Delicious Cracker Barrel Meatloaf Recipe

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This Cracker Barrel Meatloaf recipe is the ultimate comfort food! Juicy meatloaf is topped with a mouth-watering glaze that will have you coming back for seconds (and maybe even thirds).

There are many different ways to make meatloaf, but Cracker Barrel’s Southern meatloaf recipe is one of the best. Ritz cracker crumbs are the secret ingredient, and it is topped off with a sticky sweet meatloaf glaze.

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The glaze caramelized on top as the meatloaf bakes for a distinctive and delicious flavor. So make meatloaf for dinner and enjoy this copycat recipe for one of Cracker Barrel’s most iconic meals.

Reader Review

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

This was, hands down, the BEST meatloaf! Cracker Barrel recently changed their recipe for meatloaf and my mom was so disappointed until I found this recipe and made it for her. Amazing!
— Reluctant cook

🥘Key Ingredients

For exact amounts needed see the recipe card below

  • ground beef
  • yellow onion
  • green bell pepper
  • Ritz crackers
  • sharp cheddar cheese
  • eggs
  • milk
  • salt
  • black pepper
  • ketchup
  • brown sugar
  • yellow mustard
cracker barrel meatloaf ingredients.

Find more amazing comfort food recipes! Try Crockpot Chili, Spicy Chicken Riggies, or Italian Mushroom Stew for more delicious dinners.

🥣How to Make Cracker Barrel Meatloaf

  1. Mix – Combine the ground beef, onion, green pepper, crushed crackers, shredded cheese, eggs, milk, salt and pepper in a mixing bowl. Mix thoroughly but don’t overmix.
  2. Shape – Shape the meat mixture into a loaf shape and put it on an aluminum foil lined baking sheet.
  3. Bake – Bake in a preheated 350 degree F oven for 30 minutes.
  4. Glaze – Mix the ketchup, brown sugar and mustard in a bowl. Spread the ketchup mixture all over the top of the meatloaf.
  5. Bake More – Bake it for an additional 30-40 minutes, or until it reaches 165 degrees F internally.
  6. Rest – Let the meatloaf rest for 10 minutes before slicing and serving.
Mixing the ingredients in a bowl.
Mixing the meatloaf ingredients
Meatloaf with glaze added.
Adding the glaze

🍴Serving Ideas

Serve your meatloaf with mashed potatoes for a classic meal! It is also great with carrots, green beans, asparagus or a fresh loaf of bread.

Make some extra sauce to serve on the side, or just put a bottle of ketchup or BBQ sauce on the table.

💭How to Store

Store leftover meatloaf in an airtight container in the fridge for 3 days. You can make classic cold meatloaf sandwiches or heat it back up in the oven.

Meatloaf can be frozen for up to 3 months. Just let it cool and then wrap it tightly before freezing. When you are ready to serve it let it thaw in the fridge ovrenight.

To reheat this Cracker Barrel Meatloaf recipe wrap it in foil and bake it at 350 F for about half an hour.

Copycat Cracker Barrel meatloaf sliced and on a plate.

❤️Variations

While this is a copycat recipe made to taste like Cracker Barrel you can change things up to suit your tastes. Here are some possibilities:

  • Use BBQ sauce as glaze.
  • Add some minced garlic.
  • Make these into 2 mini meatloaves and just reduce the bake time to about 50 minutes
  • If you like a more caramelized topping add the sauce when the meatloaf first goes in the oven.

⭐Tips

Be sure to check out the step by step instructions

  • Don’t overmix the meatloaf or it will be dry instead of juicy. 
  • If you like your veggies to be more finely cut use a food processor to mince them.
  • Use an instant read thermometer to test the meatloaf for doneness. Don’t guess just based on cooking time.
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02/19/2024 01:45 pm GMT

📝FAQ

What is the best meat to use for meatloaf?

Lean ground beef is the best to use in this recipe and gives the most authentic Cracker Barrel taste. But ground turkey also works well and makes a tasty meatloaf.

How do I prevent dry meatloaf?

Overmixing is the most common reason for dry meatloaf. Mix it just enough to combine the ingredients, but don’t squeeze the meat together.

In addition, don’t overcook the meatloaf. Use a thermometer to test the internal temperature and take it out once it reaches 165 degrees F.

Did You Make This? Leave a Star Rating!

top view of cracker barrel meatloaf on a plate with carrots.
4.54 from 91 votes

Copycat Cracker Barrel Meatloaf Recipe

Published By Anne
Get delicious homestyle cooking with this mouth-watering copycat Cracker Barrel Meatloaf recipe. Perfectly seasoned and cooked to perfection!
Prep Time15 minutes
Cook Time1 hour 10 minutes
Total Time1 hour 25 minutes
Servings: 8
Print Save Rate Pin

Ingredients
 

  • 2 pounds ground beef
  • 1/2 onion diced
  • green pepper diced
  • 1 1/2 sleeves of crushed Ritz crackers
  • ¾ cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Glaze Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup ketchup
  • 2 ½ tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon yellow mustard

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  • In a large bowl, combine the ground beef, onion, bell pepper, eggs, crushed Ritz crackers, cheese, milk, salt and black pepper.
    2 pounds ground beef, 1/2 onion, green pepper, 1 1/2 sleeves of crushed Ritz crackers, ¾ cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese, 3 eggs, 1/2 cup milk, 1 teaspoon salt, 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • Mix well until everything is combined.
  • On a foil lined baking sheet form the meatloaf mixture into a loaf shape. Or place it in a loaf pan if you prefer.
  • Bake for 30 minutes.
  • While it bakes combine the ketchup, brown sugar, and mustard.
    3/4 cup ketchup, 2 ½ tablespoons brown sugar, 1 1/2 teaspoon yellow mustard
  • Remove the meatloaf from the oven and spread the ketchup glaze all over the top of the meatloaf.
  • Pop back in the oven and cook for another 40 minutes. Use a meat thermometer to make sure it has reached 165 degree F internally.
  • Remove from oven and let rest for 10 minutes.
  • Slice and serve!

Notes

  • Don’t overmix the meatloaf or it will be dry instead of juicy. 
  • If you like your veggies to be more finely cut use a food processor to mince them.
  • Use an instant read thermometer to test the meatloaf for doneness. Don’t guess just based on cooking time.

As an Amazon Associate and member of other affiliate programs, I earn from qualifying purchases.

Nutrition Information

Calories: 407kcal | Carbohydrates: 12g | Protein: 25g | Fat: 29g | Saturated Fat: 12g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 11g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 154mg | Sodium: 686mg | Potassium: 441mg | Fiber: 0.3g | Sugar: 10g | Vitamin A: 337IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 133mg | Iron: 3mg

Nutrition facts are estimates.

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meatloaf with mashed potatoes and carrots.
anne

Hi, I’m Anne!

I love to cook and I want to share my recipes with you. I believe cooking should be approachable and fun, not a chore. I want to make simple recipes using everyday ingredients that you can make again and again, whether it is for a busy weeknight, a summer cookout or a special dessert. Read more...

9 thoughts on “Delicious Cracker Barrel Meatloaf Recipe”

  1. 5 stars
    Well done, thanks for the amazing effort and well written article. Reminds me of the Cook Illustrated level of professionalism and passion for food and cooking! God Bless!
    If you could only copy-cat Arizona’s famous dive – Chino Bandito’s black bean recipe. There complimentary snickerdoodle cookie, along with mains such as, the jade-red chicken and jerk chicken are all extraordinary too.

    Reply
  2. Love to eat with you anywhere we go. The meatloaf is probably my favorite,because I never make it myself. I sure will try this recipe.

    Reply
  3. 5 stars
    This was, hands down, the BEST meatloaf! Cracker Barrel recently changed their recipe for meatloaf and my mom was so disappointed until I found this recipe and made it for her. Amazing!

    Reply
  4. 5 stars
    This is a family favorite. !9 yr old granddaughter recently moved out of area and first recipe she asked for was this!

    Reply
  5. 5 stars
    Delish! Made per recipe taking care not to overmix. It did fall apart a little when cut but I believe I should have let it sit a bit longer before cutting.
    I can’t swear to the Cracker Barrel similarity but it’s for sure a darn good meatloaf!

    Reply
  6. 2 stars
    BETTER Version.
    Ingredients

    1x
    2x
    3x
    1 lb. 90% lean ground beef
    1 cup dried bread crumbs
    1/2 cup diced yellow onion
    1/2 cup milk
    1 large egg beaten
    2 tbsp. ketchup
    1 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
    1 tsp. dried parsley leaves
    3/4 tsp. salt
    1/2 tsp. garlic powder
    1/4 tsp. ground black pepper
    For the Topping:
    1/4 cup ketchup
    2 tbsp. packed light brown sugar
    1 tbsp. red wine vinegar
    Instructions
    Preheat oven to 350° Fahrenheit.
    In a large bowl, add the beef, bread crumbs, onion, milk, egg, 2 tablespoons ketchup, worcestershire sauce, parsley, salt, garlic powder, and pepper. Use your hands to mush and mix these ingredients together until well combined.*
    Add the meat mixture to a loaf pan. Pat the meat down into an even layer.
    In a small bowl, add ¼ cup ketchup, the brown sugar, and vinegar. Stir to combine. Pour the sauce on top of the meatloaf and spread it into an even layer.
    Bake uncovered for 55 minutes.
    Let the meatloaf rest for 8-10 minutes before serving (or it may fall apart).

    Reply
  7. 5 stars
    I made this, with a mix of beef and pork, and a couple of anchovies. A hint of cayenne too. The crackers make for an excellent texture. I shall make this again. Thumbs up.

    Reply

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