One of the tough things about finding good dinner ideas is putting together a recipe that is easy to whip up after a long day at work. Oh, and also finding a dinner that is in the shape of cupcakes. (That is a common requirement, right?) These Vegan Meatloaf Cupcakes are not only a fun party food to serve to your guests for this upcoming New Years, they are also a kid-friendly meal to serve for dinner.  With the mashed potatoes piped on top to look like frosting, what kid wouldn’t want his or her dinner to look like a cupcake? I know I would…And I did last night.

Vegan Meatloaf - Fork & Beans

On Facebook, I received a request to veganize this recipe found here. I gladly accepted the challenge because well, I love a challenge and I really loved the outcome of this recipe. It was my first attempt at a meatless meatloaf and I really loved the texture from the tempeh.

Vegan Meatloaf - Fork & Beans

One of my favorite aspects of eating meatloaf as a kid was the ketchup on the top that becomes slightly burnt and crispy along the sides. Do you know what I’m talking about? Oh man, don’t get me started about burnt items or the corner section of certain foods (ie: brownies, lasagna, etc.) I am salivating just thinking about it. Due to my need to incorporate a childhood memory, I had to recreate a homemade “ketchup” to top these vegan meatloaf cupcakes.

Vegan Meatloaf - Fork & Beans

You can omit it if you want to but I highly recommend it. It brings a little sweetness to the salty and savory cupcake.

Vegan Meatloaf Cupcakes
Yields 10
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Ingredients
  1. 3 cloves garlic, minced
  2. 2 shallots, chopped
  3. 1/4 c. red bell pepper, finely chopped
  4. 1 (8 0z) package tempeh, ground up in a food processor
  5. 1/2 c. gluten-free oats
  6. 1/3 c. sunflower seeds
  7. 1/4 c. fresh parsley, chopped
  8. 3 Tbsp. (heaping) tomato paste
  9. 2 Tbsp. vegan worcestershire sauce
  10. 2 Tbsp. ground chia seed + 6 Tbsp. warm water--set for 5 minutes until thick
  11. 1 tsp. salt
  12. 1/2 tsp. dried oregano
  13. 1/2 tsp. dried thyme
For "ketchup"
  1. 2 Tbsp. tomato paste
  2. 2 Tbsp. maple syrup
Instructions
  1. Preheat your oven to 375 degrees. Grease a muffin pan.
  2. In a small skillet, sauté the garlic, shallots and bell pepper for 5 minutes until translucent and fragrant. Remove from the heat and allow to cool.
  3. In a medium bowl, combine the ground tempeh, cooked veggies tomato paste, Worcestershire sauce, dried herbs and salt until well-mixed.
  4. Add the chia "egg" and mix. Add the remainder: oats, sunflower seeds, and parsley.
  5. Scoop the tempeh meat into each muffin cup and gently pat down with your hands. This should fill 10 of the spots in your muffin tin.
  6. In a small bowl, whisk together the ingredients for the "ketchup." Lightly coat the tops of the meatloaf with this mixture.
  7. Bake for 20-23 minutes or until fully cooked in the middle.
  8. Allow to cool for 5 minutes before removing from the pan. Top with mashed potatoes.
Fork and Beans http://www.forkandbeans.com/
If there is anything you are interested in converting into a gluten, egg, and dairy-free version of itself, leave a comment below. I would love to hear from you and what you are missing!

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