Mini Air Fryer Meatloafs: the Recipe for Cheesy, Healthy and Quick Portioned Meatloaves!

Total time: 30 min
Difficulty: Low
Serves: 4-6
By Cookist

Craving classic comfort food with a fun twist? This recipe for Air Fryer Mini Meatloaf stuffed with Ham and Cheese is for you! This recipe takes the classic meatloaf recipe and shrinks it down to appetizer-sized portions. Ground beef is combined with breadcrumbs and spices, then it’s filled with savory ham and melty cheese. Instead of using the oven, the air fryer achieves perfectly cooked meatloaf with a crispy exterior. These mini meatloaves are ideal for all kinds of gatherings, from potlucks and game days to after-school snacks. They're also a great way to introduce picky eaters to the joys of meatloaf. So ditch the full-sized loaf and embrace the mini revolution!

What is Meatloaf?

Meatloaf is a savory dish made from ground meat mixed with various ingredients, shaped into a loaf, and baked. It's a comfort food classic enjoyed around the world. The concept of meatloaf likely has roots in various European traditions. Similar dishes involving leftover meat formed into a loaf and cooked appear in German, Scandinavian, and Belgian cuisine.

Meatloaf as we know it today is believed to have emerged in the United States sometime in the late 19th century. It's thought to be an adaptation of scrapple, a Pennsylvania Dutch dish made with ground pork and cornmeal. Meatloaf gained significant popularity during the Great Depression due to its affordability and versatility. It allowed families to stretch their meat budget by incorporating fillers like breadcrumbs and vegetables.

Air Fryer Mini Meatloaf Stuffed with Ham and Cheese is a fun twist on the classic comfort food. Their small size makes them ideal for finger foods at gatherings, offering a delicious and satisfying option alongside dips and veggies.


  • Don't overmix the meatloaf mixture. This can make it tough. Aim for a light and well-combined consistency. To ensure moisture, consider adding a splash of milk or broth to the mix.
  • Chopped vegetables like onions, peppers, or mushrooms add flavor and moisture to the meatloaf. You can experiment with different combinations based on your preferences.
  • Don't skimp on the seasonings! Salt, pepper, garlic powder, and dried herbs like thyme or oregano are all essential for a flavorful meatloaf.
  • Select a cheese that melts well. Shredded mozzarella, cheddar, or a blend are also good options.
  • Preheat your air fryer for at least 5 minutes before adding your mini meatloaves. This ensures even cooking.
  • Don't overcrowd the air fryer basket. Leave space between the mini meatloaves for proper air circulation. This will result in a crispy exterior and prevent steaming.

Can I Use Different Types Of Meat?

Yes! While ground beef is common, you can experiment with turkey, lamb, pork, or even a combination.

What Kind Of Cheese Can I Use?

Choose a cheese that melts well. Shredded mozzarella, cheddar, or a blend are all good options. You can also get adventurous with other melting cheeses like Gruyere or Swiss.

Can I Prepare The Mini Meatloaves Ahead Of Time?

Yes!  Assemble the mini meatloaves and place them on a baking sheet in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours before air-frying. Let them come to room temperature for a few minutes before cooking.

How Long Do I Have To Cook Mini Meatloaves in The Air Fryer For?

Cook the mini meatloaves in the air fryer at 180°C (360°F) for 20 minutes.

How Do I Know When the Meatloaves Are Ready?

The meatloaves are ready when they reach an internal temperature of 75°C (165°F) and are golden brown on the outside.

How Do I Keep My Meatloaves From Shrinking in The Air Fryer?

To minimize shrinking, avoid overworking the meat mixture, and use lean minced beef. Additionally, let the meatloaves rest for a few minutes after mixing before cooking.

What Can I Serve With These Mini Meatloaves?

There are many options! Consider serving them along side dishes like mashed potatoes, roasted vegetables, mac and cheese, or a side salad, if you're considering them for a weeknight dinner. If you're serving them as finger foods during a party or a brunch, you can pair them with a variety of dipping sauces, like ketchup, BBQ sauce, or a creamy horseradish sauce.

Can I Freeze Leftover Mini Meatloaves?

Absolutely! Let them cool completely, then place them in a single layer on a baking sheet and freeze for up to 2 months. Reheat them in the air fryer for a few minutes until warmed through.

More Meatloaves Recipes For Your Weeknight Dinners

Egg-Stuffed Meatloaf

Stuffed Cheesy Meatloaf

Bacon Wrapped Meatloaf

Mortadella Stuffed Meatloaf

Chicken Meatloaf

How to Store Air Fryer Mini Meatloaf

Store leftovers in an airtight container, in the fridge, for up to 3 days.


Minced beef
400g (14oz)
6g (1 tsp)
2g (1 tsp)
15g (1 tbsp)
Parmesan cheese
30g (2 tbsp)
120g (1 cup)
Cooked ham
120g (1 cup)
Olive oil

How To Make Air Fryer Mini Meatloaf

Season the minced meat with salt and pepper. Mix it with the chopped parsley, parmesan, and breadcrumbs.

Form the mixture into balls, then flatten them on parchment paper squares. Top each patty with ham and provolone.

Fold the parchment paper over the filling, forming a cylinder.

Bread them in breadcrumbs and cook them in the air fryer at 180°C/360°F for 20 minutes.

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