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Beef and Bacon Meatloaf

Beef and Bacon Meatloaf

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  • 1 12-ounce red onion, coarsely diced
  • 3 large garlic cloves, peeled
  • 1 1/4 pounds ground beef (10% fat)
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 7 slices thick-cut bacon, 5 coarsely chopped, 2 halved crosswise
  • 4 slices white sandwich bread, torn into pieces
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

Recipe Preparation

  • Preheat oven to 400°F. Blend onion and garlic in processor until onion is finely chopped. Transfer to large bowl; add beef, 1/4 cup ketchup, and next 3 ingredients.

  • Add chopped bacon and bread to processor. Using on/off turns, blend until bread is chopped. Scrape mixture into bowl with beef. Add parsley; stir gently to blend well. Transfer mixture to 9x5x3-inch metal loaf pan. Arrange bacon-slice halves crosswise atop meat, spacing apart and tucking edges down sides of loaf. Spoon remaining ketchup between bacon slices. Bake meatloaf until cooked through and meat comes away from sides of pan, about 1 hour. Let rest 10 to 15 minutes. Slide spatula under 1 end of meatloaf. Tilt pan; slide loaf out onto platter. Slice and serve.

Recipe by The Bon Appétit Test Kitchen

Nutritional Content

One serving contains the following: (Analysis is based on 6 servings.) Calories (kcal) 323.5 %Calories from Fat 40.2 Fat (g) 14.5 Saturated Fat (g) 5.0 Cholesterol (mg) 138.8 Carbohydrates (g) 24.2 Dietary Fiber (g) 2.5 Total Sugars (g) 7.8 Net Carbs (g) 21.6 Protein (g) 27.2Reviews Section

How to Make the Best Meatloaf Recipe Ever

Drunk-on-cinnamon Cinnamon Rolls, silky Key Lime Pie—those recipes are the little black dresses of your recipe box. But a good meatloaf recipe is the pair of super-soft, super-thick socks that you can't wait to put on after a long day. Meatloaf may not be sexy, but it sure is comforting.

The ideal meatloaf is tender and juicy, yet holds together well when sliced, and has a round, meaty savoriness without a lot of other added seasonings. Naturally, Epicurious has a lot of meatloaf recipes to offer—over 30—but which one would meet my meatloaf criteria? I picked five of the highest user-rated recipes on the site, and our staffers tasted and analyzed what we liked—and didn't like—about each one. From there I created a Frankenrecipe that combined our favorite elements of the top five, and incorporated a few things we learned along the way. Here's how to make meatloaf better:

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A bite of this meatloaf tastes like a bacon cheeseburger without the bun. Ground beef is mixed with sharp cheddar, grated onion, garlic, and ketchup formed into a loaf and covered with bacon slices. After it’s baked, a quick broil makes the bacon on top extra crispy. The whole thing’s so easy you’ll have time to spare, which you could use to make homemade potato tots to serve on the side.

This recipe was featured as part of our photo gallery of meatloaf recipes.

Tips for Beef, Ground Beef, Bacon, Christmas, and Eggs

For ground beef, keep refrigerated and use within one to two days. It can stay in its original container if the packaging hasn’t been opened. Steaks follow the same protocol, but can last a bit longer at three to five days. It’s actually best to allow a little airflow with stored meat, as tightly-adhered plastic like Saran wrap can make meat sweat and, as a result, less tender. Meat can be transferred to plastic containers, but should be covered loosely.

Never refrigerate raw meat if it’s been sitting out beyond two hours.

Bacon is most commonly cooked on the stovetop or in the oven. If you’re opting for the former, start with a cold pan with the bacon strips touching, but not overlapping. Set the burner on low and allow the bacon to slowly release its fat. As it begins to cook, use tongs to flip the strips and fry them on their opposite sides. Continue to flip and turn until the bacon is browned evenly. Let the cooked bacon drain by carefully placing them on paper towels or a newspaper.

To cook bacon in the oven, simply line a large baking sheet with aluminum foil and arrange the bacon strips on its surface. If your baking sheet does not have grooved edges, be sure to fold the aluminum corners upwards to catch excess grease. Bake at 400°F for ten to 20 minutes (depending on your texture preference), remove, and place bacon strips on paper towels or a newspaper. The bacon will crisp as it cools.

Eggs should keep a consistent and low temperature. This is best achieved by placing their carton in the center of your fridge. The eggs should also remain in their original packaging to avoid the absorption of strong odors.

It is wise to follow the “best by” date to determine overall freshness, but eggs can be tested by simply dropping them into a bowl of water. Older eggs will float while fresh eggs will sink. This is due to the size of their air cells, which gradually increase over time.

Cooked eggs have a refrigerator shelf life of no more than four days, while hard-boiled eggs, peeled or unpeeled, are safe to consume up to one week after they’re prepared.

The beauty of an egg is its versatility. Eggs can be cooked in a variety of ways. Here are some tips in accomplishing the four most common preparations.

Scrambled: Whip your eggs in a bowl. The consistency of your scrambled eggs is a personal preference, though it seems like the majority of breakfast connoisseurs enjoy a more runny and fluffy option. In this case, add about ¼ cup of milk for every four eggs. This will help to thin the mix. Feel free to also season with salt and pepper (or stir in cream cheese for added decadence). Grease a skillet with butter over medium heat and pour in the egg mixture. As the eggs begin to cook, begin to pull and fold the eggs with a spatula until it forms curds. Do not stir constantly. Once the egg is cooked to your liking, remove from heat and serve.

Hard-boiled: Fill a pot that covers your eggs by about two inches. Remove the eggs and bring the water to a boil. Once the water begins to boil, carefully drop in the eggs and leave them for 10-12 minutes. For easy peeling, give the eggs an immediate ice bath after the cooking time is completed. For soft-boiled eggs, follow the same process, but cut the cooking time in half.

Poached: Add a dash of vinegar to a pan filled with steadily simmering water. Crack eggs individually into a dish or small cup. With a spatula, create a gentle whirlpool in the pan. Slowly add the egg, whites first, into the water and allow to cook for three minutes. Remove the egg with a slotted spoon and immediately transfer to kitchen paper to drain the water.

Sunny Side Up/Over Easy/Medium/Hard: For each of these preparations, you are cracking an egg directly into a greased frying pan. For sunny side up, no flipping is involved. Simply allow the edges to fry until they’re golden brown. To achieve an over easy egg, flip a sunny side up egg and cook until a thin film appears over the yolk. The yolk should still be runny upon serving. An over medium egg is flipped, fried, and cooked longer until the yolk is still slightly runny. An over hard is cooked until the yolk is hard.

Eggs can easily be frozen, but instructions vary based on the egg’s physical state. As a general rule, uncooked eggs in their shells should not be frozen. They must be cracked first and have their contents frozen.

Uncooked whole eggs: The eggs must be removed from their shells, blended, and poured into containers that can seal tightly.

Uncooked egg whites: The same process as whole eggs, but you can freeze whites in ice cube trays before transferring them to an airtight container. This speeds up the thawing process and can help with measuring.

Uncooked yolks: Egg yolks alone can turn extremely gelatinous if frozen. For use in savory dishes, add ⅛ teaspoon of salt per four egg yolks. Substitute the salt for sugar for use in sweet dishes and/or desserts.

Cooked eggs: Scrambled eggs are fine to freeze, but it is advised to not freeze cooked egg whites. They become too watery and rubbery if not mixed with the yolk.

Hard-boiled eggs: As mentioned above, it is best to not freeze hard-boiled eggs because cooked whites become watery and rubbery when frozen.

Recipe Summary

  • 2 pounds ground beef
  • 2 ½ cups crushed butter-flavored crackers
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 2 eggs
  • ¾ cup ketchup
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • 2 slices bacon
  • 1 cup ketchup
  • 2 tablespoons vinegar
  • ¾ teaspoon salt, or to taste
  • 2 tablespoons prepared yellow mustard
  • ½ cup brown sugar

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).

In a medium bowl, mix together ground beef, crushed crackers, onion, eggs, 3/4 cup ketchup, and 1/4 cup brown sugar until well blended. Press into a 9x5 inch loaf pan. Lay the two slices of bacon over the top.

Bake for 1 hour in the preheated oven, or until cooked through. While the loaf bakes, mix together the remaining 1 cup ketchup, vinegar, salt, mustard and 1/2 cup brown sugar. Spread over the top of the meat loaf for the last 15 minutes of baking.

Bacon-wrapped keto meatloaf


  • 2 tbsp 2 tbsp butter
  • 1 (4 oz.) 1 (110 g) yellow onion , finely chopped yellow onions , finely chopped
  • 1½ lbs 650 g ground beef or ground turkey or ground pork
  • ½ cup 120 ml heavy whipping cream
  • 2 oz. (½ cup) 55 g (120 ml) cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 1 1 egg, beaten eggs, beaten
  • 1 tbsp 1 tbsp dried oregano or dried basil
  • 1 tsp 1 tsp salt
  • ½ tsp ½ tsp ground black pepper
  • 7 oz. 200 g sliced bacon

Below 4 E% carbs or, 7 g of carbs or less if it is a mealRead more

Besides being tested by the original recipe creator, this recipe has also been tested and quality approved by our test kitchen.


Instructions are for 4 servings. Please modify as needed.


Gravy and serving

Want some variety? We have an entire atlas of ideas for you to make this recipe new and exciting every time you make it!

Go Greek by adding crumbled feta, pitted Kalamata olives, cinnamon and thyme. If you’re in the mood for Italian, finely chop some sun-dried tomatoes and grate some parmesan into the mix – or toss in some pesto, parmesan and green olives. Feeling more French? Reach for a little Dijon mustard, tarragon and grated gruyere cheese. Some finely chopped chorizo and padrón peppers will whisk you away to Spain. Or head down to Tex Mex country by bringing some jalapenos, shredded Monterey Jack, chili powder, coriander and fresh cilantro to the party. Use your imagination and travel the globe!

What Type Of Veggies Can I Add To Meatloaf

You can really load this recipe up with veggies to make it healthier! Do you have some picky eaters at home? They’ll never know what you have hidden in this meatloaf. What an awesome trick to hide up your sleeve, hey?

  • Grated carrot
  • Minced mushrooms
  • Red or yellow bell peppers
  • Grated zucchini
  • Riced cauliflower
  • Grated radish

Adding veggies to your meatloaf helps keep lots of moisture in there as well. It’s a win-win! I like to either grate or mince my veggies nice and small. You seriously won’t even know they’re in there other than a few pops of color!


Step 1

Preheat oven to 350° F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil, then parchment paper.

Heat oil over medium in a small skillet. Cook onion and garlic, stirring occasionally, until very soft, about 4 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl.

Meanwhile, bring ketchup, vinegar, brown sugar, and cayenne to a boil in a small saucepan, reduce heat, and simmer, stirring occasionally, until slightly reduced and syrupy, about 5 minutes. Transfer 2 tablespoons ketchup mixture to a blender add broth and parsley and blend until smooth. Set remaining ketchup mixture aside.

Add broth mixture, eggs, breadcrumbs, Parmesan, salt, and pepper to onion and garlic mix to combine. Add beef and mix well with your hands to combine. Transfer meatloaf mixture to prepared pan and form into a long log (about 12-x5-inch), smoothing surface. Spread reserved ketchup mixture over top and drape bacon in a crisscross pattern over loaf, tucking underneath.

Bake until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the center registers 165°F and bacon is crisp, 70 to 80 minutes. Let rest 10 minutes before slicing.



View line-by-line Nutrition Insights&trade: Discover which ingredients contribute the calories/sodium/etc.

Disclaimer: Nutrition facts are derived from linked ingredients (shown at left in colored bullets) and may or may not be complete. Always consult a licensed nutritionist or doctor if you have a nutrition-related medical condition.

Calories per serving: 3706

Get detailed nutrition information, including item-by-item nutrition insights, so you can see where the calories, carbs, fat, sodium and more come from.

Use same recipe for meatballs, etc. .

Here I've turned 8 pounds of ground beef (that I got on sale) into:

  • meatballs that will be oven browned and then frozen
  • 4 mini bacon-wrapped meatloaves to be eaten right away!
  • meatballs that will be cooked as Königsberger Klopse mit Sosseਏor the coming week
  • and some left ground beef to freeze for some future use.

I love making this recipe into mini meatloaves . that way there's lots more crust for everyone!

Bacon Barbecue Meatloaf

Meatloaf is a meal that I often turn to when my husband is away and it will be just me and the kids at the table in the evening, because I know that no one will need any prodding to finish their dinner. This Bacon Barbecue Meatloaf takes a humble family dish and elevates it to something truly delicious and memorable that you will want to make again and again. With just a little effort, you can make a flavorful meatloaf topped with a simple, sweet barbecue sauce. Serve it with Creamy Garlic Whipped Potatoes (page 56) and Cece’s Garlic Green Beans (page 44) on the side!

Cooking Method Pressure Cooker


  • Meatloaf Mixture
  • 1 1 / 4 pound (570 g) ground beef
  • 1 egg
  • 3 / 4 cup (45 g) panko breadcrumbs
  • 1 / 2 cup (125 ml) milk
  • 1 / 2 cup (30 g) shredded Parmesan cheese
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 / 2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 / 2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 / 2 cup (60 g) minced red onion
  • 4 slices bacon
  • Barbecue Sauce
  • 1 cup (175 g) ketchup
  • 1 / 4 cup (75 g) molasses
  • 1 / 2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 / 4 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 / 4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 tablespoon (6 g) dried minced onion


In a medium mixing bowl, combine the ground beef, egg, breadcrumbs, milk, Parmesan, salt, pepper, oregano, chili powder, garlic powder, and onion. Thoroughly mix the ingredients with your hands, then form the mixture into a loaf. Place the meatloaf in a 7-inch (18-cm) springform pan (see Note). Lay the strips of bacon across the top of the meatloaf, then tuck the ends underneath.

For the barbecue sauce, stir together the ketchup, molasses, garlic powder, oregano, salt, thyme, cayenne pepper, and onion in a liquid measuring cup. Pour ½ cup (125 ml) of the sauce on top of the meatloaf. Cover the springform pan with a piece of foil so that it loosely tents over the top of the meatloaf.

Pour 1 cup (250 ml) of water into the Instant Pot, set in the trivet, then place the springform pan on the trivet. Place the lid on the Instant Pot, turn the valve to Sealing, and set the cook time for 35 minutes on high pressure.

Quick release the pressure when the cook time is complete. Discard the foil. Transfer the meatloaf to a serving platter, pour 1 cup (250 ml) of barbecue sauce on top of the meatloaf, and place the meatloaf under the broiler until the sauce is bubbly, about 5 minutes.

Serve the meatloaf with any remaining barbecue sauce for dipping.

Any 7-inch (18-cm) pan will work for this if the sides are as high as the meatloaf. Alternatively, you can make a sling out of foil to set the meatloaf in if you do not have a pan to use.

Reprinted with permission from Family Meals from Scratch in Your Instant Pot by Lisa Burns, Page Street Publishing Co. 2019. Photo credit: Ken Goodman