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I just made meatloaf by mixing 90% ground beef with shredded cheddar cheese, milk, an egg, and oats. I cooked it on 350 degrees for 50 minutes. It tastes fine but the mixture is kind of mushy and losses its shape. How do I make the meatloaf bond together better?

  1. 1lb ground beef
  2. 2/3 cup cup milk
  3. 1 egg
  4. 1 cup cheese
  5. 1/2 cup oats
  • Can you give us a at least a rough idea of the amounts of all the ingredients? – Cascabel May 15 '16 at 4:35
  • post updated with details – appleLover May 15 '16 at 4:49
  • I've never used oats as a binder -- did they actually absorb all of the milk? Typically when you use bread, you soak it and then squeeze it out so you're not adding more liquid than the bread can hold. – Joe May 15 '16 at 5:24
  • By oats, you mean cooked and pressed oat flakes, oatmeal, not oat groats? I use dried bread crumbs. Have never added milk. – Wayfaring Stranger May 15 '16 at 17:43
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There are several factors, but the texture of meatloaf primarily depends on the ratio of binder, filler and meat.

In this case, your binder is the egg. Specifically, the protein in the egg white helps hold the meat proteins together.

The filler is the mixture of milk and oats. I've heard that toasted panko is more effective at absorbing milk, and also that cooking it can help. I haven't tried these options though, so I can't recommend them.

One thing I've done is replacing a portion of the beef with ground veal, which contains more collagen. This breaks down into gelatin in the oven, and gives the meat a silky texture without loosening it - allowing me to use less filler.

You can simulate this effect by using a small amount of powdered gelatin in your filler directly.

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Corn starch or potato starch work well binding ground mixtures. Don't use too much or you'll end up altering the texture

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