Super moist and flavorful, this Italian-inspired pork meat loaf recipe is also a breeze to make. This recipe makes 10 miniature loaves for 10 individual servings, so you can cook what you need for dinner tonight and freeze the rest for later. Or pull this recipe out when you’re having a few guests over.
Pork Meat Loaf Ingredients
- Ground pork: Some meat loaf recipes use a mix of ground beef and ground pork, but this recipe uses only ground pork.
- Eggs: Eggs bind all the ingredients together and help to prevent crumbly loaves.
- Bread crumbs: Bread crumbs mixed with milk add moisture to the loaves.
- Ketchup: Sweet, tangy ketchup adds flavor to the meat loaves and keeps them moist while cooking.
- Parmesan cheese: A bit salty and full of umami notes, Parmesan adds a wonderfully savory flavor to our pork meat loaf.
Step 1: Make the loaves
Preheat oven to 350°F. In a large bowl, combine the eggs, bread crumbs, milk, 1/2 cup cheese, onion, Worcestershire sauce, garlic salt and 1/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning. Crumble the ground pork over the mixture, and mix until combined. Shape into 10 individual loaves.
Editor’s Tip: Avoid overmixing here, or you’ll risk ending up with tough meat loaves.
Step 2: Top with ketchup and seasonings
Set the meat loaves on a rack placed in a large shallow baking pan. Spread the ketchup evenly over the loaves, then sprinkle with the remaining cheese and Italian seasoning.
Editor’s Tip: Baking the loaves on a rack allows air to move all around the loaves, helping them to cook and brown up more evenly.
Step 3: Bake the loaves
Bake, uncovered, for 45 to 55 minutes, until a meat thermometer reads 160° in the thickest part of the loaf. If desired, serve with chopped parsley and additional cheese.
Pork Meat Loaf Variations
- Try a different meat: You can substitute some of the ground pork with another ground meat, such as beef or turkey.
- Go for a different sauce: Replace the ketchup with a different topping, such as marinara sauce or your favorite barbecue sauce.
- Add veggies: Mix in finely chopped vegetables, such as green peppers or carrots. (Saute the vegetables with a little olive oil to soften them before adding to the ground meat mixture.)
Can you make pork meat loaf ahead of time?
Meat loaf is a great make-ahead meal. The loaves can be assembled (unbaked) up to a day in advance and kept in the fridge in a covered container or wrapped tightly in storage wrap. The loaves can also be frozen (uncooked) for up to two months. Assemble the loaves through Step 1, then wrap in a layer of storage wrap followed by a layer of aluminum foil. Store in the freezer in a freezer-safe resealable plastic bag. Thaw the loaves in the refrigerator, then proceed with the recipe starting at Step 2.
How do you store pork meat loaf?
Any leftover meat loaf can be kept refrigerated in an airtight container for up to three days.
Can you freeze cooked pork meat loaf?
You can freeze cooked pork meat loaf for up to three months. Let the loaves cool, then wrap each tightly in aluminum foil, and place in freezer-safe resealable plastic bags. Thaw loaves in the refrigerator for 24 hours, then reheat in a 350° oven until the loaves are heated through the middle to 165°.
Pork Meat Loaf Tips
How can you make juicy pork meat loaf?
To keep your pork meat loaf tender and juicy, be sure not to overmix when mixing and shaping the loaves. Also, use a thermometer to check the internal temperature of the meat loaf ensure you don’t overcook it.
What do you serve with pork meat loaf?
Meat and potatoes is a classic combination. You can’t go wrong with any potato side dish (these Texas garlic mashed potatoes would be particularly delicious), but there are plenty of other options. A few meat loaf side dishes that would pair well with pork meat loaf include sauteed green beans, garlic bread, Italian salad with lemon vinaigrette and Parmesan roasted broccoli.