This keto-friendly Sweet and Sour Meatloaf has a tangy and sweet sauce baked over a ground veal meatloaf mixture. Shredded cheese, spicy dill pickles, and a ketchup-based sauce come together to form this mouthwatering recipe!
Make Sunday Dinner special with this Sweet and Sour Meatloaf! Serve the meatloaf with a fancy side dish like Cheese and Herb Stuffed Artichokes or Garlic Mashed Cauliflower with Browned Butter for a complete keto-friendly comfort food dinner!
Making keto friendly meatloaf with ground veal
I love being able to serve a variety of proteins in a variety of ways! So, when I found myself with some ground veal, I decided I had to try a Sweet and Sour Meatloaf with it. Veal is very lean meat. As a result, I had to find a way to up the fats to make this recipe more on the keto side of things.
I was able to add fat in a few different ways. By adding cheese, egg, and pork rinds to the meatloaf mixture, I was able to achieve a higher fat ratio. I also eliminated any carbs by removing the bread crumbs. Overall, one serving of this meatloaf comes to only 3 carbs per serving.
How to make Sweet and Sour Meatloaf
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When I make a meatloaf, there are a few essential items I use in preparation. First of all, to me, it is not a meatloaf if you don't use a loaf pan. My go-to is my Pyrex Loaf Pan. It heats evenly, there is no metallic taste to my meatloaf, and its oven, microwave, and freezer safe!
When I made this veal meatloaf, the one thing I knew I had to add was dill pickles. They would help give it some of that tangy flavor we love. I happened to have some spicy dill pickles in my refrigerator. So, I decided to try them in this recipe.
I was a little hesitant to add the chili pepper that was in the jar. After the fact, I wish I had because I didn't really notice the heat in the recipe. Next time I will add a couple of them so I can have that sweet heat effect.
Pork rinds really do a great job as a substitute for bread crumbs. They add zero carbohydrates, extra fat, soak up some of the moisture, and helps hold the loaf together. My favorite brand is Utz Pork Rinds and I buy them in bulk right on Amazon! I love that they come in a big plastic container that will seal after I've used what I need.
When I made the sweet and sour sauce for the meatloaf I used Swerve Brown sweetener. Or, you could use Monkfruit Golden. Either will work. Alternatively, you could use Swerve Granular and add a teaspoon of Yacon Syrup to it. Or, just add some molasses. A little bit of molasses won't add enough sugar or carbs to this recipe and will give it the depth of flavor you get with brown sugar.
What makes this Sweet and Sour
You may be wondering what makes this meatloaf Sweet and Sour Meatloaf. It is basically in the sauce! When I mix the sauce up, I not only add sweetener, but I add some vinegar or pickle juice. Believe it or not, that really adds some yumminess to the topping!
I like to have a lot of sweet and sour sauce on top of my meatloaf. Because of this, I probably make more than other recipes indicate. When I was a child, I always wanted more ketchup on my meatloaf. So, Mom would have to pull the ketchup bottle back out of the fridge so I could load my meatloaf up!
Even with the "extra" sauce on my meatloaf, it still pooled down some. That was ok though. Because the sauce did seep down the sides and into the juices. Which, I just made sure to take a little extra of when I made my serving!
So why ground veal?
First of all, you do know that veal is beef, right? I tell you all about my veal farm visit on my post for Bacon Wrapped Stuffed Jalapenos (also a Keto recipe!). If you haven't seen that post then I hope you will hop over there to read it as it is very informative as to what veal is and how it is raised.
I also hear people state that they don't eat veal. And, that is ok if you don't. It's your choice. You can go ahead and substitute ground beef, turkey, or even venison. The recipe will taste just as delicious that way! I happened to have ground veal in my freezer, so that is what I went with for this recipe.
What to serve with Sweet and Sour Meatloaf
Most people would serve mashed potatoes. That is fine if you are not keto. However, I make this killer Garlic Mashed Cauliflower with Browned Butter that would be amazing with this recipe. And, that recipe is completely keto-friendly! As you can see in the photos on this post, I paired this particular meal up with another favorite of mine: Cheese and Herb Stuffed Artichokes!
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Sweet and Sour Meatloaf with Ground Veal
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For the Meatloaf:
- 1 lb ground veal
- ¼ cup diced dill pickles
- 1 cup shredded colby jack cheese
- ¼ cup diced onions
- 1 large egg
- 2 tablespoon dill pickle juice
- 1 cup ground pork rinds
For the Sweet and Sour Sauce:
- ¾ cup sugar-free ketchup
- ½ cup Swerve Brown Sweetener
- 2 tablespoons Cider Vinegar or Dill Pickle Juice
- 2 teaspoons ground mustard
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Place ground veal, cheese, onions, egg, dill pickle juice, and ground pork rinds in a mixing bowl.
- Mix together with your hands until ingredients are combined.
- Transfer meatloaf mixture to a loaf pan. Pat down and flatten top. Set aside.
- Mix together sugar free ketchup, Swerve Brown Sweetener, Cider Vinegar OR Pickle Juice and ground mustard.
- Spread Sweet and Sour Sauce over top of meatloaf.
- Bake for 40-50 minutes, until internal temperature is at 160 degrees.
- Remove from oven and let cool for 15 minutes prior to serving.
- Alternatively, place the meatloaf mixture in your slow cooker and pat into a loaf shape. Cook on low for 5 hours or until internal temperature is at 160 degrees.