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Slow Cooker Italian Meatball Meatloaf

by Kristen

Do you love homemade meatballs but don’t have the time to spend rolling each meatball out?  Try making your favorite Italian meatball recipe into a meatloaf!   This Italian meatball meatloaf tastes irresistible over pasta, polenta, and a “meatball” sub sandwich.   Cooking meatloaf in your slow cooker will not only liberate you from your kitchen but will also produce a deliciously moist meatloaf on any night of the week!  It’s like making one large meatball for your family with just a few minutes of prep time! 

How to achieve meatballs on a weeknight without spending time hours rolling out all the meatballs?   Make your favorite meatball recipe into a meatloaf and throw it in the slow cooker to cook all day!   This Italian meatball meatloaf won over my family with flying colors, and it was super easy to mix and place in the slow cooker!

Although this meatloaf can be made in the oven, I really love the way meatloaf turns out best in the slow cooker.  When it’s warm outside, your slow cooker doesn’t heat your entire house, and it will cook up mouthwatering tender.  Cooking meatloaf in your slow cooker is an easy way to serve up comfort food on a busy weeknight!

How do you make a slow cooker meatloaf?

  1. In a medium mixing bowl,  mix the ingredients for a meatloaf just like you would if you were baking one in the oven: ground beef, parmesan cheese, Italian breadcrumbs, milk, parsley, garlic,  egg, and onion.
  2. Form a loaf and place it in your pressure cooker.  You can double the recipe if you want to make two loaves as I did.  I have a “casserole” style slow cooker if you want; you can fit 2-3 meatloaves in it.
  3. Top the meatloaf off with marinara sauce.   You can add marinara sauce to the bottom of your slow cooker, too, if you like.
  4. Slowly cook the meatloaf for 5-6 hours.
  5. Top with more parmesan cheese and serve!

If you have a favorite family meatball recipe, I encourage you to use it and apply it to this recipe!  It will work out great!

A few tips

  • Use as many fresh ingredients as possible!
  • Don’t use overly lean meat.
  • Don’t overmix- this can cause your meatloaf to toughen up.

This recipe is simple!  All you need is:

Note: This ingredient list will make two medium-sized meatloaves 

2 pounds of ground beef

1/4 cup of milk

1 cup of Italian breadcrumbs

1 cup of parmesan cheese

2 tablespoons of parsley

1/2 cup minced onion

4 cloves of garlic

2 large eggs


5 from 1 vote

Italian Meatball Meatloaf

Makes 2 meatloaves

Servings 6


  • 2 pounds ground beef
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 4 cloves garlic minced
  • 1/4 cup minced onion
  • 1 cup parmesan cheese
  • 2 tablespoons parsley
  • 2 large eggs


  • marinara sauce
  • parmesan cheese


  1. In a medium bowl, mix together ground beef, milk, Italian breadcrumbs, garlic, parmesan cheese, parsley, onion, and eggs.

  2. Form two loaves. Place them into your slow cooker.

  3. spread marinara sauce over meatloaves

  4. slow cook for 4-6 hours

  5. Remove from slow cooker and serve.

This meatloaf was such a delicious dinner and a crowd pleaser!  We have been so busy, and it is nice to come home to a hot comforting meal after running around all evening.   This meatloaf makes delicious ” meatball”  sandwiches for lunch the next day!


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Jenny February 5, 2023 - 10:17 pm

5 stars
Really good. What is the yellow stuff in the photo?

Kristen February 6, 2023 - 1:15 am



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