My smoked meatloaf recipe is to die for and if you have not tried it then you are definitely missing out on one of the finer things in life.
You would never believe how many folks email me every week and tell me that they will NEVER eat another oven baked meatloaf again. Well, I have not gone that far personally because I don’t wanna have to eat my words if my wife makes one but I can guarantee you that if I have anything at all to do with it, the meatloaf that I eat will be smoked.
I don’t have some kind of secret recipe for my meatloaf.. in fact the smoked meatloaf recipe that we use is very simple. Feel free to use your very own whether it be simple or one of those that is passed down from generation to generation. It is not so much the ingredients of the meatloaf that make such a big difference but in the addition of smoke flavor via hickory, mesquite, pecan or whatever type of wood that you have available.
To create this wonderful masterpiece, you begin by mixing up your ingredients. My basic recipe is below and it always turns out great. Feel free to use it or use it and change things up a little bit.
Basic Meatloaf Recipe
- 2 lbs. ground beef
- 1 small onion finely chopped
- 1/2 green pepper finely chopped
- 2 cloves garlic minced (optional)
- 1 C. fresh bread crumbs or saltine cracker crumbs
- 2 eggs lightly beaten
- 3/4 C. ketchup
- 1/4 C. milk
Mix all ingredients in a bowl. blend the mixture about 4-5 minutes and then form onto a flat cookie sheet.
The thickness and size of your meatloaf is entirely personal but I make mine about 8×10 and about 2-1/2 inches thick.
Originally, I set the cookie sheet with the meatloaf on it right on the grate and let it smoke away but then I decided on later attempts that it needed to be up out of the juice a little so I started placing it up on a rack of some sort inside of a larger aluminum pan. This allowed the juices to be caught but also kept the meatloaf out of the juices so it could form a nicer crust.
Smoking a meatloaf will take in the neighborhood of 3 hours at around 250° F but be sure to use a digital probe meat thermometer to monitor the temperature and let that be your guide to tell you when it is finished. Let it reach 160° F and it is finished.
About 30 minutes before it is done you can add some ketchup or better yet, some barbecue sauce to the top and sides of the meatloaf to give it that nice topping that we all like so much.
Quick Tip: My very own barbecue sauce recipe is amazingly good on this meatloaf.. you really owe it to yourself to try it. Get my Rib Rub recipe and/or my special Barbecue Sauce recipe today and you will thank me tomorrow;-)
I tend to add smoke for the entire time it is cooking if I am using one of my smaller smokers.. if I am using the stickburner I don’t have a choice;-)
I like it nice and smoky and usually end up with a good 1/2 inch smoke ring or better. Use your own judgment on that based on how much smoke flavoring you like.
Like most meatloaf, this smoked meatloaf is also good on sandwiches or just reheated in the microwave. If you really want to cause a stir, take some to work and heat it up in the microwave in your lounge or break area. Folks will start gathering around and asking questions as the wonderful smell goes wafting across the room and out into the other areas of the building.
If you have a smoked meatloaf recipe you would like to share, please post it below in the comments section for all of us to enjoy.