Here is my recipe for classic low sodium meatloaf. This is a recipe used in my family that I modified to reduce the sodium content as much as possible.
First of all, be aware that red meat is not an ideal food in a kidney diet and it is highly recommended to consume it only very occasionally. A healthy kidney diet prioritizes vegetal proteins and high fiber food instead.
However, this does not prevent you from enjoying a good meatloaf, but moderation is required. That’s why I created this recipe to present one that has the advantage of containing much less salt than the usual recipes in order to reduce the sodium content as much as possible.
In this recipe, I used quick oats to replace the panko. This is one of the changes that greatly reduces the sodium content. This also has the added benefit of increasing the fiber content of this recipe!
Broth is used to keep meatloaf juicy despite the long cooking. In order to limit the addition of sodium, use unsalted beef broth.
Low sodium ketchup
To give more flavor to your classic low sodium meatloaf, the ideal is to cover it with ketchup that is low sodium too.
It is possible to buy low sodium ketchup in the majority of supermarkets. However, commercial low sodium ketchup often contains potassium chloride, which is to be avoided in cases of hyperkalemia.
To overcome this, or simply have a great homemade ketchup, you can cook your own. To do this, you can check out my low sodium ketchup recipe.
Note that the nutritional values of this meatloaf recipe take into account the use of this homemade ketchup recipe. If you use commercial low sodium ketchup, the sodium and potassium content will be higher.
How to make a low sodium classic meatloaf
It is very easy to cook meatloaf. All you have to do is combine the ingredients together and bake in the oven.
You have 2 usual methods to bake your meatloaf. This recipe indicates using a high sided rectangular pan for cooking, but it is also possible to cook directly on a baking sheet.
To do this, you just need to line the baking sheet, form a round bread and follow the same cooking instructions indicated in the recipe.
The cooking method you choose will affect the final result. A meatloaf baked on a plate will be round and the outside will be crispier than a meatloaf baked in a mold.
Also, since the mold retains the juices of the meat, the meatloaf cooked on a baking sheet will be a little drier. Your choice will depend on the kitchen instruments you have and your own preference.
Tips for making a good low sodium meatloaf
Here are some tips to make sure you make a great meatloaf that, despite its low salt content, will appeal to everyone.
Do not overmix
Avoid mixing the meat too much, otherwise you risk getting a meatloaf that won’t be as tender as it should be. Mix all the ingredients sufficiently until you get a homogeneous meat mixture without more.
If you use a high sided rectangular pan (bread mold) to bake your meatloaf, I strongly suggest placing a sheet of parchment paper in the bottom so that you can easily remove it once cooked.
Once cooked, let it sit for at least 10 minutes uncovered before slicing the meatloaf to let the oats absorb excess liquids. You will get more beautiful slices.
Some meatloaf recipes use milk in the mixture in order to preserve juicy meat. In the case of this recipe, I used unsalted beef broth instead to add a little more flavor.
However, you can use what you prefer by replacing beef broth with the same amount of another type of broth or milk you want.
Low sodium meatloaf variations
Here’s a bit of inspiration if you want to customize this recipe.
Herbs and spices
I have kept this recipe very simple, but know that you can easily customize it with more ingredients such as spices and herbs.
For example, you could add a fresh bouquet of finely chopped coriander or parsley to the mix for a more herbal flavor.
Another of the infinite possibilities available to you is to use or make your own spice blend without salt to give a completely different personality to your meatloaf. For example, you could use a baharat spice blend!
In this recipe, I use ketchup. However, you can substitute it with the same amount of BBQ sauce.
I suggest you use a low sodium sauce again. You can easily do it yourself! Check out my low sodium BBQ sauce recipe for an example!
Type of meat
A classic meatloaf usually uses ground beef. However, it is possible to use ground veal or pork.
If you want to use ground chicken or turkey, be aware that the amounts of oats and egg in this recipe are not optimized for these type of meats. These are much more malleable and the meatloaf might not hold together.
If you are cooking this recipe with one of its poultry meats, I strongly suggest that you bake the meatloaf in a mold and let it cool longer before unmolding it. You could also add a little more quick oats to the mixture.
This meatloaf can be kept for at least 2 to 3 days in the refrigerator. It can also be freeze for about 3 months.
If you only want to eat one or two slices of meatloaf from time to time, I recommend this method.
First, let your meatloaf cool completely in the refrigerator. Then cut it into slices and separate them with parchment paper before freezing them in a freezer bag.
This way, you can easily thaw only the portions you need and not exaggerate your red meat intake.
More low sodium recipes!
Here are some other low sodium recipes you might like too:
Classic Low Sodium Meatloaf
- 1.5 lbs ground beef
- 1 cup quick oats
- ½ cup yellow onion finely chopped
- ¼ cup unsalted beef broth
- 1 egg slightly beaten
- ⅓ cup low sodium ketchup (Note 1)
- Preheat the oven to 375 ° F (190 ° C).
- Combine all the ingredients for the meatloaf in a large bowl except the ketchup. Do not mix too much so as not to obtain too compacted bread.
- Line a high-sided rectangular pan with parchment paper and place the mixture in it.Depending on your preference, you can also shape the meat mixture into the shape of bread and bake it on a lined baking sheet.
- Cover evenly the top of the meatloaf with the ketchup.
- Bake uncovered in the oven for 1 hour.
- Take the meatloaf out of the oven and let rest uncovered for 10 to 15 minutes. It might seem too juicy and soft at first, but as it cools down a bit, it will absorb the excess liquid and firm up.
For informational purposes only. Nutrition data is primarily calculated from the USDA National Database. Values may vary from accuracy of measurements, brands, nutritional data and more. All measurements are metric (1 cup = 250ml). Readers are encouraged to make their own calculations.