Friday Eats

Friday Eats: Veggie(fied) Meatloaf

This veggie(fied) meatloaf was originally a recipe for healthy, low cost doggie food loaf posted by Mashanda Lane, the mother of Caiden Lane.  I like it so much I sometimes add a bit more flavoring and eat it when they do! The recipe was so good I wanted to share it with all of you, as well as share this story of Caiden Lane.

Caiden is a six, almost 7, year old boy who suffers from severe oral and verbal apraxia as well as mild limb-kinetic apraxia. Apraxia is a disorder of the brain that affects the delivery of signals to the nervous system which affects the person’s ability to move their muscles and perform specific tasks. While Caiden suffers from severe apraxia, the condition is manageable with the proper therapy. He undergoes speech therapy, brain stimulation therapy, and hyperbaric treatments. The combination of these treatments show a huge improvement in Caiden’s condition, however, therapy is expensive.

Caiden Lane

Caiden’s condition is due to TIA’s (mini-strokes) he has had, but there is still no known cause or cure. Doctor’s told the family Caiden would never walk, talk, eat, be potty-trained, or even smile. But he has done all of this and more! He runs, swims, always has a smile on his face, and even sings in his church choir!  Not all days are this great, but to help make more days like this Caiden needs the hyperbaric chamber.

Caiden Lane

To help the Lane family out, donations are being accepted to purchase a portable hyperbaric chamber so they will always have access to it to help Caiden’s condition. To purchase the chamber they still need about $9,000. To accomplish this task, Orange United Methodist Church in Lathemtown is accepting checks for the family, or you can visit In Search of Caiden’s Voice and click the donate button and give whatever you can. This is a very reasonable amount to collect for such a good cause. So please contribute what you can.

To read in detail about everything Caiden and the Lane family have been through please visit the facebook page dedicated to Caiden, or visit In Search of Caiden’s Voiceto read Mashanda’s blog and to donate to this cause. If you cannot afford to make a financial donation, please repost our blog as well as Mashanda’s blog to help get the word out, so more people will know about this condition that Caiden and many other suffer from.

This is Mashanda’s recipe with little changes I made and my comments in the ( )


  • 2 -3 carrots, shredded (add spinach and mixed frozen veggies as a great way to sneak in the veggies!)
  • 4 potatoes, shredded
  • Any leftover vegetables, shredded, (or toss in some frozen veggies) NO ONIONS!!!!!!
  • 1 lb navy beans, cooked (1 can of black beans)
  • 3 lbs hamburger (2 lbs of hamburger or 3lbs of ground turkey)
  • 4 eggs
  • 1/4 cup wheat germ (substituted some whole wheat flour and a bit of bread crumbs, I recently added Brewer’s Yeast – nutritional yeast for B vitamins and selenium and more)
  • 3 teaspoons low-sodium beef bouillon cubes (with a little Herbamare…sea salt and herbs mixed….yum! Also added parsley, thyme, a bit of celery seed, and oregano…great herbs for nutrition!)
  • Just a little garlic (natural flea repellent)


  • Heat oven to 350°F.
  • Lightly oil a 13×9-inch baking dish.
  • In a large mixing bowl combine: shredded carrots, potatoes and any leftover veggies, no need to peel. NEVER USE ONION!!
  • Using rubber gloves hand mix/mash remaining ingredients into veggie mixture, mixing until there are no lumps.
  • Place mixture into baking dish, spreading evenly.
  • Bake for approx. 1 1/2 hours.
  • Cool.
  • Then slice into pieces a size your dog will eat, wrap in foil or put into freezer bags and date and label for dogs.
  • Freeze remaining slices.
  • Defrost, then feed.

You may heat the loaf in the microwave or oven to thaw it faster,( I stick it in the skillet and warm it)… Just be sure that there are no Hot Spots in it when you serve it.

Do not be surprised if your dogs do not want to eat as many times a day or as much after starting this diet.  Natural food is much more filling and much more nutritious than commercial food for our friends and they tend to not want to eat as much.  (My dogs adore this stuff!!!)

This is AWESOME when you have HUGE dogs too, since they eat so much.
It is a GOOD idea to make several of these up in advance and freeze them!! This eliminates the everyday hassle of preparing food and you are more likely to stick with a natural diet for your fur babies if you eliminate the stress from it!!

To lower costs, we plant the veggies that are needed for it in the summer and have a nice harvest of them to keep great food prepared. We buy meat on sale and even the butchers clearance  meat that is cheap because it will expire soon. Once you cook it and freeze it’s fine! Do try to avoid buying meats that have been treated with preserving mixtures like those that you would find at Wal-Mart or other big box store. Aim for meats from a butcher shop, Publix or other source of fresh meats.

A good source of free, fresh meat is from a hunter! Our dogs love when we replace the hamburger or chicken with deer or elk!!

Some fresh veggies that our dogs like are peas, green beans, zucchini , squash, corn, etc…. I REPEAT….NEVER USE ONIONS!!!


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(1) Comment

  1. Leslie Reese says:

    My dogs gobbled this up…was good enough to eat it myself.

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