A Modern Thanksgiving Twist

I remember as a kid that it would take at least two days for my parents to prepare a Thanksgiving meal including time to defrost, marinate, roast the 12 pound turkey and prep for other side dishes. It wasn’t really until these last few years away from home that I’ve been really able to appreciate the time and effort that my parents went through to make Thanksgiving a special day out of the year for my family.


Our first attempt

Through experience, with ‘X’ number of dinners under my belt, I’ve realized that Thanksgiving doesn’t have to be overly complicated. This year, taking refuge at Ricelessasian’s lovely home for Thanksgiving was a unique experience because we had the opportunity of revolutionizing our own Thanksgiving and create our own new traditions. Ricelessasian suggested that we should create a modern twist to the traditional cupcake by making a savory Thanksgiving-themed cupcake. She found the perfect recipe – which was a very refreshing take on the traditional, often bland-tasting, meatloaf. I enjoyed this recipe also because it uses turkey which makes it a leaner, more guilt-free alternative. And who could forget mentioning the faux cupcake ‘frosting’ of roasted garlic mashed potatoes topped up with cranberries? Cuteness overload.

I was impressed with the overall flavour profile. It was a simple recipe but all the flavours associated with Thanksgiving that I was nostalgic for, were there – all in one cupcake. Who would have thought?

It was a real treat for me to help make, and eat, all while in good company.

Happy Thanksgiving,

– Matchachoco


Turkey Meatloaf Cupcakes with Roasted Garlic Mashed Potato Frosting (makes 9-12 cupcakes) 
Turkey meatloaf recipe from Skinny Taste


For the meatloaf cupcakes:
1.3 lb extra lean ground turkey
1 cup grated zucchini, all moisture squeezed dry with paper towel
2 tbsp onion, minced
1/2 cup Italian style breadcrumbs
1/4 cup ketchup
1 egg
1 tsp kosher salt

For the roasted garlic mashed potatoes:
3 large to medium yellow potatoes, peeled and chopped into equal size pieces
2 garlic bulbs
1/2 cup 2% milk
1/4 cup butter
Salt and pepper to taste
Olive oil

Dried cranberries
Dehydrated thyme


Turkey Meatloaf

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the turkey, zucchini, onion, breadcrumbs, ketchup, egg, and salt.
  3. Place meatloaf mixture into muffin tins and bake for about 18-20 minutes until cooked through.

Roasted garlic mashed potatoes

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. To roast garlic bulbs, chop each garlic bulb horizontally and spread olive oil into the cut portion of the garlic. Wrap the garlic bulbs tightly with aluminum foil. Bake for about 45 minutes. Once the roasted garlic has cooled, squeeze out the garlic from the bulb. Set roasted garlic aside.
  2. Boil potatoes in a large pot with salted water until potatoes are fork tender. Meanwhile, heat milk and butter in a saucepan.
  3. Using a potato ricer, mash the potatoes with the roasted garlic. Slowly add milk and butter mixture to the mashed potatoes just until you get the consistency you want. Season with salt and pepper.

To assemble the cupcakes, pipe the mashed potatoes using a decorative piping tip on top of the meatloaf. Sprinkle with dehydrated thyme and garnish with dried cranberries. Serve with gravy, of course 😉


2 thoughts on “A Modern Thanksgiving Twist

  1. Pingback: Our Year in Review (2013) | Underground Culinary Lab

  2. Pingback: Virtual Thanksgiving Potluck with EatPrayBake | Underground Culinary Lab

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