Grill Master’s Meatloaf: Taking Dinner To The Outdoors

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There’s something undeniably satisfying about a juicy, flavorful meatloaf sizzling away on the grill. It’s a classic comfort food that transcends seasons and occasions. But achieving that perfect balance of texture and taste can seem tricky. Fear not, grill masters and meatloaf enthusiasts! This guide will walk you through every step, from gathering ingredients to plating up a masterpiece.


Grilled Meatloaf Wrapped With Bacon (and filled with deliciousness)
Grilled Meatloaf Wrapped With Bacon (and filled with deliciousness)

1 pound ground beef (80/20 lean-to-fat ratio)

  • ½ pound ground pork
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • ½ cup breadcrumbs (panko or Italian style preferred)
  • ¼ cup milk
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • 2 tablespoons ketchup
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon onion powder
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

  • Directions:

    1. Preheat your grill: Aim for a medium-high heat, around 400°F (200°C). If your grill has a two-zone setup, preheat one side for direct heat and the other for indirect heat (explained later).

    2. Combine the dry ingredients: In a large bowl, whisk together the breadcrumbs, thyme, garlic powder, onion powder, salt, and pepper.

    3. Sauté the onion: Heat a bit of olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add the diced onion and cook until softened and translucent, about 5 minutes. Set aside to cool slightly.

    4. Mix it all up: In another large bowl, combine the ground beef, ground pork, beaten egg, milk, ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, Dijon mustard, and the cooled sautéed onions. Gently fold in the dry ingredients using a spoon or your hands until just combined. Avoid overmixing, which can lead to a tough meatloaf.

    5. Shape the meatloaf: Form the meatloaf mixture into a loaf shape on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. This helps with transferring the meatloaf to the grill later.

    6. Grill time: Carefully transfer the meatloaf to the preheated direct heat side of your grill. Sear the meatloaf for about 5 minutes per side, creating a nice crust.

    7. Indirect heat for the win: Once seared, transfer the meatloaf to the indirect heat side of the grill (or lower the heat to medium). If your grill doesn’t have an indirect heat zone, simply move the meatloaf to a cooler area on the grill grate, away from the direct flames.

    8. Glaze it up (optional): During the last 15-20 minutes of cooking, you can brush the meatloaf with a glaze for added flavor. Combine ketchup, brown sugar, and a touch of Dijon mustard in a small bowl. Brush the glaze onto the meatloaf a few times during the final cooking stage.

    9. Internal temperature is key: Use a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature of the meatloaf. It’s done when it reaches 160°F (71°C) in the center.

    10. Rest and serve: Once cooked through, transfer the meatloaf to a cutting board and let it rest for 10 minutes before slicing. This allows the juices to redistribute for a more flavorful and tender result. Slice and serve with your favorite sides!

    Nutrition Facts:

    (Per serving, based on a 6-slice recipe)

    Calories: 450

  • Fat: 25g
  • Saturated Fat: 10g
  • Cholesterol: 80mg
  • Sodium: 450mg
  • Carbohydrates: 20g
  • Fiber: 2g
  • Protein: 40g

  • Please note: These are approximate values and can vary depending on the specific ingredients used.


    Grilling your meatloaf takes this classic dish to a whole new level. The smoky flavor from the grill adds a depth of character that’s unmatched. By following these simple steps, you’ll be well on your way to grilling up a juicy, flavorful meatloaf that’s sure to impress your family and friends.


    1. Can I use leaner ground meat?

    Yes, you can use leaner ground meat like turkey or chicken. However, using a combination of lean and fatty ground meat (like the 80/20 ratio suggested) helps to keep the meatloaf moist and flavorful. If you choose leaner meat, consider adding a ¼ cup of olive oil or melted butter to the mixture for extra moisture.

    2. What sides go well with grilled meatloaf?