In the mood for the flavors of a Thanksgiving feast without all of the work?  These mini turkey meat loaves are perfect to satisfy that craving sans the blood, sweat, and tears!

(and as always, please forgive the poor quality pictures)

Mini Turkey Meat Loaves w/Pan Gravy and Cranberry-Orange Relish


1 lb ground turkey
2 celery stalks (chop some of the leaves as they have tons of flavor)
2 large carrots
I large onion
½ cup crushed Saltine crackers
1 egg
1 tablespoon of poultry seasoning
Olive oil
1 cup dry white wine
½ cup chicken stock
1 tablespoon of flour
I can of whole berry cranberry sauce
Zest of one orange


Preheat oven to 375.  Drizzle some olive oil in a large oven-safe skillet or shallow roasting pan, set aside.  Dice about ¼ of the onion and place in large bowl.  Take remainder of onion, cube into quarters and scatter in the roasting pan.  Take one carrot and one celery stalk and cut in half.  Dice each half as small as you can and place in bowl.  Cut the remaining carrot and celery stalks into chunks and scatter in pan with the onion quarters.  Add ground turkey to the bowl with the veggies, then the poultry seasoning, egg, cracker crumbs, salt and pepper.  Combine by hand.  Score mixture into four even sections. (this ensures each loaf is the same size so it will cook evenly)  Form each one into an oval shape and place in the pan nestled amongst the veggies.  Drizzle everything with a little bit more olive oil then bake in the oven for about 30-45 minutes or until centers are no longer pink.

While loaves are cooking, empty the can of cranberry sauce into a small bowl.  Add the zest of one orange (zest is the peel/rind of the outer-most layer of the orange-you can use a small grater or micro plane for this).  Combine and chill in refrigerator.

When loaves are done, put everything on a separate plate and cover with foil.  Let sit.  Move that pan to a burner on medium heat.  Using the remaining oil (you may have to add a little bit more), whisk in the flour until thoroughly combined.  Then whisk in the wine, chicken stock, and a little salt/pepper.  Bring to a small boil until gravy starts to thicken then drop the heat down to low.

I served these with herbed mashed potatoes- prepare mashed potatoes as you normally would and instead of butter, combine about 1-2 tablespoons of onion/chive (or any kind of herb cream cheese) a little milk, salt/pepper.  Serve loaves on top of the potatoes, pour on gravy, and top with a dollop of the cranberry relish.  The veggies that were cooked with the loaves can also be a side dish as they will be caramelized and flavorful from roasting in the oven.

*You can serve these with any of your favorite Thanksgiving side dishes.
*Don’t jive with wine? Use brandy or even white balsamic vinegar instead.