Elk Meatloaf Baked in a Local Sugar Pumpkin

Elk Meatloaf Baked in a Local Sugar Pumpkin

What better combination of Fall Ingredients than the marriage of ground elk, fresh pumpkin, and savory fall spices?! This recipe is easy, it smells amazing while baking, and it is beautifully impressive to serve!

While shopping for Thanksgiving ingredients, I spotted a beautiful display of Pumpkins for Pie! When shopping for pumpkins, look for the ones usually generically labeled “sugar pumpkins” or “pie pumpkins.” Some specific names are Baby Pam, Autumn Gold,  New England Pie Pumpkin, Ghost Rider, Lumina (a white skinned pumpkin), Cinderella, and Fairy Tale. I am so happy with the result that I could hardly wait to share this with you!

Like I said… it’s easy! Have fun!

How to Pick the Perfect Pumpkin!

Elk Meatloaf
Elk Meatloaf Baked in a Sugar Pumpkin
Elk Meatloaf
Ready for the oven: Elk Meatloaf Baked in a Sugar Pumpkin

Elk Meatloaf Baked in a Local Sugar Pumpkin

Ingredients:

  • 2 Tbs. unsalted butter melted
  • 1/2 cup finely onion
  • 1/2 cup finely carrots
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped celery
  • 1/2 cup minced red bell pepper
  • 2 tsp. minced garlic
  • 1/2 tsp. salt 
  • 1 1/2  tsp. freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1/4 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup ketchup
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1 1/2 lbs. lean ground elk or deer
  • 1/4 cup fine fresh bread crumbs

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Cut the top off a pie pumpkin and scrape the inside to remove seeds & strings. Set aside in a greased baking pan.
  3. In the bowl of a food processor, add the onion, carrots, celery peppers and garlic. Pulse till finely chopped. Add salt, black pepper, cayenne, cumin, nutmeg, eggs, ketchup and heavy cream. Pulse till thoroughly blended.
  4. Place the ground elk & breadcrumbs in a large bowl.
  5. Scrape the veggie, ketchup, cream, egg and spice mixture into the ground elk and bread crumbs. With your “clean” hands, mix by kneading gently for five minutes.
  6. Fill the prepared pumpkin to the top with the elk meatloaf mixture.
  7. Place the meatloaf filled pumpkin in a greased baking dish which it will fit comfortably. Place the pumpkin top along side the meatloaf filled pumpkin to bake along with it.
  8. Place in 375 degree F oven and bake approximately 2 hours., till pumpkin is tender, and the center of the meatloaf has reached at least 165 degrees F.
  9. Let Pumpkin Elk Meatloaf rest 15 minutes before slicing. Serves 4 – 6 a dinner size wedge.
  10. Serve with your favorite sauce or condiment: horseradish sauce, queso sauce, ketchup, salsa, or au’ jus!
Elk Meatloaf
Elk Meatloaf Baked in a Sugar Pumpkin with Harvard Beets & Feta

 

Elk Meatloaf
Elk Meatloaf Baked in a Sugar Pumpkin with horseradish sauce

 

Elk Meatloaf
Carved Elk Meatloaf Baked in a Sugar Pumpkin

 

Elk Meatloaf
Done: Elk Meatloaf Baked in a Sugar Pumpkin

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