Turkey & Veggie Meatloaf

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vegetable turkey meatloaf

What’s Up, Hungry People

Embarking on a healthier lifestyle is always a popular resolution, and I’m right there with you! Having successfully ditched sodas and adopted a healthier diet, I’m finding creative ways to satisfy my cravings without compromising on taste.

The key? Reimagining favorites into healthier versions – like transforming classic meatloaf into a nutritious masterpiece.

turkey meatloaf recipe

Revamped Turkey & Veggie Meatloaf

Turkey is an excellent alternative to beef in meatloaf, offering a similar texture and a canvas for diverse flavors. My version is chock-full of nutritious vegetables like spinach, onions, and peppers. To give it a unique twist, I’ve topped it with a spicy balsamic glaze, an innovative nod to the traditional meatloaf.

In a departure from the norm, I used oats instead of bread or breadcrumbs. This not only holds the meatloaf together but also adds a wholesome touch. I’ve recently become an oat aficionado, incorporating them into various dishes for their texture and health benefits.

ingredients for turkey meatloaf

Here’s What You Need

  • Ground Turkey: Lean protein source, provides structure and flavor to the meatloaf.
  • Oats: Absorbs moisture, binds ingredients, and adds texture.
  • Almond Milk: Moistens oats, adds slight nutty flavor.
  • Spinach: Adds nutrients, color, and subtle flavor.
  • Eggs: Act as a binder, helping to hold the loaf together.
  • Onion: Adds sweetness and aroma upon cooking.
  • Bell Peppers: Provide color, sweetness, and a crunchy texture.
  • Garlic: Enhances flavor with its strong, aromatic profile.
  • Lemon Juice: Adds acidity, brightening the overall flavor.
  • Spicy Ketchup: Offers a tangy and spicy glaze for the meatloaf.
  • Balsamic Vinegar: Contributes a rich, slightly sweet flavor to the glaze.
  • Worcestershire Sauce: Adds umami and depth of flavor.
  • Whole Grain Mustard: Gives a tangy and slightly spicy kick.
  • Cayenne Pepper: Provides a hint of heat.
  • Fresh Thyme: Adds earthy and lemony notes.
  • Fresh Parsley: Offers a fresh, slightly peppery taste.
  • Salt and Pepper: Enhances overall flavors of the meatloaf.
turkey meatloaf mixture

Let’s Cook

For the best texture, allow the oats to soak until they’re quite soft, much like preparing bread for a classic meatloaf. I let mine marinate for about two hours to fully absorb the flavors.

mixing turkey meat

When it’s time to assemble the loaf, mix the spinach with the meat. Feel free to shred the spinach for a more integrated texture, though leaving the leaves whole works just as well. A crucial step is to thoroughly grease the loaf pan to prevent sticking and ensure an easy release of the loaf after baking.

filling bread pan

For the glaze, combine spicy ketchup, balsamic vinegar, and lemon juice. Spread this mixture over the turkey loaf just before baking. This step infuses an extra layer of flavor and moisture into the meatloaf.

topping with sauce

Cover the loaf with foil and bake for forty-five minutes at 375°F. Then, uncover and continue baking for an additional fifteen to twenty minutes to achieve the perfect crust.

hot sauce drizzle

Turkey & Veggie Meatloaf Tips

  • Greasing the Pan: To prevent sticking, thoroughly grease your loaf pan. This ensures easy removal and a perfect shape of your meatloaf.
  • Marinating Oats: Allow the oats to marinate for at least an hour. This step is crucial for the oats to absorb the flavors and moisture, which helps in binding the meatloaf.
  • Meatloaf Temperature: The internal temperature of the meatloaf should reach 160°F to ensure it’s cooked thoroughly. Use a meat thermometer for accuracy.
  • Resting the Meatloaf: Let the meatloaf rest for 15 minutes after baking. This helps in retaining its shape and makes slicing easier.
  • Reheating: For reheating, warm the meatloaf in an oven at 350°F for 25-30 minutes. It ensures even heating without drying out the meatloaf.
  • Make-Ahead Method: For an even more cohesive meatloaf, prepare it the night before. Let it cool completely, then reheat for thirty minutes the next day. This resting period allows the flavors to meld and the loaf to firm up, ensuring clean slices.
  • Same-Day Serving: If you’re short on time, you can still enjoy the meatloaf the same day. Just let it rest for about fifteen minutes before serving. This brief pause helps the loaf set.
  • Versatile Serving Suggestions: While this meatloaf fits perfectly into a healthy diet, it’s also delicious cold, sandwiched between two slices of bread for a more indulgent meal.
sliced meatloaf

Turkey and veggie meatloaf is a fantastic dish that proves healthy eating doesn’t mean sacrificing flavor or your favorite meals. With its rich blend of spices, hearty turkey, and an array of vegetables, this recipe brings both nutrition and taste to the table. The spicy glaze adds a unique twist, making each bite a delightful experience.

Whether you’re a seasoned chef or a kitchen newbie, this meatloaf is a simple yet satisfying dish to add to your cooking repertoire. Enjoy it hot from the oven or as a tasty cold sandwich filling – either way, it’s a winner!

vegetable turkey meatloaf

Turkey & Veggie Meatloaf

The Starving Chef
I packed my turkey meatloaf full of vegetables like spinach, onions and peppers, then made a spicy balsamic glaze for the top as a take on classic meatloaf.
No ratings yet
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Resting Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 45 minutes
Course Dinner
Cuisine American, Healthy
Servings 6


  • 16 oz ground turkey
  • 2 ½ cup oats
  • 2 cups almond milk or milk of choice
  • 2 cups spinach
  • 2 eggs whisked
  • ¼ cups onion chopped
  • ¼ cup bell peppers chopped
  • 3 tablespoons garlic minced
  • ½ lemon juiced
  • ¼ cup spicy ketchup
  • ¼ cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon whole grain mustard
  • ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 4 tablespoons fresh thyme
  • 4 tablespoons fresh parsley
  • salt & pepper to taste


  • In a small bowl, stir together the oats, almond milk, chopped onions, peppers, and garlic. Whisk the eggs and pour them into the oats mixture. Mix in the whole grain mustard, Worcestershire sauce, fresh herbs, and cayenne pepper. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Let marinate for at least one hour.
  • Preheat the oven to 375°F. Grease a loaf pan well. Add the ground turkey and spinach to the oat mixture. Season again with salt and pepper, as desired. Mix with a spoon until well combined. Pour the turkey mixture into the loaf pan.
  • Whisk together the ketchup, balsamic vinegar, and lemon juice. Spread the sauce over the top of the turkey loaf. Cover the pan with foil.
  • Bake the turkey loaf, covered, for 45 minutes. Remove the foil and continue to cook for an additional 15-20 minutes, or until the internal temperature of the turkey loaf reaches 160°F. Let the meatloaf rest for 15 minutes prior to serving. This will ensure that it continues to cook and doesn't fall apart when removed from the pan. Garnish with additional ketchup and fresh parsley. Enjoy!
  • Optional: Let rest, covered and refrigerated overnight (or for 8-10 hours). This helps the turkey loaf retain its shape. To reheat: bake at 350°F for 30-40 minutes, or until the internal temperature of the turkey loaf reaches 160°F
Keyword meatloaf, oats, turkey
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