You’ll love this heart-healthy Italian Turkey Quinoa Meatloaf! You might never go back to using breadcrumbs.

A serving of italian turkey meatloaf with marinara sauce, noodles, and fresh parsley on square white plate. Text overlay reads "Italian turkey quinoa meatloaf."

When I was asked to participate in an event to raise awareness for heart disease, I knew it was something I wanted to take part in. My friend Kim does this every year on the anniversary of her mom’s passing and I think it is such a great way to not only remember and honor her mom, but to also help other people realize that they may need to make some changes in their life. Here’s what Kim says:

Today we are joining together to help raise awareness for Heart Disease. Kim of Cravings of a Lunatic lost her mom to heart disease when her mother was 47, and Kim was 15. Each year on the day her mom passed she shares stories and photos of her mom. This year she joined forces with Jen of Juanita’s Cocina, whose life was also touched by heart disease when her stepfather had a heart attack. Jen’s stepfather is alive and well more than a decade later, and for that, Jen is thankful every day. The ladies got in touch with other bloggers to ask them to share their own stories about how heart disease has touched their lives. So today we share stories and recipes from our hearts to yours, in memory and honour of Momzie, Kim’s mom. We hope you will share your stories with us today as well.

My family and my husband’s family both have a history of heart disease. It is almost hard to find a family that doesn’t. Ever since having kids, I find it even more imperative to protect my heart and my health. I want to be around for a long, long, long time. For my kids, for my husband, and for myself too. I selfishly want to see my children grow old, but I also know that they need me in their life.

I might occasionally (or more than occasionally) indulge in a big juicy burger or a bowl of ice cream, but I do try to make healthy choices and remember the phrase, “everything in moderation.”

One of the big things we do to protect our health and hearts is to eat lean meats such as turkey and lots of whole grains such as quinoa. This quinoa meatloaf fits the bill! I serve it with whole grain pasta, marinara sauce, and sautéed spinach. Easy dinner that you can feel great about.

Serving of meatloaf on square white plate with fork. Served with marinara sauce and noodles.

However, here’s a confession: Even though I’m no longer pregnant, and I’m not feeling nauseous, I am still a little bit lazy.

Just a little.

As evidenced by the progression of this quinoa meatloaf… I began with a grand plan to make meatballs. A double batch of meatballs. Half to freeze. Then I thought to myself, do I feel like rolling this mixture into a million little balls?

Answer: No.

Lightbulb! Meatloaf. If the family wants meatballs, they can cut the quinoa meatloaf into little chunks. Instant balls-o-meat.

Front view of serving of meatloaf on white plate with noodles and sauce.

Whenever I’m looking for a great recipe that is also good for me, Dara’s site, Cookin’ Canuck is one of the first places I look. Not only will I see gorgeous photography, but I’ll also find great recipes like these Turkey, Quinoa and Zucchini Meatball Lettuce Wraps, the inspiration for this recipe. Lettuce wraps are always fun for a light meal and I just love the idea of throwing meatballs inside a lettuce wrap.

With the added protein from quinoa, you’re sure to feel satisfied after eating either those meatballs or this meatloaf. The addition of zucchini helps to keep the turkey nice and moist.

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Enjoy! And take pride in your heart. Do something good for your heart.


It can’t wait.

No really. It can’t.

PS: Prefer a more classic meatloaf? Try this classic meatloaf recipe.  I also really love this mini turkey meatloaf sheet pan dinner or for something kind of unique, this southwestern mini meatloaf recipe made with ground chicken, corn, black beans, and barbecue sauce. 

Serving of meatloaf on white plate with noodles and marinara sauce.

Italian Turkey Quinoa Meatloaf

Yield: 6 servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes

You’ll love this heart-healthy Italian Turkey Quinoa Meatloaf! You might never go back to using breadcrumbs.


  • 1 ¼ pound ground turkey
  • 1 cup cooked quinoa
  • ½ medium yellow onion, grated
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • ½ cup grated zucchini (about 1 large or 2 small zucchini)
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh parsley, more for garnish if desired
  • ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 2 tablespoons reduced-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 6 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 jar of your favorite tomato (pasta) sauce


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray a rimmed baking sheet with non-stick cooking spray or line with a Silpat baking mat.
  2. In a large bowl, combine all ingredients EXCEPT tomato sauce. I use my hands, because you don’t want to over-mix this or it will get tough.
  3. Form into a meatloaf shape on your prepared baking sheet. Mine was long, skinny, and short because I didn’t want to have to bake it forever.
  4. Bake for 50-60 minutes or until meatloaf reaches an internal temperature of 165°F.
  5. Serve topped with heated sauce or pour sauce over meatloaf in last 10 minutes of cooking.


  • I got the 85% lean (85/15) ground turkey for this so it wouldn’t be too dry, but feel free to try the leaner version.
  • Double the recipe and freeze a loaf for a busy day!
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 6 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 329Total Fat: 20gSaturated Fat: 6gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 12gCholesterol: 136mgSodium: 373mgCarbohydrates: 10gFiber: 1gSugar: 1gProtein: 29g sometimes provides nutritional information, but these figures should be considered estimates, as they are not calculated by a registered dietitian. Please consult a medical professional for any specific nutrition, diet, or allergy advice.

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