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Chipotle Meatloaf

Meatloaf is a staple in the Southern cuisine. Classic meatloaf recipes include basic ingredients and are heavy on ketchup. While I do enjoy a classic meatloaf occasionally, I prefer diced tomatoes and less ketchup in my recipes. Be warned, this meatloaf is not for those that do not enjoy a little "kick in their mouth." If you are worried about the heat level, reduce the amount of chipotles by half. No matter what heat level you enjoy, this recipe is tender, moist, and flavorful.

1 Pound Ground Beef
1/4 Cup Minced Onion
3.5 Ounces (weight) Chipotles in Adobo, Chopped
1/2 Cup Diced Tomatoes
1 Egg
1 1/3 Cup Saltine Cracker Crumbs
5 Strips Uncooked Bacon, Halved

1. In a large bowl, combine all ingredients, minus the bacon. Use your hands to fold all of the ingredients together, making sure to evenly distributer but not over work. Place the mixture into a 9x5 loaf pan, pressing slightly to make an even layer.
2. Use the bacon strips to cover the top of the loaf.
3. Bake at 400 degrees for 1 hour or until the bacon is completely crisp and the loaf is cooked through.
4. Once removed from the oven, carefully remove the meatloaf from the pan, leaving the juices behind. In order to move the loaf without it crumbling, the use of two spatulas is recommended.
5. Allow to sit for 5 minutes before slicing.
6. Serve with ketchup for dipping. (Optional)


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