This easy Smoked Meatloaf Recipe is hearty and tender and everything you love about this classic iconic dish. We topped it with a tangy Whiskey Coke Barbecue Sauce and served over some Smoked Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes for one of the most epic meals in recent memory.
Smoked Meatloaf Recipe
Meatloaf is a thing that you either REALLY love or really hate. If you grew up eating dried out, overcooked, cardboard-like meatloaf I can guess what camp you are in.
It might have a bad reputation, and that reputation might even be well-deserved, but I’m here to let everyone know that meatloaf has officially been transformed and reformed in the belly of your pellet grill.
If you are in club pellet grill, you know what kind of magic is has for making dishes that traditionally have been easy to ruin. Think chicken, pork chops, etc. Dishes prone to drying out and being less-than-desirable in most cases. The Traeger does amazing things to those dishes, and meatloaf is no exception.
Cooking your meatloaf in the pellet smoker not only will give you that live wood-fired flavor that everyone loves, but it also helps keep your meat from drying out and lets you keep your house nice and cool during these warm spring and summer months when that craving for a meatloaf sandwich hits.
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Smoked Meatloaf shopping list
Wondering if you have to hit the store? Here’s the list of items you’ll need to make this recipe. For specific amounts, please refer to the printable recipe card at the bottom of the post.
- Black pepper
- Dry mustard
- Onion powder
- Garlic powder
- Panko breadcrumbs
- Saltine crackers
- 85/15 ground beef
- Whiskey Coke Barbecue Sauce
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How to make Smoked Meatloaf
This is just the overview so you can see what you’re actually getting into here. When you are cooking, you’ll want to use the full recipe at the bottom of the page.
We’re shooting for premium smoke temps at first, so start the grill and get it heated up to 220°F.
Sauté the onion in a pan with some butter. Deglaze the pan with a couple tablespoons of apple cider vinegar.
Mix together the NOT MEAT parts of the meatloaf ingredients until they are combined. Now gently, with your hands, mix in the ground beef. Don’t over mix!
Form into a loaf shape and place it onto a doubled-up piece of parchment or butcher’s paper.
Smoke & Grill
Smoke the meatloaf for 30 minutes and then turn the temp up to 325°F. Cook until the internal temperature reaches 160°F, basting every 10 minutes during this time with the BBQ sauce.
Carefully remove from the grill, slice, and enjoy!
Try our Smoked Pizza Meatloaf too!
Smoked Meatloaf FAQ
Can this be made ahead of time?
You can form the loaf up to a day in advance of cooking, but I wouldn’t go farther than that unless you are going to put the mixture into a loaf pan and freeze it.
What’s the best way to store and reheat leftovers?
Store these leftovers covered in the fridge for 3-4 days. Reheat in the oven or microwave until steaming, but don’t overdo it!
Are there any recommended substitutions or additions?
You can chop up some jalapeños if you like your meatloaf to have more of a kick. I like to sauté them along with the onions to soften them up a bit. Have some wild game? Throw some into the mix with the ground beef. Love ground pork? That can get mixed in too! Are you obsessed with bacon? You can do a bacon weave to wrap around this bad boy, and just paint the BBQ sauce on the bacon at the end. Experiment, and let me know your results!
Enjoy with some Smoked Baked Potatoes!
More great recipes to love!
- A smaller version of our classic Traeger Meatloaf, these Smoked Meatloaf Burgers are perfect for grilling up and serving to a crowd for epic meatloaf sandwiches!
- Kick it up several notches with a Smoked Jalapeño Jack Juicy Lucy. This spicy stuffed cheeseburger is a fun twist on a legendary Minnesota dish.
- Fire up the grill because we made the best decision ever with these Bacon-Wrapped Cheddar Brats! I love the crunch they add to the outside, and love eating them with ketchup and mustard.
- Smoked Beer Brats is a Traeger twist on a traditional Wisconsin favorite. You’re going to love what live wood fire does to these sausages!
- Our Smoked Cream Cheese is consistently one of my most requested dishes to bring to parties and cookouts, and you’ll soon see why. It is as delicious as it is easy!
- If you have access to Cobia, you’ve GOT to try our Cobia Fish with Mango Salsa recipe! It is one of the best dishes featuring fish we’ve ever made, and there is no fish like fresh Cobia!
- 1 small onion, finely diced
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- 3 large eggs
- 2 egg yolks
- 1/4 cup milk
- 1/2 cup ketchup
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
- 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon dried parsley
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- 1/2 cup panko breadcrumbs
- 1 sleeve crushed saltine crackers
- 3 pounds 85/15 ground beef
- 1 cup Whiskey Coke Barbecue Sauce (or your favorite variety)
- Preheat your smoker to 220°F.
- Finely chop the onion put it in a pan on the stove over medium heat with the olive oil. Saute for 5-8 minutes, until the onion is softened and starting to brown a little.
- Let the onion cool for 10 minutes and mix it and all of the other loaf ingredients together, except the ground beef. Stir until well combined, and then add ground beef and mix until fully incorporated, but don't over-mix!
- Form the mixture into a loaf shape and place it on a doubled-up piece of parchment paper or butcher paper.
- Place on the grill and smoke for 30 minutes. Turn up the heat at this point to 325°F and continue cooking until the internal temperature reaches 160°F, painting on some of the barbecue sauce every 10-15 minutes or so during the higher-temp portion of the cook.
- Let rest for 10 minutes and then cut into slices and serve with the extra barbecue sauce.
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Amount Per Serving: Calories: 190Total Fat: 8gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 4gCholesterol: 129mgSodium: 516mgCarbohydrates: 18gFiber: 1gSugar: 11gProtein: 13g
Nutrition data provided here is only an estimate. If you are tracking these things for medical purposes please consult an outside, trusted source. Thanks!
Nicole Johnson, a self-taught expert in grilling and outdoor cooking, launched Or Whatever You Do in 2010. Her blog, renowned for its comprehensive and creative outdoor cooking recipes, has garnered a vast audience of millions. Nicole's hands-on experience and passion for grilling shine through her work. Her husband, Jeremiah Johnson, also plays a pivotal role in recipe development, adding his culinary flair to the mix. Together, they form a dynamic duo, offering a rich and varied outdoor cooking experience to their followers.