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Turkey Meatloaf

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
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Turkey Meatloaf

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This truly is the best and juiciest Turkey Meatloaf recipe! The turkey is tender and so flavorful and topped with a smoky ketchup glaze.

This turkey meatloaf recipe is healthy without sacrificing any flavor at all. It’s the perfect cozy dinner–especially when you serve it alongside mashed potatoes or your favorite sides.

The Best Turkey Meatloaf Recipe

I don’t say this lightly, but this is truly the best turkey meatloaf recipe! It’s juicy and flavorful and doesn’t rely on a ton of breadcrumb fillers.

I grew up with meatloaf on regular rotation–my Mom’s version featured high-in-fat ground beef with Lipton’s onion soup mix. Delicious, but I wanted to find a way to lighten things up without sacrificing flavor.

My recipe for turkey meatloaf keeps to the classic flavors, topped with a smoky ketchup sauce that totally makes the whole thing. This is such a simple recipe to make on busy weeknights!

Say goodbye to dry meatloaf because once you try it, I guarantee it’ll become your go-to recipe! Need more easy weeknight dinner inspo? Check out all my favorite weeknight dinner recipes.

turkey meatloaf recipe

Why You’ll Love this Recipe

So Easy – On busy weeknights, everyone wants a satisfying and delicious dinner that doesn’t take hours to make. Turkey meatloaf is so easy to throw together (or even prep in advance!) so that all you need to do is pop it in the oven and relax.

Great for Meal Prep – I personally am a big meal prepper, especially during busy weeks. This recipe makes 8 servings and reheats so well without ever becoming dry.

Healthy and Satisfying – This ground turkey version of a classic meatloaf is just as cozy and delicious while being just a little bit lighter. It’s got minimal filler ingredients so it remains high in protein while being lower in fat.

turkey meatloaf recipe

How to Make Turkey Meatloaf

I tried this recipe both in a loaf pan and baked freeform on a baking sheet. Both ways work, but the loaf pan meatloaf turned out juicier! Highly recommend using a quality loaf pan to bake turkey meatloaf.

Tools Needed

Ingredients and Substitutions

  • Ground turkey. For optimal flavor and moisture, make sure to use 93/7 ground turkey. The little bit of extra fat keeps it from drying out.
  • Breadcrumbs. Plain classic breadcrumbs are best here, but you can use Italian flavored in a pinch.
  • Eggs. Eggs keep the meatloaf moist and help bind everything together.
  • Milk. Soaking the breadcrumbs in a little milk or half and half before mixing with the ground turkey makes all the difference.
  • Spices. Paprika, marjoram, and sage add all the classic meatloaf flavors without being too herby.
  • Aromatics. I saute onions and garlic in butter before adding to the meatloaf mix for extra flavor.
  • Worcestershire. Truly the secret ingredient in meatloaf for adding that delicious savory flavor.
  • Dijon mustard. Another one of my tricks for adding extra savory flavor.
  • Ketchup sauce. Ketchup, brown sugar, Worcestershire, spices, and a hint of liquid smoke make the most delicious glaze and sauce for serving alongside the turkey meatloaf.

turkey meatloaf ingredients

The Process

  1. Make the ketchup glaze. Combine all the glaze ingredients in a small saucepan and stir well. Bring to a very gentle simmer over medium-low heat for 5 minutes, until slightly thickened. Set aside to cool.
  2. Moisten the breadcrumbs. In a large mixing bowl, combine the bread crumbs, beaten eggs, and milk or half/half and stir well to combine. Let this mixture sit for 10 minutes.
  3. Saute the onions and garlic. In the meantime, melt 2 tablespoons of butter in a medium skillet over medium heat. Once the butter is melted and foamy, add the onions and saute for 4-5 minutes, until the onions are starting to brown. Add the garlic and cook for another 2-3 minutes. Set aside to cool slightly.
  4. Mix the meatloaf. Add the sauteed onions and garlic and any juices from the pan to the mixing bowl with the breadcrumb mixture. Add the chopped parsley, paprika, marjoram, sage, Worcestershire, salt, pepper, and dijon mustard and stir to combine. Add the ground turkey and mix gently by hand just until everything is well-mixed and the ingredients are evenly streaked throughout the meat mixture.
  5. Bake. Press the meatloaf into the prepared baking pan, making sure to press the meat in tightly to remove any air bubbles. Spread ½ of the glaze on top of the meatloaf. Place on a baking sheet and transfer to the oven for 40-45 minutes, until the center of the meatloaf reaches 160 F.
  6. Rest, then slice. Let the meatloaf rest in the pan for about 30 minutes, until just firm enough to handle. Use the parchment paper to lift the meatloaf from the pan. Slice the turkey meatloaf and serve with the remaining sauce on the side.

Recipe Tips & Tricks

Avoid extra lean turkey. This recipe truly is best when you use the 93/7 ground turkey. The little bit of extra fat keeps the meatloaf moist and adds flavor. In an absolute pinch, you can use leaner turkey but the recipe will be drier.

Soak the breadcrumbs. Another way to avoid dry meatloaf? Mix the eggs and milk with the breadcrumbs and let it sit for 10 minutes. This lets the liquid from the eggs and milk hydrate the breadcrumbs so that you don’t end up with streaks of dry breadcrumbs in your meatloaf.

Always mix by hand. I find that this is the easiest way to mix everything together without over mixing is to mix by hand! You’ll be able to incorporate the ingredients more evenly than if you used a spoon. I always throw on a pair of disposable gloves to make cleanup after mixing super easy.

Bake in a loaf pan. I tested this recipe both in a loaf pan and baked free-form on a baking sheet and the loaf pan was the clear winner! The meatloaf cooks more evenly so you don’t end up with dry ends.

Use a thermometer. I always give cooking time estimates, but ovens vary. To ensure doneness, use an instant read thermometer and make sure the center reads 160 F. As the meatloaf rests, it’ll finish cooking to the full 165 F.

Let it rest. While it may be tempting to want to dig into this turkey meatloaf right away, make sure to let it rest for about 30 minutes. This allows the juices to redistribute and makes it easier to slice.

turkey meatloaf recipe

What to Serve with Turkey Meatloaf

Turkey meatloaf is truly one of my favorite weeknight dinners! While it’s great on its own, I always make sure to serve mine with copious sides.

Meatloaf is so good with a starch on the side like fluffy mashed potatoes or mac and cheese. Balance out the plate with some garlic green beans, roasted carrots, or brussels sprout gratin.

What’s a good dinner without finishing with a stellar dessert? Try my marbled cheesecake brownies or my skillet chocolate chip cookie for delicious crowd pleasers!

Storage Instructions

Turkey meatloaf makes great leftovers! Make sure to let the meatloaf cool completely before storing in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days.

If you want to freeze turkey meatloaf, wrap the leftover meatloaf tightly in plastic wrap and then place inside a freezer-safe ziplock bag. This helps prevent freezer burn. Freeze for up to 3 months. Defrost overnight in the fridge before re-warming.

Leftover turkey meatloaf slices also make great sandwiches!

turkey meatloaf recipe


This ultra-juicy and flavorful Turkey Meatloaf recipe is truly the best! It’s the perfect quick and easy weeknight dinner that’s so cozy–especially when served with fluffy mashed potatoes. If you do give this recipe a try, be sure to let me know! Leave a comment with a star rating below. Be sure to subscribe to my weekly newsletter and never miss a new recipe! You can also snap a photo & tag @JENNYGOYCOCHEA on Instagram. I LOVE hearing about & seeing your SMF creations!

More Easy Ground Turkey Recipes to Try

Southwest Turkey Burgers
Turkey Shepherd’s Pie
30-minute Turkey Chili
Turkey Taco Salad

This post contains affiliate links from which I receive a small commission at no additional cost to you. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. Affiliate links allow me to keep providing great recipes for free and I never recommend products that I don’t love and personally own.

easy turkey meatloaf recipe
Main Dishes

The Juiciest Turkey Meatloaf Recipe

This truly is the best and juiciest Turkey Meatloaf recipe! The turkey is tender and so flavorful and topped with a smoky ketchup glaze.
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour
Makes: 6 – 8 servings

Ingredients

Turkey Meatloaf

  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1/2 yellow onion, diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 cup breadcrumbs
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1/3 cup milk or half and half
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried marjoram
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried rubbed sage
  • 1/4 cup minced fresh Italian parsley leaves
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon dijon mustard
  • 2 lbs ground turkey, 93/7
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly cracked pepper

Ketchup Glaze

  • ¾ cup ketchup
  • ¼ cup dark brown sugar
  • 1 ½ tsp dried mustard powder
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 2-3 dashes liquid smoke, like applewood or hickory
  • ¼ tsp freshly ground black pepper

Instructions

  • Line a 10 x 5 loaf pan with parchment paper so that there’s some overhang over the edges. Lightly spray with nonstick cooking spray. 
  • Make the glaze: Combine all the glaze ingredients in a small saucepan and stir well. Bring to a very gentle simmer over medium-low heat for 5 minutes, until slightly thickened. Set aside to cool.
  • Preheat an oven to 375 F.
  • Moisten the breadcrumbs. In a large mixing bowl, combine the bread crumbs, beaten eggs, and milk or half/half and stir well to combine. Let this mixture sit for 10 minutes.
  • Saute the onions and garlic. In the meantime, melt 2 tablespoons of butter in a medium skillet over medium heat. Once the butter is melted and foamy, add the onions and saute for 4-5 minutes, until the onions are starting to brown. Add the garlic and cook for another 2-3 minutes. Set aside to cool slightly.
  • Mix the meatloaf. Add the sautéed onions and garlic and any juices from the pan to the mixing bowl with the breadcrumb mixture. Add the chopped parsley, paprika, marjoram, sage, Worcestershire, salt, pepper, and dijon mustard and stir to combine. Add the ground turkey and mix gently by hand just until everything is well-mixed and the ingredients are evenly streaked throughout the meat mixture.
  • Bake. Press the meatloaf into the prepared baking pan, making sure to press the meat in tightly to remove any air bubbles. Spread ½ of the glaze on top of the meatloaf. Place on a baking sheet and transfer to the oven for 40-45 minutes, until the center of the meatloaf reaches 160 F.
  • Rest, then slice. Let the meatloaf rest in the pan for about 30 minutes, until just firm enough to handle. Use the parchment paper to lift the meatloaf from the pan. Slice the meatloaf and serve with the remaining sauce on the side.

Nutrition

Calories: 347kcalCarbohydrates: 27gProtein: 40gFat: 9gSaturated Fat: 4gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2gMonounsaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0.2gCholesterol: 149mgSodium: 1157mgPotassium: 684mgFiber: 1gSugar: 18gVitamin A: 582IUVitamin C: 3mgCalcium: 75mgIron: 3mg

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