Cranberry-Turkey Meatloaf

January/February 2013

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This healthy turkey meatloaf recipe is packed with cranberries, sage and celery—all the flavors of Thanksgiving dinner wrapped up into one delicious turkey meatloaf.

Cranberry-Turkey Meatloaf

Makes: 10 servings

Active Time:

Total Time:


  • 2 large leeks, whites and light green parts only, halved, rinsed and cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 4 large stalks celery, cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil or canola oil
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh sage or 2 teaspoons dried
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 3/4 cup cooked bulgur (see Tip)
  • 2 pounds 93%-lean ground turkey
  • 1/2 cup canned cranberry sauce


  1. Preheat oven to 375°F. Coat a large rimmed baking sheet with cooking spray (or see Loaf Pan Variation).
  2. Pulse leek and celery in a food processor until finely chopped. (Or finely chop them with a knife.)
  3. Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add the vegetables and cook, stirring occasionally, until tender and most of the liquid has evaporated, 5 to 10 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl and let cool for 10 minutes.
  4. Add dried cranberries, sage, salt and pepper to the vegetables; stir to combine. Stir in egg and bulgur. Add ground turkey and with clean hands gently knead the vegetable mixture into the meat; do not overmix. Pat the meat mixture into a loaf shape (about 12 by 5 inches) on the prepared baking sheet. Spread cranberry sauce on top.
  5. Bake the meatloaf until an instant-read thermometer inserted in the center registers 165°F, 40 to 45 minutes. Let rest for 10 minutes before slicing.

Tips & Notes

  • Make Ahead Tip: Prepare through Step 3, cover and refrigerate for up to 1 day. Let stand at room temperature while oven preheats; bake until an instant-read thermometer registers 165°F, about 1 hour.
  • Tip: Try whole-grain bulgur—parboiled cracked, dried wheat berries—as a filler for things like meatloaf and burgers or as the base for salads and side dishes. (Don’t confuse bulgur with cracked wheat, which is simply that—cracked wheat.) To cook, combine one part bulgur with two parts boiling-hot water in a mixing bowl. Soak until softened, about 30 minutes. Drain if necessary. Look for ­bulgur in the natural-foods section of large supermarkets, near other grains.
  • Loaf Pan Variation: If you want a more uniform-shaped “loaf” you can bake your meatloaf in a 9-by-5-inch loaf pan instead of on a baking sheet. Coat the pan with cooking spray, pat the meatloaf mixture into the pan and cover with the topping. Bake for about 1 hour. Let stand for 10 minutes in the pan before slicing.


Per serving: 206 calories; 8 g fat (2 g sat, 1 g mono); 71 mg cholesterol; 16 g carbohydrates; 9 g added sugars; 19 g protein; 2 g fiber; 216 mg sodium; 334 mg potassium.

Carbohydrate Servings: 1

Exchanges: 1/2 fruit; 1/2 vegetable; 1/2 other carbohydrate; 2 1/2 lean meat; 1/2 Fat

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