Swedish Meatballs are easy, all time favorite recipe, made with equal mixture of ground beef and pork, breadcrumbs and other savory ingredients that are rolled into small balls then slightly fried and cooked in luscious rich creamy sauce.
There are many variations of meatballs around the world and the common thing they share is they are rolled into balls and seasoned with spices and herbs. They are either fried, baked, steamed or cooked in sauce.
Swedish meatballs are tasty and commonly served with pasta, potatoes and bread. To most Filipinos, it is paired with white rice.
In Sweden, they add lingonberry sauce. I have eliminated this ingredient as it is not easily accessible to everyone. I promise you, even without it, this is a decadent recipe.
When I was in college, it was easier to eat out and have boxes of Stouffer's frozen dishes. Cooking was not a thing for me in the past. Those good old days when things were simple and not complicated.
Two of my favorite pasta dishes that were always in my freezer were Stouffer's Swedish Meatballs and Beef Stroganoff. For something quick, they were both delicious especially for someone who doesn't cook.
Recently, many popular Disney and IKEA recipes were posted online. One is IKEA’s popular Swedish Meatballs. As one reader commented, there’s nothing special about the ingredients plus why would they share to the whole world their famous meatball recipe.
Honestly, I've never had IKEA’s meatballs that everyone raves about and it was just recently that I’ve been to their restaurant. I have nothing against IKEA. I prefer to shop at Macy’s and small specialty stores with less crowd.
My niece when she was a toddler, IKEA was her playground during winter. I believe, I went with them once and they were there every other week so she can play. I can’t stand the crowd and craziness inside the store. Plus, it is easier for me to find everything I need in a smaller store.
What Meat to Use with Swedish Meatballs?
Ground beef and pork are commonly used to make this delicious morsels. A mixture of ground beef and pork renders a tender, juicier meatballs .
Some prefer to use just beef. Veal and chicken are other options to use.
(7) Meatballs are slightly fried in butter and oil.
Easy Swedish Meatball Sauce
This luscious sauce is a rich roux made of chicken stock and heavy cream. It is a simple sauce recipe but adds so much richness to these meatballs.
The roux will thicken the gravy and to make it, flour is added to butter and oil used in frying the meatballs. Don’t clean the skillet, the brown bits from frying will add so much flavor to the sauce. Cook flour longer if you prefer a darker sauce.
The sauce is seasoned with Dijon mustard, garlic powder, nutmeg and salt then meatballs are added back and braised in this rich creamy sauce.
In Sweden, it is not traditional to cook meatballs in sauce. BUT MAKE IT WITH SAUCE, it will not disappoint!
It is best to double up the sauce if you have kids. They love to smother their pasta and potatoes with this delicious creamy gravy.
Adjust the consistency of sauce with chicken stock or the combination of water and chicken bouillon powder. If you prefer a thinner gravy, add more chicken stock otherwise add less for a thicker consistency.
Don’t skip the breadcrumbs especially if you are using pure beef only. Breadcrumbs add moisture to meatballs keeping it juicy and tender.
(1) Breadcrumbs – Take 1 big slice of bread soaked in 3 tablespoons milk or heavy cream or if you have crackers crush it and add it to meatballs.
(2) Meat – This recipe calls for equal parts of ground beef and pork. You can do all beef or add some chicken instead of pork. Veal can be used to.
(3) Heavy cream – Substitute heavy cream with whole milk, half and half or evaporated milk. Just make sure when adding cream or milk that you are constantly stirring until well combined.
(4) Allspice – If you don’t have allspice, you can use a PINCH of ground cloves, ground cinnamon and ground nutmeg.
How to Make Easy Swedish Meatballs
Easy Swedish Meatballs
- ½ pound ground beef
- ½ pound ground pork
- ½ cup breadcrumbs
- ¼ teaspoon allspice
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- ¼ teaspoon ground pepper
- ½ tablespoon salt
- 2 tablespoons parsley chopped
- 1 medium onion chopped
- 1 egg
- 2 tablespoons heavy cream
- 2 tablespoons oil
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 3 tablespoons flour
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 3 teaspoons chicken bouillion powder
- 1 ½ cup water
- ½ teaspoon dijon mustard
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ⅛ teaspoon nutmeg
- salt to taste
- In a medium sized bowl, combine breadcrumbs, allspice, ground pepper, garlic powder and salt. Stir-in onion and parsley. Add ground beef, ground pork, egg and heavy cream. Mix until combined. Roll into 20 small meatballs.
- In a large skillet, melt butter then add olive oil over medium heat. Slightly fry meatballs turning continuously until brown. Transfer to a plate and set aside.
- On the same skillet add flour to butter and oil mixture whisking until it turns brown. Stir-in chicken bouillion powder then add water. Note: You can use 2 cups of chicken or beef broth instead. Slowly pour heavy cream while stirring contantly. Stir-in dijon mustard, garlic powder, nutmeg and salt to taste.
- Add meatballs back to the skillet and simmer for another 4 minutes.
- Serve with noodles, potatoes, bread or rice. Enjoy!
- For the sauce, you can replace the 3 tbsp. chicken bouillon powder and 1 ½ cups water with 2 to 3 cups chicken broth or stock.
- Garnish with chopped parsley, a dash of paprika or better yet some cayenne pepper powder.
- In the blog, you can find substitution for some ingredients.