Vegan Cuts

Quick and Easy Meatloaf Muffins

These easy meatloaf muffins took less time to bake in the oven than the traditional method of baking in a loaf pan or cast iron skillet. I had a kitchen assistant to help me bring this meal together. You may notice a sweet 5 year old in the background. Maggie was very serious and actually, very helpful. She surprised me with all that she could handle.


  • 1 1/2 to 2 pounds lean ground beef
  • 3/4 cup crushed crackers
  • 1 packet instant onion soup mix
  • 1 egg
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1/3 cup ketchup

HEAT the oven to 350ºF (180ºC) degrees.

Place 12-15 saltine crackers in a one cup food processor and pulse into rough crumbs.

Place the meat, onion soup mix, cracker crumbs, egg, water and ketchup in a large mixing bowl.

Mix well with hands, but try not to mash the meat together.


Have your kitchen helper fill each muffin cup with about 1/2 cup of the meat mixture. Do not pack it down, but gently press the top flat.

Add an extra dollop of ketchup to the tops and have your helper spread it evenly with the back of a spoon.

BAKE for 30-40 minutes, until meatloaf muffins pull away from the sides. While the muffins are baking, you’ll have plenty of time to make home cooked mashed potatoes. Transfer hot meatloaf muffins to a large serving bowl and you’re ready to eat!

Meatloaf Muffins

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  • amy

    I’m on my way over now… me a seat at the table….:)

    I will definitely try making meatloaf this way next time I make it.

    This is a better way for me to keep track of my portion size/calories….:)

    Plus it makes me think of meatballs…and I looooove meatballs.:)

    God Bless,

  • tye

    I have everything on hand. I am making this tonight!

  • Jill

    Cool Tye!

    Be SURE to come back and rate this recipe using the new star system and let the other readers know how it turned out. I can’t be only one going on about this recipe.

    The crowd demands SOCIAL PROOF!

  • Angie

    Made this last night and had leftovers of it for lunch, best meatloaf ever, what a cute idea to do it in muffin pans! I tweaked and adjusted the recipe in a few ways, but it came out great anyway!
    I added diced banana pepper and green onion fresh from the garden, it was delicious.
    Also – I really packed the meat in the muffin cups, so I put the muffin pan into another pan with a little water in it to catch the overflowing grease, does that make sense? Hope so, it made clean up easy :)
    Thanks for the idea, LOVE your recipe collection!

    • Jill

      Thank you Angie!

      I like the idea of the banana pepper and green onions…mmm.
      Good idea with the pan inside the pan. I totally get what you’re saying.

  • mandy

    Thanks for the great idea, my husband doesn’t like traditional meatloaf, but i think he will like this one. Can’t wait to try it.

  • Jill

    Hi Mandy!
    Please come back and let me & others know what he thought.

  • Karen

    I tried this tonight and my two toddlers love it. Great recipe and great to let the kids help.

  • Jill

    Thank you Karen for letting us know.

    Two Toddlers?! Boy! you have your hands full. If there’s anything I can do you, hollar.

  • Jan Maiolatesi

    What a novel way to make meatloaf. I have tried different ways but this has got to be the best one yet. I am so excited that I am going 3 miles down the road & pick up my granddaughter & make this a family affair. She loves to squish things together. I will let you know how it turns out. Thanks again Jill for a wonderful recipe.

    • Jill

      Go Jan go! I’ll be waiting to hear about the fun.
      You’re welcome for the recipe. It’s my pleasure to be here for you.

  • Shawna

    So, if I may ask, why the high heat PAM? I don’t like the regular stuff @ all. It always leaves a funny flavor when I use it on baked items. But I do use Baker’s Joy (or whatever that one is called) when I am making dessert items. Just curious! :)

  • Deby

    How cute! Presentation is important! Much better then the traditional meatloaf shaped like a log. My mom makes meatloaf often, I will share with her.

    • Jill

      Deby & Bren, I agree with both of you. The muffin shape & size is just enough meat for anyone. And I like the idea of using this recipe for a church potluck! Very smart.

      I don’t know about y’all, but I love a warm meatloaf sandwich the next day. I suppose with this shape, I would need to buy hoagie buns and eat’em like a meatball sandwich.

  • Bren

    My hubby does not like a lot of meat so this recipe will probably please him. Having an easy clean up and the prepared portions will also be good for a church potluck; no need to cut a big loaf up.

  • Jill

    Hi Shawna, I did a write up on High Heat Pam here…

    as far as taste, well I’ve honestly never noticed one. and I haven’t tried Baker’s Joy. I’m curious now to compared the two. Hmmmm…

  • Sithean

    You are awesome! Thanks for sharing these. =) They freeze perfectly, and are a great addition to my bento lunches. They make portion control a snap, plus they taste great. You rock!

  • Jill

    Ah golly! Thank you Sithean! You’ve made my morning brighter.

    It’s really good to know that these meatloaf muffins freeze well. Thank you for sharing that tip.

  • Lauren

    Meatloaf is my favorite! My boyfriends mother Melinda was working a night shift as a nurse and went to the website and saw it! Now she is in there making meatloaf muffins! i think it very cool how they are muffins! I JUST CANT WAIT TILL THERE DONE! Thank you for putting up your recipe and sharing it! Lauren & Melinda

  • Tameka

    I saw this recipie yesterday while browsing the web and fell in love with this idea! I went to the store and grabbed everything I needed (including splurging for a new muffin pan) and was so excited to make these last night. I added fresh chopped onion, olives, and green peppers and I also used ground turkey instead of beef. It was fabulous and so cute. And I like the idea of this helping with portion control. Thanks for this grand idea!! I was so proud, I even took pictures! :-)

  • Jill

    Good morning Tameka!

    Great idea, using turkey and fresh vegetables in this recipe. I know there are lots of folks in the SDR family that enjoy alternatives to beef. Did you add any spices to your meatloaf muffins?

  • Tameka

    Good afternoon Jill! As far as spices, I used a seasoning salt, pepper, tuscan blended spice mix (Kroger Brand) and a bag of powdered Ranch mix. in addition, because I am not a big fan of katchup, I dollopped the top of my meatloaf muffins with sundried tomato alfredo sauce. I went down the pasta aisle and was just going to get a jar of alfredo sauce but then I saw the sun-dried tomato flavor and said well maybe that will be close to the tomato flavor of the traditional recipie. So I used it and it tasted great! I just love your website! It’s my new vice!

    • Jill

      What a great idea, Tameka!
      It would never have occurred to me to try a savory tomato topping instead of ketchup. Mmmm… I can imagine how that went so well with the onions and green peppers. What’s goes in the Tuscan spice mix blend?

      A couple of years ago, we lived near a Kroger and I loved that store. They had a tortilla machine in the bakery that pumped out fresh, hot tortillas in the mornings. My kiddos and I would stop there first so we could nibble on hot tortillas as I shopped. Ah, what a yummy memory.

  • Candy

    This recipe seemed almost too simple, far too easy to be really good. But, with a 3 week old newborn in the house I needed something easy to prepare and cook in the mere moments I was allowed to have. So I was extremely happy when these little meatloaf muffins came out moist (yay!), flavorful (double yay) and perfectly portioned to eat. Plus, we have leftovers to tide us through these difficult early days with baby!

    Thanks for the great recipe. I’m definitely keeping this one.

    • Jill

      Oh! and a new baby too? Candy, you have been blessed, indeed.
      I’m so glad this recipe works for you. I’ve been told the muffins freeze well, too, in case you feel like making extra for a make-ahead-meal.

      Have fun with your new love!

  • Chelle

    These were wesome! We are picky eaters here, so I altered a tiny bit of the recipe -omitted the onion soup mix – and added some cheese in the middle that oozes out when you cut it open. They were a hit! Thanks!

    • Jill

      You are welcome, Chelle! It’s always nice to read when a recipe works out. Thank you for letting me know.

  • Jess

    My lovely boyfriend and I made the meatloaf-muffins that you have here. Great idea! I love how yummy they are! I love your web site and is very happy to say I will be trying out more of your recipes.. Thank you for the great ideas.

    Jess ;)

  • Samantha

    I just realised these existed so I’m going to try it out. I’m going to use some other people’s ideas, since it seems it works: possibly leaving out the onion soup mix, maybe I’ll add some of my own spices to compensate, and I’ll put some cheese in the middle as well! I’m planning to top these with mashed potato “icing” and sprinkles. (shredded cheese). Can’t wait! (Hope they work out, hehe)

  • Jennifer

    GREAT RECIPE!!! Would it hurt anything to put the meat incupcake papers?? I Absolutely love decorating my food!

    • Jill

      I’m so glad you enjoyed them, Tami.

    • Jill

      There you go, Cathy! Use what you’ve got on hand.

  • Dawn

    Did anyone else have any issues with grease overflowing the muffin tins?
    I’m not sure what I did wrong but I have house full of smoke and some delicious meatloafs.

    • Angie Sosenko

      Did you use lean ground beef? Use no less than 90/10 or the fat will overflow. Also, I only fill them up about 2/3 of the way. They’re smaller muffins, but I put the mashed potatoes in a zip lock bag, cut the tip off, and pipe it onto the meatloaf to where they look like cupcakes, then sprinkle with bacon bits. Simply delicious and they look soooo cool!

  • TRB

    Can these be frozen?

    • Jill McKeever

      Yes, they can be frozen, no problem. ;D