This BBQ Turkey Meatloaf isn’t your mama’s meatloaf! It’s juicy and flavorful with the goodness of whole grain oatmeal so it’s completely gluten-free. It’s topped with a sweet, tangy bbq sauce for an easy dinner that may be prepped up to a day in advance!

BBQ turkey meatloaf sliced on a platter

Most people either love meatloaf or hate it. I really like it now, but when I was growing up I wasn’t a huge fan.

Let’s go a bit further and say that when I was a child, I used to carefully place my meatloaf into a napkin on my lap, wad it up and throw it away when I took my plate to the sink.

I never made it myself until after I got married because my husband loved it.  

I still wasn’t wild about it, then I had an aha! moment when I made bbq turkey meatballs from the Pioneer Woman. Her recipe included oatmeal instead of breadcrumbs, which I really loved.

I adapted that recipe into this BBQ Turkey Meatloaf with Oatmeal recipe, and I made it my own over the years.

This recipe is something that my entire family loves (including me!), so I make it often. ๐Ÿ™‚

Sliced turkey meatloaf with oatmeal on a platter

Why you’ll love this recipe:

  • This turkey meatloaf is the ultimate comfort food. It’s moist and flavorful with the goodness of whole grain oatmeal, and it’s topped with a sweet, tangy bbq sauce.
  • It includes rolled oats as a binder instead of breadcrumbs, so it’s a great gluten-free option.
  • It’s an easy family dinner and may be prepped up to a day in advance.
  • The recipe can easily be doubled to feed a crowd.

Recipe ingredients

turkey meatloaf recipe ingredients

Ingredient notes

  • Ground turkey. The ground turkey may be substituted with your favorite ground meat such as beef, chicken, pork or meat loaf mix.
  • Oatmeal. The oatmeal acts as a binder similar to breadcrumbs, which keeps the meatloaf from falling apart. Both old fashioned rolled oats and quick oats work fine in this recipe. I prefer rolled oats as they provide more texture.
  • Milk. The milk helps soften the oats for better texture and provides moisture for a nice, juicy meatloaf.
  • Worcestershire sauce. Provides savory, umami flavor. It may be substituted with soy sauce or gluten-free options such as coconut aminos or tamari.
  • Onion powder. The onion powder may be subbed with 1/2 cup of freshly grated onion if you prefer.
  • Garlic. I prefer using fresh garlic for flavor, but it may be substituted with a teaspoon of garlic powder if you prefer.
  • BBQ sauce. I use my favorite homemade bbq sauce, but you may use a store-bought sauce as a time saver.

How to make meatloaf with oats

If you’ve never tried meatloaf with oats, you’re in for a pleasant surprise.

The oats are softened in milk, then added to the meat mixture to bind the meatloaf and provide moisture as well as texture.

Pro tip:  The meatloaf mixture may be prepped up to a day in advance and baked when you’re ready for an easy meal prep option.

See the recipe card below for full instructions.

How to make turkey meatloaf recipe with oatmeal
  1. Combine the oats and milk in a small bowl and allow to soften for 30-60 minutes.
  2. Place the ground turkey, oat mixture, Worcestershire sauce, garlic, onion powder and salt and pepper in a large bowl.
  3. Using your hands, gently combine the meat mixture until incorporated, being careful not to over work the meat.
  4. Place the meat mixture on a parchment or foil lined baking sheet and form into a loaf about 2″ thick.
  5. Bake for 30 minutes, then remove from the oven and top with the sauce.
  6. Place back in the oven and bake for an additional 15 minutes or until a meat thermometer inserted into the center registers 160 degrees.
Sliced bbq turkey meatloaf on a platter with parsley

FAQ’s

Can meatloaf be prepared in advance?

Yes! Simply combine the meatloaf mixture and cover with plastic wrap up to a day in advance. Then form it into a loaf and bake when you’re ready!

Can quick oats be used?

I recommend making this turkey meatloaf with old fashioned rolled oatmeal for added texture, but quick oats may be used if that’s all you have on hand.

Why do you put milk in meatloaf?

Milk is essential for softening the oats (or in some cases breadcrumbs), which provides moisture to the meatloaf.

Why do people put oatmeal in meatloaf?

Either rolled oats or quick oats are often used in meatloaf to act as binder instead of breadcrumbs, bread or crushed crackers.

Meatloaf without breadcrumbs is a great gluten-free dinner option.

Slices of turkey meatloaf with oatmeal on a plate with broccoli

Serving suggestions

This turkey meatloaf recipe with oatmeal may be served so many delicious ways.

Recipe notes

  • Pro tip:  Prep the meatloaf mixture up to a day in advance and bake it when you’re ready!
  • Quick oats may be used in place of the rolled oats, they just won’t add as much texture.
  • Turkey meatloaf with oatmeal can be customized with your favorite ground meat such as beef, chicken, pork or meatloaf mix.
  • Store bbq meatloaf in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
  • This recipe is easily doubled to feed a crowd.
Slices of turkey meatloaf on a plate

More ground turkey recipes:

Did you try this recipe?ย  If so, be sure to leave a review below and tag me @flavorthemoments on Facebook and Instagram

BBQ turkey meatloaf with oatmeal sliced on a platter

BBQ Turkey Meatloaf Recipe

This BBQ Turkey Meatloaf with Oatmeal is juicy, flavorful and made with whole grain oatmeal for a delicious gluten-free dinner option. It's topped with a tangy bbq sauce and it may be prepped up to a day in advance!
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Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup old fashioned rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup milk your favorite dairy or non-dairy
  • 1 lb. lean ground turkey for best results, don't use ground turkey breast as it dries out easily
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce sub with soy sauce or gluten-free options such as coconut aminos or tamari
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup bbq sauce homemade or your favorite store bought brand

Instructions 

  • Combine the oats and milk in a small bowl and let stand for 30-60 minutes to soften, or cover with plastic wrap and chill overnight.
    1/2 cup old fashioned rolled oats, 1/2 cup milk
  • Place the oat mixture, ground turkey, garlic, Worcestershire sauce, onion powder, salt and pepper in a large bowl. Using your hands, gently mix the ingredients together just until incorporated, being careful not to overwork the meat.
    1 lb. lean ground turkey, 2 cloves garlic, 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce, 1 teaspoon onion powder, 3/4 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line a large rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper or aluminum foil. Place the meat mixture onto the baking sheet and form it into an oval loaf about 2" thick.
  • Place on the middle rack of the oven and bake for 30 minutes, then remove from the oven and top with the bbq sauce. Bake for another 15 minutes or until an instant read thermometer inserted into the center registers at 160 degrees. Remove from heat and let stand 5-10 minutes. Slice, serve and enjoy!
    1/2 cup bbq sauce

Notes

  • Pro tip:ย  Prep the meatloaf mixture up to a day in advance and bake it when you’re ready!
  • Quick oats may be used in place of the rolled oats, they just won’t add as much texture.
  • Turkey meatloaf with oatmeal can be customized with your favorite ground meat such as beef, chicken, pork or meatloaf mix.
  • Store bbq meatloaf in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
  • This recipe is easily doubled to feed a crowd.

Nutrition

Calories: 169kcal, Carbohydrates: 16g, Protein: 20g, Fat: 3g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 1g, Trans Fat: 0.01g, Cholesterol: 44mg, Sodium: 620mg, Potassium: 365mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 9g, Vitamin A: 108IU, Vitamin C: 1mg, Calcium: 46mg, Iron: 1mg

Nutrition is estimated using a food database and is only intended to be used as a guideline for informational purposes.

Did you try this recipe?Be sure to tag @flavorthemoments with the hashtag #flavorthemoments on Instagram so I can see what you made!

**This recipe was originally published in January 2016. The recipe and photos have been updated, and the text has been modified to include more recipe information.

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