Mozzarella-Stuffed Meatloaf with a few slices laying on their side next to a bowl of salad on a bamboo surface (with logo overlay)

The Best Meatloaf Stuffed with Mozzarella Cheese

Meatloaf is a quick meal that’s easy to make on a busy weeknight. Stuff it with mozzarella cheese for added flavor. 

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Meatloaf is one of those quick and easy meals that doesn’t take much to make. But there are so many ways to make meatloaf.

Even with those numerous versions, I have never had it anywhere outside my family with mozzarella cheese inside. And I won’t eat it any other way. For me, the cheese is what makes it so good.

So maybe no one else does this and I am giving away a ‘secret family recipe’. If so, sorry family!! Then again, it isn’t the first family recipe I’ve posted (Chicken a la Gurnham & Christmas Sandwiches).

This recipe makes a huge loaf and reheats well for leftovers the next day. We often make this during the week, so we have leftovers for lunch for a day or two, which is especially helpful when working outside the house.

The trick is using either a silicone mat or aluminum foil to roll the meatloaf. Once you have all the cheese inside, it’s not easy to use your hands to fold it over properly. I’ve always used aluminum foil. But in my efforts to cut waste, we will be using our silicone mat.

Simple Ingredients

Ground Beef

For most meals, I prefer to use lean ground beef. There are a few exceptions, such as making hamburgers, but otherwise, I go with lean meat. For meatloaf, though, you want it to be lean, but not too lean. I like to use a 90/10 mixture for meatloaf. If you prefer, you can make this with ground turkey, ground pork, or ground chicken as well. 

Italian Bread Crumbs

Plain breadcrumbs have the least flavor, so don’t change much of the flavor. I like to use Italian bread crumbs for that reason. If you don’t have Italian breadcrumbs, you can use plain breadcrumbs and add a tablespoon or two of Italian seasoning. The bread crumbs help to dry out the meat and hold it together. Panko breadcrumbs would also work as a substitute. 


2 regular eggs are used to help hold the meat together as it cooks. While it won’t work as well, you can use an egg substitute such as cornstarch and water, chia seeds and water, or flax seeds and water. 


The parsley is part of the flavoring for the meatloaf. I like to use dried parsley as it’s easy to work with but chopped fresh parsley would be delicious, too. 


Make sure you cut your onion into very small pieces. You don’t want to bite into a big chunk of onion in the meatloaf. I like to dice them small before adding them to the meatloaf. 

Black Pepper

Black pepper is another seasoning for the meatloaf. You can increase the amount if you want more flavor. 

Spaghetti Sauce

I like to use a small jar of spaghetti sauce for meatloaf. It already has some seasonings in it. Otherwise, you can also use tomato sauce and add some Italian seasoning to the mixture. Or use pizza sauce. 

Onion Powder

Seasoning. Flavor. All of the above. If you don’t like strong onion flavor, you can omit this since you already have diced onions and there is likely onion powder in your spaghetti sauce.

Garlic Powder

Same as the onion powder. This just adds more flavor and seasoning to the meatloaf. 

Mozzarella Cheese

It wouldn’t be mozzarella stuffed meatloaf without the gooey mozzarella cheese inside! It’s best to shred your own mozzarella cheese when you can. It has a fresher taste and is a good melting cheese when it’s freshly shredded. 

Tomato Paste

The tomato paste goes on top of the meatloaf. This brings the flavors all together and helps keep the tender meatloaf moist while it’s baking. 

Make-Ahead Meatloaf

You can make meatloaf ahead of time! Follow the steps to mix the meatloaf and form it into a loaf shape. Then wrap the raw meatloaf in plastic wrap and place it in a freezer-safe ziptop bag. This can be frozen for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight before cooking as directed below. 

Using a Loaf Pan

Typically, I shape my loaf and cook it right on a baking sheet. This lets the shape be whatever size I need and cooks a little better. If you want, though, you can prepare the meatloaf and then transfer it to a loaf pan. 

Mozzarella-Stuffed Meatloaf Step by Step


  • 2 lb lean ground beef
  • 1 cup Italian bread crumbs
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 1/2 tsp parsley
  • 1/4 cup onion (diced)
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 3/4 cup spaghetti sauce
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 3 cups mozzarella cheese (shredded)
  • 6 oz tomato paste


Preheat the oven to 350F. In a large bowl, mix the ground beef, bread crumbs, eggs, parsley, onion, pepper, spaghetti sauce, onion powder, and garlic powder. You can try to use a spoon. I find it’s best to get down and dirty and use your hands to mix everything thoroughly.

Spread the meat mixture out onto a large silicone mat or piece of aluminum foil. Again, a rolling pin usually sticks to the meat, so your hands work the best.

Place the cheese down the center of the meat, leaving about 1/4″-1/2″ around the edges.

Use the mat or foil to roll both sides of the meat together. I find it works best to bring one side up to just past center, then bring the other close to it. Peel the foil away from the bottom side, and lay the top over the exposed meat. Then press to seal the meat together.

Roll up the ends of the meat and press to seal so the cheese doesn’t leak out from the sides, either.

Cover the entire thing with tomato paste. Make sure to get the top and all of the sides.

Carefully move the entire thing to a baking dish or a cookie sheet with sides (to catch any juices). Bake for about 40-45 minutes, until the meat is done. Use a meat thermometer to check the doneness. The spaghetti sauce and tomato paste will make the meat look red when you cut into it. Just make sure the instant-read thermometer is reading the meat and not all the way through to the cheese. It should reach an internal temperature of 160F minimum. 

Mozzarella-Stuffed Meatloaf with a few slices laying on their side next to a bowl of salad on a bamboo surface (vertical)

Mozzarella-Stuffed Meatloaf Leftovers

Storage: Store leftover meatloaf in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days. 

Reheating: The best way to reheat meatloaf is in a shallow dish in an oven at about 250F for 20-25 minutes. Loosely cover it with foil. Otherwise, you can also reheat it in the microwave or a toaster oven. 

Freezing: Meatloaf can be frozen to save for later. Wrap it tightly in a freezer-safe wrapping such as plastic wrap then place in a freezer-safe ziptop bag. It can freeze for up to 2 months. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight before reheating. 


Originally Published On: August 29, 2016

Last Updated On: March 29, 2024

Mozzarella-Stuffed Meatloaf

Mozzarella-Stuffed Meatloaf

Meatloaf is a quick meal that's easy to make on a busy weeknight. Stuff it with mozzarella cheese for added flavor. 
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Main Dish
ground beef
Dietary Needs:
Servings: 8
5 from 2 votes


  • 2 lb lean ground beef
  • 1 cup Italian bread crumbs
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 1/2 tsp parsley
  • 1/4 cup onion (diced)
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 3/4 cup spaghetti sauce
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 3 cups mozzarella cheese (shredded)
  • 6 oz tomato paste


  • Preheat oven to 350F
  • In a large mixing bowl, combine the ground beef, bread crumbs, eggs, parsley, onion, pepper, spaghetti sauce, onion powder, and garlic powder
  • Roll out meat mixture onto a piece of aluminum foil until about 1/4″ thick
  • Pour cheese down the center of the meat
  • Use foil to roll both sides of meat on top of each other, then peel the foil and seal the meat
  • Roll up ends so cheese doesn’t leak
  • Cover with tomato paste
  • Put on baking sheet and bake for 40-45 minutes or until meat is done
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Nutrition Facts
Mozzarella-Stuffed Meatloaf
Amount Per Serving (1 piece)
Calories 510 Calories from Fat 297
% Daily Value*
Fat 33g51%
Saturated Fat 14g70%
Cholesterol 154mg51%
Sodium 742mg31%
Potassium 683mg20%
Carbohydrates 17g6%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 5g6%
Protein 33g66%
Vitamin A 765IU15%
Vitamin C 6.6mg8%
Calcium 274mg27%
Iron 4.1mg23%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

All nutritional information is based on third-party calculations and should be considered estimates. Actual nutrition content will vary based on brands used, measuring methods, portion sizes, and more.

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