Muffin Pan Meatloaf is a much faster way to enjoy your favorite meatloaf dinner. They are individual portions of savory ground beef meatloaf cooked in a muffin tin in just 25 minutes. Serve it up with these quick Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes and buttery peas for an excellent family dinner!
This recipe also is a great make-ahead dinner. The meatloaf cups refrigerate perfectly for up to 4 days and reheat in the microwave nicely! You can even serve them on a mini bun for a Meatloaf Slider Sandwich!
If you want a non-traditional flavored meatloaf, you can also check out this Italian Meatloaf Recipe! Or to make these a little healthier using ground turkey, pop over to this recipe for Turkey Meatloaf Muffins.
Ground Beef for Meatloaf
It is important to have SOME fat in your beef. It is what helps keep ground beef recipes moist and juicy, it also gives the meatloaf really great flavor.
When you purchase ground beef the meat to fat ratio is shown in a fraction- ex: 80/20. Which means the beef is 80% lean ground beef and 20% fat.
For this Meatloaf Cup recipe I recommend using an 85/15 or 90/10 ground beef. You could even go 93/7 for less calories.
I definitely would not use a 80/20 or 70/30 ground beef. That fat ratio will produce too much grease and your meatloaf cups will shrink quite a bit.
We are sticking with good old classic ketchup topping in this meatloaf recipe. Nothing fancy.
When the ketchup topping cooks it takes on a whole different flavor. The sugars in traditional ketchup caramelize a bit and the flavor deepens and becomes warm and savory.
If you have brown sugar glaze or tomato sauce topping you like you can absolutely swap that out! BBQ sauce would even work if you want a totally different flavor.
Step by Step
This is a much faster way to make meatloaf for dinner! Instead of cooking for an hour or more, this recipe bakes in just 25 minutes.
Start by preheating your oven to 400 degrees and greasing a 12 cup muffin pan with cooking spray or olive oil.
In a skillet over medium heat sauté the onions and garlic in olive oil until they are softened, about 5-8 minutes.
Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the Worcestershire sauce, fresh rosemary (could sub thyme), and tomato paste. Stir until the tomato paste coats everything. Set aside.
In a large bowl combine the panko bread crumbs and milk, let that sit for a few minutes to soak.
Now add the 2 lbs. lean ground beef, the onion mixture, 2 lightly beaten eggs, salt, pepper, and onion powder. With clean hands lightly mix the meatloaf just until all the ingredients are distributed.
It should still be a little fluffy, which will give you a more tender meatloaf (instead of a dense meatloaf).
Using ⅓ cup measuring cup portion out the meatloaf into 12 muffin cups. This should give you exactly 12 meatloaf cups.
Top each muffin cup with 1 tablespoon ketchup.
PRO TIP: Place the muffin tin on a rimmed baking sheet. This will catch any grease or juices in the oven in case you have spill over.
Pop that in the oven for 25 minutes until the center of the cups reaches 160 degrees.
Let the meatloaf cups cool for a few minutes and then remove them from the muffin tin and serve!
Storing & Reheating
If you have Muffin Tin Meatloaf leftover store them in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4-5 days.
These reheat REALLY well (so they make a great meal prep)! Simply place one or two muffins on a microwave safe plate and microwave for a minute or so.
Pro Tip: They will reheat through a little better if you cut them in half.
Bake & Freeze Meatloaf Muffins
Yes you can freeze your meatloaf muffin cups, making them a great option for meal prep (or a meal train dinner!).
Simply prepare the meatloaf cups completely and let them cool. Place them in a freezer safe, airtight container and freeze for up to 3 months.
To reheat let them thaw in the fridge overnight and then reheat them in the microwave. Or heat in the oven, covered with foil, at 400 degrees for 15-20 minutes, until the middle is warmed through.
Meatloaf is a traditional Sunday dinner recipe and is great served with some classic side dishes like:
- A starch like mashed potatoes or baked potatoes
- A green veggie like peas, asparagus, roasted broccoli or green beans.
- Roasted Carrots definitely work too!
- Dinner Rolls and butter
Add a Jello Salad and/or broccoli bacon salad for a more robust super classic dinner!
More Meatloaf Recipes
Did you make this recipe?!
If you make this recipe I would love to hear your review. Pop down to the comment section and connect with me.
Then sign up for our Weekly Newsletter so you never miss a new recipe!
Muffin Pan Meatloaf Recipe
- 2 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 small to medium yellow or white onion diced
- 3 plump garlic cloves chopped
- 1 teaspoon fresh rosemary chopped (can sub thyme here)
- 2 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 1 cup panko bread crumbs
- ⅓ cup milk
- 2 lbs. ground beef 85/15 or 93/7 is the best ratio for this recipe
- 2 eggs lightly beaten
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- ½ teaspoon onion powder
- 1 cup ketchup
- non stick spray or additional olive oil for the muffin pan
- Preheat the oven to 400° and spray a 12 count muffin tin with baking/olive oil spray.
- In a skillet over medium heat saute the 1 diced onion and 3 chopped garlic cloves until softened, about 5-8 minutes.Remove from the heat and stir in the 2 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce, 1 tablespoon tomato paste, and 1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary.
- In a large bowl add 1 cup panko bread crumbs and ⅓ cup milk. Let sit a minute or two to soak.
- To the panko mixture add the 2 lbs. ground beef, 2 lightly beaten eggs, 1 teaspoon kosher salt, ½ teaspoon black pepper, ½ teaspoon onion powder, and the sauteed onion mixture.
- With clean hands or a fork lightly mix the ingredients together. Mix just until it comes together, over mixing will create tough, more compact meatloaf!
- With a ⅓ cup measuring cup portion out the meatloaf mixture into the prepared 12 cup muffin tin.
- Top each individual meatloaf with 1 tablespoon ketchup. Topping Note: if you have another topping you like (tomato sauce, BBQ sauce, or more of a brown sugar topping you can swap that here)
- Place the muffin tin on top of a rimmed baking sheet to catch any spill-overs in the oven!
- Bake at 400 for 25 minutes until the center of the meatloaf cups reaches 160°.
- Let rest for a few minutes and then serve!
- Serve 1-3 meatloaf cups per person.
- Goes great with Mashed Potatoes and a green veggie like roasted broccoli, peas, sauteed green beans or roasted asparagus.
If nutrition facts are provided they are calculated as an estimate to the best of our knowledge.
Truly the best meatloaf I’ve ever had. Absolutely delicious!
This was seriously so delicious. I LOVED the fresh rosemary & sautéed onion/garlic mixture. It added the best flavor. Thank you for my new go to mini meatloaf recipe!!!
I adore this recipe. I modify it a bit and add garlic chili paste and cayenne so they’re a bit spicier and top them with bbq sauce, but I make them at least once or twice a month and my boyfriend will eat no less than seven or eight of them coming right out of the oven!
I tried this tonight and it is so delicious and tomato-ey and generally yummy!!!
These were fabulous! Juicy and full of flavor. I’ve made them twice already! This made 16 meatloaf muffins for me. Thanks for sharing your recipe!
This was SO good! I loved the individual portions in the muffin tin, makes it perfect for freezing and reheating individual servings.
Hi! Question: is there a substitute for tomato paste that you would recommend? I don’t have that on hand, but I have everything else.
You could use ketchup, or just skip that ingredient is totally fine too!
i made this muffin tin meatloaf for dinner with mashed potatoes and gravy it was moist and delicious this one is for keep thank you very much
i made this muffin meatloaf for dinner with mashed potatoes and gravy the meatloaf was moist and delicious thank you very much
My family loves these mini meatloaf. Everytime I ask what would you like for dinner they always suggest these. Making them this evening.