A tasty alternative to classic meatloaf made with ground chicken, this chicken meatloaf features bacon, sautéed leeks and scamorza cheese. Easy to make, this baked chicken meatloaf recipe only requires 15 minutes of active time before going in to the oven. Make sure to save leftovers because this is perfect meal prep material!
I was never used to buying ground chicken – or ground poultry in general – before I came to Sweden. So, growing up, any recipe that required ground meat would mostly have been made with ground beef. In the past two years I have reduced my beef consumption and started paying more attention to white meat alternatives. Ground chicken turned out to be a very nice ingredient to work with.
Chicken meatloaf is as delicious as regular beef/pork meatloaf. If you’re worried about it being tough and not so juicy fear not. Yes, chicken is generally leaner (especially than pork) but to make things juicy we are spicying things up in this meatloaf adding sautéed leeks and bacon, as well as melty scamorza cheese.
Chicken meatloaf ingredients
- Ground chicken – sub with ground turkey if preferred
- Leek – to be sautéed
- Bacon – I used diced, can sub with pancetta
- Scamorza – sub with grated mozzarella if unavailable
- Eggs – for binding
- Bread crumbs – do not skip but use gluten free if allergic
- Tomato paste – you can use paprika paste or ajvar for a different flavour
- Olive oil – to sauté leeks
A description of the recipe with step by step photos follows. Please find ingredient quantities in the recipe card below.
How to make chicken meatloaf with bacon and leeks
- Clean and slice the leek. Warm the olive oil in a pan and sauté the leek on medium heat for 5 minutes. Add the diced bacon and keep sautéing until the bacon cooks through and the leek becomes soft but not browned. Remove from the heat.
- In a mixing bowl combine the ground chicken, grated scamorza, minced parsley, eggs, salt, bread crumbs and tomato paste. Add the leek and bacon mixture and knead until homogeneous. It is not recommended to eat raw chicken so you will have to trust me on the salt and not taste to adjust.
- Transfer the mixture to a loaf pan (I lined mine with parchment paper for easier unmoulding) and bake in the preheated oven at 180°C (350°F) for 45 minutes.
How do you know when chicken meatloaf is done?
The chicken meatloaf is ready when it has reached an internal temperature of 75°C (165°F). The quantities in this recipe baked in a regular loaf pan should take 45 minutes. The use of a meat thermometer is recommended for maximum safety, as it is difficult to tell if the meatloaf is cooked through just by judging from the top.
If you don’t have a meat thermometer, take the chicken meatloaf out of the oven after 45 minutes and slice it in the middle. Completely cooked meat will look pale and uniform, and feel firm to the touch. If not, return to the oven. If ready, return both halves to the loaf pan and let sit 5 minutes before slicing it more. This helps redistribute the juices and heat throughout.
How to serve and store
Since this meatloaf is not glazed, you can pair it with any sauce you like. Ketchup is a classic that will always work, but we’re in full-swing barbecue season so I drizzled mine with BBQ sauce, and served some more on the side. Saffron garlic mayo is another great option if you are a mayo freak like me.
Pair it with a nice side of roasted potatoes or a simple red wine risotto. If you’re counting carbs, sweet sautéed carrots are a nice option (don’t worry, they’re not sweetened). If it’s winter or you’re just in the mood for soup, a bowl of roasted butternut soup will not go wrong. As for a drink, a glass of ice-cold brown sugar lemonade is a good alternative for the whole family. For a wine pairing go for a white with dry and herbaceous notes like Grüner Veltliner or Sauvignon Blanc.
Have leftovers? This chicken meatloaf is your best friend. Slice it up and place it in lunch boxes along with your side dishes of choice. This meatloaf keeps for up to a week airtight and refrigerated! If you have 2 loaf pans and managed to buy a whole kilo of ground chicken go ahead and make 2. You can feast on this delicious meatloaf the whole week ahead, or just freeze up the second one for later. It keeps in the freezer up to 3 months.
Pro tip: slice and portion up before freezing so you can thaw one portion at a time.
If you liked this recipe please drop a comment and let me know what you enjoyed this chicken meatloaf with. If you are planning to make it at a later time, save it to Pinterest!
Chicken meatloaf with bacon and leeks
- 500 g ground chicken
- 1 leek
- 140 g bacon diced
- 150 g scamorza grated
- 2 eggs
- 100 g bread crumbs
- 2 tbsp tomato paste
- 1 tbsp parsley minced
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tsp salt
- Clean and slice the leek. Heat the olive oil in a pan and sauté the leek on medium heat for 5 minutes. Add the diced bacon and sauté until the bacon cooks through and the leek becomes soft but not browned. Remove from the heat.
- In a mixing bowl combine the ground chicken, scamorza, parsley, eggs, salt, bread crumbs and tomato paste. Add the leek and bacon mixture and knead until homogeneous.
- Transfer the mixture to a loaf pan and bake in the preheated oven at 180°C (350°F) for 45 minutes or until it reaches an internal temperature of 75°C (165°F).