by Olena

Turkey Meatloaf

Olena Osipov
4.9 from 14 votes

This Turkey Meatloaf with simple ketchup glaze is juicy, easy and full-flavored healthy comfort food. Always a hit at our house. I’m sure it will be at yours too!

Turkey Meatloaf

Ground Turkey Meatloaf

Turkey meatloaf has been on my “to share” list for quite some time now. Like many of you I grew up on ground beef meatloaf which is juicy because of high saturated fat content.

After making super moist turkey meatloaf in Instant Pot thanks to all that steam, I knew I had to perfect oven baked turkey meatloaf.

Over the years I tried to make one with oats, breadcrumbs, shredded zucchini and sauteed veggies. As busy as you are, I knew we needed simple ground turkey meatloaf recipe without extra steps.

Turkey Meatloaf sliced

This is it! This turkey meatloaf is so juicy from minced onions and soaked in milk oats, even ground turkey haters will think they are eating beef. Well, almost haha. Beef is beef and turkey is turkey. But there is better turkey!

I know turkey can be dry. But trust me, this meatloaf will WOW your family. Just like I have heard rave reviews from friends whose husbands approved turkey burgers and turkey meatballs.

No sauteing veggies, plain ketchup on top, simple ingredients and less steps.

Ingredients for Turkey Meatloaf

  • Ground turkey: Lean or extra lean ground meat. Just know if package says 1 lb and 3 oz it is fine, most are that weight, not exactly 1 lb.
  • Egg: It helps to bind all ingredients.
  • Oats: Quick or rolled oats work. I used quick cooking steel cut oats. If using steel cut, soak them for 1 hour.
  • Onion and garlic: Not only do they add flavor but make meat more juicy.
  • Seasonings: Balsamic vinegar, oregano, salt and pepper.
  • Ketchup: 3 tbsp of preferably organic ketchup go a long way for the easy glaze.

ground turkey, onion, egg, oats, garlic, ketchup, balsamic vinegar, seasonings

How to Make Turkey Meatloaf

  • Soak oats with milk: Do so while you are mincing onion, garlic and getting other ingredients ready. For about 10 minutes. No need to drain the milk before adding oats to meat mixture. This steps makes meatloaf juicy and flavorful. My grandma always soaked bread in milk when making meatloaf. oats soaked in milk in glass bowl
  • Combine ingredients: Ground turkey, egg, onion, garlic, soaked oats, balsamic vinegar, oregano, salt and pepper in a large bowl. Mix well using your hands. That’s when rings come off. turkey meatloaf ingredients combined in glass bowl
  • Shape meatloaf: Place in regular 9 x 5 loaf pan or shape 1 meatloaf on lined baking sheet or into 4 mini meatloaves. You don’t have to own a loaf pan to make meatloaf. Ha! turkey meatloaf shaped in a loaf pan
  • Bake: Single large meatloaf for 45 minutes or 4 mini meatloaves for 35 minutes in preheated 400 degrees F oven. Meatloaf is ready when  internal temperature is 160 degrees – check with the thermometer. Do not overbake because meatloaf will start drying out. baked turkey meatloaf to internal temperature 160 degrees F
  • Glaze meatloaf with ketchup: I used organic and just 3 tablespoons. Everything in moderation. I used to make fancy glaze with tomato paste and balsamic vinegar but not anymore. Remove from the oven and brush with ketchup. Garnish with fresh parsley if desired.
  • Cut into 8 slices using sharp knife: No need to let meatloaf cool down. However, I would transfer meatloaf with spatula on a cutting board before slicing to avoid damaging the loaf pan, silicone baking mat or baking sheet.

ground turkey meatloaf served with mashed potatoes

Tips, Variations and Serving

  • Using breadcrumbs: You can also use breadcrumbs, almond meal or flour in place of oats. No need to soak either. Skip milk then.
  • Mini meatloaves: Make 12 meatloaf muffins and bake for 35-40 minutes or so. Check with internal read thermometer for 160 degrees F doneness.
  • Add heat: Add chipotle in adobo, red pepper flakes or hot sauce to the meat mixture for spicy meatloaf.
  • Double the meat? You can double the recipe but cooking time would be close to 70 minutes. Again, check with internal read thermometer.

Serving: Serve meatloaf warm with mashed potatoes, Instant Pot mashed potatoes or cauliflower mash.

turkey meatloaf brushed with ketchup glaze

How to Store and Freeze Meatloaf

Keep Warm: I kept meatloaf warm along with Instant Pot mashed potatoes until dinner. It was my lucky day I made those potatoes because in a food blogger’s life dinner is usually ready at lunchtime.

Fridge: Refrigerate leftovers in an airtight container for up to 5 days.

Freeze: I usually make 2 meatloaves. You can freeze cooked, cooled and sliced meatloaf in an airtight container for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight and then reheat in the microwave or simmer in a covered pot with a splash of water. I do not like to warm up meatloaf in the oven because it dries out.

turkey meatloaf and mashed potatoes in instant pot

More Ground Turkey Recipes

Ground Turkey Meatloaf

Turkey Meatloaf {Juicy and Full-Flavored}

This ground Turkey Meatloaf with simple ketchup glaze is juicy, easy and full-flavored healthy comfort food. Always a hit at our house. I'm sure it will be at yours too!
4.93 from 14 votes
Print Save Rate
Course: Dinner
Cuisine: Ukrainian
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 55 minutes
Servings: 4 servings
Calories: 241kcal
Author: Olena Osipov

Ingredients

  • 1 lb ground turkey
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/4 cup oats
  • 3 tbsp any milk or water
  • 1 medium onion minced
  • 1 large garlic clove minced
  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tsp oregano dried
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • Ground black pepper to taste
  • 3 tbsp ketchup

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
  • In a small bowl, add oats and milk. Stir and set aside to soak for 10 minutes while you are getting other ingredients ready.
  • In a large bowl, add ground turkey, egg, onion, garlic, soaked oats, balsamic vinegar, oregano, salt and pepper. Using your hands mix well to combine.
  • Spray ceramic non-stick 9 x 5 loaf pan with cooking spray and transfer mixture into it. Level with spatula. You can also shape 1 meatloaf on lined baking sheet or 4 mini meatloaves.
  • Bake single large meatloaf for 45 minutes or 4 mini meatloaves for 35 minutes. Meatloaf is ready when  internal temperature is 160 degrees. Do not overbake, so meatloaf dries out.
  • Remove from the oven and brush with ketchup. Garnish with fresh parsley if desired.
  • Cut into 8 slices and serve warm with mashed potatoes, Instant Pot mashed potatoes or cauliflower mash.

Store: Refrigerate in an airtight container for up to 5 days.

    Freeze: I usually make 2 meatloaves. You can freeze cooked, cooled and sliced meatloaf in an airtight container for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight and then reheat in the microwave or simmer in a covered pot with a splash of water. I do not like to warm up meatloaf in the oven because it dries out.

      Video

      Notes

      • Ground turkey: Lean or extra lean ground meat. Just know if package says 1 lb and 3 oz it is fine, most are that weight, not exactly 1 lb.
      • Oats: Quick or rolled oats work. I used quick cooking steel cut oats. If using steel cut, soak them for 1 hour.
      • Using breadcrumbs: You can also use breadcrumbs, almond meal or flour in place of oats. No need to soak either. Skip milk then.
      • Mini meatloaves: Make 12 meatloaf muffins and bake for 35-40 minutes or so. Check with internal read thermometer for 160 degrees F doneness.
      • Add heat: Add chipotle in adobo, red pepper flakes or hot sauce to the meat mixture for spicy meatloaf.
      • Double the meat? You can double the recipe but cooking time would be close to 70 minutes. Again, check with internal read thermometer.

      Nutrition

      Serving: 2slices | Calories: 241kcal | Carbohydrates: 11g | Protein: 24g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 126mg | Sodium: 494mg | Potassium: 365mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 218IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 56mg | Iron: 2mg
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      olena osipov in the studio

      Hello and welcome to iFOODreal.

      My name is Olena Osipov. I'm a mom to 2 boys, a wife to Alex and we reside on magical Vancouver Island in British Columbia, Canada. This is our healthy family recipes blog. Originally from Ukraine, I grew up on real food. As an adult, I struggled with diets for years because none worked long-term. Now for over 10 years, I cook easy healthy meals for my family. I can help you with “What’s for dinner?” too.

      35 comments on “Turkey Meatloaf

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      1. 5 stars
        Best meatloaf ever!! My husband loved it- followed the recipe and it was juicy and flavorful- will definitely make this again

      2. 5 stars
        I made this a few days ago and it was utterly delicious. I was hesitant that my husband would not like a turkey meatloaf but he loved it! The only real change I made was I added chopped up celery to the mix because I had so much of it in my fridge, and I did not do the ketchup glaze on top. Instead I found a few slices of bacon in the fridge that I wanted to use up as I don’t eat bacon too often, and I layered the top with the bacon and put it back in the oven for another 15 to 20 minutes. As promised it was very Flavorful and moist. Thanks Olena!

          1. 5 stars
            Yes…I pulled it out of the oven 15 to 20 minutes early and then I added the bacon on top and put it back in the oven and I had to check a couple of times to make sure the bacon was nice and cooked. With or without it, it was still delicious. You truly are a culinary gift to this planet.

      3. I have to say I love all your recipes but this one didn’t go well with the family. I personally liked it but they didn’t. Maybe it was the oats ? It was moist I felt too

        1. Interesting… Maybe breadcrumbs will do. I honestly do not consider this recipe flavors or cooking method different from what I usually do. Maybe they are used to a beef meatloaf? Maybe it is onions that you didn’t like, they add moisture but flavor at same time to rather bland turkey. Maybe was undercooked and too moist otherwise moisture is never a bad thing with a meatloaf. Maybe beef meatloaf it is for your family. 🙂

      4. 5 stars
        Hi! My steel cut oats are apparently not quick cooking. Should I alter the soak time or the recipe in any way? Let me know please. Thanks!

      5. 5 stars
        I just tried this. I loved it, came out moist just as you said. The only thing I did a little different was add some barbecue sauce the tomato sauce. Your recipe was wonderful. Thank you!

      6. 5 stars
        Really good recipe. We don’t eat beef and I always make meatloaf with turkey but this recipe is way better. Not the least bit dry like turkey can often be and no trouble with the loaf falling apart. I cooked mine in mini silicone pans for 35 mins and it was perfect.

      7. 4 stars
        I did make this recipe. It was so easy and, as promised, quite moist. I would definitely recommend it.

        Barbara
        November 8, 2019

      8. Hi;
        I don’t understand the explanation for 1.3 lbs. My calculation for 1.3 lbs is
        1 lb. and slightly less than 5 ounces (4.8) not 1 lb. and 3 ounces. I am going to test it later
        today and expect it will make little difference in the recipe but I am curious about your notation. Thanks,

        Ken

        1. I see your struggle. 1 lb and 3 oz. I will update the recipe so no more questions haha. It’s just one meat tray. For some reasons, most stores sell pre-measured 1 lb and 3 oz. Not 1 lb.

      9. This meat loaf recipe sounds terrific however I don’t understand how much ground turkey you need. Do I need 1 lbs. 3 oz. or do I need 3 pounds of turkey meat?

      10. 5 stars
        I haven’t made this yet- I plan to as soon as I get the ground turkey. I love meatloaf. But, it’s nice to have a simple recipe that doesn’t call for breadcrumbs as I have celiac disease. Thank you.

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