Cooking Meatloaf on the Engine

Click on any picture with a border for a larger view!

Now  for most of my trails you can download my GPS track (bread crumb trail) as well as the map of my track. For more info Click Track Info

For a trail lunch how about a no mess meatloaf.

One of the largest time-consuming activities is producing hot meals. This is even worse when traveling having to break out the kitchen, cook and cleanup is very time-consuming. If you're on the trail with a group of people they probably are not going to want to wait for you. If you're going to be on the rood for an extended period of time restaurant food is expensive and can also be quite time-consuming.  Fast food places get pretty boring, not to mention it's not very healthful.  So why not cook while you're driving! Actually this is quite easy to do, you can make just about anything you want! I have made hot dogs, kielbasa, Italian sausage, salmon, pork, prime rib, chicken, lamb chops, New York sirloin, zucchini, onion, potato and meatloaf.  This cooking is very similar to cooking in a crock pot. Meats come out very tender.  There is a drawback to this type of cooking since you're cooking inside the Ziploc, beef always ends up tasting like pot roast, no matter what cut of meat you use!

In this article I'm going to show you how to make a no fuss meatloaf.

The reason I call this no fuss is we're going to take a one gallon Ziploc, this bag will be both our mixing bowl and our cooking bag. It's important to get the right kind of baggy, you need to use a heavy high-quality ziplock type of bag.  If you use a cheap bag you'll end up with juices all over your engine!  While in the short run this may smell good, you may be out camping, and some morning wake up to find that some mice really enjoyed your electric wires sautéed in cooking juice.  Or even more fun to wake up to, the noise of a bear ripping stuff out of your engine.  One of the major manufacturers of zip-able Freezer bags has a "Two ply freezer bag". I found this bag to be unsuitable as it tends to melt while cooking on the engine.

I made my meatloaf using ground turkey.

Let's start with a list of ingredients, feel free to make any kind of substitutions or additions according to your taste. 

Zip lock bag




Ground turkey

1 pound


2 cloves minced


2 sliced

Ginger fresh

1 teaspoon sliced like a third of the toothpick


1/2  cup


1/2 teaspoon ground


Quarter teaspoon


1 cup coarsely chopped (I like Onion)

Cheddar cheese

1/2 cup cubed

Put the ground turkey in the freezer bag and add the other ingredients. Close the Ziploc and knead the contents together.  When properly mixed, encourage the mixture to the bottom of the Ziploc.  Now unzip the bag and roll the meatloaf thus removing all the air and forming the mixture into a log. Then zip the bag closed, cover the Ziploc with two or three layers of tinfoil.

When using tinfoil always have the shiny surface towards what you want to be hot.  If you're cooking you want the shiny side towards the food, if you're covering potato salad you want the shiny side facing out.

Now you need to figure out where to put the meatloaf so it will cook.  Putting it directly on the exhaust manifold is not a good idea as it gets way to hot!  If you can find some place where it rests directly against the valve cover and is not directly in the air flow this would be good.  On Jeep Wranglers and Cherokees there is an excellent place, this is between the heater hose and the valve cover. I usually put the food on at the start of the trail, around at 9 AM.  By 12 o'clock it's done!  I've never had my meal not cook in that amount of time.

When it's lunchtime remove the meatloaf from the tinfoil and allowed to cool slightly open the Ziploc put on a plate, carve and serve!


For salmon I add dill and basil for prime rib I add ½ onion ½ a new potato a jalapeno cut in half, for a lamb chop some garlic.  The sky is the limit!

Next I want to try a desert, apple cobbler?  Sounds good to me!

How about some salsa to go with the meatloaf.


[Welcome page]

The Odyssey

[Video, Jeeping 101]

[GPS Track info.]


[Odyssey] [Day 8-14] [Day 15 -21] [Day 22 - 28] [Day 29 - 35] [Day 36 - 42] [Day 43 - 49]

[City Match Name] [Name the Folige]


[the shaft] [airing down] [Salsa] [Air Compressor] [Cooking Meatloaf] [Articles in Low-Range]

[City Answers] [Foliage Answers]


[Choke Cherry] [Holy Cross] [Death Valley] [Chili Challenge] [Caballo Mts] [Gila NF Trip] [Titus Canyon]

[Woodpecker Mine]  [Picket Post]  [Box Canyon]