Swedish meatballs are the best-known Swedish food in the United States. This version is also the most American version of Swedish meatballs. There’s also a secret to making the super easy Swedish meatballs taste great.
If you’ve ever had the Swedish meatballs at IKEA then you will fall all over yourself when you try these!!! I’ve been trying to recreate them for years and I think I’ve finally nailed it!
Swedish Meatballs – Oh How I Love Thee!
These meatballs are full of flavor, they are not bland like the ones at IKEA (sorry IKEA). I’m not sure what the whole big appeal is with their meatballs. I’ve tried them and I wasn’t a huge fan.
The Swedish meatballs I’m referring to are the ones my mom used to make. I had no idea IKEA stole her idea (just kidding). But I’m going to show you our family recipe today.
- Ground Beef and Pork – one of the key components to making these meatballs not quite as dense is the addition of ground pork.
- Onion and Garlic – minced onion is the secret ingredient here
- Milk and Egg
- Butter and Flour – to start the roux
- Beef broth and cream – to make it nice and creamy
- Spices – nutmeg, allspice, Worcestershire sauce and Dijon help give this sauce it’s signature flavor.
One of the key ingredients that give these meatballs their distinct flavor is dried minced onion. Please don’t leave this out, it is a crucial flavor.
How to make the Meatballs
I’ve been baking my meatballs over frying them for a long time now for several reasons. For starters, they cook evenly. There is no greasy oil splattered all over the stove and they are much healthier. If you’d like to try baking your meatballs too click here for our meatball recipe.
Putting it All Together
- As the meatballs are baking away, the sauce can be made by creating a roux with the flour and butter. You want to let this flour cook down over a very low flame for at least 2-3 minutes. The point isn’t to brown the roux but to get rid of the raw flour taste.
- Slowly add the beef broth with a whisk until it is all incorporated and there are no lumps. Add the cream and spices.
- Bring it to a quick boil and lower to a simmer until it thickens.
- Add the meatballs to the creamy gravy until fully coated and sprinkle with fresh parsley.
- Serve over mashed potatoes or egg noodles.
SWEDISH MEATBALL RECIPE
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Swedish meatballs just like IKEA, only better.
FOR THE MEATBALLS:
- 1 ½ lb mixture of Ground Beef and Pork
- ½ Cup Bread Crumbs
- 1 Tablespoon Parsley, chopped up fine
- ¼ Cup Dried Minced Onion
- 1 teaspoon Garlic Powder
- ½ teaspoon Sea Salt, Pepper to taste
- 1 Large Egg
- ¼ Cup Whole Milk
FOR THE SAUCE:
- 5 Tablespoons Butter
- 5 Tablespoons White Whole Wheat Flour (I use Bob Mills)
- 2 Cups Beef Broth
- 1 ¼ Cups Half and Half Cream
- ½ teaspoon Ground Allspice
- ¼ – ½ teaspoon Ground Nutmeg
- 1 Tablespoon Worcestershire Sauce
- 1 tsp. Dijon mustard
- salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat an oven to 400° F.
- In a medium sized bowl break the egg and whisk, add the milk, ground beef, bread crumbs, parsley, dried onion, garlic powder, pepper, salt. Mix until combined and form into small meatballs, approximately 1 Tablespoon in size.
- Prepare a baking sheet with a silpat or parchment paper and bake the meatballs for 30-35 minutes or until cooked through.
- Meanwhile, melt the butter to a small skillet over medium heat. Once it’s melted add the flour and whisk until it turns a light brown, approx. 2-3 minutes.
- Slowly stir in beef broth and heavy cream. Add worchestershire sauce, spices and dijon mustard and bring to a simmer until sauce starts to thicken. Taste and season with salt and pepper.
- Pour over meatballs and serve over rice or egg noodles.