This is the BEST Classic Meatloaf Recipe out there! Super moist, easy to make with basic pantry ingredients and everyone always gives it RAVE reviews!
Nothing says comfort food better than a good old fashioned meatloaf recipe. This meatloaf is not a complicated dish. In fact, my recipe has the most basic, simple ingredients, yet still gets 5 stars all the way!
Best Classic Meatloaf Ingredients:
- Ground Beef – I like to use a lean ground beef, around 90 to 93% fat free.
- Binding Ingredients – eggs and breadcrumbs.
- Seasonings and Spices – diced onion, garlic powder, parsley, salt, pepper and my secret ingredient: BBQ sauce!
How To Make Meatloaf:
- Once all your ingredients are combined, use your hands to really get in there and mix it all together. This is one of my favorite parts!
- We are doing what is called a “Free Form” meatloaf. You’ll shape your meatloaf on top of a foil lined baking sheet. Try to get it about 8 inches long and 4 inches wide.
- Pop the meatloaf into the oven and let it cook for about 45 minutes.
How Long Do You Cook Meatloaf Per Pound?
- For the first pound of meatloaf I would start at 30 minutes, then increase 15 minutes per pound after that.
- You’re looking for a final internal temperature of 160 degrees F. Notice how I say FINAL? This is because the last 10 to 15 minutes we’re going to bump up the heat to 400 degrees and add our topping. So the first round in the oven it won’t be to temp yet.
- If you decide to cook your meatloaf in a pan, rather than free form, you’ll want to increase cooking time a bit. Just check with an instant read thermometer for 160 degrees.
The Best Meatloaf Sauce Topping:
- I love this super easy topping for my meatloaf because it’s just 3 simple ingredients and I always have them on hand.
- Mix ketchup, mustard and brown sugar together in a bowl. After the first round of baking, spread the sauce evenly over the top of the meatloaf, then bake again until finished.
- The sauce gives the meatloaf a nice kick of flavor on top!
Easy Meatloaf Recipe Tips & Variations:
- If you’re not into seeing pieces of onion in your meatloaf, swap out the diced onion for 1 tsp onion powder.
- Want to sneak in more veggies? Try adding in shredded carrots, zucchini or diced bell peppers!
- Can I Use Ground Turkey for Meatloaf? Yes! You’ll want to make sure you cook till internal temperature reaches 165 degrees F.
- Why Did My Meatloaf Fall Apart? If your meatloaf is falling apart, chances are you don’t have enough binding ingredients or you didn’t press the loaf together tight enough.
- How Can I Make Meatloaf Gluten Free? An easy way to make this recipe gluten free is to crush up some Rice Chex or Corn Chex in place of the breadcrumbs!
What To Serve With Meatloaf Dinner:
Planning to make this delicious Meatloaf Recipe for dinner? Here are some super simple side dishes that’ll make this a complete meal.
- Cheesy Scalloped Potatoes
- Fluffy Mashed Potatoes
- Any steamed veggie – green beans, broccoli, carrots, etc.
- Parmesan Roasted Cauliflower
More Easy Meatloaf Recipes:
- Instant Pot Meatloaf and Mashed Potatoes
- Macaroni Cheese Stuffed Meatloaf
- Asian Inspired Meatloaf
- Meatloaf Stuffed Peppers in the Slow Cooker
HELPFUL PRODUCTS TO MAKE THIS RECIPE:
Best Classic Meatloaf Recipe
- 2 lbs. lean ground beef
- 1 cup Italian breadcrumbs
- 2 eggs
- ½ cup onion, diced
- 2 tsp garlic powder
- 2 tsp chopped parsley
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp pepper
- ½ cup bbq sauce
For the Topping:
- ⅓ cup ketchup
- 2 tbsp brown sugar
- 1 tsp yellow mustard
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with foil and coat with non-stick spray, then set aside.
- In a large bowl combine the meatloaf ingredients and mix with clean hands, until fully combined. Press the meatloaf mixture into an 8" x 4" loaf on the prepared baking sheet.
- Bake for 45 minutes, then remove from oven and increase oven temperature to 400 degrees.
- Whisk together the topping ingredients, spread over the meatloaf and continue cooking for 10 to 15 minutes, until internal temperature reaches 160 degrees in center.
- Let meatloaf rest for about 5 to 10 minutes before slicing. Enjoy!
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