Craving a slice of Cracker Barrel's famous meatloaf? Try our copycat recipe for that same mouthwatering taste right at home.
Get ready to enjoy a budget-friendly copycat recipe that tastes just like the real thing. Who needs to dine out when you can have the flavor of Cracker Barrel at home?
Say goodbye to long waits and expensive bills, and say hello to a delicious homemade meal. Not only will it satisfy your cravings, but it also allows you to save money by making a restaurant favorite right at home. Serve it with a cozy bowl of potato soup for a comforting meal.
Reasons to Love
- A comforting meal. Serve it alongside mashed potatoes and green beans for a cozy home-cooked meal.
- Saves money. Using ingredients readily available in your pantry and fridge, you can whip up a hearty meal that satisfies your stomach and your wallet.
- Easily customized. Feel free to experiment with different seasonings or add extra ingredients. You can also easily modify the recipe if you have dietary restrictions or preferences, such as gluten-free or low-sodium diets.
You don't need to break the bank or search for rare ingredients to make Cracker Barrel meatloaf recipe. Instead, you can use affordable and easily accessible items like buttery Ritz crackers you probably already have in your pantry or can find at your local grocery store.
Here are the ingredients that will make this meatloaf recipe both tasty and wallet-friendly.
- ground beef
- green bell pepper (or a mild green pepper)
- crushed Ritz crackers
- cheddar cheese
- salt and pepper
- brown sugar
- Worcestershire sauce
Scroll down to the recipe card for quantities used.
Preheat the oven to 350°F and grease a small baking dish. Then, follow these simple directions to ensure perfect results whenever you make meatloaf.
In a large bowl, combine all of the meatloaf ingredients (ground beef, onion, bell pepper, Ritz crackers, cheese, and seasonings). Knead with your hands until well combined.
Form the ground beef mixture into a small loaf, and place into the baking dish (you can also use a small loaf pan for the meatloaf pan). Bake for 15 minutes.
In a small bowl, whisk together the meatloaf glaze ingredients (ketchup, brown sugar, Worcestershire sauce, and mustard).
Remove the meatloaf and brush with the ketchup and brown sugar glaze topping.
Bake the loaf for an additional 15-20 minutes or until cooked through.
Allow to rest for a few minutes then cut it into slices.
Hint: Resting allows the juices within the meatloaf to redistribute, which can help keep the meatloaf moist and flavorful. If you slice it immediately, the juices may run out, resulting in a drier meatloaf. It also makes it easier to slice the loaf into neat, even portions without falling apart.
You can easily customize the copycat Cracker Barrel meatloaf recipe. Try experimenting with different flavors to suit your taste buds. Here are a few ideas:
- Bacon - dice up some cooked bacon and mix it into the meat mixture before baking.
- Cheese - mix grated or crumbled cheese with the ground beef before shaping it into a loaf. Sharp cheddar cheese is our favorite add in.
- Seasoning - add some smoked paprika for a smoky kick, or throw in some fresh chopped rosemary for a burst of herbal fragrance.
- Sauce - try brushing on some tangy barbecue sauce for a smoky flavor
You can even try adding soy sauce and ginger to give it an Asian flavor like our beef and broccoli recipe.
Top tip: An 80/20 lean-to-fat ratio is often recommended for the best meatloaf flavor and moisture.
- Adjust for dietary preferences or restrictions. You can modify the recipe by using leaner meats or alternative ingredients, such as turkey or plant-based proteins.
- Keep an eye on the meatloaf as it bakes to avoid overcooking. Using a meat thermometer to ensure the meatloaf reaches a safe internal temperature (usually 160°F or 71°C for ground meat) without overcooking it.
- Prepare the meatloaf mixture in advance and refrigerate it. This allows the flavors to meld. Bake when you're ready to serve.
Complete the Cracker Barrel vibe by pairing your mouthwatering meatloaf with classic sides like creamy mashed potatoes, mac and cheese, crispy green beans, or a slice of warm cornbread. Consider serving the meatloaf with a flavorful gravy or sauce, like mushroom gravy, to enhance the overall taste.
Place the meatloaf in an airtight container or wrap it tightly in aluminum foil. It can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
For more extended storage, slice the meatloaf into individual portions and wrap each piece tightly in plastic wrap or aluminum foil. Place them in a freezer-safe container or resealable bag. Frozen meatloaf can be stored for up to 3 months.
Want to try a few more of our easy recipes for two? Here are some of our favorite comfort foods:
- Sloppy Joe casserole is a mouthwatering take on the classic sandwich.
- Easy beef stew is perfect for a cozy night at home.
- Chicken divan casserole combines chicken, broccoli, and cheese.
- Polish Golumpki is a hearty and delicious cabbage roll recipe.
- Easy chicken pot pie casserole is a quick satisfying meal idea.
Cracker Barrel Meatloaf (Copycat)
- ½ pound ground beef
- 3 tablespoons chopped onion
- 3 tablespoons chopped green bell pepper
- ¼ cup crushed Ritz cracker crumbs
- 1 large egg
- 2 tablespoons milk
- ¼ cup shredded cheddar cheese
- salt and pepper to taste
- ¼ cup ketchup
- 1 ½ tablespoons brown sugar
- ¼ teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- ¼ teaspoon mustard
- Preheat the oven to 350°F and grease a small baking dish well.
- In a mixing bowl, combine all of the meatloaf ingredients. Knead with your hands until well combined.
- Form the meat mixture into a small loaf, and place into the baking dish.
- Bake for 15 minutes.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the topping ingredients.
- Remove the meatloaf and brush with the topping.
- Bake for another 15-20 minutes or until cooked through.