Turkey meatloaf cupcakes

By Michael Bonacini
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  • 680 grams ground turkey
  • 6 slices smoked bacon, diced
  • 1 cup onion, finely diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup parsley, chopped
  • 2/3 cup dry bread crumbs
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 whole egg
  • Splash of vegetable oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Regular potato mash:

  • 900 grams large, white skinned potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1/4 cup 35% cream
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • Salt, pepper and nutmeg to taste.

Mashed sweet potato (topping):

  • 6 large sweet potatoes
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 dozen toasted pecans
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  1. In a small, non-stick pan gently fry the bacon. Add the onion and garlic and continue to cook until soft. Remove from heat and let cool.
  2. In a small bowl, place the breadcrumbs, add the milk and allow to soak. In a large, stainless steel bowl, place the ground turkey and add the salt and pepper, Worcestershire sauce and whole egg. Add in the now-cool bacon, onion and garlic followed by the soaked bread crumbs. Mix thoroughly. Remove a small piece and form into a small patty, and then pan-fry in the same nonstick pan. This is your opportunity to taste the seasoning and adjust as needed.
  3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Take the meatloaf mixture and fill a nonstick muffin tin of your choice with the meatloaf mixture, full with a slight dome shape at the top. Bake in the oven approximately 18-25 minutes, until just cooked tender and moist.
  4. Note: While the muffins are baking, you can work on the regular and sweet potato mash.
  5. When the meatloaf muffins are cooked, remove from oven and allow to rest for 5 minutes. Now you get to use your decorating skills. Pipe in a decorative style, each one can be different or a combination of both sweet and mash potato. Let your creative side go to town! I like to add sweet, cooked garden peas as an added garnish, sliced cooked carrots or a sprig of mint! Maybe a little toasted pecan, or anything that turns your meatloaf muffins into meatloaf cupcakes. A sprinkle of cheese is the cherry (tomato) on top!
  6. Note: This is a dish you can have fun with, get the kids involved and it will become a fast family favourite. You can use your favourite meatloaf as the foundation, just be creative!

Regular potato mash:

  1. Boil the potatoes in a large pot of salted water, 20-25 minutes until fall-apart tender. Drain and allow to cool slightly, and the steam to evaporate. Place potatoes back into the pot, add the butter, cream and some of the milk. Season with salt and pepper, a grate of nutmeg, and mash. If the mixture is a little too stiff, add a touch more milk to obtain a soft, fluffy but pipe-able mix. 

Mashed sweet potato (topping):

  1. Wrap each large sweet potato in foil and bake in a hot oven at 400 degrees for approximately 40-50 minutes until thoroughly cooked, soft and tender. Remove from oven, allow to cool, remove from the foil and peel the skin off. Place into a pan and mash with a potato masher, adding the butter and seasoning over a gentle heat to create a perfect, smooth, slightly stiff mashed potato. The gentle heat allows you to keep it hot. Place the mixture in a piping bag with a star tip and its ready to pipe over the meatloaf.


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