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 82 reviews
Unbelievably Moist Turkey Meatloaf Recipe
 
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Cook time
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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.
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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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218 comments… Leave a Comment
  • Stacy G. September 22, 2016, 10:15 am

    I usually do not leave comments but I had to with this meatloaf. It was absolutely delicious. I thought that it would have a mushroom taste but it didn’t. The mushrooms provided an extra meaty element to the meatloaf. I have been using Ina Garten’s recipe for years and I can truly say that this recipe is a step ahead. I also made the homemade ketchup. I loved it!!! Definitely will be making this again. Thank you for sharing!!!

    Reply
  • Joni September 19, 2016, 11:51 pm

    5 stars. I made mini meatloaves in a muffin pan to save time. After combining everything, I found the mixture to be too moist but had used all my Panko so I put in about a 1/4 cup of quinoa and it turned out perfectly! I was low on katchup too so I mixed a quarter cup of cream of mushroom soup with a bit of katchup and Worcestershire sauce to brush on top. After 25 minutes in the oven I spread the sauce on the mini loaves then placed them under the broiler until they started to bubble. Huge hit! I will make these again and again.

    Reply
  • Wendy September 19, 2016, 8:32 pm

    Delish! Everyone loved it in my family and they were shocked that it had mushrooms. I don’t like ground turkey but I keep trying recipes hoping we could find one we enjoy since I don’t buy beef anymore. Thank you for sharing this yummy meatloaf:) I will make a double batch next time so we can have left overs😋

    Reply
    • Wendy September 19, 2016, 8:34 pm

      I forgot to give it five stars!!!!

      Reply
  • Kanina Brinkey September 19, 2016, 6:40 am

    This recipe is amazing!! I was a bit skeptical of all of the mushrooms making it taste different from meatloaf should, but it was SO good. I also dropped in some chunks of cheddar to the mix and doubled the ketchup. Soooo good!!

    Reply
  • Jackie September 12, 2016, 6:42 pm

    Usually I mess up everything that I cook but this was amazing! My family loved it! We will definitely be eating this for dinner again!

    Reply
  • Valerie September 4, 2016, 3:11 am

    Can you prepare the turkey loaf and leave in fridge for a day or two before cooking

    Reply
    • Joanne September 14, 2016, 2:16 pm

      Hi Valerie, You should be fine for a day or two, but I don’t recommend going any longer than that.

      Reply
  • Spencer August 15, 2016, 10:26 pm

    Tried it, everyone liked it.

    Reply
  • Spencer August 15, 2016, 10:25 pm

    This is really bomb-good

    Reply
  • Sarah August 15, 2016, 1:41 pm

    Do you think this recipe would do well cooked in a slow cooker? Any tips?

    Reply
    • Joanne August 22, 2016, 1:54 pm

      Hi Sarah, We have never made this in a slow cooker. You are not the first to ask, though! It’s on our list to try. If you try it, we’d love to hear how it went.

      Reply
  • Celestine Ganie August 15, 2016, 1:37 pm

    This meatloaf was the ultimate!! The moistest, most delicious I have ever tasted. It is a keeper! Thank you for sharing it with us. Due to time constraints, I couldn’t make the ketchup but I definitely will try it. (5 stars!)

    Reply
  • Joe August 14, 2016, 12:46 pm

    I love this recipe it smells so good when cooking and taste better than any other meatloaf recipe I have made. Our whole family loves it. Today I doubled the recipe and am making two loafs on the charcoal grill to save from heating up the house on a warm summer day and I just like grilling😀

    Reply
  • Amy August 4, 2016, 7:00 pm

    Can you use canned mushrooms?

    Reply
    • Joanne August 11, 2016, 12:32 pm

      Hi Amy, you can, we just recommend draining any liquid from the can first.

      Reply

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