Healthy Turkey Meatloaf

December 10, 2009 at 5:00 pm 3 comments

Turkey meatloaf with macaroni and cheese.

I like to use ground turkey as an easy substitute into sauces that usually call for ground beef, like our favorite spaghetti sauce. I can watch our fat intake without worrying about if my family will like (or even notice) the healthier substitute. However, for some ground beef or pork recipes, things can be a bit tricky when I try to substitute turkey for the very reason I’m making the change: turkey doesn’t have the same amount of fat. I sometimes have to add a binder like bread crumbs or eggs to the dish, or increase the amounts if they are already in the recipes. Turkey can also be a little bland because it’s missing the flavor-carrying power of fat, so I may amp up the seasonings in a recipe as well. What I’ve found across the board though is, with a little tinkering, just about any family favorite that calls for ground beef or pork can be made a little healthier with ground turkey. This particular turkey meatloaf really is as delicious as its beefy cousin, and if being better for you isn’t enough, it has the benefit of being ridiculously easy to make as well. You’ll have it on the table in no time flat.

Ground Turkey on FoodistaLearn more about ground turkey

Recipe: Healthy Turkey Meatloaf


  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Serves: 4
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time:40 minutes


For the meatloaf:

  • ¼ c. bread crumbs, seasoned or plain
  • 1/3 c. milk
  • 1 lb. ground turkey
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • ½ tsp. poultry seasoning
  • 2 Tbsp. catsup

For the glaze:

  • 3 Tbsp. brown sugar
  • ¼ c. catsup
  • ¼ tsp. nutmeg
  • 1 tsp. dry mustard


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Combine the breadcrumbs and milk in a large bowl and stir until the breadcrumbs are moist.
  3. Add the turkey, egg, onion, salt and pepper, poultry seasoning, and catsup and mix well (use your hands; it’s the easiest way to do it).
  4. Spray a small meatloaf pan with non-stick cooking spray and pat the turkey mixture into it.
  5. Bake the meatloaf at 350 degrees for 40 minutes.
  6. While the meatloaf cooks, combine the glaze ingredients in a small bowl and stir to combine.
  7. After the turkey has been in the oven for 40 minutes, spoon the glaze over the meatloaf and bake for an additional 20 minutes or until the internal temperature reads 160 degrees on an instant read thermometer.

Tips, Tricks, and Tweaks

  • You can use any kind of ground turkey you’d like: all while meat, white and thigh meat mix, or thigh meat. Let your preferences and what’s on sale be your guide.
  • You can make this recipe in the microwave as well. Combine and mix the ingredients, then pat them into a round microwave safe dish. Cover the dish with wax paper or two layers of wet paper towel. Cook on High for 8 minutes, rotating dish ¼ turn every 4 minutes. While the meatloaf is cooking, combine glaze ingredients and after 8 minutes of cooking time, spoon over the meatloaf. Continue cooking, uncovered, for another 8 to 9 minutes. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.

Entry filed under: Healthy Eating, Recipes. Tags: , .

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