Sunny’s Nunya Business Meatloaf

Meatloaf. Just that simple word brings many things to mind. A dry flavorless brick of beef smothered in thick gloppy ketchup. The singer who performed many hits beginning in the 70’s. He would do anything for love, but he won’t do that. What is that? I’ve always  wondered.


We didn’t eat a lot of meatloaf in my family when I was growing up. My mother cooked it off and on and after 10 years of marriage, my daddy finally spoke up and told her that he didn’t really care for meatloaf. I’ve recounted that story to my husband many times and told him that if doesn’t like something that I cook, he’d better let me know or else he’d be eating it for years to come!


Before Henry and Massey were born, aka Simpler Times, I would record and religiously watch every episode of The Kitchen on Food Network. It’s a cooking show that features 5 different chefs. One of my favorite is Sunny Anderson.  Her personality matches her name. She’s bright and colorful and always upbeat.  One day she shared a meatloaf recipe that looked unlike any meatloaf I’d ever seen before. It wasn’t dry and tasteless. It was juicy and looked amazing. I tried it and we’ve been hooked ever since!

Here is Sunny’s Nunya Business Meatloaf:


Nothing dry or tasteless about it! The ingredients are probably things you already have on hand:

  • 2 pounds ground chuck (80 percent beef, 20
    percent fat)
  • 1 1/2 cups Italian-style breadcrumbs
  • One 14.5-ounce can diced tomatoes
  • One 11-gram packet French onion mushroom
    soup/dip mix
  • 1/4 cup finely grated Parmesan
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper,
    if needed
  • 1 egg, whisked



  • Preheat the oven to 350°F
  • Break up the beef and drop loosely in a large
    bowl. Sprinkle the breadcrumbs evenly over
    the beef.
  • In a medium bowl, add the tomatoes, soup
    mix and Parmesan. Mix and mash up any
    large chunks of tomatoes using a potato
    masher. Taste and season with salt and pepper if necessary (the mix packet contains lots of seasoning, so you probably won’t need to). Add the egg and stir.
  • Pour all but 1/2 cup of the flavor base (tomato mixture) over the top of the beef.
    Using your less dominant hand with your fingers spread out like a pitchfork, gently
    mix and fold everything together, turning the bowl with your free hand, until just
    combined. Don’t over-mix!
  • Form the mixture into the shape of a loaf on a parchment-lined baking sheet or press gently into a meatloaf pan. Top the loaf with the remaining flavor base. Cook until the internal temperature is 155° F, 50 to 65 minutes. Remove and gently cover
    with aluminum foil for 10 minutes to allow the ambient heat to bring it to 160°F before slicing and serving.


Enjoy! It’s so delicious!