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Mom's Haitian Meatloaf on a Sandwich

1 hr
10 mins
Eva Kosmas Flores
1 hr
10 mins


  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 large yellow onion, cut into 1/4-inch dice
  • 7 medium cloves garlic, roughly chopped
  • 2 medium bell peppers (preferably red and yellow), stemmed, seeded and cut into 1/4-inch dice
  • tablespoons kosher salt, divided
  • 2 pounds ground dark meat turkey
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 1/2 Scotch bonnet or habanero chile, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup all-natural ketchup, divided
  • 3 tablespoons extra-fine almond flour
  • 1 tablespoon umami mushroom powder, preferably Nom Nom Paleo brand
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 cup drained pimento-stuffed olives, roughly chopped
  • 1 large handful small parsley sprigs, roughly chopped
  • 1 ripe peach, pitted and thinly sliced
  • 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • kosher salt
  • 12 slices white bread
  • grainy mustard, to taste
  • thinly sliced red onion, to taste
  • 6 leaves green lettuce
  • store-bought chips, to serve

Chef notes

My mom added classic Haitian seasonings — thyme, parsley, and fruity, fiery chile — to her meatloaf, which made it extra special. When I replicate her triumph today, I make sure there's some leftover for sandwiches the next afternoon. I like mine on white bread (gluten-free for me, but not necessarily for you) with lettuce for crunch, mustard for zing and quick-pickled peaches as a sweet-tart foil to the meatloaf. 

Technique tip: Use a meat thermometer to test for doneness; line the loaf pan with parchment paper, so the meatloaf is easy to remove neatly once it's done.

Swap option: Lean beef works well, as a substitute for dark meat ground turkey.


For the meatloaf:


Preheat the oven to 350 F. Line a 9- by 5-inch loaf pan with parchment paper so that it overhangs on both long sides of the pan by at least an inch.


Heat the oil in a medium skillet over medium heat until shimmery, add the onion and garlic, and cook, stirring occasionally, until they start to soften, about 3 minutes. Add the bell peppers and 1/2 tablespoon of the salt, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are translucent and soft, and the peppers are bright and tender, about 12 minutes. Turn off the heat and let cool.


In a large mixing bowl, combine the turkey, egg, chile, 1/4 cup of the ketchup, the almond flour, mushroom powder, paprika and the remaining 1 tablespoon of salt. Stir well, then use your hands (gloved ones, if you're worried about the chile) to mix and knead well for a minute or so to make a smooth mixture that's all one color.


Stir in the onion mixture, olives, and parsley and mix really well. Transfer the meatloaf to the prepared loaf pan, smooth and even out the top, and cover with the remaining 1/4 cup of ketchup, spreading it into an even layer.


Bake until a thermometer inserted into the center of the meat registers 160 F (it's the best way to gauge doneness for this meatloaf), 50 minutes to 1 hour. Let the meatloaf rest for at least 30 minutes. Use the parchment paper overhang to carefully pull the meatloaf out of the pan and transfer to a cutting board. Slice into 1-inch-thick slices.

For the sandwiches:

In a medium mixing bowl, combine the peach with the vinegar and a generous pinch of salt, toss well, and let pickle for 5 minutes.

Meanwhile, toast the bread lightly. Spread some mustard on six of the bread slices, top with a slice of meatloaf, then add the red onion, drained pickled peaches and lettuce. Cover with the remaining bread slices and serve with store-bought plantain chips.