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Say hello to your new favorite weeknight dinner: BBQ Chicken Meatloaf.
This is *NOT* the meatloaf you grew up eating….no weird mystery meat or funky ingredients here.
This meatloaf is made with simple ingredients like: ground chicken, onions, spices, and BBQ sauce – making it totally gluten free, paleo, Whole30 friendly, and DELICIOUS! Even the pickiest of eaters is going to love this recipe.
(I mean.. really, can you go wrong with anything BBQ? BBQ Sauce is the best! We love it on Healthy Pulled Pork, but it makes everything taste better!)
It’s super moist (sorry if you hate that word) and has the perfect amount of BBQ sweetness to it, while still being savory and delicious.
Let me show you just how easy it is to make!
Ingredients for BBQ Chicken Meatloaf:
To make BBQ Chicken Meatloaf you’ll need:
I’ve included substitutions for all of these ingredients in the green box below so you can customize it to fit your dietary needs!
Here’s a link to the BBQ Sauce I used in this recipe. It does contain a little bit of sugar, so it is not Whole30 compliant.
How to make BBQ Chicken Meatloaf:
You can make BBQ Chicken Meatloaf in your crockpot, instant pot, or in the oven. The oven is my preferred way to make meatloaf. I find that it helps to not make the meatloaf soggy, and gives the nice browning/caramelization of the sauce on top.
Below I’m showing you how to make meatloaf in the instant pot!
How to make Meatloaf in the Instant Pot:
- Add all ingredients to a bowl.
- Mix together your ingredients until combined.
- Take a piece of foil and slice it with scissors to create a vent.
- Form your meatloaf on top of the foil and place it on a trivet. Here’s a link to the instant pot trivet I use.
- Lower your meatloaf into the instant pot and cook per directions.
- You’ll notice that the meatloaf isn’t exactly pretty when it comes out of the instant pot (see step 6) that’s why we recommend broiling it in the oven with the sauce when you’re finished.
Instant Pot Notes for this recipe:
Make sure to poke holes in the foil. If you don’t, the meatloaf will sit in its own juices and have a very mushy texture.
Broiling makes a difference. Visually, without broiling – the meatloaf isn’t very appealing. Additionally, the caramelizing of the sauce adds depth of flavor.
How good does that look!?? We love eating this for meal prep. It’s one of those recipes that gets better as the days go on and the flavors can meld.
Substitutions for BBQ Chicken Meatloaf:
These cookies are pretty versatile. Here are a few ways you can customize them!
Meat – You can make this with ground turkey or ground beef. I found ground beef a little greasy, too heavy for my taste but it will work. You can also try this Turkey Meatloaf Recipe or BBQ Chicken Breast!
BBQ Sauce– If you can’t find or don’t have a Whole30 BBQ Sauce – mix together the following: 1/3 cup tomato sauce or Whole30 compliant ketchup, 1 date, 1 tbsp. Dijon Mustard, 2 tsp. Coconut Aminos. This works great!
Pumpkin – Pumpkin puree isn’t necessary for this recipe, but it’s recommended. If you omit it may lead to a drier meatloaf depending on the fat content of your meal
Oil – Avocado, coconut, or olive oil will all work in this recipe.
Cheese – If you’re not paleo/Whole30 you can add 1/4 cup cheddar cheese to this recipe. It’s delicious!
Almond Flour – If you have a nut allergy you can sub in whole wheat breadcrumbs, but this recipe will no longer be gluten free/whole30. I have not tried this recipe with any other flour, but I think coconut flour might work.
Storing Whole30 Meatloaf:
Storing: This meatloaf will last for up to 4 days in the refrigerator. I recommend storing it in airtight containers.
Freezing: I have not tried freezing this meatloaf, however, I do think it would freeze well. I would recommend baking it, letting it cool completely + storing it in freezer safe ziploc bags.
How to serve meatloaf:
This meatloaf pairs well with pretty much anything, but here are some of my favorite recipes to serve it with:
- Spiralized Potatoes
- Garlic Brussels Sprouts
- Healthy Green Beans Almondine
- Garlic Thyme Crispy Sweet Potatoes
- Pumpkin Mushroom Risotto
- Instant Pot Broccoli
Love chicken? Check out our favorite healthy chicken breast recipes!
BBQ Chicken Meatloaf
Instant Pot Instructions:
- Turn the IP to the normal sauté function and sauté the onion for 30 seconds-1 minute. You just want it soft and translucent.
- Make a foil package for the meatloaf by pulling off roughly a 12inx12in piece of foil and folding it in half. Make slits on the fold. These will be vents so your meatloaf can drain as it cooks. Your meatloaf should be 7 inches long by about 4 wide and 2.5 inches tall.
- Put the steamer basket into the IP. Pour in 1 cup of water, set the meatloaf on top of the foil and lower the foil down onto the steamer basket. Put the lid on and cook for 20 minutes at high pressure. The middle should be 165 degrees when you pull it out. If it isn’t cook it for 2 minute increments until it reaches temperature.
- Do a quick release and lift the meatloaf onto a sheet tray. Leave it right on the foil. Brush on the ¼ cup barbecue sauce or glaze. Optional, but recommended: preheat your broiler. Broil for 4-6 minutes until the sauce caramelizes.
- Allow it to cool for 10 minutes before cutting. Garnish with more parsley or cilantro and serve.
- Preheat oven to 450 degrees + prepare a parchment lined baking sheet.
- While oven preheats, mix together all ingredients in a bowl.
- Bake for 25-30 minutes at 450. Remove from oven, top with remaining ¼ cup of BBQ sauce + serve!
- Mix together all ingredients in a bowl.