CORE Salsa Meatloaf

I don’t recall where I found this recipe, but I know it’s been many years since I did. In fact, I think Fred sent it to me because he spotted it in some forum and thought it sounded good. I used to make it all the time, and then the recipe disappeared from my recipe box and I hadn’t made it for years. Then recently, I stumbled across it again, and made it.

I had forgotten how good it is! In fact, when Nance and I made meatloaf earlier this year or last year, or whenever the hell we made it, I declared that that was my go-to meatloaf recipe forevermore. But the good thing about the CORE Salsa Meatloaf is that it’s got shredded veggies in it, which means it’s good for you!

If you’re on Weight Watchers, it is also Weight Watchers CORE program compliant. I’d love to tell you exactly what that means, but I haven’t got a clue. I assume it’s a good thing?

Anyway. Your ingredients:

Core meatloaf (2)

Ground beef, egg whites, shredded zucchini, carrots, and onion, Worchestershire sauce, garlic, salt and pepper, oatmeal, and thyme. Also, salsa – but warning: I didn’t use the salsa because I had a better idea for the topping.

Really, aren’t all meatloaf recipes pretty much the same? Throw all the ingredients in a bowl and mix them up.

Core meatloaf (3)

When the ingredients are well-mixed, shape them it all into a loaf and put it in a loaf pan; bake. As an aside (and to use our brand-spanking-new Amazon affiliate link, woohoo!), I have this meat loaf pan. I like it because it allows the grease from your meatloaf to drain through into the bottom pan, and thus you’re consuming less of the grease and fat. I CALL THAT AWESOME.

Core meatloaf (4)

I veered away from the recipe. The original recipe says after the meatloaf has baked for 40 minutes, spread 1/2 cup of salsa on top of the meatloaf and cook another 20 minutes.

I didn’t do that, because salsa on meatloaf is just gross to me. I know, I’m a picky bitch.

What I did was steal the idea for the topping from the meatloaf Nance and I made, the 1/4 c. ketchup, 1/4 c. BBQ sauce and 2 T. brown sugar, spread that on top of the meatloaf and then cooked it another 20 minutes.

It was DIVINE.

Core meatloaf (5)
Look – NO ONE takes a decent picture of meatloaf. IT CANNOT BE DONE.

You know how sometimes meatloaf is just a big, solid mass of meat? This meatloaf is much less dense, and it’s tasty and it’s chock-full of veggies, and really just SO good. Give it a try – shredding the veggies is a pain in the ass, but it’s very much worth it, I promise!


CORE Salsa Meatloaf
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
: Entree
Cuisine: Weight Watchers
Serves: 8
  • 4 egg whites (or ½ c. pasteurized egg whites) (or two whole eggs)
  • 1 c. old-fashioned oats
  • 1 onion, grated
  • 1 c. grated zucchini
  • ¾ c. grated carrot
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 t. Worcestershire sauce
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp each dried thyme and pepper
  • 1¼ lbs extra-lean ground beef
  • ½ c. salsa
  1. Throw everything but salsa in a big bowl; mix together well. Don't be a priss; use your hands to mix that stuff up.
  2. Place in a greased loaf pan. Bake at 350ºF for 40 minutes. Spread salsa over top (see note below if baked salsa on top of meat grosses you out); bake an additional 20 minutes. Makes 8 servings.
  3. Note: as an alternate topping if you prefer not to use salsa, mix ¼ c. ketchup, ¼ c. BBQ sauce, and 2 T brown sugar. After meatloaf has baked for 40 minutes, spread on top of the meatloaf, and bake an additional 20 minutes. (If you go with this topping, the nutritional information below is incorrect.)
  4. Nutritional information (if made with the salsa topping) Per serving: 206 calories, 22 g. protein, 7 g. total fat (3 g. saturated fat), 12 g. carb, 2 g. fiber, 47 mg cholesterol, 382 mg. sodium.



CORE Salsa Meatloaf — 34 Comments

  1. You used the word “divine” when describing meatloaf. That gave me serious pause because as much as I like meatloaf, I have never, ever felt that it was divine. Also, way to point out that I’m the fat-fatty with the topping idea. You’re all healthy-healthy, eat your vegetables! And along comes the tank adding her BBQ sauce & brown sugar. Diabetes, FTW!

    • Well, I really meant that the topping was divine, but the meatloaf was pretty damn good!

      Also, you were NOT the fat-fatty with the topping idea, I got it from the meatloaf recipe we made last year (or whenever the hell we made it), so that makes ME the fat-fatty. Who you callin’ fat?

      • It’s a Weight Watchers term, but I have no idea what it refers to. One of their programs – they roll out new programs every so often to keep interest up. I’d roll my eyes, but there are plenty of WW recipes I’ve used and liked, so I’d only be rolling my eyes at myself! 🙂

      • Cats On the Run Everywhere? Speaking of which, Robyn, no input from any kittens or adults this week?

      • No cats for this one – but the tandem Nance & Robyn post will be up later this week, so I imagine there will be some furry creature. 🙂

  2. A friend and I were just talking about this recipe yesterday! She used to make this recipe all the time and loved it, but like Robyn said-she hadn’t made it in years. I never have made it-but she always raved about it, and since it has the Bitchypoo Seal of Approval, I will give it a try!

    • At least Robyn is upping her game by picking a recipe with more than 3 ingredients, but I still think since she’s just mushing everything together and Amanda would not approve. Although…there is some grating going on. I might have to rethink this. That Amanda is a tough nut to crack, ya know!

  3. My children like nothing more than a big slab o’meat for dinner. I can’t wait to slide vegetables inside it!!

    Wonder how many more WW points get added if we switch out the salsa for the BBQ topping. Because salsa on meatloaf? How does one make the emoticon for the green face with the tongue sticking out?

    • Oh, I’m glad you said that, Kelly! I didn’t want to be the only one thinking that Salsa on a meatloaf is nothing but barf city. I can’t even imagine that tasting good!

      • Can I just point out that salsa on any mexican meal IS salsa on top of cooked meat?! 🙂 (especially tacos where there’s no layer of corn/flour tortilla between them.)

        But I have to admit, I don’t think that salsa on top of meatloaf sounds right. I understand that for WW it’s really good for you, gives you lots of flavor for your buck, blah, blah, blah, but I’m in the camp of “not on meatloaf!”

        Also – idea for anyone out there who doesn’t want to grate the veggies, and/or is hiding it from the kids so need it even less visible – use the food processor.

      • Now I’m craving tacos, Sherry, damnit! 😛

        I always use the food processor when grating anything because I’m too lazy to do it by hand. 🙂

    • Thanks Lisa, I’ll check it out, but I really don’t like cumin.

      You know, I think of myself as not picky at all, but the longer this site goes on, the more stuff I have to admit to not liking. Maybe I AM picky and just didn’t know it!

  4. I always put barbeque sauce on top of meatloaf, salsa- no way in HELL! might mix a little in (along with half the kitchen) but never on top. Will be trying this recipe later this week when i make meatloaf!
    I did WW before having lap band surgery, and the CORE program had just come out.. i think its unlimited fruits, vegetables and other ‘free’ type foods..

      • But what does CORE stand for? This shit is going to make me crazy. I should probably just google it, but dammit, Robyn…you started this mess!

      • No worries, Nance. I used the Googler for you. Apparently it’s Core, not CORE as an acronym. Weight Watchers says it’s a diet organized into 10 sensible food groups… and then they only picture nine of them (one that is condiments with an actual photograph of ketchup). Now we can obsess over what the tenth food group is.

      • I actually laughed my ass off when I read this comment because there are quite a few of us on here that are totally going to obsess over that freaking tenth food group! Thanks for doing the heavy lifting, Kelly! 😉

  5. My understanding of the “CORE” program is it’s something low-carbish but with certain allowed vegetables, etc. Thus, the BBQ sauce and sugar negates the CORE program authenticity – however it adds to the taste so the judges will allow it! 😉

  6. I love me some meatloaf.

    One of these days I hope you guys will make the meatloaf muffins. They sound kinda yucky but they are seriously SOO good. And they have Stove Top Stuffing in them!

    I gotta say I don’t think the salsa would be bad on the meatloaf – the liquid would seep into it and make it moist I’d imagine and you’d just have tomatoes and peppers and onions on top.

    Also, anyone who has ever done Weight Watchers KNOWS what the 10th food group is…canned pumpkin.

    • OMG yes Bonnie ;). When I was on WW I swear there was pumpkin in everything.

      …..dammit, now I’m wondering if I can find the recipe for these pumpkin oat bar things that were like 2 points. They were like eating hockey pucks if hockey pucks tasted good…kind of.

      C’mon, you guys, you know you want that to be your next tandem recipe 🙂

      • yes! I forgot all about that.. they all start with a can of pumpkin or an Angel Food cake mix and a can of pineapple. I never tried any of their dessert recipes, I knew I’d eat the whole thing within a day.. telling myself its low calorie so i can eat more! LOL

  7. Yay finally a recipe without wheat (as long as you leave out the BBQ sauce topping)! I love meatloaf and I love salsa, so I think I will try making this in its original form. Actually now wishing I had made it last night so I could have some leftovers for breakfast now. Oh well, I guess I will get off my fat ass and just make some breakfast like a normal person.

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