Turkey Meatloaf Recipe

Learn the secret for making the best turkey meatloaf. Jump to the Turkey Meatloaf Recipe now or read on to see how we make it.

We never used to make turkey meatloaf. We make turkey meatballs all the time, but never meatloaf. I always had the idea that it would be dry and tasteless. Now though, we know we were making a mistake — a big one.

Unbelievably Moist Turkey Meatloaf Recipe

You see, we’ve stumbled across a little secret. One that turned typical turkey meatloaf into something we crave and now make often.

Turkey Meatballs RecipeIf you love this, you will love these Easy Turkey Meatballs in a light tomato sauce. There’s no lengthy cooking times, no baking and no searing the meatballs. Easy and delicious.

The Secret to a Craveable, Moist Turkey Meatloaf Recipe

Mushrooms.

It’s true — thanks to tiny pieces of chopped mushrooms, our turkey meatloaf recipe is moist and has unbelievable flavor. 

Unbelievably Moist Turkey Meatloaf Recipe - Secret to the Best Turkey Meatloaf

Mushrooms are chopped extra small — either by hand or in a food processor. Then, they are cooked down until soft and added mixed into the turkey.

This does add a little extra time at the beginning — a little more prep time than you may be used to seeing with our recipes. But, we wouldn’t do it if we didn’t believe it was worth it. And we really (really) do.

Not a mushroom fan? You don’t really taste mushrooms in the meatloaf, instead they are in there to add depth and a savory taste. We’ve done this before, in fact mushrooms are the secret ingredient to our Easy Go-To Turkey Chili Recipe. People love it!

A Few Simple Ingredients

The other thing we love about this recipe is that the rest of the ingredients are simple — onion, garlic, Worcestershire sauce, breadcrumbs, milk, egg and ketchup. We usually have all those ingredients in the kitchen and we’re betting you do too (or at least most of them).

You May Also Like These Easy Sides: Baked Sweet Potato Fries or our Simple, Everyday Mashed Potatoes.

Unbelievably Moist Turkey Meatloaf RecipeRecipe updated, originally posted March 2013. Since posting this in 2013, we have tweaked the recipe to be more clear and added a quick recipe video. – Adam and Joanne

4.8 from 74 reviews
Unbelievably Moist Turkey Meatloaf Recipe
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
You would never guess this turkey meatloaf is packed with mushrooms, but that’s what makes it so darn delicious. Lots of finely chopped mushrooms add flavor and moisture, often missing from the typical turkey meatloaf. When choosing which mushrooms to add, white button mushrooms will work perfectly fine. For more flavor, try one or a combination of brown cremini, portobello, or shiitake mushrooms. The mushrooms need to be very finely chopped. You can do this by hand or use a food processor.
Created By:
Yield: Serves 6
You Will Need
  • 8 ounces mushrooms, trimmed and very finely chopped
  • 1 medium onion, peeled and finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 7 tablespoons ketchup (try our homemade ketchup)
  • 1 cup (60 grams) Panko bread crumbs
  • 1/3 cup (80 ml) milk
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1-1/4 pound ground turkey (92% lean)
Directions
  1. Heat oven to 400º F. Lightly oil a rimmed baking sheet (or 9-inch by 13-inch baking pan) lined with aluminum foil.
  2. Prepare Meatloaf: Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-low heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened; about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute.
  3. Stir in the mushrooms, a 1/2-teaspoon of salt, and a 1/4-teaspoon of pepper. Cook until the mushrooms give off their liquid and it boils away; about 10 minutes.Turkey-Meatloaf-Step-1
  4. Transfer the onions and mushrooms to a large bowl then stir in the Worcestershire sauce and 3 tablespoons of the ketchup. Set aside to cool for 5 minutes.
  5. In a small bowl, combine the breadcrumbs and milk.
  6. Stir the breadcrumb mixture and the eggs into the mushrooms and onions.
  7. Using a fork or your hands, gently mix in the turkey, a 1/2-teaspoon of salt and a 1/4 teaspoon of pepper. The mixture will be very wet.
  8. Form the meatloaf into a 9-inch by 5-inch oval in the middle of the prepared baking sheet. Spread the remaining 4 tablespoons of ketchup on top.Turkey-Meatloaf-Step-2
  9. Bake Meatloaf: Bake the meatloaf until an instant read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the meatloaf registers 170º F, 45 to 55 minutes. Let stand 5 minutes before slicing.
Notes and Tips
A note about salt: We use kosher salt in our recipes. It’s much easier to pick up with our fingers and gives us better control of our seasoning. Use what you have, but keep in mind that kosher salt has larger flakes compared to table or fine sea salt. If using a finer salt, you will need to reduce the amount of salt called for in our recipe by 25% to 50%.

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197 comments… Leave a Comment
  • PatS June 13, 2016, 9:29 pm

    This was not very tasty or moist. And it lacked flavor even with the sautéed mushrooms. Will not be making this again.

    Reply
  • Linda June 12, 2016, 5:03 pm

    My hubby and I LOVE LOVE this meatloaf!!Thanks for sharing your recipe!!😎😍❤

    Reply
  • Kristina June 3, 2016, 1:13 am

    This meatloaf is hands down the best I’ve ever made/had…

    Brought some to work and my coworkers devoured it… Its my new go to recipe 🙂

    Reply
  • Paulette May 2, 2016, 11:43 am

    I am going to make this for sure love the great reviews but what makes this a must make for me is that its in ounces & grams.
    Thank you

    Reply
    • Dana May 9, 2016, 12:22 am

      Yes,to metric measurements; 400 deg.F oven is 200 deg.C. if anyone wants to know.

      Reply
  • Fred May 1, 2016, 8:58 pm

    Make this at least weekly. I use gluten free oatmeal instead of bread crumbs. Also, a couple shakes of crushed chili peppers and I use medium salsa on the top instead of ketchup. Excellent dish!

    Reply
  • Frederick Hill April 18, 2016, 9:12 pm

    I use half bread crumbs (gluten free) and half oat meal (also, gluten free). I also use Salsa on the top instead of ketchup. Finally, I use a red onion instead of yellow. yummy!!

    Reply
  • Mina March 21, 2016, 5:15 pm

    My husband and little girls will only eat turkey meatloaf but I’ve not been impressed with any recipes I’ve tried until this one. It was amazing! I didn’t have mushrooms on hand so I threw in a can of cream of mushroom. I’m sure it wasn’t the healthiest option cause of salt content, but it turned out tasting awesome. Great flavor, moist, and not greasy. I doubled it and made meatballs with a turkey gravy, a meatloaf with ketchup sauce on top, and threw some uncooked into the freezer to see how it turns out as a crock pot meatloaf later. Thank you for the incredible recipe! It was also my first time using Panko instead of oatmeal or Progresso Italian bread crumbs. Panko wins!

    Reply
  • Stephanie March 17, 2016, 12:12 pm

    I made this the other day and did not bake it until yesterday (I saved it for our busier day with the kids activities.) Can I just say my 9 year old daughter is THE pickiest eater and LOVED this!!! She NEVER eats anything I make, and is pretty much a staple chicken nugget/mac n cheese kind of kid. I will DEFINATELY be making this again! I loved how moist it was and you cannot even taste the mushrooms, so it gives it an added veggie boost!! I used a food processor to get them extra chopped! Thank you for the great recipe!

    Reply
  • luis March 2, 2016, 3:29 am

    Make it today is good I add spinash carrots,celery,peppers,to make it healthy but I like the moist the mushrooms add to it and the milk mix whit the panko is a good tip.

    Reply
  • Tai February 27, 2016, 8:18 am

    My family loved this my fiance wanted turkey meatloaf and this was my first time making meatloaf 🙂 it was really good and one tip dont try to cut the mushrooms just use the good processor very easy

    Reply
  • Carole February 24, 2016, 12:18 am

    I made this tonight, followed directions exactly, except I used button mushrooms, did not have cremini, and it was delicious!! As good as any meatloaf made with beef and really, the best turkey meatloaf I have ever tasted. Keeper for sure, thank you!!

    Reply
  • Paulina February 22, 2016, 6:51 pm

    I decided to look for a turkey meatloaf recipe because my SO said that he’d had some VERY awful turkey meatloaf at work (they have their own cafeteria) and I was determined to prove to him that turkey meatloaf can be delicious!

    My SO does not like mushrooms and it’s not a vegetable that I have on hand most of the time but I had zucchini. I used about 230g of zucchini, 225g of yellow onion, and 27oz of ground turkey since that’s how much the package had in it (I buy mine at Costco), everything else stayed the same. I skipped through painstakingly dicing everything super fine by just dicing the stuff with my Vitamix on 2. I also used reduced-sugar ketchup and made my own breadcrumbs with whole-wheat bread, everything went in a loaf pan cooked for 55 minutes 🙂

    It came out extremely tasty and MOIST, my SO was very pleasantly surprised. I’ve made this twice already and I never get tired of it. I cut it into 8 slices (very hearty ones too) so each slice comes out to 192 calories. I usually have 2 and he has the rest (in one meal! lol)

    Amazing recipe and EXTREMELY simple too! Thank you so much!

    Reply
    • Elaine March 9, 2016, 3:09 pm

      Paulina, I liked your input. What have you served as a side for this meatloaf ? Thanks a lot for the answer. Elaine.

      Reply
  • Helen February 21, 2016, 5:32 pm

    Just put it in the oven……smells great…..can hardly wait….For the topper after it comes out I will mix ketchup with Naked Coconuts raw organic nectar and a splash of their fermented soy (fabulous products from B.C.) plus a dash of Dijon mustard….serving with sauted rapini (organic) and beets and a salad

    Reply
  • Diane February 21, 2016, 12:56 pm

    I have been making this meatloaf recipe since I found it last year and it’s great! The mushrooms add a “meatier” flavour and keeps it moist. Greatest turkey meatloaf I’ve had and is so simple. Alternately, I have added some finely chopped red pepper to the onion/mushroom mix which adds a little sweetness, colour and of course delicious flavour.
    This is a MUST make!!! cheers!

    Reply
  • Kristin February 17, 2016, 1:33 pm

    Looks great. Will make tonight. Has anyone used a loaf pan instead of the baking sheet?

    Reply
    • Joanne March 3, 2016, 8:45 pm

      Hi Kristin, A loaf pan works really well. We recommend spraying it with a bit of nonstick cooking spray before filling.

      Reply
  • Jean February 6, 2016, 11:38 am

    loved it!

    Reply
    • Roselle February 16, 2016, 8:01 pm

      Absolutely delicious!!!!

      Reply
  • Betty Nichols February 5, 2016, 6:07 pm

    This meatloaf recipe is a 10++! The only ingredient I added was a link of hot Italian Sausage (casing removed) which I further processed so it would blend easier with turkey. I think I’ll do the same next time because it enriches the flavor.

    Reply
  • KrystynaM January 27, 2016, 4:11 pm

    I LOVE this meatloaf! My husband and I have made it several times since finding this recipe. I am making it again tonight. It is unbelievably moist and has great flavor. I didn’t have worcestshire sauce so I used half bbq sauce/ketchup and a splash of soy sauce. I also added a handful of fresh chopped oregano, rosemary & thyme. I like intense herb flavor. Yum!!

    Reply
  • Jennifer H January 27, 2016, 12:24 pm

    I made this recipe a couple of weeks ago. I substituted the ketchup with Sweet Baby Ray BBQ sauce. It was delicious! I made it again on Sunday and added some green pepper for fun. Still used the BBQ sauce instead of ketchup. My husband doesn’t like mushrooms and said he couldn’t taste them at all. I have been freezing single servings in snack size ziploc bags for work lunches during the week. They heat up perfectly.My favorite new recipe, for sure!

    Reply
  • Val January 25, 2016, 9:02 pm

    i made this tonight and it was fantastic! It was moist and tasty! Will DEFinitely make it again!

    Reply
  • Kellie January 22, 2016, 12:11 pm

    I made this and it is amazing!!!!! My husband said it was the best he ever had. (As far as when I use turkey for a healthier meal) Thank you for sharing this recipe!!!

    Reply
  • Scurry January 20, 2016, 6:30 pm

    I am a heart patient on very strict diet. Was awesome to taste and fairly easy to prepare. The sodium and fat in this are great. Thank you.

    Reply
  • Jill January 20, 2016, 4:50 pm

    I found this recipe on Pinterest and have been making it for quite awhile. Can’t believe I never sent in a review. We LOVE it! It is always our go to meatloaf recipe (even for those in the family that “don’t like” mushrooms, love it). Thank you for sharing. Every time I make I’ve wanted to ask the question – is there a reason you put the loaf on baking sheet vs a loaf pan? I always use loaf pan and comes out great, but didn’t know if I should try it on a baking sheet.

    Reply
    • Joanne March 3, 2016, 8:46 pm

      Hi Jill, We just hate cleaning the loaf pan after making it. Both the baking sheet and a loaf pan work great.

      Reply
  • Linda January 18, 2016, 2:59 pm

    This is by far the best turkey meatloaf I have ever eaten. I would choose it over meatloaf made with any other meat. I made a double batch and then thought I would regret it. It made a lot. But we ate every single bit of it, even my son who claims to not like meatloaf. He couldn’t stop eating it. Try it with this sauce for the best ever taste: 1/2 c. ketchup; 1/4 c. brown sugar; 1 tsp. dry mustard; 1/2 tsp. nutmeg. Put on the top when it bakes and then later on the pieces when you eat them.

    Reply
  • beth January 13, 2016, 7:50 pm

    Really good! It was gone by the next day and it’s just me and my mom eating it. I will use parchment paper next time instead of foil because my loaf stuck to the foil even when I lightly oiled it. I am going to make again and again!

    Reply
  • Tracey January 5, 2016, 8:01 pm

    Fantastic… best meatloaf I have made. Simple recipe that creates a moist and tasty meatloaf. Entire family thoroughly enjoyed it. Will be made over and over again.

    Reply

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