Have you ever made a delicious meatloaf only to later realize it wasn’t cooked enough? Don’t worry, we’re here to help.
This article will answer the all-important question of ‘how long do you cook meatloaf at 375°F’ so that you can make perfectly cooked, juicy, and delicious meals.
You’ll never worry about undercooked or overcooked dishes again.
What Is Meatloaf?
Meatloaf is a traditional classic dish that consists of ground meat, vegetables and seasonings that are combined and baked.
It often takes on the form of a large loaf or other shapes, like balls, patties or logs.
When properly cooked, it can make a delicious and nutritious meal that is suitable for any night of the week.
Just as there are many variations of meatloaf recipes, there are many ways to prepare it as well.
It can be roasted in the oven at 375°F (190°C), fried in a skillet or slow-cooked in the crockpot overnight.
Regardless of how you cook your meatloaf, you’ll want to use an internal thermometer to make sure it reaches an internal temperature of 165°F (74°C).
If you’re cooking your meatloaf at 375°F (190°C), an 8-inch loaf should take approximately 1 hour to cook; however, larger loaves may require up to 1 1/2 hours to reach their desired doneness.
Is Meatloaf Goof For You?
Meatloaf is a staple dish in many families, and while it’s not known as the healthiest meal, it can still be included in a balanced and nutritious diet.
In the United States Department of Agriculture’s Dietary Guidelines for Americans, they recommend balancing your plate with fruits, vegetables and lean proteins – like poultry or seafood – that are cooked using heart-healthy methods like grilling or roasting.
Meatloaf can fit into your healthy diet as long as you use lean meats such as beef, veal or ground turkey.
Additionally, use minimal amount of added fats when mixing together the ingredients.
A good rule of thumb is to use one egg per pound of meat mixture and consider adding chopped fresh vegetables instead of excessive amounts of breadcrumbs for a nutrient boost.
When cooking your meatloaf in the oven at 375 degrees Fahrenheit (190 degrees Celsius), it should take about one hour to cook a two-pound loaf all the way through.
To ensure that your meatloaf has reached its ideal internal temperature to ensure food safety – 165 F (74 C) – use an instant-read thermometer inserted into the center of the loaf before serving.
Ingredients Needed To Cook Meatloaf
Making a succulent meatloaf requires the right ingredients to ensure your dish is moist and flavorful.
The basic ingredients you need to make a classic meatloaf include ground beef or ground turkey, eggs, dried herbs, peppers, fresh vegetables such as onions or celery, garlic, ketchup and milk.
You can also add other ingredients like crumbled crackers or dry breadcrumbs to your mix in order to absorb any additional moisture and help bind the mixture.
Once all of the ingredients are combined in a large bowl, add them together with your clean hands until they are fully incorporated.
Now that you have all of the ingredients combined, use them to form a log-shaped loaf that is roughly 10 inches by 5 inches.
Transfer your loaf onto an oven-safe dish lined with parchment paper for easy cleanup afterwards.
Before you place it in the oven at 375 degrees F (190 degrees C), brush it with some melted butter or oil for added flavor and crispness once it’s done cooking.
For first-time cooks looking to determine how long to cook meatloaf at 375 degrees F (190 C), let it bake for 45 minutes before checking for doneness.
Insert an instant-read thermometer into the center of the loaf; it should register 160F (71C).
If not cooked through (but close.
), return it to the oven and bake for another 10 minutes before checking again.
How To Cook Meatloaf At 375 From Scratch?
Meatloaf is a classic comfort food that can be prepared in many different ways.
It is easy to cook meatloaf from scratch – all you need is a few simple ingredients like ground beef, bread crumbs, eggs and seasonings.
The most important part of the recipe is determining the optimal cooking time to ensure that your meatloaf isn’t undercooked or overdone.
To cook your meatloaf at 375 degrees Fahrenheit, it’s recommended that you bake it for about 40-50 minutes until its internal temperature reaches 165 °F (74 °C) when tested with a digital thermometer.
Here are some additional tips for getting perfect results:
- Make sure that your oven is preheated before you place the meatloaf inside so that it cooks evenly and thoroughly.
- Line your baking dish with parchment paper or spray it with nonstick cooking spray if desired to make cleanup easier afterwards.
- Take out your meatloaf once its internal temperature has reached 165°F (74°C).
- Let the cooked dish cool slightly before serving or else it may be difficult to slice or remove from pan.
- If desired, you may also add toppings such as ketchup and cheese prior to baking for added flavor.
How Long To Cook Meatloaf At 375?
Cooking meatloaf at 375 degrees Fahrenheit requires knowing the weight of the loaf and the desired doneness.
The general rule for cooking a meatloaf at 375 is to cook it for approximately 20 minutes per pound.
Therefore, if you are making a two-pound loaf, it will need to be cooked in 375-degree oven for approximately 40 minutes.
For crystal clear results, always use an instant-read thermometer.
Insert the probe into the thickest portion of the meatloaf and make sure it does not touch any bones or pan walls as readings can be inaccurate.
When the thermometer reaches an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit, your meatloaf is safely cooked through enough for consumption.
Always allow a meatloaf to rest for at least 10 minutes before serving so that all juices distributed evenly throughout.
How Long To Cook A 4 Pound Meatloaf At 375?
Cooking times vary depending on the size and shape of your meatloaf.
As a general rule, a 4-pound meatloaf should be cooked at 375 degrees Fahrenheit for approximately 1 hour and 10 minutes.
To get the best results, stick a meat thermometer into the center of your loaf and make sure the internal temperature is 165-degree Fahrenheit before removing from the oven.
It is also important to use an appropriate sized baking pan.
A 9×13 inch pan works best for a 4 pound loaf.
If you don’t have one, use two smaller pans instead.
If you are cooking a larger loaf, then increase the cooking time accordingly; if it’s smaller than 4 pounds decrease it by 10 minutes.
As always be careful to prevent overcooking or undercooking because food safety is always paramount.
What Affect The Time To Cook Meatloaf?
When cooking meatloaf at 375 degrees Fahrenheit, the length of time for optimal results depends on several factors such as size and shape of the loaf, the type of ground meat used and whether or not it is stuffed.
Baking times can range from 40 minutes to over an hour.
The size and shape of the meatloaf will affect how long you need to cook it at 375 degrees.
If you’re cooking a larger size, 8 inches by 4 inches, then it will take longer than if you are preparing a smaller one measuring 6 inches by 3 inches.
When stuffing your loaf with other ingredients like vegetables, cheese or bacon make sure that all parts have reached an internal temperature of 165 degrees before taking the dish out of the oven.
In addition to size and shape, ground beef is typically used for meatloaf however there are cases where substitutes like ground turkey or veal could be used instead.
In general, these lighter meats will require less time to cook compared to beef which may take 12-15 minutes longer when cooked in a 375 degree oven.
To make sure your meatloaf has cooked evenly throughout use a food thermometer so you know when your dish has reached its optimal food safety temperature.
What Temperature Should Meatloaf Be Cooked At?
Cooking meatloaf can be a tricky endeavor, as the type of meat, size of the loaf and doneness desired all affect the length of cooking time.
When making meatloaf, an oven temperature of 375°F is generally recommended.
However, this general guideline must be adjusted to accommodate individual preferences and ingredient variations.
Meatloaf can be cooked using ground beef, pork or a combination of both meats.
Use 85 percent lean or higher ground beef or pork for best results and to avoid a dry product.
Blending in 85 percent lean ground turkey adds flavor without taking away from the moistness of the dish.
Whole wheat bread crumbs also add moisture while adding additional nutrients.
Add 1 tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce or steak sauce plust 1 egg per pound of meat mixture to ensure a moist center.
The addition of onion, bell pepper, celery or shredded cheese provides even more flavor while helping retain moisture during the cooking process.
Form your desired amount into an oblong shape approximately 2 inches tall on a large baking sheet lined with aluminum foil for easy cleaning; then place for 20 minutes in an oven heated to 375°F according to your recipe instructions if present or until center is no longer pink when cut with a sharp knife and juices run clear — approximately 55 minutes for up to 4 pounds — uncovering halfway through baking time at 27 minutes if instructed by recipe for browning purposes if desired.
To determine doneness without cutting into your final product use an instant read thermometer inserted into center reading 165 degrees Fahrenheit on its display screen; however smaller pieces may cook faster so please adjust time accordingly.
Tips To Cook Meatloaf At 375 Perfectly
Cooking meatloaf at 375 degrees Fahrenheit is a great way to get a moist, flavorful and juicy loaf.
Follow these helpful tips for making meatloaf at 375 degrees:
Start by preheating your oven to 375 degrees.
Use an oven thermometer if you don’t have an accurate temperature setting on your oven dial.
Be sure that the internal temperature of the oven has reached at least 350 degrees before placing your meatloaf in the oven.
Prepare the ingredients for your meatloaf according to your preferred recipe, either in a large bowl or on a cutting board.
Mix all ingredients together until blended, but do not overmix or the meatloaf can become tough.
Shape into a loaf and place in an appropriately sized baking dish that is lightly greased.
Make sure there are no air pockets inside of the meat mixture and be sure to place it into the center section of your preheated oven.
Bake uncovered for around 90 minutes or until done according to preference (baking time can vary depending on size).
The internal temperature should read between 155-165 degrees Fahrenheit when done, as registered with an accurate food thermometer inserted into several places (it might be necessary to let rest 5-10 minutes after baking).
Serve warm and enjoy.
How Do I Know When A Meatloaf Is Cooked?
Cooking times for a meatloaf can vary depending on several factors, including the size and fat content of the meatloaf.
The best way to make sure your meatloaf is cooked through is to use an instant-read thermometer.
An internal temperature of 160°F (71°C) indicates that it is safe to eat.
If you don’t have an instant-read thermometer, you can check if the meatloaf is done by pressing down on the top with a spoon.
Fully cooked meat will feel firm, but not hard.
You can also slice into it and look for juices that run clear instead of pink, which indicates that it’s done cooking.
When baking a 2-lb (900g) meatloaf at 375°F (190°C), it generally takes about one hour or until the internal temperature reaches 160°F (71°C).
However, it’s recommended that you check after 45 minutes and periodically thereafter to prevent over-baking.
Additionally, all ovens are different so times may vary slightly by oven.
How To Keep Meatloaf Moist?
Cooking meatloaf at 375°F will produce a well-done and juicy interior.
The ideal internal temperature for a cooked meatloaf is 165°F, which can usually be achieved after around an hour and ten minutes in the oven.
However, it is important to keep in mind that the cook time can vary depending on the size and shape of your meatloaf.
To keep your meatloaf juicy and moist, mix some binder ingredients — such as bread crumbs or oats — into your ground beef mixture.
Also, add liquids like broth or milk and fat such as bacon fat or butter for additional moisture.
Additionally, adding some extra eggs can help bind everything together and add richness to your dish.
Finally, be sure to spread your filling in an even layer in the baking dish so there are no holes for the moisture to escape through during cooking; this will help keep it moist throughout its cook time.
To be sure your meatloaf is fully cooked, use an instant-read thermometer to check the internal temperature.
Should You Cook Meatloaf Covered Or Uncovered?
When cooking meatloaf at 375 degrees Fahrenheit, you have the option of covering the meat or leaving it uncovered.
Much of this decision depends on your preferences; both covering and uncovering have their advantages.
Let’s take a look at both approaches to help you make the right choice for you and your family.
Covered: If you choose to cover your meatloaf while it is baking, you can rest assured that it will become much juicier.
The trapped moisture will be retained by the foil, allowing it to be reabsorbed into the meatloaf during cooking.
Not only that, but covered cooking reduces kitchen mess since splattering juice is kept inside the aluminum foil wrapped around your dish.
Generally speaking, when cooking a 375°F oven-baked meatloaf for about 20 minutes per pound, opt for covering with aluminum foil or a lid of some kind if this is what you prefer.
Uncovered: Choosing to leave your meatloaf uncovered means that it won’t retain as much moisture as when covered – this means slightly drier slices but crisper exterior which some people may prefer than very moist slices throughout their entire piece of savory goodness.
Since much of this preference comes down to texture and taste, make sure to experiment with different methods in order to decide what works best for our desired outcome.
Again though when talking about baking temperature and time – an internal temperature that reads 165°F coupled with 20 minutes per pound should give you satisfactory results regardless if another technique was chosen instead.
What Can I Put On Top Of Meatloaf?
Topping your meatloaf is a great way to bring in added flavors to the finished dish.
Common topping ingredients for traditional recipes include brown sugar, ketchup, and barbeque sauce.
If desired, cheeses such as cheddar and mozzarella can be added on top either in chunks or shredded.
Bacon strips or ground sausage pair nicely with meatloaf while spices like garlic, onion powder, cumin, paprika, basil, oregano and thyme can make the dish more flavorful.
Breading like crushed croutons or stuffing mix can be used on top of the loaf for a crispier texture.
Finally, don’t forget the traditional ingredients of sliced onions and peppers.
For more ideas take a look at some of the recipes available online.
What To Serve With Meatloaf?
When ready to serve, meatloaf is generally served with side dishes like mashed potatoes, gravy and green beans.
Combining the traditional sides with something a bit more unexpected can add more layers of flavor and turn this essential recipe into something extra special.
Here are some side dishes to try with your next meatloaf dinner:
- Roasted vegetables like squash, Brussels sprouts or carrots.
- Roasted potatoes or sweet potatoes.
- Baked Macaroni and Cheese for a classic blend of flavors.
- Garlic couscous or quinoa for a heartier option.
- Lightly steamed seasonal greens such as kale or Swiss chard with a hint of lemon and garlic.
- A simple side salad like tomato and cucumber with balsamic vinaigrette is always a refreshing choice.
- Steamed broccoli or cauliflower tossed in butter can bring out the best in this comfort food main dish.
Conclusion: How Long To Cook Meatloaf At 375?
The perfect time for cooking meatloaf at 375°F (190°C) is about 60 minutes.
The internal temperature of the meatloaf should be at least 160°F (71°C).
Additionally, for a crispier topping, the temperature should reach 175-180°F(79-82°C).
Cooking time may vary depending on the size and shape of the loaf.
Therefore, it is important to keep an eye on the temperature and check your meatloaf to ensure it has reached its desired level of doneness.
In addition, use a thermometer as an extra precaution to prevent overcooking and dryness.