Turkey Meatloaf is a healthier version of a dinner classic. You’ll love all the delicious flavors of this easy weeknight favorite!
I’m always looking for ways to add more veggies and swap for healthier ingredients in my family’s meals. Sure we love spaghetti casserole and meatballs subs as much as the next family, but somedays I want to lighten things up.
Enter this crazy good turkey meatloaf. It’s loaded with flavor, super easy to make, and my family loves it just as much as their favorite pork chop recipes. I know your family will too!
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When most people hear “meatloaf” they instantly think of microwave television dinners and black and white 1950’s sitcoms. Though I do love a good apron, I assure you that I never cook in heels! Despite not being a perfect 1950’s TV matriarch, I still love a good meatloaf. However, living in the 21st century has changed my meatloaf game for the better and this ground turkey meatloaf recipe is proof.
CAN YOU SUBSTITUTE TURKEY FOR BEEF IN MEATLOAF
Ground turkey meatloaf versus ground beef. They are both delicious! I find that turkey meatloaf is generally less heavy and works better in the warmer months than its beef alternative.
There is also the health advantage of lean ground turkey meatloaf being lower in saturated fat and therefore a better, healthier option. Not to mention that this particular turkey meatloaf is packed with delicious veggies!
One of the drawbacks to using ground turkey is that it can dry out easier than beef. That’s why I am giving you the best Turkey Meatloaf recipe I have ever found.
HOW TO MAKE THIS TURKEY MEATLOAF
There’s a reason your grandma and mom used to make meatloaf on the regular. It is just so simple!
- Start by preheating your oven to 375 degrees F.
- Next, place the frozen spinach in a microwave-safe bowl. Defrost it in the microwave for about 5 minutes before letting it rest. Once cooled, place the spinach in a double layer of paper towels. Use your hand to drain and squeeze out all of the excess liquid possible.
- Then, to a large mixing bowl, add the ground turkey, spinach, milk, bread crumbs, onion soup mix, 1 1/2 cups of Colby jack cheese, egg, Worcestershire sauce, bell pepper, garlic powder, salt, and pepper. Mix everything together until it is well combined
- After that, spray an 8-inch x 8-inch glass baking dish with non-stick cooking spray. Add the turkey mixture to the pan and form it into an even layer.
- Next, sprinkle the remaining 1/2 cup of cheese on top of your meatloaf, and pour the tomato sauce on top of the cheese. Then spread the diced tomatoes over the top of the meatloaf.
- Place the baking dish into the oven and bake for 1 hour. If your meatloaf begins to brown too quickly on top, carefully place a piece of foil over it and secure loosely to the pan.
- Remove the meatloaf from the oven and let cook for 10 minutes. Then cut into slices and serve with mashed potatoes, some veggies, or your favorite sides!
HOW DO YOU KEEP TURKEY MEATLOAF FROM FALLING APART?
The key to keeping your meatloaf together is to add the binding ingredients like eggs and breadcrumbs. These ingredients are key to making sure your loaf does not crumble. Even though all the ingredients end up in the same bowl for mixing, it helps to pre-soak your breadcrumbs in the milk prior to adding both ingredients to your mixing bowl. This helps to incorporate the moisture and bind the meat mixture together even better.
Another reason for a crumbly meatloaf may be simply overcooking it. The longer you cook the turkey, the more it tends to dry out. Moisture is the key to your meatloaf holding its form. So be sure not to forget about it in the oven past its cooking time!
WHAT HAPPENS IF YOU DON’T PUT BREADCRUMBS IN MEATLOAF?
Lack of breadcrumbs in your meatloaf will lead to a crumbly loaf that falls apart. You need the breadcrumbs as a binding agent for this dish. The good news is that if you are looking for an alternative you can use oatmeal! Switching out breadcrumbs for quick oats is also a great way to keep your dinner gluten-free.
HOW DO YOU KEEP MEATLOAF MOIST?
Soaking your breadcrumbs in the milk prior to mixing your meatloaf will not only help bind the meatloaf together, it also ensures your end result is moist and perfect. I love this recipe because it is delicious and, most importantly, foolproof! All of the issues one might encounter when making a meatloaf are already worked out in this easy Turkey Meatloaf recipe! You and your family will absolutely love it.
TRY THESE OTHER GROUND TURKEY RECIPES!
- Easy Three Bean Turkey Chili
- Skillet Turkey Cornbread Casserole
- Turkey Taco Salad
- Turkey & Sweet Potato Shepherd’s Pie
- Garden Fresh Caprese Turkey Burger
- More dinner recipes…
TOOLS USED TO MAKE THIS TURKEY MEATLOAF RECIPE
Glass Baking Dish: I prefer to use a baking dish to a loaf pan because there is more surface area to glaze and that is by far the best part of the meal!
Large Mixing Bowl: When I am working with ground meat I prefer a large bowl so I have lots of room to work in and incorporate the flavors. This bowl is the best!
*This post originally posted on 10/10/2021.
- 10 ounces frozen spinach
- 1 pound ground turkey
- 1/2 cup milk
- 1/2 cup Italian bread crumbs
- 1 packet dry onion soup mix
- 2 cups Colby jack cheese shredded, divided
- 1 egg
- 1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1/4 cup red bell pepper seeded and diced
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 8 ounces tomato sauce
- 1/2 cup yellow onion diced
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
- Place spinach in a microwave-safe bowl. Defrost in the microwave for about 5 minutes. Let rest. Once cooled place spinach in a double layer of paper towels and squeeze out all of the excess liquid possible.
- To a large mixing bowl, add the ground turkey, spinach, milk, bread crumbs, onion soup mix, 1 1/2 cups cheese, egg, Worcestershire sauce, bell pepper, garlic powder, salt, and pepper. Mix everything together until well combined.
- Spray an 8-inch x 8-inch glass baking dish with non-stick cooking spray.
- Put the turkey mixture in the pan and spread it into an even layer.
- Sprinkle the remaining 1/2 cup of cheese on top of the meatloaf. Pour the tomato sauce on top of the cheese, and sprinkle the diced onion on top of the tomato sauce.
- Bake for 1 hour. If the top of your meatloaf begins to brown too quickly, carefully place a piece of foil over the top and secure loosely.
- Remove meatloaf from the oven and let cool for 10 minutes before cutting into 6 slices.