Smoked Meat Loaf

Total Time

Prep: 15 min. Cook: 70 min. + standing


8 servings

Updated: Nov. 02, 2023
Here's a new take on a family classic—smoked meat loaf. Make several loaves at once to take full advantage of the space in your smoker during the long cook time; the leftovers freeze nicely. I like to use a serrated knife when I cut this into slices because it's on the delicate side. —Peggy Woodward, Shullsburg, Wisconsin


  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 3/4 cup dry bread crumbs
  • 1/4 cup 2% milk
  • 1 cup barbecue sauce, divided
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 pounds ground beef
  • RUB:
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper


  1. Soak hickory and mesquite chips or pellets; add to smoker according to manufacturer's directions. Heat to 225°.
  2. In a large bowl, combine eggs, onion, bread crumbs, milk, 1/4 cup barbecue sauce, Worcestershire sauce, salt and pepper. Add beef; mix lightly but thoroughly. Shape into a 10x4-in. loaf on a greased smoker rack. Combine rub ingredients; rub over meat loaf. Place in smoker; smoke until a thermometer reads 145°, about 1 hour. Brush generously with remaining 3/4 cup barbecue sauce. Smoke until a thermometer reads 160°, 10-15 minutes. Let stand 10 minutes before slicing.

Smoked Meat Loaf Tips

What other woods can you use in this smoked meat loaf recipe?

For best results, you can also use pecan, oak, apple or cherry wood chips when smoking most meats (in addition to the mesquite or hickory). Avoid pine, which can yield a bitter smoke taste. Don’t forget that you can still make smoked meat loaf even if you don’t have a smoker! You can turn your grill into a smoker, as long as you have a few extra hours to spare.

How can you make sure your smoked meat loaf stays juicy?

Use a gentle touch when mixing and shaping your meat loaf. Overmixing can make it tough and dense. Additionally, consider swapping out some of the ground beef with ground pork. The mixture of two different meats can help the meat loaf stay juicy.

How do you store smoked meat loaf?

Kept wrapped in foil or in an airtight container, smoked meat loaf will last in your fridge for up to 3 to 4 days. Here is our handy guide for how long your leftovers will keep. If you loved this smoked meat loaf recipe, try making smoked mac and cheese next.

Mark Neufang, Taste of Home Culinary Assistant

Nutrition Facts

1 piece: 318 calories, 15g fat (6g saturated fat), 117mg cholesterol, 937mg sodium, 21g carbohydrate (13g sugars, 1g fiber), 23g protein.