This Turkey Meatloaf Recipe is easy to make, healthy and so tender and moist! Zucchini is the hidden ingredient that gives it so much moisture, so you can say goodbye to dry meatloaf. You can’t taste it so no one will know you added some sneaky veggies!
I've been making this recipe for over 20 years and it's my husband's favorite meatloaf recipe!
I love meatloaf, but when I’m trying to eat lighter and healthier it’s not at the top of my list of things to make because it can be really heavy and dense with a lot of extra fat. When I found this recipe in a magazine 20 years ago, I started making a delicious ground turkey meatloaf that tastes amazing but is lighter.
I’ve tried other turkey meatloaf recipes and they always come out dry. Turkey is pretty lean and without the extra fat it doesn’t always make the best meatloaf – it should be tender and moist, not tough and dry. This is the BEST turkey meatloaf with a sneaky ingredient that makes it so good.
My husband LOVES when I make this recipe - and I know you'll love it too.
How to Make Moist Turkey Meatloaf
Shredded zucchini is what makes this meatloaf so delicious – full of moisture, tender and delicious without extra fat. You can’t taste the zucchini and it basically melts into the meat as it bakes giving it tons of moisture.
It really makes a big difference and you don’t have to worry about your meatloaf coming out oven dry.
The other thing I love about this recipe is that you don’t need a ton of ingredients. It’s so easy to mix up and you’ll have it in the oven in no time.
- I like to shred two small zucchinis for this recipe. Smaller zucchini have more water which is good for your meatloaf!
- You’ll also need an egg which acts as a binder and holds the loaf together. The egg also adds a little fat and flavor, too.
- Some tomato paste and dry onion soup mix adds a lot of savory flavors.
- Breadcrumbs are also a binder and work with the egg to help hold the meatloaf together.
- Of course, you need ground turkey, too!
Make the Meatloaf in Three Easy Steps
- First, shred your zucchini using the large holes of a box grater. Combine them with the egg, tomato paste, soup mix, breadcrumbs, and some black pepper in a large bowl.
- Add the ground turkey and zucchini and gently mix them using a wooden spoon or your hands. Press the mixture into a prepared loaf pan.
- Bake it for 1 hour and 10 minutes or until it’s cooked through. Let the meatloaf stand for 10 minutes before slicing and serving.
How do you know when meatloaf is done cooking?
Turkey meatloaf is done when the internal temperature is 165°F. Be sure to insert the meat thermometer into the center of the loaf to ensure it’s cooked all the way through.
Use a meat thermometer to test for doneness for PERFECT meatloaf!PRO TIP
How to Make Mini Meatloaf Muffins
If you want to speed things up you can make mini meatloaf muffins in a standard-sized muffin pan. This is a great way to have meatloaf during the week since they cook a lot faster this way – plus, everything is cuter in mini-form, right?
- Make the recipe as directed but instead of using a loaf pan divide the mixture evenly in a muffin pan.
- Bake them for 20 to 25 minutes or until they are cooked through.
We love this lightened-up turkey meatloaf with zucchini! Who would have guessed that zucchini can make such a big difference? I hope you love this recipe as much as I do!
Be sure to try our Turkey Meatloaf Muffins!
Turkey Meatloaf Recipe
- 2 small zucchini
- 1 large egg
- 1 6 ounce can tomato paste
- 1 package dry onion soup mix
- 1/2 cup breadcrumbs
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 2 pounds ground turkey
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray a 9x5x3-inch loaf pan with nonstick cooking spray.
- Shred zucchini using the large holes of a box grater into a large bowl. Add egg, tomato paste, soup mix, breadcrumbs and pepper. Stir to combine.
- Gently stir turkey into the zucchini mixture with a wooden spoon or your hands. Press into prepared pan and shape into a loaf.
- Bake for 1 hour and 10 minutes, or until the mixture reads 165°F on an instant-read thermometer. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.
Turkey Meatloaf is a healthier alternative for dinner this week! It’s the best turkey meatloaf kept moist with the secret ingredient – zucchini! You can even make these as mini muffins.
Dorothy is a blogger over at CrazyforCrust.com, where she's been sharing recipes with a slice of life for almost 10 years. She's married to Mel, the other half of Easy Good Ideas, and together they are raising a teenager and dog in Northern California.