The BEST Meatloaf is such an easy classic meal. It is my mother's delicious recipe with an added touch of delicious sauce. Add this to your dinner rotation. I promise it’ll quickly become a favorite family meal!
Please hear me out. I understand that the word “meatloaf” is a turn-off to some. If this is you, I beg you to set your qualms aside because you have just landed on this blog post detailing the most delicious meatloaf you will ever eat. A few years ago I dug up my mother's handwritten recipe from childhood and used it as my guide. I don't remember ever eating a recipe as good as hers.
I tweaked hers a teeny bit (and it is a great recipe!), added an irresistible sauce and just like that the best meatloaf recipe was born. I have received so many comments and emails over the years from people who tell me this has become their favorite go-to recipe. I love that so much!
WATCH THIS QUICK VIDEO TUTORIAL THAT SHOWS YOU HOW TO MAKE MEATLOAF!
HOW TO MAKE MEATLOAF
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Coat a 5x9 loaf pan with cooking spray and set aside. In a large bowl, combine ground beef, crackers, egg, milk, 1/2 cup ketchup, salt, pepper, onion and garlic powder. Mix everything together with your hands until it is thoroughly combined.
Pour the mixture into the prepared pan and spread evenly. Place the pan on a rimmed baking sheet (this is important!) so grease does not spill over the edges and into your oven! Bake in the preheated oven for 1 1/2 hours (add the sauce at around the 40-minute mark!).
In a small bowl, combine the ketchup, brown sugar, apricot preserves and Worcestershire sauce. Mix well. Spread half of the mixture evenly over the meatloaf halfway through baking. Reserve the remainder of the meatloaf sauce for dipping/topping. Let the meatloaf sit for 15 minutes before slicing and serving or it may fall apart on you.
WHAT MEAT IS BEST FOR MEATLOAF?
This recipe works best with a leaner meat such as turkey, venison or a super lean beef (like 90/10 ground beef). The fattier the meat is, the more likely you will encounter grease issues. The lean meat will not take away from the flavor AT ALL, I promise. It’s the magic of this recipe!
HOW LONG TO COOK MEATLOAF
If you are wondering about cooking times for cooking meatloaf all the way through, it takes an entire hour and a half. Be sure to place the pan on a rimmed baking sheet before putting it into the oven. Meat juices will be bubbling over the edge and I don't want you to burn your house down while making dinner. Let it sit for at least fifteen minutes before slicing and serving.
WHY DOES MY MEATLOAF ALWAYS FALL APART?
Remember my last paragraph about letting it sit for at least 15 minutes after you pull it out of the oven? This is a vital step if you wish to keep your meal intact! The egg and crackers will work their magic and hold the meatloaf together but if you slice too soon, all bets are off.
WHAT SHOULD I SERVE WITH MEATLOAF?
WHAT PEOPLE ARE SAYING ABOUT THE BEST MEATLOAF RECIPE FROM PIP AND EBBY
“Been using this recipe for years, we love it so much!! my husband was never a huge fan of meatloaf until I tried this recipe, now he asks for it regularly :) thank you for sharing it, makes me feel like a rock star every time! “ ~Felicia
“Our whole family absolutely LOVES this meatloaf. I never cared for meatloaf until this recipe. Turns out great every time!! I make it exactly as directed, it is fabulous. We love the sauce so much that I sometimes make just the sauce and serve it with hamburger steak. 😜 “ ~Patricia
“This is by far the best meatloaf I’ve ever eaten/made. Everyone that has eaten it has loved it. I once put mine in muffin tins and swirled garlic mashed potatoes on top for a meatloaf cup cake. Soooooo yum!!! “ ~Ashley L.
“I’ve used this recipe a few times and need to write a review. WE LOVE IT! my husband isn’t a fan of meatloaf until I started making this one and he LOVES it! The only thing we do that doesn’t say in your recipe is we line the pan with 2 slices of bread to soak up any grease. It’s a trick my grandma taught me years ago. Thanks again for your yummy recipe! “ ~Olivia
“I have always hated meatloaf. Until this!! My whole family ate it and loved it, which is a massive feat in a houseful of picky eaters. Thank you for sharing, this definitely goes into our regular rotation. “ ~Joanna