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The Speckled Palate
March 25, 2013

Slow Cooker Turkey Meatloaf

Last Updated on

No time to prep dinner at night? Get your start the morning of with this delightful, easy and delicious Slow Cooker Turkey Meatloaf. Browned before it’s placed in the slow cooker with classic tomato soup, this meatloaf has great texture and flavor for a fast weeknight meal!

Sliced Slow Cooker Turkey Meatloaf is served on a white platter alongside green beans.

The photos and recipe for this Slow Cooker Turkey Meatloaf were originally published on March 25, 2013. The photographs, along with the text of this blog post, were updated on July 1, 2018.

This post contains affiliate links. If you were to make a purchase through one, I would receive a small commission. For more information about the affiliate programs The Speckled Palate participates in, please refer to my disclosure page.

This recipe is the ultimate quick morning recipe / you have someplace to be in about 30 minutes and need to put on dinner so you can eat SOMETHING after you finish work later in the evening.

Unsurprisingly, this recipe is one from my newspaper photographer days. And even though I generally don’t find myself leaving the house at a moment’s notice anymore, it’s still a gem. (Hi, breaking news. You were not and have never been my favorite.)

Sauce is poured on top of Slow Cooker Turkey Meatloaf

When I lived in Mississippi, I was basically the queen of dishes like these, especially since my days had a habit of starting a little earlier than expected.

This dish, first introduced to me by my mother and then tinkered with by me throughout the years, has remained a household favorite ever since because it is quick, it’s easy, and it is delicious.

It’s also the perfect for a comforting meal after a long day.

Overhead image of sliced Slow Cooker Turkey Meatloaf

I even found a way to expedite the process, especially if I didn’t have the time in the morning to make up the meatloaf. So I would either mix the meatloaf ingredients the night before and let them hang out in the fridge until the morning, or I would even freeze loafs, then remove one from the freezer, toss it into a pan to brown the sides–an essential part, folks!–and then throw it in the the slow cooker to hang out with a can of tomato soup all day.

The end result is a crunchy on the outside, utterly smooth and delicious on the inside slice of meatloaf, topped with its own juices and tomato soup and served atop mashed potatoes.

So. Good.

A whole Slow Cooker Turkey Meatloaf sits alongside green beans (with mashed potatoes in the background) before serving.

Can I make this meatloaf in the Instant Pot?

Yes! I’ve made it in the IP before. Use the Saute setting to sear it on the outside before pouring in the tomato soup. Seal and click the ‘High Pressure’ button. Cook for 8 minutes, then manually depressurize.

Easy peasy, y’all!

What do I need to make this meatloaf?

Close up of sliced Slow Cooker Turkey Meatloaf, smothered in tomato sauce, before serving

What can I make to serve alongside this Slow Cooker Turkey Meatloaf?

Ready to learn how to make this goodness? Scroll on down to make it at home…

Pinterest graphic for Slow Cooker Turkey Meatloaf, featuring text and an overhead image of the sliced meatloaf covered in tomato sauce

Slow Cooker Turkey Meatloaf
Yield: 4 servings

Slow Cooker Turkey Meatloaf

Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 8 hours
Total Time: 8 hours 30 minutes

No time to prep dinner at night? Get your start the morning of with this delightful, easy and delicious Slow Cooker Turkey Meatloaf. Browned before it's placed in the slow cooker with classic tomato soup, this meatloaf has great texture and flavor for a fast weeknight meal!

Ingredients

  • 1 lb. ground turkey, (as lean as possible!)
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 egg
  • 10 Saltine crackers, , crushed
  • ½ cup onion, diced (about ½ a medium onion)
  • 1 garlic clove, minced fine
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 ½ teaspoons Mural of Flavor, (or other salt-free poultry seasoning)
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • 8 oz. Tomato Soup
  • 8 oz. water

Instructions

  1. Preheat the olive oil in a large nonstick saucepan over medium-high heat.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the the turkey, egg, crackers, onion, garlic and seasonings.
  3. Using your hands, mix the the ingredients together until combined, then form into two rounds.
  4. Gently place the loafs in the preheated saucepan, browning all sides until thoroughly browned and crispy.
  5. Once each loaf has been browned, transfer to the slow cooker.
  6. Top the meatloaves with tomato soup and water.
  7. Cook on slow for 8 hours.
  8. Once cooked through, remove from slow cooker, and slice into pieces. Top each piece with the tomato soup.
  9. Enjoy warm with a side of mashed potatoes (or rice) and green beans!

Notes

To make this recipe in the Instant Pot: Use the Saute setting to sear all the edges of the meatloaf before pouring in the tomato soup. Seal and click the 'High Pressure' button. Cook for 8 minutes, then manually depressurize.

Make Ahead Tip: The meatloaf(s) can be formed the night before and stored in the fridge. Sear them in the morning before throwing them in the slow cooker to cook all day! You can also sear the meatloaf straight out of the freezer, too, though it'll take longer to sear that way.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

4

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving:Calories: 407 Total Fat: 25g Saturated Fat: 6g Trans Fat: 0g Unsaturated Fat: 16g Cholesterol: 167mg Sodium: 434mg Carbohydrates: 13g Net Carbohydrates: 0g Fiber: 1g Sugar: 4g Sugar Alcohols: 0g Protein: 32g
Nutrition facts are an estimate and not guaranteed to be accurate.

Do you have a go-to slow cooker recipe that has served you well over the years? What is it?

The photos and recipe for this Slow Cooker Turkey Meatloaf were originally published on March 25, 2013. The photographs, along with the text of this blog post, were updated on July 1, 2018.

8 Comments

  1. Katherine

    I’ve never heard of a slow cooked meatloaf, but I am loving this idea. Given the cold snap we’re having, this sounds like a perfect dinner option for the week. I’m going to try this out and put one in the slow cooker tonight for tomorrow!

    • Erin

      My mom was the one to turn me on to it, especially since my job in Mississippi was SO CRAZY that I tried a ton of different foods in the slow cooker. It’s definitely a winner and makes this recipe a cinch.

      So I hope you give this a shot and enjoy the taste of it!

  2. Jayne

    Wow! I am kinda loving this sorts of recipes. What other kinds of meats can I substitute turkey with? I can’t seem to find ground turkey here. We have pork, beef, chicken and sometimes mutton. SO going to try this. My favourite slow cooker recipe would be braised soy pork for when I haven’t got 2 hours to nurse a bubbling pot.

    • Erin

      Thanks, lady! I think you could easily substitute beef here, and it would be lovely. I’ve never had pork, chicken or mutton meatloaf before, but if you decided to go that route, I’d love to know how they turned out and tasted!

      Oh my. Do you have a link to your favorite slow cooker recipe? I might need to try that because it sounds DELIGHTFUL.

  3. Anne ~ Uni Homemaker

    I love these kind of comfort food! Turkey meatloaf is always a healthier alternative to the traditional meatloaf (ground beef, pork and veal). Lovely post and I love your photos!

    • Erin

      Thanks, Anne! You’re too sweet! I’m a huge fan of this kind of comfort food, as well, and making it a bit healthier since I like to indulge in said comfort food. Let me know if you give it a shot! I’d love to know what you think.

  4. Kathryn Ni

    I simply love this recipy. Only one thing bothers me that could some of thew material be preserved, so it could short whole cooking time? 8 hours is some long. I may try it, but I will use chicken instead of turkey. I am in Beijing.

    • Erin

      Hey Kathryn. I think you could probably cook this for shorter in the slow cooker, and I think chicken is a great substitute for turkey. I’m unsure how much shorter you can go, though, as I’ve always put this recipe on in the morning before I’ve left for work and let it cook all day to be ready when I arrived home that evening. Interested to hear what you think of it!

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