Yeah that's right...I said Chicken Meatloaf! But before you go giving me the culinary death stare, let me just tell you how good this was. Ri-goddamn-diculously good! Sautéed onions and smothered with Sweet Baby Ray's BBQ sauce, you may not think there's an equal substitute for ground beef meatloaf...well YOU WOULD BE WRONG!
When did meatloaf get such a bad rap? This chicken meatloaf with BBQ sauce was phenomenal and became an instant classic in my house.
Ingredients for Chicken Meatloaf
Here's what you'll need to make it (p.s. how cool is the image with all the ingredients on it btw? Think I'll start doing this more often 🙂
How to cook it
Step 1 - Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Step 2 - Cook the onions and garlic. Heat the olive oil and start sautéing the onions. Once the onions start getting soft, add the garlic.
Step 3 - Make the meatloaf. Add all the ingredients (except ¼ cup of BBQ sauce and half the parsley) to a large bowl. Mix all together until thoroughly combined.
Step 4 - Prepare the meatloaf for cooking. Grease a loaf pan with olive oil, shape the chicken mixture into a tightly packed loaf and place in the pan.
Step 5 - Bake. Bake, uncovered for about 30 minutes.
Step 6 - Top with BBQ sauce and finish cooking. Using a basting brush, remove the meatloaf from the oven and cover the outside with the remaining BBQ sauce. Bake for an additional 10-15 minutes or until the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees F.
Tips, Tricks, FAQs
Let the meat sit after baking
This step is REALLY important! Now, I know you'd like to take your bear claws and dig right in and start eating, but DON'T! Pull back on those reins and give it 5 minutes to sit and rest. This will help the juices redistribute and help you create the juiciest, moistest, tastiest, softest chicken meatloaf ever. So go relax, sip your glass of wine or guzzle a beer and give it those 5 minutes.
Can I freeze chicken meatloaf?
The short answer is...yes. You can freeze it before baking it and cook it later. You can also cook it first, and freeze the leftovers. If you decide to make it in advance and freeze the raw meat, make sure to wrap it very well in plastic wrap and then put it in a freezer bag to keep the air out. Leftovers can also be frozen. Just make sure you freeze them within 3-4 days after cooking, preferably before then. Whether frozen before or after cooking, meatloaf can stay in the freezer for up to 6 months.
If the meat you're using was already frozen and thawed, it's always a good idea to check the USDA's guidelines on thawing and refreezing frozen meat. There are a few factors to take into consideration, such as how the meat was handled, if it was frozen and thawed, and how it was thawed. Better safe than sorry.
How long can meatloaf stay in the fridge?
3-4 days. After that, trash it or just toss it in the freezer for later.
Can I substitute ketchup for the BBQ sauce?
Sure. It's really more preference than anything else. If you're on 'Team Ketchup' go with it. If you're more of a BBQ fan, stick with that. Either way, both options will help the meatloaf stay nice and moist on the inside, so you really can't go wrong.
What sides go well with meatloaf?
Roasted carrots, mashed potatoes, mac n' cheese, Brussels sprouts, and roasted broccoli are some of my favorites.
Bake up this Chicken Meatloaf? Would definitely appreciate if you leave a comment below and let me know what you thought! Always love hearing from you guys...and don't worry I'm an Italian from New Jersey...I got thick skin!
Chicken Meatloaf with BBQ Sauce
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Heat the olive oil in a medium skillet. Once hot, add the onions and cook for for about 3-4 minutes until they begin to soften. Then, add the garlic and cook for an additional minute. Transfer to a bowl.
- In a large bowl, combine the ground chicken, onion and garlic mixture, breadcrumbs, ¾ of the BBQ sauce, Italian seasoning, parmesan cheese, ½ the parsley, salt and pepper. Using clean hands, mix everything all together until thoroughly combined.
- Spray all sides of a loaf pan with cooking spray. Shape the chicken mixture into a tightly packed loaf (about 8 inches long by 4 inches wide) and place in the pan.
- Bake, uncovered, for 30-35 minutes.
- After the initial baking time, using a basting brush, brush the top of the meatloaf with the remaining BBQ sauce. Bake for an additional 10-15 minutes or until the internal temperature reads 165 degrees on an instant thermometer.
- Remove meatloaf. After 5 minutes of resting, slice and top with the remaining parsley. Serve hot!
- So, I double this recipe when I cook it and make (2) separate meatloafs for my family (2 adults, 2 children) and we typically have no leftovers.
- I know it's tempting to dig right in, but be sure to let the meatloaf sit and rest for 5 minutes after removing from the oven. This will make sure all the juices redistribute and the meatloaf stays nice and moist!
- Nutritional information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking method and ingredients used. It's advised you calculate your own nutritional values if needed.