This turkey meatloaf is moist and healthy and packed with plenty of onions, peppers, and mushrooms along with a healthy dose of barbecue sauce to keep it juicy and tender.
Thanks to an immodest amount of barbecue sauce, this turkey meatloaf turns out moist and lovely, not dry and crumbly, and has sorta a sweet and tangy and eminently kid-friendly thing going on. And not to change the topic, but if you and the wee ones in your household are fond of this recipe, chances are you’re going to be over the moon about these barbecue pork burgers.–David Leite
☞ Table of Contents
- 2 pounds ground turkey
- 2 large eggs
- 1/3 cup barbecue sauce plus more for brushing if desired
- 1/2 cup chopped red, green, yellow, or orange bell pepper
- 1/2 cup finely chopped sweet onion
- 1/2 cup finely chopped button mushrooms
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1/4 to 1/2 cup dry bread crumbs or as needed
- Vegetable oil for the pan
- Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C).
- In a large bowl, combine the turkey, eggs, and barbecue sauce, and mix well with a wooden spoon or rubber spatula. Stir in the pepper, onion, mushrooms, salt, and pepper and gently mix. Slowly add the bread crumbs and mix just until incorporated. The turkey meatloaf mixture should be moist and thick, not firm and dry. If necessary, add a little more bread crumbs a tablespoon at a time.
- Line an 11-by-4-inch rimmed baking pan or a 9-by-5-inch loaf pan with aluminum foil and slick it with vegetable oil. Place the turkey mixture in the pan, creating a smooth oval mound if using the larger pan or just plopping it in if using the loaf pan. Smooth out the top of the turkey meatloaf.
- Bake until the turkey meatloaf is cooked through but not dried out, about 50 minutes. If desired, brush the meatloaf with more barbecue sauce during the last 10 minutes or so.
- Remove the pan from the heat and let it rest for 10 minutes before slicing. Any leftover turkey meatloaf makes swell sandwiches the next day on a roll with some more barbecue sauce slathered on top. Originally published January 12, 2010.
Recipe Testers’ Reviews
My son is 7 years old and any time I can sneak some vegetables into his meals, I jump all over it. I used 3 different colored peppers and cremini mushrooms, which resulted in a very colorful meatloaf. In all honesty, I probably doubled the amount of onions, peppers, and mushrooms. Since I cooked this in a loaf pan, I let it cool about 20 minutes before unmolding. While this was a beautiful presentation when sliced, next time I’ll go freeform to let the juices run clear of the loaf instead of congealing on and around it.
I served this with Cauliflower Puree and had leftovers for lunch. This combo is so incredibly satisfying and healthy, you almost feel guilty enjoying it so much. Almost.
I don’t like meatloaf—never have and thought I never would. This recipe changed my mind completely. This was delicious, moist, easy, and made great leftovers. The turkey works really well here and the mushrooms help keep it rich, meaty, but not heavy.
I recommend chopping the vegetables as small as you can without turning them into mush. I also cooked the recipe free-form (molded into a rough loaf on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper) and really liked it that way. I finished off leftovers in sandwiches with challah and onion marmalade. In the future, I might play with different proportions—more peppers, more mushrooms—or different vegetables entirely, but for a first run this recipe hit it out of the park.
This was a great recipe. The meatloaf was moist with lots of flavor. The vegetables are a wonderful touch, and I felt better eating the meatloaf knowing that there were a lot of veggies in it. Barbecue sauce might make a difference in the flavor. I used a smoky, dark, thick one from Trader Joe’s. An easy, wonderful recipe that my entire family enjoyed. I’ll definitely make this again.