I freaking LOVE my air fryer. Love it so damn much. Did you get one from Christmas or whatever mid-winter holiday you celebrate? Based on how many photos I’ve been tagged in lately, all people really received was air fryer and instant pots. So many instant pots. Well if you didn’t receive an air fryer this year and you’re still on the fence, just know that I’ll be sharing more air fryer recipes in the future. So far I have –

And now meatloaf. And sure, you can make this in the oven but it will be no where near like the air fryer version. This version makes the bacon extra crispy on the outside while discarding the excess fat from the bacon, without leaving it dry.

PaleOMG Air Fryer Meatloaf

If you’re still not sold on an air fryer, I totally get that. And it’s fair to be hesitant. I’ve shared this list before on other posts, but I’m going to share it again. It’s my air fryer pros and cons list. Let’s start with the cons because I’m much more of a pessimist –

  • Do you absolutely need one? Not really. You can fry or bake things instead.
  • Do they take up a lot of room? Hell yes they do. I have the 6qt size and it’s massive.
  • Do you need to use less fat when it comes to cooking with the air fryer? Yes, a bit less. But I’ve also only fried one thing in my life so I’m probably not the best person to ask. I wasn’t born in a place that thinks deep frying is a way of life. Nor do I love fried food much.

But here’s the reason I love my air fryer –

  • I don’t have to heat up the house with the oven in the summer time.
  • I don’t have to wait for the oven to pre-heat.
  • I don’t have to dirty my oven when cooking chicken wings.
  • My house doesn’t smoke up like it does with the oven sometimes (because the chicken wings made it so damn dirty).
  • I can cook meat and veggies faster than in the oven.
  • I can get brussels sprouts crispier than the oven.

I think the pros outweigh the cons, personally. My main complaint is how big it is. I have a medium-size kitchen and I have to store it on its side in one of our drawers. Which makes it a little hard to get out daily, but that’s my only complaint.

PaleOMG Air Fryer Meatloaf

Other than that, I love it. Breakfast potatoes in it are crispy perfection. Even better than what you can make in an oven. Does it compare to a deep fryer? Doubtful. I’ve never used a deep fryer because who TF has room for that in their kitchen unless they are Paula Dean? I miss Paula Dean. I know she said dumb racist things that she can’t really ever come back from, but I miss her annoyingly loud laugh and outrageously bad-for-you food. Giada just isn’t the same. Don’t get me wrong, Giada has some delicious looking food and great boobs, but her laugh doesn’t burn your ears like Paula’s. That got very off track. Anywho, go try this. You’re going to LOVE it!

PaleOMG Air Fryer Meatloaf

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Air Fryer Meatloaf

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5 from 3 reviews

  • Author: juli
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 50 minutes
  • Total Time: 60 minutes
  • Yield: 3-4 1x


  • 1/2 pound thick cut bacon
  • 1/2 pound ground beef
  • 1/2 pound ground pork
  • 1 cup almond flour
  • 1/2 yellow onion, diced
  • 1 red bell pepper, diced
  • 2 tablespoons ketchup
  • 1 tablespoon spicy brown mustard
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon white pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon celery salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 egg*

For the sauce:

  • 1/2 cup ketchup
  • 23 tablespoons maple syrup


  1. Preheat air fryer to 350 degrees.
  2. Mix together meatloaf ingredients in a large bowl with clean hands until completely combined. Then whisk together sauce ingredients in a separate bowl and set aside.
  3. Line a 9×5 loaf pan with slightly overlapping strips of bacon. Place the meatloaf mixture on top of the bacon then wrap the strips around the meat to completely surround the meatloaf. Then tip the pan over the remove the meatloaf. 
  4. Place the meatloaf in the air fryer. I put mine at a diagonal to fit. Turn oven heat up to 350 degrees F then timer up to 50 minutes.
  5. Once timer hits the 30 minutes mark, press pause, and using a basting brush to brush about 3 tablespoons of the sauce on top of the meatloaf. Lightly cover the meatloaf with a piece of tin roil. (This will keep the bacon from burning in the remaining cooking time.) 
  6. Cook for 16 more minutes, then remove the foil, baste the meatloaf once more in about 3 tablespoons of the sauce then let cook without the foil for the remaining 4 minutes.
  7. Once cooked, let the meatloaf rest for 10 minutes before slicing and serving. Just a heads up, it’s definitely a little challenging getting the meatloaf out. Once the wire rack has cooled, you’ll be able to slightly push up and raise the wire rack up from the basket. Or you can always use a couple handy dandy spatulas. This will be the hardest part of your day, calm down.


*To make this meatloaf egg free, I used Bob’s Red Mill Egg Replacer

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PaleOMG Air Fryer Meatloaf

PaleOMG Air Fryer Meatloaf


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  1. Sharon Balas says:

    Made this last night with a couple of substitutions – used Primal Kitchen BBQ sauce because I didn’t have any ketchup and real celery for the celery salt. I threw the onion, pepper and celery in the food processor to rough chop. The veggies stayed a tad crunchy and added great texture. The air fryer technique is spot on. Husband says put it permanent rotation. Outstanding! Thank you.

  2. Alison says:

    How gross would it be to use only ground turkey….because it’s all I have. 🙂

    PS – I dig you. You’re hilarious and real and I love that.

    1. juli says:

      it will just be a bit dry in comparison

  3. Shelley says:

    This is the best! As a shift worker I love iI can prep with spicy cauliflower for 4 days with left overs 👊

    1. juli says:

      yay!! air fryer cauliflower is the best, too!

  4. Greg says:

    I’m would think regular flour would work as well?

    1. juli says:

      no clue, i’ve never cooked anything in my life with real flour lol

  5. Lori says:

    This meatloaf turned out amazing! Love my air fryer as well! It’s been a huge blessing to not run the oven this summer.

  6. Stephanie says:

    Who knew you could air fry meatloaf?! I thought I hated meatloaf but decided to give this a try and WOW it’s SO good!