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The Best Classic Meatloaf Recipe uses only the freshest ingredients, resulting in a moist and flavorful meatloaf to the last mouthful.

An old-fashioned meatloaf dish made with breadcrumbs, ground beef, onions, and a ketchup sauce gives the Meatloaf excellent taste. Every family enjoys the traditional recipe for Meatloaf since it is so delicious.

Best Meatloaf Recipe

Best Meatloaf Recipe

To prepare the most outstanding traditional Meatloaf, you’ll need a few key components, including ground beef, lots of binding elements (breadcrumbs and eggs), and BBQ sauce to keep the Meatloaf moist.

In this case, we’re creating a “Free Form” meatloaf, which means that Instead of baking in a pan, it will be cooked on a baking sheet. It will help the Meatloaf to cook more quickly and efficiently, and any extra fat will be able to drain away from the Meatloaf as it cooks.

The Best Traditional Meatloaf Ingredients

Meatloaf is a delicious and juicy dish that needs a few essential ingredients. Here are a few essentials:

  • Ground Beef – Choose ground beef that is 90% to 93 percent fat-free.
  • Ingredients in Combination – Breadcrumbs and eggs
  • Herbs and seasonings – meatloaf seasoning is what gives your Meatloaf its wonderful flavor.
  • Meatloaf glaze recipe — the sweet and tangy meatloaf sauce brings all flavors together.

How to Cook Meatloaf?

How to Cook Meatloaf?

If you’ve never prepared Meatloaf before because you don’t know the specific recipe, don’t worry about it being too dry or tasting bad.

This article will provide you with the required instructions for correctly preparing Meatloaf. Several vital guidelines include Meatloaf cook time and temperature; what should the internal temperature of Meatloaf be? Do you cook Meatloaf covered or uncovered? And numerous more.

Remember a few things in mind when preparing this straightforward meatloaf recipe:

  • In a large mixing basin, mix only until incorporated; otherwise, the mixture will be excessively dense.
  • Lean beef is the healthiest meat option.
  • Allow it to sit after it comes out of the oven before serving to ensure that it remains juicy.

What’s the usage of milk in Meatloaf?

Adding milk to the breadcrumbs is an absolute must to make wet Meatloaf and enjoy moist Meatloaf. Everyone dislikes Meatloaf that is too dry or crumbly. Non-dairy milk substitutes can be used in dairy milk in recipes that call for the latter.

What is the most acceptable meatloaf filler?

Several fillers can be used to increase the flavor of Meatloaf, including bread crumbs, soaked bread, and dried veggies.

Soak onions before adding to Meatloaf

While other recipes require cooking the onions beforehand, this recipe streamlines the process by including them in the first step. The moistening components will perfectly cook the onions and leave them with a lovely texture at the end.

The Secret behind excellent Meatloaf

Quality ingredients, a well-balanced spice to meat ratio, and correct cooking time are the keys to a delicious meatloaf.

Meatloaf cook time and temperature

To make classic Meatloaf, preheat the oven to -350 degrees F and bake for around 30 minutes. When preparing Meatloaf, the temperature is critical; if it’s too hot, the crust will burn before the middle is fully cooked, and if it’s too low, you won’t have a crispy outside.

How to moisten Meatloaf?

Using wet ingredients is the key to moist Meatloaf. While the breadcrumbs act as a binder, the addition of eggs, milk, and ketchup contributes to taste and moisture.

How can I improve my Meatloaf?

If you don’t want your Meatloaf to be too dry or gritty, you should choose a slice of high-fat meat. It will also keep its delicate and juicy texture by adding eggs, ketchup, and milk.

Temperature to Bake Meatloaf

Cooking times will vary according to the size of the bread. 350°F is the typical temperature for cooking Meatloaf. Meatloaf should be baked for 35 to 45 minutes per pound at 350°F, according to a good rule of thumb.

Using a meat thermometer, you may check the internal temperature of your Meatloaf to see if it is overdone or undercooked. The meatloaf’s internal temperature should be 160°F when it is finished cooking.

Do you cook Meatloaf Covered or Uncovered?

Every one of our kitchen experts recommends leaving the countertops open. It’s impossible to get that perfect crust and caramelized top on a meatloaf if it’s covered while baking.

Many meatloaf recipes call for a glaze to be added, so you may be wondering how long you should wait before adding it to your loaf. Generally speaking, your Meatloaf should spend the majority of its time in the oven (about 40 to 45 minutes) uncovered and unglazed to achieve a lovely crust on the top of the loaf.

You may then apply the glaze towards the conclusion of the cooking process, allowing the top layer to caramelize for a few more minutes.

Meatloaf Glaze

Meatloaf Glaze

Southern meatloaf sauce is sweet, tangy, and extraordinary, taking ketchup to a whole new level. Your entire family will adore the slightly sweet BBQ sauce-like flavor you get with the addition of white vinegar, and brown sugar-everyone likes this meatloaf topping.

Why Does Your Meatloaf Crumble?

To keep Meatloaf from falling apart, it needs eggs and breadcrumbs to hold it together. Also, watch out for overcooking. Meatloaf success is within your reach if you stick to the directions in this recipe.

How Do You Prevent Meatloaf From Collapsing?

When there is insufficient Meatloaf to hold it together, it crumbles. Eggs and breadcrumbs help hold the mixture together, and this recipe specifies the proper quantities. Cooking time for Meatloaf is also critical since it will break apart if overcooked.

What’s In meatloaf Sauce?

The glazing sauce for Meatloaf is a combination of ketchup, white vinegar, brown sugar, garlic powder, onion powder, salt, and black pepper.

Serving Options With Meatloaf

Serving options with Meatloaf

Meatloaf can be filled with a variety of items:

  • Mashed Potatoes
  • Skillet Glazed Carrots
  • Onion Rings
  • Crockpot Cabbage
  • Mac and Cheese
  • Cheese Rolls

Is Meatloaf Safe To Freeze?

That is also the most beautiful aspect of it! Make a larger quantity and freeze it until ready to use. It’s as simple as making a loaf and wrapping it up. Then, refrigerate it for 24 hours before cooking.

Cooked Meatloaf may be frozen as well. Slice it thinly, cover it in freezer paper, and toss it into a freezer bag once it’s chilled. This is even better for those evenings when you forget to defrost anything. In no time at all, you’ll have a tasty and healthy lunch on the table.

How to Reheat Meatloaf?

Meatloaf reheated in the microwave will taste strange and be dried out. The ideal way to cook it is in the oven, but you can also do it in a skillet.

First, add a smidgen of beef stock, water, or gravy to the preheated oven in a loaf pan or baking dish. One tablespoon should be sufficient. Then, bake it in foil for another 20 to 25 minutes when it’s cooked through.

The Best Classic Meatloaf Recipe

This easy meatloaf recipe is always moist and flavorful! The sweet and sour sauce enhances every mouthful on top.


  • Large mixing bowl
  • Small mixing bowl
  • Meat thermometer
  • Meatloaf Pan


  • ½ tablespoon black pepper
  • Two spoon salt
  • ½ tablespoon smoked paprika
  • ½ cup milk
  • Two tablespoons of Italian seasoning
  • 2 lbs ground beef
  • One large size of onion
  • Two eggs
  • Two spoon garlic cloves
  • Four tablespoon ketchup
  • One tablespoon of Worcestershire Sauce
  • Four spoons of fresh parsley
  • 3/3 cup panko breadcrumbs

Meatloaf Sauce

  • ½ tablespoon pepper
  • ½ tablespoon salt
  • 1 cup ketchup
  • Two spoons of white vinegar
  • 2 spoons of brown sugar
  • Two spoons of garlic powder
  • 1½ onion powder


  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
  2. Nonstick spray should coat the loaf pan and set it aside.
  3. Combine the ground beef, onion, eggs, garlic, ketchup, Worchestershire sauce, parsley, breadcrumbs, milk, Italian seasoning, and pepper in a large bowl. Combine thoroughly.
  4. Fill the prepared loaf pan halfway with meatloaf mixture—Bake for 40 minutes at 375 degrees F in a preheated oven.
  5. Prepare the meatloaf sauce first. Combine ketchup, white vinegar, garlic powder, salt, and black pepper in a small mixing bowl. Whisk ingredients together until thoroughly blended. When the Meatloaf has 15 minutes in the oven, spread the meatloaf glaze on top.
  6. Rest the Meatloaf for 5 minutes. Garnish with fresh parsley and serve.


  • Calories: 406 kcal
  • Protein: 23 g
  • Carbohydrates: 22 g
  • Fat: 25 g
  • Saturated Fat: 9 g
  • Vitamin C: 6 mg
  • Calcium : 86 mg
  • Iron : 3 mg
  • Trans Fat: 1 g
  • Vitamin A: 519 IU

Tips & Variations on the Simple Meatloaf Recipe

If you dislike onion chunks in your Meatloaf, sauté the onion ahead of time or use one tablespoon of onion powder for the diced onion.

Want to sneak in some more vegetables? Add shredded carrots, zucchini, or sliced bell peppers to the mix.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Ground Turkey Suitable for Meatloaf?

Yes, ground turkey may be added to Meatloaf. However, it is preferable to cook it. Until an interior temperature of 165 degrees F is reached.

Why Did Meatloaf Disintegrate?

If your Meatloaf crumbles, it’s likely that you didn’t use enough binding ingredients or didn’t press the loaf together tightly enough.

How Do I Make Gluten-Free Meatloaf?

A simple approach to make this dish gluten-free is to replace the breadcrumbs with crushed Rice Chex or Corn Chex.

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