Recipe By Chef John
Published Oct 7th
Prep 25m Cook 25m Additional 1h Ready In 1h 50m
Servings 8 meatloaf ghosts Calories 586.5

For a delicious crowd pleaser that will have your family cheering, who ya gonna call? Ghost meatloaf! Turn your favorite meatloaf recipe into these absolutely adorable, yet still incredibly terrifying, edible apparitions. They’re easy and fun to make and the leftovers make great “ghost on toast” sandwiches.

Recipe Ingredients

  • 1 pound lean ground beef
  • 1 ½ teaspoons kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 pinch cayenne pepper
  • 2 tablespoons minced green onions
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley, or to taste
  • ⅓ cup plain dry bread crumbs
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 10 slices provolone cheese
  • ½ cup ketchup
  • ¼ cup barbeque sauce
  • 2 tablespoons Sriracha sauce

Cooking Directions

  1. 1 Combine ground beef, salt, pepper, cayenne, green onions, parsley, bread crumbs, egg, and Worcestershire sauce in a large bowl. Mix with a fork until just combined; do not overmix. Wrap and chill in the refrigerator for 1 hour.
  2. 2 Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Line a sheet pan with a silicone liner (such as Silpat®).
  3. 3 Remove meat from the refrigerator and divide into 8 equal portions. Dampen your fingers with cold water and roll meat into smooth balls. Form each ball into a ghost (or pear) shape and place on the prepared sheet pan; try to center the heads over the bodies.
  4. 4 Bake in the center of the preheated oven until cooked through, about 20 minutes. An instant-read thermometer inserted into the center should read at least 150 degrees F (66 degrees C).
  5. 5 Remove from the oven and immediately place a slice of provolone cheese on the top of each ghost, centering it the best you can. Cut the remaining 2 slices of provolone into quarters and place those over the center to provide more cheese for the head. The residual heat from the meat will start to melt the cheese and it will droop down.
  6. 6 Return to the oven until the cheese melts, 30 to 60 seconds.
  7. 7 Remove from the oven and take some of the melted cheese around the bottoms and wrap and drape it back up over the heads. Use the tip of a knife to form eyes and mouths, then neaten up the bottom of the cheese "sheets."
  8. 8 Combine ketchup, barbecue sauce, and Sriracha for blood sauce; ladle onto plates and serve meatloaf ghosts on top.

Nutrition Facts

  • Calories 586.5
  • Carbohydrate 22.2 g
  • Cholesterol 161.7 mg
  • Fat 36.4 g
  • Fiber 0.8 g
  • Protein 41.9 g
  • Saturated Fat 18.8 g
  • Sodium 2180.7 mg
  • Sugar 12.3 g

Chef's Notes

You don't have to use this meatloaf recipe to make these ghosts--you can use any meatloaf recipe, or meatball recipe, or just use seasoned ground beef; Chilling the meat mixture in the fridge is not necessary but it will make the meat easier to work with and it will probably taste better; Fine salt can be used in place of kosher salt, and you can use any white melty cheese.


  1. I used my regular meatloaf recipe, but followed these directions. They didn't turn out so cute, but whatever, they were scary nonetheless. I did most of the ghosts as real meat, and a few alternative beef, which did pretty well. May attempt next Halloween and hope for better looking results! The "blood sauce" was something - Read more ...
  2. I made these with the help of my 8 year old granddaughter and they were a big hit at our Halloween family dinner.
  3. These were adorable. The meatloaf recipe is really good, too! Next time I would use less sriracha, but otherwise I'd made these as is.
  4. Great recipe. it was easy to make and a crowd pleaser. my kids loved this!
  5. Loved these! Didn't change a thing! Except i used franks red hot in place of siracha as that i what i keep on hand. I served this with orzo primavera that i called maggot primavera and some spooky halloween colored bread. Was a very festive meal. Thanks for the great idea/recipe.
  6. Very tasty, and so much fun for my little one to eat!
  7. I made these cute little ghosts! They were not only cute but sooooo delicious! Chef John has the best recipes!
  8. These were so fun! I will definitely be making them every year for a spooky dinner.