Easy Swedish meatballs are a delicious combo of beef and pork simmered in a creamy Swedish meatball sauce. Ready in less than 30 minutes, this is delicious comfort food that makes the perfect weeknight dinner or yummy party appetizer.

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These easy Swedish Meatballs are comfort food at its finest and after today you won’t have to wait for your next trip to Ikea to enjoy them!

The homemade meatballs are made with a mix of ground beef, ground pork, breadcrumbs, onions, and spices.

It’s the spices that make these meatballs so different. Nutmeg and allspice are used to give the meatballs a sweet, spicy taste that sets them apart from our Italian meatballs (we have an air fryer version and an Instant Pot version), and our baked turkey meatballs.

The meatballs are delicious but it’s the amazing Swedish meatballs sauce that is the key to the dish. It’s a perfectly creamy gravy that the meatballs finish cooking in that is out of this world.

This is a family friendly dish that you can serve over egg noodles, rice, mashed potatoes, or even keep the carbs lower by pairing them with options like cauliflower rice, cauliflower mash, or zoodles.

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close up of swedish meatball sauce on meatballs

Ingredients You’ll Need

You’ll need ingredients for both the meatballs and sauce. Here is what you’ll need to get and some substitution ideas.

For the meatballs:

  • Ground meats – You’ll need both pork and beef for the best flavor combination. If you don’t want to use a combination of meat you should use ground beef only. I do not recommend using ground turkey as a substitute for the particular recipe as it don’t give you the same level of flavor.
  • Yellow onion – A white onion would also work.
  • Egg – The large egg helps keep the meatballs together so do not skip this ingredient.
  • Unseasoned Bread crumbs – You can use your preferred bread crumbs for this dish. I prefer traditional bread crumbs verses panko but both will work. Make sure they are not seasoned as that will change the flavor.
  • Seasonings – To season the meatballs, you will want ground nutmeg and allspice, fresh parsley, salt, and pepper.
  • Butter – You could use olive oil if you prefer, but butter gives the meatballs a richer flavor.

For the sauce:

  • Butter – You could use olive oil, but butter makes a richer flavor.
  • All-purpose flour – This helps to thicken the sauce to get the  perfect texture. 
  • Beef broth – While beef broth will give you the best flavor you can substitute with chicken broth if needed. Still delicious but not exactly the traditional flavor.
  • Worcestershire sauce – There really is no good substitute for this.
  • Heavy cream – The sauce will be thinner, but you could use whole or reduced fat milks, but the sauce will not get as thick.
Cast iron pan with swedish meatballs in Swedish meatball sauce

How to Make Swedish Meatballs

Step 1: Mix and form the meatballs. In a large bowl, combine the ground pork, ground beef, onion, egg, salt, pepper, breadcrumbs, nutmeg, allspice, and parsley and mix until combined. Next, use your hands to roll the mixture into roughly 1.5 inch balls.

Step 2: Cook the meatballs. Heat a large skillet over medium heat, melt the butter, and then cook the meatballs in batches. Brown the meatballs on all sides and make sure they cook all the way through, which will take about 10 minutes.

Tip: The size of the meatball will affect how long you need to cook it so make sure you test one to ensure they are fully cooked.

Step 3: Make the sauce. See below for instructions.

Step 4: Add the meatballs to sauce. Once the sauce is ready, add the meatballs back in and cook for about 5 more minutes. Serve the meatballs and sauce over egg noodles, rice, or mashed potatoes.

Swedish Meatballs Sauce Recipe

Step 1: Remove meatballs from pan and make a roux. Once the meatballs are removed from the skillet, add the butter to the pan drippings and let it melt. Then whisk in the flour to form a roux. As it comes together, cook for about 1 to 2 minutes or until it begins to turn a golden brown.

Step 2: Stir in the broth.  Once the roux is ready, slowly stir in the beef broth, whisking it as you go to ensure no lumps form. Cook for 5 to 7 minutes once the broth has been added or until the sauce begins to thicken. 

Step 3: Finish the gravy. Finally, stir in the heavy cream and Worcestershire sauce and continue to cook until the sauce is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. Add the meatballs in and continue to cook for 5 more minutes before serving.

If you love comfort food like this make sure you try our beef stroganoff, Salisbury steak, and chicken fried steak with gravy too!

black bowl with egg noddles topped with Swedish meatballs in sauce

How to Store Them

First, allow the balls to cool completely and then store in an airtight container with the sauce.  

You can store it in the refrigerator for up to 3 days or up to 2 months in the freezer.

Can You Reheat Swedish Meatball Sauce?

Allow frozen meatballs to thaw overnight in the fridge before reheating.

To reheat, place the meatballs and sauce in a saucepan with ¼ cup of beef broth or water and then cover with a lid. Heat the skillet over medium heat for 20 to 30 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes, or until warmed through.

If the sauce gets too thick as you reheat, you can turn the heat down to medium low.

Note: If you feel like the sauce is getting too thick as the meatballs reheat you can turn the heat to medium low. 

Is it Better to Bake or Pan Fry Meatballs?

While I like baked meatballs for this recipe I think pan frying is necessary.

It gives them a nicely browned crust on the outside that I love AND you get to use all of the pan juices for your Swedish meatball sauce which greatly enhances the flavor.

What Do You Eat Swedish Meatballs With?

Traditionally, you serve Swedish meatballs with egg noodles. You can also serve them over rice, mashed potatoes, or with your favorite fresh bread.

While the meatballs and sauce aren’t low carb or keto, if you want to cut back on the carbs and calories you can serve them over cauliflower rice, cauliflower mash, zoodles, shitake noodles (like we used for our keto beef stroganoff) or palm noodles (like we used for our keto Cajun chicken Alfredo)

Top down shot of swedish meatballs in sauce over egg noodles

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Servings: 4
Prep Time: 10 mins
Cook Time: 35 mins
Total Time: 45 mins

Easy Swedish Meatballs

These Easy Swedish Meatballs are a traditional Swedish dish with flavorful homemade meatballs coated in a rich and creamy sauce. Classic comfort food served over noodles for a hearty dinner your family will love.
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Print Recipe
5 from 7 votes

Ingredients

Meatballs

  • 8 ounces Ground pork
  • 8 ounces Ground beef
  • 1 medium Yellow onion, finely diced
  • 1 large Egg
  • 1/2 teaspoon Salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon Pepper
  • 1/4 cup Unseasoned Breadcrumbs
  • 1/4 teaspoon Ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon Ground allspice
  • 2 tablespoons Fresh parsley, finely chopped
  • 3 tablespoons Butter

Sauce

Instructions

  • In a large bowl combine ground pork, ground beef, onion, egg, salt, pepper, breadcrumbs, nutmeg, allspice, and parsley. Mix the ingredients thoroughly then roll into 1 1/2 inch balls.
  • Place butter in a large skillet and, working in batches, begin frying the meatballs, cooking them on all sides until they are perfectly browned and cooked through, about 10 minutes.
  • Once meatballs are cooked set them to the side and begin making your sauce. Add butter to the skillet and once it is melted add the flour whisking quickly and forming a roux. Cook for 1-2 minutes or until it begins to turn a golden color.
  • Slowly add beef broth whisking the whole time to keep it from getting lumpy. Once all of the broth has been added cook for 5-7 minutes or until the sauce begins to thicken.
  • Add Worcestershire and heavy cream and continue cooking until the sauce is thickened enough to coat the back of a spoon.
  • Add the meatballs to the sauce and cook them together for about 5 minutes.
  • Serve over egg noodles or mashed potatoes.

Notes

Note: If your skillet has too many burned bits after you finish cooking the meatballs you can wash it out before starting your sauce.

Nutrition

Calories: 598kcal, Carbohydrates: 14g, Protein: 25g, Fat: 48g, Saturated Fat: 23g, Cholesterol: 199mg, Sodium: 1287mg, Potassium: 532mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 2g, Vitamin A: 990IU, Vitamin C: 5.4mg, Calcium: 76mg, Iron: 3.2mg
Nutrition Disclaimer: We are not certified nutritionists. Nutrition facts are an estimate and are provided as a courtesy. They are generated by an online API which recognizes ingredient names and amounts and makes calculations based on the serving size. Results may vary.
Author: Kat Jeter & Melinda Caldwell
Course: Dinner
Cuisine: Swedish
Keyword: how to make swedish meatballs, ikea swedish meatballs recipe, swedish meatball recipe, swedish meatball sauce

This post first appeared on The Slow Roasted Italian website.