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5 from 3 votes

posted: 05/17/20

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This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy

Meatloaf makes for such a great easy dinner! This recipe is flavorful, moist, and can freeze perfectly!

picture of a meatloaf on a serving plate, cut into with BBQ sauce on top and garnished with fresh parlsey

Even as someone who loves cooking for my family and coming up with new recipes, I am dreading dinner time right now. It feels like my life is one long stretch of making meals and cleaning dishes.

And I know a lot of you are feeling the same.

I will continue to come up with dinners that are easy to make and that your whole family will love, and this meatloaf is the latest addition.

My easy meatloaf recipe comes together in just under 15 minutes, is full of the best delicious flavors, and is topped with my perfect BBQ sauce that is getting rave reviews.


While I know meatloaf is a classic, the combination of flavors in this recipe is what makes it a winner.

I love how simple the ingredients are. Except the beef, I always have everything on hand; but even that we can keep in the freezer.

  • ground beef
  • onion
  • garlic
  • 1 egg
  • breadcrumbs
  • Worcestershire sauce
  • ketchup
  • salt & pepper
  • BBQ sauce
  • liquid smoke (optional, but adds a little something nice)
overhead view of a the ingredients for meatloaf: ground beef, raw egg, breadcrumbs, catchup, seasonings, and cooked onion


Meatloaf is seriously one of the easiest comfort foods to make. A little bit of hands on time and then it bakes away to perfect.

  1. In a small skillet cook the onion and garlic. We are looking to make them soft and tender and bring out the sweetness in the onion.
  2. Once cooked, mix together the remainder of the ingredients (except the BBQ sauce) in a large bowl.
  3. Form the mixture into a loaf shape in a baking dish.
  4. Top with some BBQ sauce and bake.

So easy to make and absolutely delicious.

overhead view of a raw meatloaf topped with BBQ sauce that has been free formed in a baking dish


This recipe takes just a few minutes to put together, but if you want to make it ahead you totally can.

Follow the instructions up until adding the BBQ sauce. Put your meatloaf in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours. Top with BBQ sauce and throw in the preheated oven when you are ready to make it.

overhead view of an oval platter with cooked meatloaf on it topped with BBQ sauce and fresh parsley and a bowl of parmesan broccoli next it it


You can also freeze this meatloaf before baking. Just as mentioned above make up until the point where you are topping it with BBQ sauce.

Place the meatloaf on wax paper and allow it to freeze for 1 hour. Then wrap tightly and store in an airtight container for up to three months.

When ready to bake, remove all the wrappings from the meatloaf and place in the prepared pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes. Top with BBQ sauce and bake for an additional 50 minutes.


You can definitely make this with ground turkey. I have a great recipe for Turkey Meatloaf that is pretty much the same as this one. Your family will love it.


This recipe will easily serve a family of four. If you add in some delicious side dishes, you can stretch this out to serve a family of 6.

close up overhead view of a cooked meatloaf on a serving plate that has been slices, topped with more BBQ sauce, and garnished with parsley


If you are looking for what to serve with this recipe, I have a few great suggestions.

If you make this delicious meatloaf recipe or any of my other recipes, leave me a comment and let me know what you think!

picture of a meatloaf on a serving plate, cut into with BBQ sauce on top and garnished with fresh parlsey
5 from 3 votes


Serves: 6 people
(tap # to scale)
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 50 minutes
Total: 1 hour
Meatloaf makes for such a great easy dinner! This recipe is flavorful, moist, and can freeze perfectly!


  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1 small yellow onion diced fine
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 1 1/2 pounds ground beef 85% lean
  • 3/4 cup breadcrumbs
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup ketchup
  • 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon liquid smoke optional
  • 1/4 cup BBQ Sauce


  • Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Spray a baking dish or baking sheet with cooking spray and set aside.
  • In a small skillet heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add onions and garlic and cook until onions are translucent. About 3 minutes.
  • In a large bowl mix together the beef, breadcrumbs, egg, ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, liquid smoke (if using) salt, black pepper, and onion-garlic mixture. Form into a loaf and set on the baking sheet.
  • Top with the BBQ sauce and bake for 1 hour or until an instant read thermometer registers 165 degrees. Let stand for 5 minutes before slicing.
Author: Lisa Longley
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American


picture of a meatloaf on a serving plate, cut into with BBQ sauce on top and garnished with fresh parlsey

did you make this


I’d love to see what you made! Tag me @lisasimplejoy and hashtag it #simplejoyrecipes!

Hi! I'm Lisa Longley, and I am committed to giving you simple dinner ideas and recipes that are easy to make; recipes that will fill your home with joy. I am the owner and author of SimpleJoy.com and I'm so glad that you are here.

Reader Interactions


    Have a question? Use the form below to submit your question or comment. I love hearing from you & seeing what you made!

    Rate This Recipe:

  1. Diane Galante says

    5 stars
    Easy, moist and flavorful! Love your recipes! ❤️

    • Lisa Longley says

      Thank you for following along Diane!

  2. Joan Damore says

    Looks yummy must try

    • Lisa Longley says

      I hope you love it Joan!

  3. Robert Melton says

    I’m going to try this recipe tonight

    • Lisa Longley says

      I hope you love it Robert!

  4. Frank Zabotsky says

    Sounds good mite do it in my smoker

    • Lisa Longley says

      Sounds delicious Frank!

  5. Peggy says

    5 stars
    I made the meatloaf the only thing I added was a green bell pepper when I cooked the onion in the olive oil I added it there.the meatloaf was so good there was herdly any leftover thanks so much

    • Lisa Longley says

      I’m so happy you liked it, Peggy! Thank you for taking the time to come back and tell me!

  6. Matt Robinson says

    We were literally talking about meatloaf this morning and now I see this. Will have to try this recipe, it sounds amazing!

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overhead photo of a gray skillet filled with beef and broccoli recipe, garnished with sliced green onions
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