In this post, you will find traditional meatloaf recipes you will love including an easy meatloaf recipe that requires only 5 minutes prep time, a tasty bacon cheese meatloaf, extraordinary meatloaf and more! You’ll also find 12 ways to make meatloaf and meatballs, which give you lots of tasty options for easy family dinners everyone loves!
Traditional Meatloaf Is Easy And Delicious!
Meatloaf is a traditional comfort food that has been popular for generations! Today I will share some easy meatloaf recipes to make traditional meatloaf like my great grandmothers used to make!
I am including several easy meatloaf recipes, each of which has its own variations. Generally, any meatloaf starts with ground beef and then includes oatmeal, bread crumbs, crackers and sometimes other grains. In the Great Depression, these were used to stretch the meat to make the meatloaf cost less, but they also add a slightly different texture to the meat.
Then the meatloaf is placed into a bread baking pan and baked into a loaf, shaped like a bread loaf. When it is served, the meatloaf is usually served cut into thick slices a little bit thicker than bread slices.
Meatloaf is usually topped with ketchup and then baked, but it can also be topped with barbecue sauce, steak sauce or other specialty sauces if you prefer.
You can also sprinkle the top with grated cheese like Cheddar or Mexican cheese, or you can leave the sauce off the top altogether and simply sprinkle cheese on top. Yum! My easy meatloaf recipe is topped with ketchup or barbecue sauce, but I include other traditional meatloaf recipes below that call for cheese and sometimes bacon as a topping.
What To Do With Leftover Meatloaf
Leftover meatloaf is great for sandwiches because it tastes great and you can easily cut it into the size you prefer and place it on the bread.
If you make meatballs, you can cut them into halves and make sandwiches from them, too. Meatball sandwiches are delicious, especially served warm with mozzarella cheese, Italian sauce and other Italian-style add-ins.
If you have leftover meatloaf, recipes like these are perfect for using the leftovers:
Easy Tater Tot Casserole Recipe
Hamburger Casserole Recipes For Quick And Easy Meals!
Break leftover meatloaf pieces into chunks and serve with spaghetti or use as a pizza topping.
Homemade Taco Meat Recipe For Tostadas, Enchiladas And More! Use the leftover meatloaf to make taco meat instead of starting with uncooked ground beef.
Here are the easy meatloaf recipes:
The easy meatloaf recipe below, which is included in volume 1 of our cookbook is my original meatloaf recipe. My mom and grandmother never made meatloaf, so when I got married, I came up with this easy meatloaf recipe because my husband loved meatloaf! It is so easy and delicious! It’s a no fail recipe for meatloaf that will be a hit with your entire family!
This traditional meatloaf recipe makes a delicious moist meatloaf just like grandma used to make! Not only does it taste great every time, it only takes 5 minutes to put together and then bake!
If you use this easy meatloaf recipe for any of the above purposes, you will probably want to use ketchup instead of the barbecue sauce that is mentioned in the basic meatloaf recipe.Print
Super Easy Meatloaf Recipe!
This easy meatloaf recipe is a super delicious traditional meatloaf recipe that is easy to make with just 5 minutes’ prep time! This is an easy family dinner idea that everyone loves!
1 1/2 lbs. ground beef
1 cup milk
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. dry mustard
1/4 tsp. pepper
3/4 cup quick cooking oatmeal or 1/2 cup dry bread crumbs
1/4 tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. onion powder
1 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
1/2 cup ketchup or barbecue sauce
- Preheat oven to 350°.
- Mix the ground beef and all other ingredients together except the ketchup.
- Put the meat mixture into a loaf pan.
- Spread ketchup over the top.
- Bake 1 hour or until done.
This easy meatloaf recipe is from volume 1 of our cookbook:
Click here to get our Dining On A Dime Cookbooks 25% Off NOW! They’re filled with tasty recipes and tips to make your life easier!
If you’re in the mood for another tasty variation on an easy meatloaf recipe, try this tasty bacon cheese meatloaf recipe!
Bacon Cheese Meatloaf Recipe
This Bacon Cheese Meatloaf Recipe is an easy meatloaf recipe with the delicious taste of bacon and cheese! Who thought meatloaf could get any better?
1/4 cup evaporated milk
1 1/2 cups Swiss cheese, grated
1 cup bacon, cooked and crumbled (about 10 slices)
1/2 cup soft bread crumbs (leftover dinner rolls are especially good)
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. onion powder
1 1/2 lbs. ground beef
- Preheat oven to 350°.
- Combine everything except for 1/2 cup of the swiss cheese and 1/4 cup of the bacon.
- Mix well and shape into a loaf.
- Place the meat mixture in a greased loaf pan or baking dish.
- Bake uncovered at 350° for 1 hour, until meat is no longer pink or a thermometer inserted in the center reads 160° or higher.
- Sprinkle with the remaining cheese and bacon.
- Bake 5 minutes longer or until cheese is melted.
- Let stand for 10 minutes before slicing.
This extraordinary meatloaf recipe is another meatloaf with a unique and delicious flavor! Using half ground beef and half sausage along with a generous amount of cheese gives it a more seasoned flavor than a typical meatloaf. For even more zip, you can use hot sausage in this easy meatloaf recipe. Tou can also experiment with other cheeses, like pepper jack.Print
Extraordinary Meatloaf Recipe
1 lb. ground beef
1 lb. sausage (hot if you like it)
1 cup bread crumbs
2 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
3/4 lb. (3 cups) Colby cheese, grated
- Preheat oven to 400°.
- Mix all ingredients in a mixing bowl.
- Place in a loaf pan.
- Bake 45 minutes. When finished baking, a thermometer inserted in the center should read at least 160°.
Aunt Mary’s Best Meatloaf Recipe
This best meatloaf recipe has been a family favorite for years! It is a traditional meatloaf recipe with the addition of Parmesan cheese and cooked layered in a generous amount of bacon for an extra delicious flavor!
12 slices of bread
2 cups milk
4 lbs. ground beef
2 cups grated Parmesan cheese
salt and pepper to taste
1-2 Tbps. parsley, chopped
1 (16 oz.) package bacon
2 cups ketchup
1 1/2 cups brown sugar
1 tsp. dry mustard
2 dashes of Worcestershire sauce
hot sauce (optional)
- Preheat oven to 350°.
- Soak the bread in the milk in a bowl.
- Mix the remaining ingredients, except the bacon, in a second bowl.
- Mix the soaked bread into the ground beef mixture.
- Place a layer of bacon on the bottom of 2 loaf pans.
- Make the ground beef mixture into 2 loaves.
- Place one meatloaf into each loaf pan.
- Top the meatloaves with the remaining bacon slices.
- Stir sauce ingredients together. Pour half over the meatloaf. Use the other half of the sauce for basting and serving.
- Bake for 20-25 minutes.
- Add more sauce and bake for 25 more minutes.
Meatloaf, Meatballs and Hamburger Recipes And Ideas
Buy 5 pounds or more of hamburger and prepare your favorite traditional meatloaf recipe. Then form part of it into any combination of the following:
- 1 or 2 meat loaves
- mini meat loaves (the size that will fit into mini loaf pans)
- portions that will fit into muffin tins
- form the rest into nice sized patties
Lay everything out on cookie sheets and freeze. When frozen, place into freezer bags. When you need something quick for dinner, just pull a bag of something out of the freezer.
I do the meat balls a lot and freeze them already frozen.
I just put them on a pan with a rack and put them in the oven at 350 for about 10 min.
take some out of the freezer and add them to a sweet and sour sauce to serve over rice or noodles.
I make my own S&S sauce using 1 cup vinegar 1 cup sugar or splenda and a tbsp ketchup and soy sauce. I add a tsp of corn starch to thicken it.
quick easy meal just add salad.
Meat balls also make a nice appetizer at parties with different things to dip them in. even follows the one bite rule.
Grandma, do you think you can come live with me? With all your ideas that you have you save so many people time and money!
Grizzly Bear Mom
I mix up meatloaf burgers and cook several pounds of them on the George Foreman Grill and freeeze them. I only have to wash the bowl and grill once and I can take as many as I want out of the baggie before mealtime.
That’s a great idea…often I’d love to have a grilled burger, but it seems too much trouble for just one.
I bought the Black and Decker grill/sandwich maker/waffle maker. My nephew used it to grill a couple of steaks he bought.
Meatballs made ahead of time are great for entertaining. A friend recently hosted a meal for 20 people. She made two pots of pasta, and filled a slow cooker with meatballs and sauce. Everyone helped themselves and there was plenty of food.
This recipe sounds wonderful, but I make 4 meatloaves at a time; 1 for dinner, 1 for leftovers/lunches (hubby comes home every day to take care of his Mom) and 2 for the freezer. I’ve never used this much milk! I’m still struggling to relearn cooking, as my adult daughter has done it for the last 10 years, but can no longer do it on a daily basis. Is this recipe quadruple-able?? Any suggestions??? Help me!!!
Sunny this recipe is for 1 meat loaf that fits in a loaf pan. It feeds a family of 4 for 1 meal with leftovers. As far as the milk goes you can use less if you want. Meatloaf recipes are about as varied as people are and you can adjust the liquid (milk) and the oats or crumbs in them to what you want. Holler if you have more questions.
My grandma taught me . One pound of ground me. Handful of crackers 2 eggs a good squeeze of ketchup onions. Set oven at 350 mix with clean hands. Shape after putting in pan. Cook for about a hour.
She was born in 1899 so it’s a old recipe
The other ones sound good also.
My grandma was born in 1899 too Kathy. 100 yrs later my granddaughter (her great great granddaughter) was born in 1999. I always thought that was so cool and my granddaughter is named after her too. We had her name picked before we knew that she would be born in that year.
I just dump in my ingredients when I make meatloaf, but I don’t have dry mustard so I use the regular kind as well as some ketchup and BBQ sauce. I also add rice to stretch it. My mom always did 1 lb. hamburger and 1 lb. Jimmy Dean sausage for meatloaf, with the crumbs of some kind, ketchup, mustard, salt, and pepper. Since I got your cookbook, I make it with your recipe and my mom’s combined. I don’t like anybody’s meatloaf except for my family’s because of the sausage and sauce mixture we use (ketchup, mustard, brown sugar). I will also add italian season, oregano, or something like that and sometimes cheese to my meat loaf/meat balls. Thank you for helping me give my food a lil more life. :)
Alexis, this sounds good with the sausage as I have made sausage & ground beef hamburgers. Do you have measurements or just guess at it?
I always add about a half pound of pork sausage along with the 1-1/2 pounds of hamburger. You used to be able to buy hamburger and pork sausage for meatloaf, but haven’t seen it packaged that way in years. It makes it more moist than just plain hamburger.
Don’t add the ketchup to the meatloaf and then cook,,,it burns, instead wait until the last 5 to 10 minutes and put it on top of the meatloaf and return it to the oven to finish.
I bake the meatloaves before freezing. A thawed loaf can be sliced and heated in a frying pan with a bit of butter. The slices heat quickly and get a little crispy. Yum!
Believe it or not my hubby and I add a little bit of shredded cheese on the top of the meatloaf right before we take it out of the over,just long enough for it to melt.It adds flavor and its good. When you freeze your meatloaf is it cooked or do you take it out and cook it when you need it?
Oh that sounds so yummy Susan. You know it really doesn’t matter if you cook it before or after. Which ever way that works best for you. You could cook 2-3 at a time then freeze but I also liked to bake things sometimes the day I am using them because made the house smell so nice when the kids and hubby arrived. Like I said it really doesn’t matter.
Can you give me a gluten free recipe for an elderly lady’s birthday coming too soon???
Anything would be appreciated. She doesn’t cook anymore but lives blueberries.
Here are some gluten free recipes on our website https://www.livingonadime.com/?s=gluten+free+recipes
I always use a cheese grater and grate a potato into my meatloaf. When my kids were little and convinced they hated onions I did the same thing with the onion I put in the meatloaf. And now days I always cook meatloaf in my slow cooker! Mix it up, sometimes even the night before, set the temp depending on my time frame and leave it alone. You can add veggie later like you would a roast if you want.
On another note I want to say thanks for all your ideas, hints and thoughts. I always enjoy your emails! TK
You know TK cheese makes everything taste extra good doesn’t it. Good idea about adding the veggies to it in the crock pot.
While going through a bunch of old cook books I for a recipe for meat loaf that is just so good. It is a ‘depression’ meat loaf. Recipe calls for 1 can of evaporated milk, 5 slices of bread, 1 onion, salt, pepper, 2 pounds ground beef, 1/3 cup ketchup, and 3 slices of bacon. Mix milk and bread (tear into pieces) and let soak till milk is absorbed. Add chopped onion, salt, pepper, and ketchup to bread and milk. Stir till well mixed. Now add meat and mix just enough to blend it together. Shape into a loaf on a greased pan. Cover with bacon and bake at 350 for 1 hour.
This is very simple and so good. I double it and keep an extra in the freezer.
Do you wait and put the ketchup on top?
Yes you spread the ketchup on top before you put it in the oven.
I mix my meatloaf and cook in a small crockpot on low allday;everyone loves it
Thanks for all these delicious sounding recipes. I’m going to cook my way through them. Roxie, does your recipe say what size tin of evap.? I’m guessing you’d only need a small one.
I’ve found that the meatball mix (beef, veal, pork) makes the best meatloaf I’ve ever had. You can use it with any meatloaf recipe you like. It has a wonderful flavor because of the mix of meats, and it is not as heavy as 100 percent ground beef, which I’ve found makes the meatloaf too dense (can I say like a brick?), especially if you use the very lean ground beef. It may be a bit more expensive than beef, although that has gotten expensive as well, but I really prefer it. However, of you use beef, I would recommend 85% lean or less.
When I’m forming patties, I actually use an old 80mm (wide-mouth) ring and lid to form and measure each patty so they’re consistent sizes and shapes. Just shove meat into the ring with the lid inside, level off the top, and voila! To get the meat out of the ring, just pop the lid out, the meat will come with it. Pop the lid back in and keep going.
Then I just wash the lid and ring and put it away for next time (I have a dedicated pair that I keep in my kitchen drawer for just such a task). Easy Peasy… plus they grill nicely because they’re all the same size like store-bought ones!
I love to make meatballs and meatloaf to freeze and I do this often. Some easy variations for saucing are: jarred sweet & sour sauce, put a dab on each meatball or pour over the meatloaf for a glaze. BBQ sauce and chopped onions are also good. I also make a sauce out of a small can of tomato sauce, a scant 1/4 cup brown sugar, 1 teaspoon of garlic powder and 2 teaspoons of chili powder. Mix and glaze your meatballs or meatloaf. We also do the cream of mushroom soup and sour cream over the meatballs then serve it over noodles or rice. I also like to keep a bunch of frozen meatballs in the freezer to make up meatball subs. I put however many I need in the slow cooker, cover with sauce and let them cook until done, usually 4-6 hours and serve on hogi buns with a sprinkle of mozzarella cheese.
You all did it again. I was coming here to look for meatball recipes as I bought a lot of ground beef. Doing some freezer cooking and food prepping for the month. I come here and this is the article on the front page. Great minds must think alike. Love this site and your books.
LOL Your wish is our command. :):) You are right great minds must think alike. :)So funny how these things happen
Ok everyone.. I have challenged myself to do 30 days feeding my family of four for under $150 at the grocery store for and do freezer meals to wish me luck I hope I can do this I pray I can do this I need to pay things off so bad like credit cards and I spend so much at the grocery store I’m so glad I stumbled upon this site actually found you on YouTube and it’s been a godsend thank you
Thank you so much for all your ideas and recipes. I had to turn in my IRA and savings and then put the rest on a credit card when the insurance company told me I had to replace my roof. I finally got it paid off. Now I can start saving for another car (mine got wrecked and we have to go to court to get the settlement because they only want to pay 3900 for the car and pain and suffering.) We always pay cash for our cars. My brother has over 40000 on his truck and I can’t rely on him to much longer to be my taxi driver. LOL
I make my own meatballs and freeze them most of the time. I use different sauces for variety. Sometimes I buy the frozen ones on sale for those busy times when I work late and know cooking time is limited. However, they just don’t taste as good.