Meatloaf Cupcakes

Gluten Free Meat Loaf & Mashed Potato “Cupcakes” Recipe

Having trouble getting the kids to the dinner table? Well, I would be willing to bet they would come running if you told them you were serving cupcakes for dinner!

Years and years ago, I was in the mood for a good old-fashioned meat loaf dinner but short on time so I made my meatloaf in muffin pans. Not only does this method result in perfect-sized portions but it bakes in 20 minutes! So I had just pulled out the mini meat loaves when my hubby comes in and says “meat loaf cupcakes?!?” At first I thought he was crazy and then I realized he was inspired! Why not? I mean, after all, what goes better with meat loaf than mashed potatoes and why not just combine the two into one adorable little package?

There is really no way to prepare mashed potatoes that I am not going to love, but my new favorite way is to make them dairy free with a tangy, buttermilk ranch-style dressing flavor. I simply combine some vegan mayo with lemon juice, a touch of garlic and some fresh herbs and mix that with the potatoes and WOW! It’s amazing! And no buttermilk! Or butter! And by the way, the little sauce I make to whip into the potatoes makes a great creamy, dairy free salad dressing or veggie dipper, as well. Seriously, all the yum of ranch dressing with no dairy! Now of course you can always make your mashed potatoes with ranch, buttermilk, or however else you prefer.

The mini meat loaves (or beef cakes as my friend Karin suggested I call them) are moist and meaty with a little carrot and onion grated in. I like to grate the veggies into my meat loaf, it adds moistness. Then I top them with a little dollop of ketchup glaze, made with Health Garden’s sugar-free ketchup, a hint of sweetness from honey, and Worcestershire sauce, and hot sauce. This is the best tasting sugar-free ketchup I’ve ever had, and I highly recommend switching to things like sugar-free ketchup and using natural foods to sweeten recipes when it comes to kids’ diets – sugar just contributes to so many issues as an adult and is too much for little bodies to handle, as well, so might as well get them trained to enjoy foods in their natural states instead of getting accustomed to sugary foods.

On their own, the meat loaves are terrific but when you add the ketchup glaze and tangy topping of potatoes, each bite is pure delight. And it all comes in such a cute package!

So, what do you think? Cupcakes for dinner anyone?


Meatloaf Cupcakes Recipe

5 from 1 vote
Meatloaf Cupcakes Recipe
Print Recipe

Gluten Free Meat Loaf & Mashed Potato "Cupcakes" Recipe

Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time40 mins
Total Time55 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Servings: 12 cupcakes
Calories: 273kcal
Author: Gluten Free & More



  • pounds Yukon gold potatoes - (4 or 5 medium sized), peeled and chopped
  • ½ cup vegan mayonnaise
  • 1 small clove garlic
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice - (about ½ lemon)
  • 1 teaspoon flat leaf parsley - finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon chives or scallion - finely chopped
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper

Meat Loaf

  • pounds lean ground sirloin
  • 1 small or ½ large white onion
  • 1 carrot
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 teaspoon kosher or sea salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire Sauce plus a couple of dashes for the glaze
  • 1 cup gluten free bread crumbs
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/3 cup Health Garden sugar-free ketchup
  • 1 dash hot sauce
  • 2 teaspoons honey

Optional Garnish

  • 12 cherry or grape tomatoes - cut in half
  • 12 sprigs of flat leaf parsley


  • Start by getting the potatoes going. Put the chopped potatoes into a large pot of cold water that has been liberally salted. Cover the pan and bring to a boil. Let boil until the potatoes are tender, 15 – 20 minutes. While the potatoes are cooking, prepare the meat loaf.
  • Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Spray a standard muffin pan with gluten-free, non-stick cooking spray.
  • Put the sirloin in a large mixing bowl. Grate in the onion, carrot and garlic. Add the salt, pepper, Worcestershire Sauce, bread crumbs and egg. Mix with your hands to combine. Do not over mix the ingredients. Portion the mixture into the prepared muffin tin, an ice cream scoop works well for this or just lightly roll the meat mixture into balls with your hands.
  • In a small bowl combine the ketchup with a couple dashes of Worcestershire Sauce, the hot sauce and the honey. Spoon some on top of each mini meat loaf. Bake for 20 minutes. Cut into one and make sure they are cooked through.
  • Make the ranch-style dressing for the potatoes. Put the Vegenaise into a small mixing bowl, grate in the clove of garlic. Add the lemon juice, parsley, chives (or scallions) and pepper, whisk to combine.
  • When the potatoes are tender drain them and then put them right back into the hot pan. Whip the potatoes a little with a hand held mixer. Add the dressing and whip until smooth and creamy. Taste the potatoes and add a little salt if needed.
  • When the meat loaves are done top them with a generous portion of the whipped potato mixture. Garnish with the tomatoes and a parsley leaf and serve.


Nutrition Facts
Gluten Free Meat Loaf & Mashed Potato "Cupcakes" Recipe
Amount Per Serving
Calories 273 Calories from Fat 135
% Daily Value*
Fat 15g23%
Saturated Fat 4g20%
Cholesterol 52mg17%
Sodium 377mg16%
Potassium 492mg14%
Carbohydrates 20g7%
Fiber 2g8%
Sugar 4g4%
Protein 14g28%
Vitamin A 993IU20%
Vitamin C 11mg13%
Calcium 37mg4%
Iron 3mg17%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

The views and opinions expressed on this blog are purely the blog owner’s. This blog accepts free manufacturers’ samples and forms of cash advertising, sponsorship, paid insertions or other forms of compensation. Affiliate links may be included in this post.

Disclaimer: All nutrition facts on Gluten Free & More are meant only as a guide and may differ depending on product brands used or ingredient substitutions. Some errors may occur, so you are encouraged to confirm the recipe’s ingredient and nutrition suitability for your own diet.
Have you tried this recipe? Give it a star rating and let us know your thoughts in the Ratings & Reviews section below.
Tags: Health Garden Kid Friendly Mashed Potatoes Meatloaf Mini Potatoes Ranch Dressing
  1. March 4, 2011

    CUTE! I know my kids would love it! Great job, Carol.

  2. March 4, 2011

    Carol, this is so darling. Guess who’s making “beef cakes” this weekend?

  3. March 4, 2011

    Very cute! Great minds think alike. I just published a post on Meatloaf Cupcakes a few months ago on SGCC and again, last month at Tampa Trib.

    1. Haha I guess so! Honestly never would have thought of it had hubby not made that comment. What day do you publish in the Trib? We get the paper but I am so busy these days I never have a chance to read it. I want to start looking for your articles.

      1. March 5, 2011

        Clever guy! Mine occasionally comes up with “suggestions”, but most are not printable. Lol!
        My stuff usually appears in the Trib’s “Flavor” magazine that comes out on Wednesdays.

        1. Great! I will start making a point to look!

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  6. March 5, 2011

    What a clever way of tempting kiddies to eat something!

  7. I love this idea. I saw a show just the other day on the Cooking Channel with a restaurant that makes all kinds of foods into cupcakes. Fun way to eat for sure!

  8. March 5, 2011

    Very cute! They would be a yummy canape with mini sized cupcakes too.

  9. Cute! I saw Rachael Ray made meatloaf cupcakes this week too! A few months ago, I heard of a “man’s bakery” in Chicago that only serves a wide variety of meatloaf cupcakes.

  10. March 7, 2011

    Carol, I love that you just posted these meatloaf cupcakes. I have had the same thing on my mind lately. You have now inspired me to cook this up!

  11. these are so awesome carol! forget the kids – I want them on my dinner plate – but maybe half a dozen or maybe a bigger one???

    1. haha – that’s what my hubby said, forget the kids!

  12. March 10, 2011

    Wow those look amazing. I’m going to have to try them.

    1. Thanks!

  13. Mary Lou ridler
    March 17, 2011

    i made these last night, and my husband knew i was making them, and yet when i brought him a plate he looked surprised and thought i made dessert! he ate 4 of them and had no complaint about the gluten free breadcrumbs. just a fun dinner! thank you for being so creative.

  14. March 21, 2011

    What a nice idea!!!
    I was thinking about a side dish or an appetizer for easter to post on my blog and you gave me a wonderful idea!!!!
    I will make egg stuffed tomatoes with potatoes lentil topping…Can I steal your idea if I mention you in my blog, can I?

    1. Absolutely! Enjoy.

  15. March 21, 2011

    Love it!! Great idea =)

  16. April 27, 2011

    I want to tell you, I made these last night for my two boys (my fiance and brother-in-law) and they LOVED these. I didn’t have a cupcake pan, so I used a half-cup scoop to form the loaves and then baked on a silpat. I also substituted the gf breadcrumbs with almond flour. Worked like a charm! Carol, your recipes never fail me. I hope you’ll consider a main course cookbook for your next offering!

    1. April 27, 2011

      Thank you so much and I have more than considered it, the second book is done and off to the publisher – it does in deeed contain main dishes :)

  17. DesertPA
    July 24, 2011

    Wow these are yummy! THey keep well for left overs the next day as well. We have made them several times for different guest and they are very much a hit. Thinking about making mini ones for a cocktail party.

    1. July 25, 2011

      Thanks and what a great idea to do mini ones for a cocktail party!

  18. Mandi thompson
    October 3, 2011

    I think it’s important to leave comments so others can know the pros and cons… Sister there’s no cons here!! These were lovely and so fun! My kids ages 5, 3, & 22months gobbled them up. Even my husband liked them, thank you!

    1. October 4, 2011

      Thanks for your lovely words Mandi!!!

  19. February 26, 2012

    Excellent post. I was checking continuously this blog and I am impressed! Extremely helpful info particularly the last part :) I care for such info much. I was seeking this certain info for a very long time. Thank you and best of luck.

    1. Gluten Free & More
      February 26, 2012

      Thank you!

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