Easy Air Fryer Turkey Meatloaf Recipe

Blue's Best Life
by Blue's Best Life
6 servings
35 min

When you need a quick dinner idea, try this spin on a classic meatloaf. This air fryer meatloaf recipe is ready in just 35 minutes, making it the perfect dinner for a busy weeknight. This moist meatloaf recipe is made with ground turkey, peppers, onions and oats for a healthy meatloaf recipe the entire family will love.

Two mini meatloaf on a cutting board.


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Why This Air Fryer Turkey Meatloaf is the Best!


I've tried many meatloaf recipes over the years but this turkey meatloaf recipe is my absolute favorite! It's easy to make, and with the help of the air fryer your cooking time is cut in half.

Meatloaf is a classic comfort food, something I remember Mom making for years. While this recipe may be slightly different from the old fashioned meatloaf we had as kids, it is a close resemblance. This is just a healthier version that has been simplified for a easy weeknight dinner!

Trust me, after one bite of this flavorful meatloaf, you'll add this to your weekly dinner rotation!


Key Ingredients


ground turkey- I prefer a lean ground turkey for my meatloaf. By adding the right amount of vegetables the turkey meatloaf will stay moist and have great flavor.

oats- old-fashioned oats are a healthy substitute for the bread crumbs that are usually used in a meatloaf mixture. Oats add a little extra fiber and make this a gluten-free recipe as well.

canned tomatoes-adds flavor and moisture to the mix. I like the petite cut canned tomatoes for the meatloaf.

The ingredients for turkey meatloaf.
Step-By-Step Instructions


Start by chopping the onion and red bell pepper. Make sure to chop in small uniform pieces so they cook evenly. Add all of the ingredients in a large mixing bowl.

Mix the vegetables, oats, egg and seasoning into the ground turkey. Meatloaf can be a little messy so roll up your sleeves and get your hands a little dirty while mixing everything together.

Form the meat mixture into two mini meatloaf shapes by hand. The reason I make these into two mini meatloaves is because they cook more evenly and are easier to remove from the air fryer basket after they are cooked. A thicker meatloaf will become over cooked on the outside before the inside is properly cooked. It does not have to be a perfect shape but try to make it as uniform in size as possible so that the center and ends of the meatloaf cook evenly.

I know many people cook meatloaf in a loaf pan, however by cooking free form in the air fryer it allows any fat to drip through the holes of the basket so that the meatloaf isn't greasy. I do not use any aluminum foil for this reason. Don't worry the meatloaf will slide right out of the basket with a spatula and the basket cleans up very easily.

Mixing the ingredients together for air fryer meatloaf and placing it in the air fryer basket.

Once the meatloaf is shaped turn air fryer to 400 degrees and time for 25 minutes. While the meatloaf is cooking whisk together the ketchup, Worcestershire sauce and brown sugar. This is the delicious glaze that we will brush on the meatloaf during the last 5 minutes of cooking.

Once the air fryer timer is down to the last 5 minutes of cook time, remove the basket and check the meatloaf with a meat thermometer. The USDA recommends that poultry be cooked to an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit. When it is getting close to the proper temperature go ahead and brush a generous amount of the sauce on the top of the meatloaf and return the basket to the air fryer and finish cooking. I always add the glaze towards the end because the high sugar content in the glaze can cause it to burn.

Mixing the glaze and brushing it on the meatloaf.
What to serve with Meatloaf


Of course mashed potatoes are a must with meatloaf. If you are looking for a light option try my Creamy Potato and Cauliflower Mash Recipe. It’s still creamy but with less carbs!

I always pair a yummy green vegetable or a side salad with my meals. Mediterranean Green Beans with Lemon Dressing is the perfect light salad to pair with meatloaf.

The sliced meatloaf served with mashed potatoes.
Expert Tips


  • Form into two rectangular shape mini loaves. The small loaf shape will help the meatloaf cook more evenly and not require a longer cook time.
  • Do not use cooking spray in your air fryer basket. You can spray with olive oil but I found the nonstick basket was very easy to clean if you soak it in soapy water.


Substitutions


This meatloaf recipe can be made with lean ground beef instead of ground turkey. Just make sure to cook the beef to the recommended temperature. The ground beef will cook in less time than the turkey.

If you are short on time you can use bottled barbecue sauce instead of the glaze.

Brushing the meatloaf with glaze.
reheating and Storage Suggestions


Leftover meatloaf is one of my favorites. It warms up well by just microwaving individual slices in the microwave for 1-2 minutes.

To store the meatloaf, allow it to cool completely and then store in an airtight container for 2-3 days.


FAQ


How do you keep meatloaf moist?


The tomatoes and vegetables that are added are not just for flavor, they will help keep the meatloaf juicy!


Can You use Foil In An Air Fryer?


You can use foil in an air fryer, and that will make it easier to clean. However air fryers work by circulating hot air to cook food quicker than a conventional oven, so the foil may block the air flow causing the meatloaf to not cook as quickly or evenly.


Looking For Other tasty Air Fryer Recipes? Try These!


Air Fryer Teriyaki Salmon with Homemade Glaze

Easy Air Fryer Turkey Tenderloin (with Sweet & Spicy Rub)


Did you try this recipe? Please let me know what you think! Leave a comment below, and a 5- star rating. I would love to hear from you! Subscribe to get new recipes sent straight to your inbox!

Easy Air Fryer Turkey Meatloaf Recipe
Recipe details
  • 6  servings
  • Prep time: 10 Minutes Cook time: 25 Minutes Total time: 35 min
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Ingredients
Turkey Meatloaf
  • 1 pound lean ground turkey
  • 1/2 cup canned petite diced tomatoes, drained
  • 1/3 cup red pepper, diced
  • 1/3 cup onion, diced
  • 1 tablespoon fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1 large egg
  • 3/4 cup old fashioned oats
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
Glaze
  • 1/3 cup ketchup
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
Instructions
Turkey Meatloaf
Start by adding the ground turkey and all of the ingredients for the turkey meatloaf to a large mixing bowl. Use clean hands to mix the ingredients together. Form the mixture into 2 small loaf shapes. Make sure that the loafs are uniform in size so that they cook evenly.
Place the loaves inside the basket of the air fryer. Set the air fryer to 400 and time for 25 minutes.
While the meatloaf is cooking mix together the ingredients for the glaze. Check the meatloaf 5 minutes before the end of the recommended cooking time because all air fryers cook differently. Use a meat thermometer to make sure the internal temperature is 165 degrees. If the meatloaf is not to temperature yet, go ahead and brush with ½ of the glaze and return to the air fryer to finish cooking.
After the loafs are fully cooked allow to cool in the basket for 10 minutes before removing. Use a spatula to gently slide underneath each loaf and lift out of the basket. Place on a cutting board and cut into ½ inch thick slices. Serve with remaining glaze.
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