5-Ingredient Mini Meatloaf Muffins

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Mini Meatloaf Muffins on a plate. They have only 5 simple ingredients, cook in 30 minutes, and are gluten free. Parmesan gives salty and nutty flavor.  Ketchup on top cooks down into a thick, deep-flavored tangy, salty, and sweet glaze.

Mini Meatloaf Muffins are small bites with BIG flavor!  There are only 5 simple ingredients, but each serves a special purpose for texture and flavor.  Onions give moisture, flavor, and a little crunch.  Parmesan gives big salty and nutty flavor.  Ketchup brings a richness and slight sweetness.  And egg binds it all together to create a beautifully set little muffin.  Finally, ketchup on top cooks down into a thick, rich, tangy, salty, and sweet glaze on top of each muffin.  They are perfect for making ahead and eating throughout the week…dinner for the kids, packing in lunches, or snack.  They’re also great to make for a weekend party appetizer too!

BTW, put practically anything in a mini muffin tin and my little one will eat it up!   

Meatloaf Muffins: Small Variation with BIG Benefits

These little meaty bites of love are an adaptation of one of my most popular recipes on the Talking Meals Blog, 5-Ingredient Easy Meatloaf.  It really surprised me actually.  Of all of the interesting, exotic, international cuisine options available, at the end of the day, people love comforting familiar foods.  And Meatloaf is definitely that, a comforting and familiar food.  Mini Meatloaf Muffins are even BETTER in a lot of ways!

Less Cooking Time.  The biggest difference is the cooking time.  The original recipe takes 60 minutes to cook, because it’s all in one loaf.  These little Mini Meatloaf Muffins only take 30 Minutes! 

Goodness in Every Bite.  The mini muffins are about 1-2 bites each.  That means you get the crunchy meatloaf outside with a bit of the delicious ketchup glaze in every bite!  No more fighting for the ends of the meatloaf.  

Kids LOVE these!   The fun mini muffin size and the delicious ketchup in each bite make these irresistible for kids.   

Quick note!  This post contains affiliate links, which means I earn a commission (at no extra cost to you) if you purchase from them.  This commission is what helps me keep this blog afloat :).  But, I also share these links because I have used the products, genuinely love them, and want you to know exactly what I used. 

EQUIPMENT NEEDED

Aside from a large mixing bowl, mini muffin tins are the only special cooking equipment you need for this one!

PREP-AHEAD FOR YOUR MINI MEATLOAF MUFFINS

We are all extremely busy and making dinner during the week can be overwhelming. Here are the steps you prepare in the day(s) in advance and store in the fridge as your meal Kit… (See the recipe below for more details)

This recipe is so easy that there’s not much to prep ahead.  In fact, you can make these entirely ahead and reheat them later.  Therefore, I highly recommend you spend a few extra minutes on the weekend to make your own ketchup!  My super easy recipe uses honey and it’s delicious!  Check it how here homemade ketchup recipe, but feel free to use the store bought stuff!

Aside from making ketchup, it’s really just finely dicing the Onion.

HACK: Worried about crunchy onions in your meatloaf muffins?  Or, don’t have a fresh onion on hand?  Dice several onions in advance and freeze them in in a storage bag!  The onions will already be soft from being frozen and they cook beautifully.  You also always have freshly frozen onion on hand!  For more Freezer Hacks to make meal prep easier, download this FREE FREEZER HACK SHEET!

Mix all ingredients (except the 1/3 cup Ketchup reserved for the tops) together in a large bowl with a fork or with hands: beef, parmesan cheese, onion, egg, ketchup, salt, pepper.

Ingredients in bowl for Mini Meatloaf Muffins. They have only 5 simple ingredients, cook in 30 minutes, and are gluten free.

Mixed meat ingredients in bowl for Mini Meatloaf Muffins. They have only 5 simple ingredients, cook in 30 minutes, and are gluten free.

At this point, you can store the mixture in the fridge or continue on to cook.

COOK YOUR MEATLOAF MUFFINS 

Tear a small piece of bread off the size of the muffin tin bottoms and place it at the bottom. This will help to soak up the fat from the meat.  Using a small ice cream scoop, a tbsp measuring spoon or just a spoon, add about 2 tablespoons of the meatloaf mixture to each mini muffin slot.

Bread in bottom of muffin tin slots for Mini Meatloaf Muffins. They have only 5 simple ingredients, cook in 30 minutes, and are gluten free.

Adding raw meat mixture to bread in bottom of muffin tin slots for Mini Meatloaf Muffins. They have only 5 simple ingredients, cook in 30 minutes, and are gluten free.

Adding raw meat mixture to bread in bottom of muffin tin slots for Mini Meatloaf Muffins. They have only 5 simple ingredients, cook in 30 minutes, and are gluten free.

Adding raw meat mixture to bread in bottom of muffin tin slots for Mini Meatloaf Muffins. They have only 5 simple ingredients, cook in 30 minutes, and are gluten free.

Spread the remaining Ketchup over the top of each of the meatloaf muffins.

Spoon spreading ketchuo on Raw Mini Meatloaf Muffins in muffin tin. They have only 5 simple ingredients, cook in 30 minutes, and are gluten free.

Spoon spreading ketchuo on Raw Mini Meatloaf Muffins in muffin tin. They have only 5 simple ingredients, cook in 30 minutes, and are gluten free.

Bake in the oven for 30 minutes.

Remove from the oven and let sit for 5 minutes.  Admittedly, coming right out of the oven, these are not the prettiest foods ever.  The juices and fat from the meat will start to cook out and over the top of the muffin.  But, they sure taste darn good! 

Pop each meatloaf muffin out using a fork.  Then pull off the bread from the bottom of each muffin.  You actually, don’t need to pull off the bread, but it’ll be soaked with meat fat and bit soggy.  

Cooked Mini Meatloaf Muffins in muffin tin. They have only 5 simple ingredients, cook in 30 minutes, and are gluten free.

Fork removing cooked Mini Meatloaf Muffins in muffin tin. They have only 5 simple ingredients, cook in 30 minutes, and are gluten free.

Hand holding cooked Mini Meatloaf Muffins They have only 5 simple ingredients, cook in 30 minutes, and are gluten free.

Serve and Enjoy!

😍 Carrie

Mini Meatloaf Muffins on a plate. They have only 5 simple ingredients, cook in 30 minutes, and are gluten free. Parmesan gives salty and nutty flavor.  Ketchup on top cooks down into a thick, deep-flavored tangy, salty, and sweet glaze.

5-Ingredient Mini Meatloaf Muffins

Mini Meatloaf Muffins are small bites with BIG flavor!  There are only 5 simple ingredients, the recipe cooks in 30 minutes, and they are gluten free. Parmesan gives big salty and nutty flavor.  Ketchup on top cooks down into a thick, deep-flavored tangy, salty, and sweet glaze on top of each muffin.  They are perfect for dinner for the kids, packing in lunches, as a snack or party appetizer! #meatloaf #familydinner #kidsdinner #dinner #easydinner

Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Keyword Beef, dinner, meatloaf
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Servings 18 muffins
Calories 317 kcal
Author Carrie Tyler

Ingredients

  • 16 oz 90% Lean Grass-Fed Ground Beef
  • 1 cup Parmesan Cheese grated
  • 1/3 cup Onion finely diced
  • 1 Egg
  • 1/4 cup Ketchup for mixing with beef see my recipe for homemade Ketchup!
  • 1/3 cup Ketchup for spreading on top of muffins - see my recipe for homemade Ketchup!
  • 1/2 tsp Salt
  • 1/2 tsp Ground Pepper
  • 5 slices Bread

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

  2. Finely dice the Onion.

  3. Mix all ingredients (except the 1/3 cup Ketchup reserved for the top together in a large bowl with a fork or with hands: beef, parmesan cheese, onion, egg, ketchup, salt, pepper.

    Ingredients in bowl for Mini Meatloaf Muffins. They have only 5 simple ingredients, cook in 30 minutes, and are gluten free.
  4. Tear a small piece of bread off the size of the muffin tin bottoms and place it at the bottom. This will help to soak up the fat from the meat.

    Bread in bottom of muffin tin slots for Mini Meatloaf Muffins. They have only 5 simple ingredients, cook in 30 minutes, and are gluten free.
  5. Using a small ice cream scoop, a tbsp measuring spoon or just a spoon, add about 2 tablespoons of the meatloaf mixture to each mini muffin slot.

    Adding raw meat mixture to bread in bottom of muffin tin slots for Mini Meatloaf Muffins. They have only 5 simple ingredients, cook in 30 minutes, and are gluten free.
  6. Spread the remaining Ketchup over the top of each of the meatloaf muffins.

    Spoon spreading ketchuo on Raw Mini Meatloaf Muffins in muffin tin. They have only 5 simple ingredients, cook in 30 minutes, and are gluten free.
  7. Bake in the oven for 30 minutes.
    Spoon spreading ketchuo on Raw Mini Meatloaf Muffins in muffin tin. They have only 5 simple ingredients, cook in 30 minutes, and are gluten free.
  8. Remove from the oven and let sit for 5 minutes. Pop each meatloaf muffin out using a fork.  Then pull off the bread from the bottom of each muffin.

    Hand holding cooked Mini Meatloaf Muffins They have only 5 simple ingredients, cook in 30 minutes, and are gluten free.
  9. Serve and enjoy!

    Mini Meatloaf Muffins on a plate. They have only 5 simple ingredients, cook in 30 minutes, and are gluten free. Parmesan gives salty and nutty flavor.  Ketchup on top cooks down into a thick, deep-flavored tangy, salty, and sweet glaze.

Chicken & Cheese Corn Tortilla Quesadillas

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If Chicken Enchiladas and Cheese Quesadillas had a baby, it would be these incredible Corn Tortilla Quesadillas!  They are my latest obsession, with  crispy edges, a soft gooey center, and mouthwatering flavor.  I filled these with hearty shredded chicken, flavored with warm and smoky Mexican spices.  Then layered in shredded Pepper Jack cheese and Cheddar that gets so melty and oozy and delicious.  The result?  An irresistible new dinner or appetizer idea…maybe breakfast, a mid-morning snack, dessert 🙄…I’m just sayin’.    

Chicken Corn Tortilla Quesadilla triangles on platter with avocado, tomato, & sour cream.  They have crispy edges, a soft gooey center, and are mouthwatering flavor.  They have hearty shredded chicken flavored with warm and smoky Mexican spices.  Then shredded Pepper Jack cheese and Cheddar is layered to get melty and oozy and delicious.  It's an irresistible new easy dinner or appetizer idea.  #quesadillas #mexicanfood #enchiladas #familydinner #chicken

It Just Tastes Damn Good!

This past Spring I received my certification in Nutrition and Healthy Living from Cornell.  Since then, I have made sure to share the health benefits for each of my recipes.  Well, I will tell you that corn definitely has health benefits, including fiber, antioxidants, and vitamins.  But, let’s be real here.  No one eats Quesadillas for the health benefits!  Not even if they are made with corn tortillas.

So, these guys are just damn good.  That’s why you should make them 🙂

If you’re like me, Mexican Food is a guilty pleasure and it’s hard to stop at just one dish.  So, if you now have a hankering for more, check out these recipes!

Quick note!  This post contains affiliate links, which means I earn a commission (at no extra cost to you) if you purchase from them.  This commission is what helps me keep this blog afloat :).  But, I also share these links because I have used the products, genuinely love them, and want you to know exactly what I used. 

PREP-AHEAD STEPS FOR YOUR CHICKEN CORN TORTILLA QUESADILLAS

We are all extremely busy and making dinner during the week can be overwhelming. Here are the steps you prepare in the day(s) in advance and store in the fridge as your meal Kit… (See the recipe below for more details) Chicken Corn Tortilla Quesadilla triangles on platter. They have crispy edges, a soft gooey center, and are mouthwatering flavor. They have hearty shredded chicken flavored with warm and smoky Mexican spices. Then shredded Pepper Jack cheese and Cheddar is layered to get melty and oozy and delicious. It's an irresistible new easy dinner or appetizer idea. #quesadillas #mexicanfood #enchiladas #familydinner #chicken

To start, determine what you want to fill your quesadillas with.  My kids really love Chicken and Cheese, so I went basic.  However, you can get creative or healthier by adding grilled zucchini, mushrooms, onions, peppers, steak, the list goes on!  In a pinch, I’ve been known to add frozen-then-cooked chicken fingers!

You can also use pre-cooked chicken from your store, whether that is rotisserie, grilled, or roasted.  If it’s pre-cooked, just be sure to shred it and then mix a little of the seasonings with it (Chili Powder & Cumin).

Ok, so up to 5 days in advance, you can roast or grill your chicken!

Drizzle a little bit of Olive Oil on the chicken and rub it all around. Then sprinkle all sides of chicken with Salt & Pepper and roast in 400 degree oven for 25 minutes (Or Grill it for 5-6 minutes on each side) until temperature reaches 165 degrees in center. Once the chicken has cooled enough to handle, shred it with 2 forks or with fingers. 

Chicken cooked and shredded for Chicken Corn Tortilla Quesadillas. They have crispy edges, a soft gooey center, and are mouthwatering flavor. They have hearty shredded chicken flavored with warm and smoky Mexican spices. Then shredded Pepper Jack cheese and Cheddar is layered to get melty and oozy and delicious. It's an irresistible new easy dinner or appetizer idea. #quesadillas #mexicanfood #enchiladas #familydinner #chicken

Shred the cheese using the large hole side of your grater.  I really like to grate my own cheese because the pre-shredded cheese often has fillers in it to preserve and prevent it from melding together.  TIP: You can shred a bunch of cheese and FREEZE IT!  That way you always have it on hand for recipes where you will be melting it anyway!  Get more Freezer Hacks Here

Shredding Pepper Jack Cheese on a grater for Chicken Corn Tortilla Quesadillas. They have crispy edges, a soft gooey center, and are mouthwatering flavor. They have hearty shredded chicken flavored with warm and smoky Mexican spices. Then shredded Pepper Jack cheese and Cheddar is layered to get melty and oozy and delicious. It's an irresistible new easy dinner or appetizer idea. #quesadillas #mexicanfood #enchiladas #familydinner #chicken

Shredded Pepper Jack Cheese for Chicken Corn Tortilla Quesadillas. They have crispy edges, a soft gooey center, and are mouthwatering flavor. They have hearty shredded chicken flavored with warm and smoky Mexican spices. Then shredded Pepper Jack cheese and Cheddar is layered to get melty and oozy and delicious. It's an irresistible new easy dinner or appetizer idea. #quesadillas #mexicanfood #enchiladas #familydinner #chicken

 

COOK YOUR CHICKEN CORN TORTILLA QUESADILLAS

For a faster cooking process, preheat 1-2 large griddles or 2 large skillets. This way, you can get 3-4 (or more) quesadillas cooking at the same time.  Otherwise, you will just need to cook in batches, which is completely fine and uses less pans, but will take longer.

Lay out 8 tortillas on a flat surface (sheet pans, cutting board, plastic wrap, clean counter). Over each of the 8 tortillas, sprinkle a layer of PepperJack cheese. Then add shredded chicken. Last, sprinkle more Pepper Jack and a little Cheddar. Then top with the second tortilla.

Hand sprinkling cheese on tortillas for Chicken Corn Tortilla Quesadillas. They have crispy edges, a soft gooey center, and are mouthwatering flavor. They have hearty shredded chicken flavored with warm and smoky Mexican spices. Then shredded Pepper Jack cheese and Cheddar is layered to get melty and oozy and delicious. It's an irresistible new easy dinner or appetizer idea. #quesadillas #mexicanfood #enchiladas #familydinner #chicken

3 Tortillas assembled for Chicken Corn Tortilla Quesadillas. They have crispy edges, a soft gooey center, and are mouthwatering flavor. They have hearty shredded chicken flavored with warm and smoky Mexican spices. Then shredded Pepper Jack cheese and Cheddar is layered to get melty and oozy and delicious. It's an irresistible new easy dinner or appetizer idea. #quesadillas #mexicanfood #enchiladas #familydinner #chicken

To the preheated pans, brush on Olive Oil to the bottom and then immediately add a Quesadilla carefully transferring it from the flat surface to the pan using a large spatula. Cover the quesadilla(s) with a pan lid or aluminum foil so that the cheese starts to melt. Let cook for 3-4 minutes.

Chicken Corn Tortilla Quesadilla cooking in skillet. They have crispy edges, a soft gooey center, and are mouthwatering flavor. They have hearty shredded chicken flavored with warm and smoky Mexican spices. Then shredded Pepper Jack cheese and Cheddar is layered to get melty and oozy and delicious. It's an irresistible new easy dinner or appetizer idea. #quesadillas #mexicanfood #enchiladas #familydinner #chicken

Chicken Corn Tortilla Quesadilla cooking in skillet covered. They have crispy edges, a soft gooey center, and are mouthwatering flavor. They have hearty shredded chicken flavored with warm and smoky Mexican spices. Then shredded Pepper Jack cheese and Cheddar is layered to get melty and oozy and delicious. It's an irresistible new easy dinner or appetizer idea. #quesadillas #mexicanfood #enchiladas #familydinner #chicken

When you can see that the cheese has melted, using the large spatula, carefully flip each Quesadilla so that the other side can crisp up and the cheese can finish melting. (If you have to cook these in several batches, keep them in a 300F degree oven on a sheet pan or aluminum foil to stay warm and melty.)

Chicken Corn Tortilla Quesadillas cooked and cut on a sheet pan. They have crispy edges, a soft gooey center, and are mouthwatering flavor. They have hearty shredded chicken flavored with warm and smoky Mexican spices. Then shredded Pepper Jack cheese and Cheddar is layered to get melty and oozy and delicious. It's an irresistible new easy dinner or appetizer idea. #quesadillas #mexicanfood #enchiladas #familydinner #chicken

When they are all cooked, Cut them into four triangles each, serve with your favorite toppings like salsa, sour cream, or guacamole, and enjoy! 

😍 Carrie

Chicken Corn Tortilla Quesadillas

If Chicken Enchiladas and Cheese Quesadillas had a baby, it would be these incredible Corn Tortilla Quesadillas!  With crispy edges, a soft gooey center, and mouthwatering flavor, they will become your new obsession.  I filled these with hearty shredded chicken, flavored with warm and smoky Mexican spices.  Then layered in shredded Pepper Jack cheese and Cheddar that gets so melty and oozy and delicious.  The result?  An irresistible new dinner or appetizer idea.  #quesadillas #mexicanfood #tacos #enchiladas #familydinner #easydinner #busymom #chicken

Course Appetizer, Main Course
Cuisine Mexican
Keyword easy dinner, enchiladas, gluten free, Quesadillas
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
If Cooking in 4 batches add 15 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 8 Round Quesadillas
Author Carrie Tyler

Ingredients

  • 16 Corn Tortillas
  • 16 oz Chicken Breast
  • 1 tsp Chili Powder
  • 1 tsp Ground Cumin
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 8 oz Pepper Jack Cheese
  • 4 oz Cheddar Cheese
  • 1 tbsp Olive Oil

Instructions

Prep-Ahead

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. Drizzle a little bit of Olive Oil on the chicken and rub it all around. Then sprinkle all sides of chicken with Salt & Pepper and roast in 400 degree oven for 25 minutes (Or Grill it for 5-6 minutes on each side) until temperature reaches 165 degrees in center. Once the chicken has cooled enough to handle, shred it with 2 forks or with fingers.

    Chicken cooked and shredded for Chicken Corn Tortilla Quesadillas. They have crispy edges, a soft gooey center, and are mouthwatering flavor. They have hearty shredded chicken flavored with warm and smoky Mexican spices. Then shredded Pepper Jack cheese and Cheddar is layered to get melty and oozy and delicious. It's an irresistible new easy dinner or appetizer idea. #quesadillas #mexicanfood #enchiladas #familydinner #chicken
  3. Shred the pepper jack and cheddar cheese using the large hole side of a Grater.  

    Shredding Pepper Jack Cheese on a grater for Chicken Corn Tortilla Quesadillas. They have crispy edges, a soft gooey center, and are mouthwatering flavor. They have hearty shredded chicken flavored with warm and smoky Mexican spices. Then shredded Pepper Jack cheese and Cheddar is layered to get melty and oozy and delicious. It's an irresistible new easy dinner or appetizer idea. #quesadillas #mexicanfood #enchiladas #familydinner #chicken

Make your Quesadillas!

  1. For faster cooking, preheat 1-2 large griddles or as many skillets as you can fit.  This way, you can get 3-4 (or more) quesadillas cooking at the same time.

  2. Lay out 8 tortillas on a flat surface (sheet pans, cutting board, plastic wrap, clean counter).  Over each of the 8 tortillas, sprinkle a layer of PepperJack cheese.  Then add shredded chicken.  Last, sprinkle more Pepper Jack and a little Cheddar.  Then top with the second tortilla.

    Hand sprinkling cheese on tortillas for Chicken Corn Tortilla Quesadillas. They have crispy edges, a soft gooey center, and are mouthwatering flavor. They have hearty shredded chicken flavored with warm and smoky Mexican spices. Then shredded Pepper Jack cheese and Cheddar is layered to get melty and oozy and delicious. It's an irresistible new easy dinner or appetizer idea. #quesadillas #mexicanfood #enchiladas #familydinner #chicken
  3. To the preheated pans, brush on Olive Oil to the bottom and then immediately add a Quesadilla carefully transferring it from the flat surface to the pan using a large spatula.  Cover the quesadilla(s) with a pan lid or aluminum foil so that the cheese starts to melt.  Let cook for 3-4 minutes.

    Chicken Corn Tortilla Quesadilla cooking in skillet covered. They have crispy edges, a soft gooey center, and are mouthwatering flavor. They have hearty shredded chicken flavored with warm and smoky Mexican spices. Then shredded Pepper Jack cheese and Cheddar is layered to get melty and oozy and delicious. It's an irresistible new easy dinner or appetizer idea. #quesadillas #mexicanfood #enchiladas #familydinner #chicken
  4. When you can see that the cheese has melted, using the large spatula, carefully flip each Quesadilla so that the other side can crisp up and the cheese can finish melting (just 1-2 minutes).  (If you have to cook these in several batches, keep them in a 300F degree oven on a sheet pan or aluminum foil to stay warm and melty.)

    Chicken Corn Tortilla Quesadillas cooked and cut on a sheet pan. They have crispy edges, a soft gooey center, and are mouthwatering flavor. They have hearty shredded chicken flavored with warm and smoky Mexican spices. Then shredded Pepper Jack cheese and Cheddar is layered to get melty and oozy and delicious. It's an irresistible new easy dinner or appetizer idea. #quesadillas #mexicanfood #enchiladas #familydinner #chicken
  5. When they are all cooked, Cut them into four triangles each, serve, and enjoy!  

    Chicken Corn Tortilla Quesadilla triangles on platter with avocado, tomato, & sour cream. They have crispy edges, a soft gooey center, and are mouthwatering flavor. They have hearty shredded chicken flavored with warm and smoky Mexican spices. Then shredded Pepper Jack cheese and Cheddar is layered to get melty and oozy and delicious. It's an irresistible new easy dinner or appetizer idea. #quesadillas #mexicanfood #enchiladas #familydinner #chicken

Recipe Notes

The recipe includes 8 round quesadillas, yielding 4 triangles each. 

  • As an appetizer, it has 16 servings of 2 triangles per serving
  • As a main dish,  it can serve 4-6 people