Old-fashioned meatloaves are great but they tend to dry out in the oven. Instant pot meatloaf, on the other hand, is as juicy and moist as a meatloaf can ever get. The closed environment keeps the moisture in and the quick cooking doesn’t let the meat dry out. Couple this with one of the greatest meatloaf recipes out there and you will have yourself a heck of a dinner. Lip-smacking good!
This meatloaf recipe is a loose adaption of the Dinosaur BBQ restaurant’s fantastic meatloaf recipe published in their Dinosaur Bar-B-Que: An American Roadhouse book. I modified the recipe and scaled it down to fit in the Instant Pot cooker. The original meatloaf recipe was for oven cooking, but after a couple of tries, I made it work in my Instant Pot.
This meatloaf is succulent, juicy, moist, and full of savory, beefy and porky flavors. It’s really, really good. I added mushrooms and celery to this recipe – they added more flavor and improved texture. Every bite is a flavor explosion. I haven’t tasted a better meatloaf.
How to make Instant Pot meatloaf
Making this meatloaf is very easy and all the tools that you will need is an Instant Pot with a steamer rack where you will do all of the cooking.
Collect all of the ingredients and chop up the veggies ahead of cooking. This will make the cooking part quick and easy.
Saute the vegetables in the Instant Pot to soften them up and extract the flavour.
Mix the meats, the sauteed vegetables and the seasonings together.
Fold a sheet of heavy-duty aluminum foil into 12″x7″ sling and lightly brush with cooking oil. Wet your hands and shape the meat into a loaf positioned across the sling.
Place the meat on the Instant Pot steamer rack. This will help the meatloaf keep away from water at the bottom of the pot.
Pour 1/2 a cup of water into the Instant Pot, then transfer the meat with the rack into the cooker.
Pressure-cook for 15 minutes on high, quick-release the steam to not overcook the meatloaf, and transfer to a serving platter.
Let the meatloaf rest, glaze with your favorite BBQ sauce , slice and serve with your favorite side dish.
That’s it – six easy steps.
Recommended side dishes for the meatloaf
- Garlic Mashed Red Potatoes (recommended choice)
- Southern Potato Salad
- Smothered Cabbage
- 1 lb ground beef lean
- 1 lb sweet Italian sausage removed from casings; see notes
- 2 Tbsp olive oil or cooking oil
- 1 cup minced yellow onion
- 1/2 cup finely chopped green bell pepper
- 1 cup finely chopped cremini mushrooms
- 1 stalk celery finely chopped
- 1 cloves garlic minced or pressed
- 3 slices white bread crust removed; torn into small pieces
- 1/4 cup milk whole milk recommended
- 2 eggs beaten
- 3/4 tsp kosher salt
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
- 1 Tbsp ancho chile powder or unsalted chili powder
- 2/3 cup BBQ sauce use your favorite BQ sauce
- Set Instant Pot to sauté and give it about 8-10 minutes to preheat. Add the oil and let it heat up.
- Add the vegetables and saute until soft, about 4-5 minutes. Add the garlic and continue cooking for another minute. Turn off the Instant Pot and transfer the sauteed vegetables into a bowl.
- Hydrate the bread pieces with milk and add to the vegetables. Add the meats, eggs, salt, peppers, ancho chile, and 1/3 cup of the BBQ sauce and mix well.
- Wet your hands and shape the meat into a loaf positioned across a 12"x7" aluminum foil sling brushed with oil. Place on the steamer rack. Pour 1/2 a cup of water into the Instant Pot, then transfer the meat with the rack into the cooker.
- Cover the pressure cooker and make sure the pressure valve is sealed. Set for MANUAL, HIGH pressure for 25 minutes cook time.
- Turn off the Instant Pot and quick-release pressure. Carefully remove the lid, allowing steam to escape away from you.
- Using the sling, remove the cooked meatloaf from the cooker to a serving platter. Cover with a foil tent and let rest for 5 minutes.
- After 5 minutes have passed, glaze the meatloaf with the rest of the BBQ sauce, slice and serve with your favorite side dish.
I made this meatloaf and it was very good. However, the meat was not cooked and I had to finish cooking the meat in the oven. I followed Step 5 and put the timer to 15 minutes, sealed position, etc. I just noticed that in your recipe header, it shows a cook time of 1 hour and 15 minutes. Please advise. I gave you four stars, but will gladly change it to five stars if you can tell me how to correct the problem.
Hi Corie, the total cooking time includes searing and pressure buildup time. The actual cooking of the meatloaf is actually 25 minutes. My apologies. 15 minutes is for meatloaves that use 1 lb of meat and 25 minutes when using 2lbs. I corrected the timing in the recipe.
Hi Victor, I don’t have an instant pot, what can I use instead. Recipe looks delicious
Hi Sharron, you bake it in the oven or smoke in a smoker over indirect heat. Those are the methods that I tried and both worked well.
My fam loved the meatloaf. Will be making it again for sure.
I cannot thank you enough for the recipe. Outstanding!!! Will be making again.
Hey, Victor. I just mixed up a batch of your killer chicken thigh recipe — and have been glancing at your Blog. I usually jump to the recipe, however your text is very to the point and informative.
Thank you for making the print out super easy! I put the paper in a clip on the cabinet door; don’t dare have a device screen in the kitchen!!
Just printed the insta pot meatloaf, will try that next.
Thanks for the kind words, Edie. Happy cooking!
This looks great. Have you tried it with spicy Italian sausage?
Love spicy Italian sausage and spicy food in general. This recipe is fantastic with it, I tried a few times.
Thanks for the reply. I’ll be trying it tonight!
Love it, love it, love it! Best yet! Incredibly moist but not watery and very tasty.
5 stars for this one
i dont care much for meatloaf, ive had it 4 times in 30 years but the recipe looked so good i had to try it
inlaws in town and they have picky kids when it comes to food, but everyone had two servings of meatloaf THANK YOU this is a keeper.
You are very welcome! Glad to hear that you liked the recipe.