Low Carb Meatloaf & Sweet Tea

Let me introduce you to the best-tasting low carb meatloaf you’ll ever have. Serve with a side of sweet tea for the ultimate tasty Southern comfort food.

best meatloaf ever

This past weekend I taught a low carb cooking class and a sweet lady named Susan emailed me ahead of time and promised a sampling of the best meatloaf I’ve ever had in my life, as well as the recipe. She was right, as this low carb meatloaf recipe makes the tastiest meatloaf I’ve ever eaten. I have since made it twice and forced everyone I come into contact with to try it and they have admitted the same thing.

Folks, your life has been missing something and it is this meatloaf. The flavor, tenderness, juiciness, and beauty of it are the stuff of legends. Plus, it’s both a low carb and keto meatloaf recipe, so no guilt necessary! So if you want a no-fail, easy to make, comforting dinner that’s packed full of flavor, look no further. Now let’s stop lallygagging and hightail it into the kitchen folks because there is no time to waste when you have something as delicious as this meatloaf waiting on ya!

low carb meatloaf ingredients

Recipe Ingredients

  • Ground turkey or chicken
  • Ground beef
  • Eggs
  • Pork rinds (plain) or parmesan cheese
  • Onion soup mix
  • Reduced sugar or sugar-free ketchup
  • Water

How to Make Low Carb Meatloaf

crushed pork rinds

First, crush your pork rinds or sub with parmesan cheese. I just put them in this bag and rolled a can of something or another over them. A rolling pin works, too.

Then mix all meatloaf ingredients together using your hands in a large bowl. Mix, mix, mix until it is really well blended. I guess you could use a stand mixer to mix this if you like but I’ve always seen it mixed with hands so I just keep with old habits. If it ain’t broke…

bread in a pan

Susan’s recipe calls for taking the end pieces of a loaf of bread and placing them up against each other in the bottom of a 9×13 baking dish. I love that this uses up the part of the bread that sometimes gets discarded. I decided to use my little baking dish that I use for these glorious rolls. It worked out okay but I recommend going with Susan’s suggestion. Use a 9×13 because a 9×13 is going to give you plenty of room for any grease or liquid to accumulate. Mine almost overflowed the pan a bit because I used a shallow dish.

Turns out, there is something to be said for following a recipe!

meatloaf about to bake

Using your hands, form the meat mixture into a loaf on top of the bread in your baking dish. Press it together a bit as you do so. Squiggle a little additional ketchup on top again if you like (this is additional to what the recipe calls for).

Bake this at 350 degrees for an hour.

Allow it to sit for ten minutes before cutting. After ten minutes, it cuts beautifully.

To make this meal complete, check out Southern Breeze Sweet Tea

southern breeze teas

While the low carb meatloaf is cooking is the perfect time to brew up some Southern Breeze Sweet Tea. This is the sugar-free, zero-carb sweet tea that is as simple to make as pouring hot water over the bags and letting them steep for a few minutes. This stuff is the real deal, made in Marietta, Georgia. Let me show you how easy it is to make! I actually brew mine right in the pitcher. 

southern breeze tea making

  1. I pour about an inch of cool water in the bottom of a 2-quart pitcher (one that can handle heat). This is an old habit of mine, you can skip it if you like.
  2. Bring some water to a boil in my electric kettle (click here to see the one I have), toss two family size tea bags in the pitcher, and pour the boiling water over.
  3. Let it sit for 3-5 minutes, then remove my bags and fill the pitcher up the rest of the way with water for perfectly sweetened Southern iced tea every time. This photo is just before removing the bags and adding more water.

These three simple steps will yield perfectly sweetened Southern iced tea every time, which is great with my low-carb eating. Be sure you visit their website for a coupon to use when you go out hunting for it later on today (click here and then choose Sweet Deals at the top of their page). They also have a tool that will tell you what stores in your area carry their tea.

A glass of Southern Breeze Original Sweet Tea makes this meal complete.

best meatloaf ever


  • Keep leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to three days.
  • You can also freeze slices of meatloaf for up to three months. Just make sure every slice is tightly wrapped or sealed to avoid freezer burn.

Recipe Notes

  • I was surprised by the turkey/chicken in this recipe. Really surprised. This beefy-tasting meatloaf doesn’t give away that half of the meat is poultry but it sure does add a tender texture to it. Note that the original recipe called for chicken, but I didn’t see ground chicken at my grocery so I used ground turkey and it tasted the same to me. 
  • If you don’t want to use pork rinds, I’ve found parmesan cheese to be a great substitute that adds flavor and acts as a binder.

Recipe FAQs

What do you serve with meatloaf?

This meatloaf goes perfectly with a side of mashed potatoes and fresh green beans or brussels sprouts. Other options include mashed cauliflower, mac and cheese, or a simple side salad.

Can this meatloaf be made gluten-free?

Yes, you can adapt this recipe to make a gluten-free meatloaf. You’ll just have to use gluten-free bread crusts and gluten-free onion soup mix, which you can easily make at home.

Susan's To Die For Low Carb Meatloaf

This is the absolute best meatloaf (and it is low carb) I have ever tasted in my entire life. The flavor, tenderness, and juiciness are the stuff of legends.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 25 minutes
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: meatloaf
Servings: 4
Calories: 266kcal


  • 1 onion soup mix
  • 2 eggs
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1/3 cup ketchup
  • 3/4 cup pork rinds crush, then measure * or use 1/2 cup parmesan cheese
  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • 1 lb. ground chicken or turkey


  • Preheat oven to 350°
  • Using clean hands, mix together all ingredients in a large bowl until well blended.
    1 onion soup mix, 2 eggs, 3/4 cup water, 1/3 cup ketchup, 3/4 cup pork rinds, 1 lb. ground beef, 1 lb. ground chicken
  • Place two ends from a loaf of bread, end to end, onto the surface of a 9’x13’ baking dish.
  • Form the meat mixture into a loaf on top of the bread slices.
  • Squeeze a little more ketchup on top of the meatloaf.
  • Bake for one hour.
  • Let stand for 10 minutes before slicing


Susan’s Tips:
To take this meatloaf over the moon, heat each slice on a sizzling hot cast iron griddle skillet, putting a crusty sear on both sides!
Peel off the bread, from the bottom of each slice of meatloaf, and give it to your 4-legged children. Tails will wag, and they will love you forever!!!
*We no longer eat pork but I've parmesan cheese to be a great substitute that adds flavor and acts as a binder. I add about 1/2 cup.


Serving: 1slice | Calories: 266kcal | Carbohydrates: 4g | Protein: 22.75g | Fat: 17g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Sugar: 2g
Tried this recipe?Mention @southernplate or tag #southernplate!

The only time my prayers are never answered is on the golf course.

~Billy Graham

Special thanks to Southern Breeze Sweet Tea for sponsoring this post and helping me bring this wonderful recipe to you!

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  1. Christy, am I assuming correctly that you left the bread on the meatloaf and ate it also or did you remove it? Seems like it would be pretty greasy from the meat drippings.

    1. The bread is used to soak up some of the excess grease. That’s why one of my “Tips” suggests peeling it off and giving it to your dogs. Mine do a Happy Dance every time they get treated with the trimmings, but I have to admit that there have been times when I left it in place and did my own happy dance.

    1. You usually use something as a binder and to help keep meatloaf moist. Most recipes call for bread crumbs or oats but this one keeps it low carb by using pork rinds. I think they also add to the amazing flavor.

  2. Christy is it me today or are the recipes in both links the same. One states beef,chicken , pork. Other has only beef and chicken. I think I can’t get them side by side and I have not been feeling completely well so maybe I just can’t read today. Sounds like a good recipe. Will have to try.

    1. Hey, I’m not quite sure I’m following. I don’t have a meatloaf recipe that has pork in it. I’m probably missing something, too so holler back! It’s been a very long and somewhat sleepless week 🙂

      1. In the link for Pin for later shows meat- 1lb. ground beef, 1lb ground chicken 3/4 cup pork. I see that is suppose to mean pork rinds now but I thought it was pork to start with because a lot of people use a mixture of pork, beef, turkey to make meatloaf’s. On your site it shows pork rind and ground beef, ground chicken sorry for the mix-up in my head.

          1. I figure carbs for my own personal use but don’t publish on the site due to all of the variations in ingredients and serving sizes that other folks could potentially use. Myfitnesspal.com is what I use. It’s free and really easy 🙂

  3. You did me and my recipe proud, Girl Friend!!! Your picture looks like my Meat Loaf. When I first came up with this recipe, I used ground turkey with my ground beef. I happened to see the ground chicken in the WalMart meat display one day; it came in a tray, instead of the plastic tube. It just looked more appealing, so I tried it. I haven’t gone back to turkey, since that first chicken/beef Meat Loaf crossed my lips. I hope your readers enjoy it, as much as I do!!! My husband and I LOVED your cooking class!!!! Susan

    1. I cannot thank you enough for sharing this! I am serious, this is amazing. My husband doesn’t even like meatloaf and he said “MAN that meatloaf is ridiculously good!” and had three helpings!!!!
      Sara Jane (daughter’s best friend) had some and took some home. Her mother took one bite and said “Can you just let me have the rest of that?”.
      You are a low carb enchantress in the kitchen. I can’t wait to try the other recipes you sent me today. I’m sure you’ll have future posts dedicated to you, too!!!

      1. I am Susan’s next door neighbor and my husband and I are the lucky recipients of many of Susan’s dishes! She is an excellent cook and friend!

      2. Just made this! So good! I doubled it, and found my hubby had gotten into the pork rinds‍♀️, so although they aren’t carb free, I crushed up some seasoned croutons to make up the difference. Really good! Also, the bread on the bottom is a life changer! Would’ve never thought of it!

    2. Low Carb or not this Chicken/Beef combo is the best Meatloaf ever. I use Chicken Rinds instead of Pork Rinds. TY Susan and Christy for giving us this recipe.

  4. Sounds awesome. I’ve made meatloaf with crushed pork rinds before, but must try the ground chicken addition too…so glad you shared! YUMMERS! Meatloaf is not only one of my favs, but when my hubby returned home from Vietnam, the first thing he asked his mom to make was meatloaf. We are a match made in meatloaf heaven. =)

    1. Please thank your husband for his service! Greatest respect, M.W. Johnson, USMC 1979-2003.

      1. Col. Johnson,

        Thank you for your service as well.

        Warm regards,
        Jennette Parsons
        (Wife of Vietnam Submariner)

    2. What is the purpose of the bread crusts on bottom?? It seems it would absorb any liquid cooked out from meat.

      1. Keeps the meatloaf from sitting in any resulting grease while cooking. It does NOT make meatloaf any less juicy.

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