Super moist, slightly spicy and packed with flavor, this Spicy BBQ Turkey Meatloaf cooks so perfectly that you even will forget it’s turkey.
In this life, it boils down to two kinds of people… people who love meatloaf and those who do not. Notice I did not say LIKE meatloaf as I truly believe when it comes to this dish, you need to make the commitment and go all the way to LOVE. I am one of those that simply adores meatloaf and my husband, of course, is one that would rather eat laundry lint than even consider grabbing a plate of the “loaf of meat”, as he refers to it. I have made meatloaf a hundred different ways, from my mothers recipe (my personal favorite) to using oats, from beef to pork to turkey, to wrapping it in bacon (honestly, anything wrapped in bacon has a legitimate shot in this house), to adding cheese in the middle. Not just mine, not yours, not any human being combining ground meat, filler and seasonings. Nope, no go, no way…. Big Scary Mike is not a fan.
Fast forward ten years and I am still trying.
I continue to try to bring him over to my side because I truly do love this dish. Serve it up with a side of mashed potatoes and corn and you have a staple dinner from my childhood. It’s comfort food at it’s best and I could probably make it every Sunday for dinner and be happy with it each and every time. Mike not participating in my love affair brings forth one glaring fact… I’m not concerned that he is going through life without knowing the true affection for this tasty classic… I’m upset I don’t get my favorite dinner!! … or cold meatloaf sandwiches the next day. Seriously, who deprives a person of basic happiness like this?
So, here I am, attempt #84. We are trying to change up our evil ways and embrace a healthier lifestyle so my challenge today is to create a turkey meatloaf that I will LOVE. I have long ago given up the real expectation that I will ever be able to make a meatloaf that Mike will rave about so now I focus more on cooking for myself, when it comes to this dish. Turkey is flavorless and can be dry and all around unappealing if it is not handled right. My objective was to pack so much flavor into this recipe that when I was done, you wouldn’t even know that you were eating turkey.
Know what? It worked!
Spicy BBQ Turkey Meatloaf
Most of us know how to make a meatloaf so with that being said, this is a quick write up. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Prepare a baking pan by lining it with tin foil and spray the tin foil with non-stick cooking spray if you plan on placing the meatloaf directly on it. If you prefer to add a baking rack to your pan for your meatloaf to sit on, do so at this time.
Before anyone asks me, when I was making this recipe I completely forgot I was out of non-stick spray so I decided to forget about the tin foil when I cooked this. It still came out perfect but I didn’t want anyone to be confused.
In a large bowl, combine the turkey, onion, spices, bacon, Worcestershire, Dijon, eggs, 1/3 cup of your favorite BBQ sauce and the breadcrumbs.
Using your hands, combine all ingredients until completely incorporated. Since turkey will pick up any flavors mixed into it, be sure to rake your fingers through the meat mixture to ensure there are no pockets of unseasoned turkey.
Shape the meat mixture into a loaf and place on your pan / rack.
Using a basting brush, cover the top of your meatloaf with the remaining 1/3 cup of BBQ sauce.
Pour the ancho pepper powder in your hand and evenly sprinkle over the sauce using your fingertips.
A little goes a long way. If you do not want your meatloaf extra spicy, skip this step. If you do not have ancho pepper powder, feel free to use cayenne or ground red pepper powder or even more the chipotle powder.
Bake for 50 minutes. Remove from the oven and let sit for 10-15 minutes before serving.
This recipe has so many different spices and flavors coming out of it and the meat cooks so perfectly that you wouldn’t even know this was turkey if you weren’t the one making it. Super moist, slightly spicy and packed with flavor, this Spicy BBQ Turkey Meatloaf will surprise you with how good it really is.
And what about Mike? I was told “I don’t hate it” and he even went back for seconds. That could have just been because he’s on a diet and he’s hungry but I choose to believe it was because I brought him one step closer to my side.
- 2 1/2 lbs ground turkey
- 3/4 large onion (approx 1 cup), diced
- 1 tsp onion powder
- 2 tsp garlic powder
- 1 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 tsp pepper
- 2 slices bacon , crumbled
- 1 tsp chipotle powder
- 2 tsp smoked paprika
- 2 tbl Worcestershire sauce
- 1 tbl dijon mustard
- 2 large eggs , lightly beaten
- 1/3 cup BBQ sauce
- 1 cup wheat breadcrumbs
- 1/4 tsp ancho powder (for topping)
- 1/3 cup BBQ sauce (for topping)
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
- Prepare a baking pan by lining it with tin foil and spray the tin foil with non-stick cooking spray or add a baking rack to your pan for your meatloaf to sit on.
- In a large bowl, combine the turkey, onion, spices, bacon, Worcestershire, Dijon, eggs, 1/3 cup of your favorite BBQ sauce and the breadcrumbs.
- Using your hands, combine all ingredients until completely incorporated. Rake your fingers through the meat mixture to ensure there are no pockets of unseasoned turkey.
- Shape the meat mixture into a loaf and place on your pan / rack.
- Using a basting brush, cover the top of your meatloaf with the remaining 1/3 cup of BBQ sauce. Pour the ancho pepper powder in your hand and evenly sprinkle over the sauce using your fingertips.
- Bake for 50 minutes.
- Remove from the oven and let sit for 10-15 minutes before serving.