Air Fryer Meatloaf

5 from 4 votes
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This moist, juicy air fryer meatloaf is so quick and easy and yields perfect results every time. Deliciously seasoned ground beef bound together with eggs and breadcrumbs is formed into loaves, cooked in the air fryer, and finished with a tangy glaze.

For those who love using their air fryer as much as this gal, please, you have to try this tender air fried steak as well as these juicy air fryer pork chops!

A fork taking a bite out of a slice of air fryer meatloaf on a plate with mashed potatoes and green beans.


 

This classic meatloaf recipe is a surefire way to banish the notion of dry, bland meatloaf. It’s moist, juicy, and brimming with flavor, set to leave a lasting impression on anyone who tries it. When I first tested making meatloaf in the air fryer, I was sold – it came out so juicy and flavorful, even better than the oven version! My family was amazed at how delicious it turned out, and now it’s a regular on our dinner menu.

Its straightforward preparation and quick cooking make it an ideal recipe for busy weeknights or weekend get-togethers. The sweet and tangy glaze is my favorite part – it’s a perfect blend of sweetness and tanginess that enhances the meatloaf’s rich taste.

Why You’ll Love This Air Fryer Meatloaf Recipe

Moist. A common complaint about meatloaf is that it’s too dry, but not this one! It’s moist, juicy, and packed with flavor.

Sweet Glaze. I’m a big fan of the glaze on this meatloaf; its sweet, savory, and tangy flavors complement the rich umami of the meatloaf perfectly.

Easy. This is an easy recipe to put together. Hydrate some bread crumbs, toss all of the ingredients into a bowl, mix them together, whisk up a glaze, and air fry.

Customizable. You can tweak this recipe to fit your taste preferences. Use ground turkey, add cheese, play with the seasonings, etc.

A photo of labeled ingredients used to make air fryer meatloaf.

What You’ll Need

Head on over to the grocery store and grab the ingredients for this easy meatloaf recipe. You’ll find precise measurements in the recipe card further down the page.

  • Breadcrumbs: I used unseasoned breadcrumbs so I can control the flavor, but you could use seasoned breadcrumbs or panko bread crumbs, if you’d like.
  • Milk: I used whole milk, but 2% is okay to use.
  • Olive oil
  • Yellow onion: Red or white onion would also work here.
  • Ground beef: I suggest using 80/20 lean ground beef, but you could use a product with a lower fat content. You could also use ground turkey or ground chicken.
  • Eggs: It’s best if the eggs are at room temperature.
  • Ketchup: We will use some for the meatloaf mixture and more for the glaze.
  • Worcestershire sauce
  • Seasoning: Garlic powder, salt, ground black pepper, dried oregano, and chopped fresh parsley.
  • Brown sugar: You could use honey instead.
  • Apple cider vinegar: Needed for the glaze.
  • Mustard: I suggest plain yellow mustard, but honey mustard is also a good choice.

How to Make Meatloaf in Air Fryer

This air fryer meatloaf cooks up quickly and easily, saving you time compared to oven baking. Follow these easy steps to prepare a delicious meatloaf that will become a favorite!

  1. Hydrate the breadcrumbs. Mix the breadcrumbs and milk together and let sit for 5 to 10 minutes.
  2. Saute the onions. Heat the oil in a skillet over medium heat and add the onions. Saute until translucent.
  3. Make the meatloaf mixture. Use your hands to mix together the ground beef, sauteed onion, breadcrumb mixture, eggs, ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, and seasoning until just incorporated. Don’t overmix.
  4. Make the glaze. Whisk together the ingredients for the glaze.
  5. Preheat the air fryer. Preheat the air fryer to 350°F.
  6. Form the loaves. Divide the meat mixture in half and form each portion into a loaf shape.
  7. Air fry. Place the meatloaves in the air fryer basket and cook at 350°F for 20 minutes. Then, brush the loaves with the glaze, and air fry for an additional 15 minutes.
  8. Rest and slice. Transfer the meatloaves to a cutting board and allow them to rest for 10 minutes before slicing and serving.
Sliced air fryer meatloaf on parchment paper with a knife.

Recipe Tips And Variations

Before skipping ahead to the cooking part, read through these useful tips and tricks in order to achieve the perfect air fryer version of meatloaf.

  • Hydrate the breadcrumbs. Soaking the breadcrumbs with milk will help ensure that your meatloaf doesn’t dry out.
  • Room-temperature eggs. Start with room-temperature eggs. They will incorporate the rest of the ingredients more easily.
  • Don’t over-handle. When mixing together the ingredients, be sure not to overdo it because you’ll end up with a tough, dense meatloaf. Mix just until everything is incorporated.
  • Use a meat thermometer. To check for doneness, use an instant-read thermometer. The internal temperature should read 160°F at the thickest part of the meatloaf.
  • Let it rest. Letting the meatloaf rest before slicing helps the juices redistribute and keeps the meat juicy.
  • Try a different ground meat. Try ground chicken or turkey instead. You could do a combination of ground beef and ground pork, too.
  • Add cheese. Fold crumbled feta cheese, shredded parmesan cheese, or mozzarella pearls into the meatloaf mixture.
  • Asian style. Swap out the oregano for soy sauce and gochujang chile paste and, for the glaze, swap the mustard for more gochujang chile paste and a little sweet chili sauce. Garnish with sesame seeds and you’ve got yourself an Asian-inspired air fryer meatloaf.

Serving Suggestions

This is the best Air Fryer Meatloaf recipe. It’s super easy to make, and the air fryer gives it that perfect crispy edge.

To round out this meal, I feel like you can’t really have meatloaf without these Garlic Rosemary Mashed Potatoes – they are the perfect match. You should also try these Air Fryer Baked Potatoes or my famous Smashed Potatoes. To round out your meal with a little vegetable matter, make these Air Fryer Carrots or some Roasted Green Beans.

This simple Green Goddess Salad or my Very Berry Avocado Salad would go nicely here.

A fork taking a bite out of a slice of air fryer meatloaf on a plate with mashed potatoes and green beans.

How To Store Leftovers

Seal cooled leftover meatloaf in an airtight container. You can store it in the fridge for up to 4 days or in the freezer for up to 3 months.

To reheat, allow the meatloaf to thaw in the fridge, if applicable. Air fry at 350°F for 5 minutes or until warm. You can also reheat individual portions in the microwave in 30-second intervals until warm.

Quick Air Fryer Recipes

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5 from 4 votes

Air Fryer Meatloaf

This air fryer meatloaf recipe consistently delivers moist and juicy meatloaf. It's made with seasoned ground beef, eggs, and breadcrumbs and topped with a sweet, tangy glaze.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Resting Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour
Servings: 6 servings

Ingredients 

For the meatloaf

  • cup breadcrumbs
  • cup milk
  • ½ tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 small yellow onion, diced
  • 2 pounds ground beef
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 tablespoons ketchup
  • 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • ½ cup chopped fresh parsley

For the glaze

  • ½ cup ketchup
  • 3 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon mustard
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Instructions 

  • Hydrate the breadcrumbs. Combine the breadcrumbs and the milk in a mixing bowl. Mix together and let sit for 5 to 10 minutes.
  • Saute the onions. Heat the oil in a skillet over medium heat and add the onions. Saute for 2 minutes or until translucent.
  • Make the meatloaf mixture. Add the hydrated breadcrumb mixture, sauteed onions, ground beef, eggs, ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, garlic powder, salt, pepper, oregano, and parsley to a large mixing bowl. Use your hands to mix it all together until everything is just incorporated. Don’t overmix.
  • Make the glaze. Whisk together the ketchup, brown sugar, apple cider vinegar, and mustard.
  • Preheat the air fryer. Preheat the air fryer to 350°F.
  • Form the loaves. While the air fryer is preheating, Divide the meat mixture in half and use your hands to gently form each portion into a loaf.
  • Air fry. Place the meatloaves in the air fryer with space between them and air fry at 350°F for 20 minutes.
  • Glaze. Brush the glaze over the meatloaves and continue to cook them for an additional 15 minutes or until the internal temperature of each loaf reaches 160°F.
  • Rest and slice. Transfer the meatloaves to a cutting board and allow them to rest for 10 minutes before slicing and serving.

Notes

  • Meat Thermometer: Use a thermometer to ensure the meatloaf reaches 160°F to 165˚F.
  • Resting: Allow the meatloaf to rest before slicing to keep the juices in and the meat moist.
  • Meat Variations: Experiment with ground chicken, turkey, or a mix of beef and pork.
  • Storage: Store cooled leftovers in an airtight container and keep them in the fridge for up to 4 days or in the freezer for 3 months.

Nutrition

Serving: 2slices | Calories: 338kcal | Carbohydrates: 17g | Protein: 37g | Fat: 12g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 5g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 159mg | Sodium: 1017mg | Potassium: 699mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 10g | Vitamin A: 572IU | Vitamin C: 8mg | Calcium: 100mg | Iron: 5mg

Nutritional info is an estimate and provided as courtesy. Values may vary according to the ingredients and tools used. Please use your preferred nutritional calculator for more detailed info.

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6 Comments

  1. Sherry says:

    What if you don’t have an air fryer, will crockpot or oven work

    1. Katerina says:

      Hi!
      Yes, you can make it in the oven. Press the meatloaf mixture into a loaf pan. Brush half of the glaze over the top of the meatloaf.
      Bake at 350˚F for 45 minutes, brush the remaining glaze over the top, and bake for an additional 15 minutes or until a meat thermometer inserted into the center of the meatloaf reads 160°F.

  2. Jann Forrest says:

    I only have a 4-quart Insta air fryer and have issues with adjusting the ingredients. Any suggestions? I hate having to toss stuff when I mess up.

    1. Katerina says:

      Hi!
      Yeah, I feel the same – don’t toss out food! 😀
      This recipe is for two loaves of meatloaf. If they don’t fit in the basket together, you could cook one at a time. Or are you asking to cut the recipe in half so you can make one meatloaf?
      To cut it in half, you’ll need:
      ⅓ cup breadcrumbs
      ⅓ cup milk
      ¼ tablespoon olive oil
      ½ small yellow onion, diced
      1 pound ground beef
      1 large egg
      1 tablespoon ketchup
      1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
      1 teaspoon garlic powder
      1 teaspoon salt
      ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
      1 teaspoon dried oregano
      ¼ cup chopped fresh parsley

      For the glaze:
      ¼ cup ketchup
      1½ tablespoons brown sugar
      ½ tablespoon apple cider vinegar
      ½ tablespoon mustard

  3. Inga says:

    can I use oat milk instead of milk?

    1. Katerina says:

      Hi!
      Yes, absolutely. I have used heavy cream, skim milk, oat milk, almond milk, etc. 😀