Bourbon Glazed Meatloaf is a tender meatloaf drenched in a sweet ‘n spicy bourbon whisky glaze ~ and definitely not your mother’s meatloaf!
bourbon glazed meatloaf is a twist on a family favorite
I’ve been a meatloaf lover all my life, for me it’s the ultimate comforting dinner, but I think it does suffer from PR issues…a few targeted tweaks and a warm bourbon glaze is just what it needs to re-brand itself with a little bad boy edge.
This meatloaf itself is a moist blend of beef and pork, lightened up with fresh breadcrumbs, egg, and onion. So far pretty standard, but don’t be fooled. The glaze is an intense concoction of sweet and sour, with a hit of heat and anchored by lots of smooth Bourbon. I brush on one coat as the meat goes into the oven, then baste it with another layer during cooking, and give it a final slathering just before serving. Yum.
other unique meatloaf recipes
what you’ll need for the meatloaf:
- ground beef and ground pork
- the combination of beef and pork makes the meatloaf extra tender and flavorful.
- use fresh or dried. You can easily make your own breadcrumbs, too!
what you’ll need for the irresistible glaze:
- I love Maker’s Mark.
- any flavor you like, from marmalade to blackberry!
- dark brown sugar
- the molasses in brown sugar gives wonderful depth to this sauce.
- barbecue sauce
- whatever you’ve got in the fridge.
- chili sauce
- hot sauce
The thick bourbon glaze looks like a lot in the photos, but once you slice the meat you’ll find that it isn’t at all overpowering, and in fact I think your friends and family will appreciate a small bowl of extra glaze on the dinner table. Once you’ve tasted the sweet spicy sauce you won’t want to take a bite without it.
tips for making bourbon glazed meatloaf:
- When you mix the meatloaf you don’t want to handle the meat too much. I like to break it up before adding it to the bowl, and sprinkle all the rest of the ingredients evenly over the top of the meat. This gives a little head start to getting everything well mixed. My favorite way to mix meatloaf is in my stand mixer with the paddle attachment ~ try it!
- Dried breadcrumbs are fine, but to make your own fresh breadcrumbs just tear up a slice or two of bread and whiz in a food processor. For more details I have a post on how to make fresh breadcrumbs.
- Try to form your meatloaf into an even shape so it will cook evenly. I aim for an oval shape, not too tall.
- Check for doneness with an instant read thermometer inserted near the center, it should read 160F.
make this meatloaf ahead
Wrap it well and refrigerate for up to a day. Leave it out on the counter for an hour before baking to allow it to come up to temperature.
The glaze can be make up to 3 days in advance.
what to serve with bourbon glazed meatloaf
- Favorite Green Bean Casserole from scratch!
- Cauliflower Gratin
- Buttered Rutabagas
- Creamed Brussels Sprouts
- Green Bean Casserole
- Whipped Sweet Potatoes
- Sweet Corn Spoonbread Casserole
- Roasted Potatoes with Rosemary
Bourbon Glazed Meatloaf
- 1 cup fruit jam or preserves, I like to use apricot or cherry
- 1/4 cup dark brown sugar, use regular brown sugar if you don’t have dark
- 1 Tbsp hot chili sauce or Sriracha, use more if you like things hotter
- 1/2 cup bourbon, or any kind of whiskey or cognac
- 1/2 cup of your favorite barbecue sauce
- 1/4 cup water
- Set oven to 350F
- To make the sauce, put all the ingredients in a sauce pan and stir to combine. Bring to a boil lower the heat and simmer/boil gently, uncovered, for about 10 minutes until thickened. If you used a chunky jam you may want to use an immersion blender to puree the glaze.
- Put the meats in a large mixing bowl, breaking them apart into small pieces as you add them.
- Add the egg, breadcrumbs, onion and salt and pepper to the bowl. Mix everything well with your fingertips. You want to thoroughly incorporate all the elements without over-doing it.
- Form the meat into a loaf, not too tall and not too wide. You want it to cook evenly, so try to get it even from end to end.
- You can set it directly in a pan or on a baking sheet, or set it on a rack if you have one. Whatever you do, be sure to line the pan with foil since the glaze will drip and make a mess.
- Spread a layer of glaze all over the meatloaf and bake it for about 60 minutes, or until a thermometer inserted in the center reads 155F. (It will continue to cook as it rests.) Note: I baste another layer of sauce on the meat halfway through the cooking.
- Remove the meat and let it rest for a few minutes before slicing. Slather on a final coat of glaze just before serving, (heat it up on the stove so it is hot) and serve extra sauce on the side.