a distinct flavor and has somehow been totally omitted from America’s weekly diet. But this meatloaf is deceptive as it’s not only satisfying and comforting but also a vessel to sneak in an ample amount of organic grass-fed liver. I make mine with a quarter pound of liver, which is about half of a large liver, but you can play around with proportion sizes. If the taste doesn’t bother you, up the portion. If it does bother you or your family, start small, and every time you make it add a little more than the time before. And you might be wondering, “Why is beef liver so good for you?” It is the most nutrient-dense food around, which David wrote about here.  Also, listen to the Mara Labs Podcast with James Barry which is very informative. Bon appétit!


If you’re looking for organic grass-fed beef liver near the Charlottesville area, you can find some at the Charlottesville Farmer’s Market and at Polyface Farm.

Printable recipe

Makes 6 servings




1 Tbsp olive oil

1/2 large white or yellow onion, diced

1 carrot, diced

1 stalk celery, diced

1 tsp salt

1 organic pasture-raised egg

1 1/2 lbs grass-fed organic beef

1/4 lb organic grass-fed beef liver, finely chopped

2 Tbsp organic yogurt or organic sour cream

1 Tbsp organic tomato paste

1 tsp garlic granules

1/2 tsp fresh cracked black pepper

1/2 cup bread crumbs*

1 Tbsp fresh parsley (or 1 tsp dried)


1/4 cup organic sugar-free ketchup

2 Tbsp adobe sauce

1 Tbsp maple syrup

1 Tbsp red wine vinegar


  1. Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Spray a large loaf pan with avocado or coconut oil and set
  2. Heat a large skillet or cast iron over medium-high heat and add one tablespoon of olive Once the oil is heated and shimmering, add the onions, carrots, celery, and salt. Cook until the onions are translucent, and the carrots are softened for three to five minutes. Stir frequently so that the vegetables don’t burn. Remove from the heat, set aside, and let cool.
  3. Crack and whisk the egg in a large bowl. Add the beef, liver, yogurt, tomato paste, garlic, black pepper, bread crumbs, sautéed veggies, and parsley to the bowl, and use your hands to fully mix all of the ingredients together. Transfer the meat mixture into the prepared loaf pan and pat the meat down into an even layer across the pan. Bake uncovered in the middle of the oven for 40 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile, whisk together the ketchup, adobe sauce, maple syrup, and red wine vinegar in a small After the meatloaf has baked for the initial 40 minutes, remove it from the oven, spread the glaze evenly over the loaf, and return it to the oven. Continue to bake for 15 minutes. Remove from oven, let cool for 10 minutes, slice and enjoy with your favorite side of veggies.

*NOTE: If you are observing a paleo diet, substitute the breadcrumbs for an equal amount of almond flour. If you are not observing a paleo diet but are gluten-free, substitute the breadcrumbs for an equal amount of organic gluten-free oats. Pulse them several times in a food processor or Vitamix to create a texture that resembles bread crumbs.

If you’re an avid baker and always have extra bread around the house, make your own bread crumbs by slowly drying several slices of bread in the oven at 325ºF for 20 to 30 minutes. Once fully dried and toasted, pulse them finely in a food processor or Vitamix. This is an awesome way to use up any stale bread around the house, especially leftover sourdough.

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