This recipe is sponsored by LAND O’LAKES, INC.
All hail the tender, savory, creamy Swedish Meatball!
I grew up eating a lot of Swedish meatballs, and I have to say – Swedish meatball recipes are varied and they all kind of have their own personality. But after testing several ingredient combinations and methods, this is the one that I like best:
Sautéed garlic and onion and cream-soaked bread pulsed into a semi-smooth paste, mixed with ground beef and ground pork with plenty of salt and pepper, browned to golden meatball perfection, baked to tender meatball perfection, and finally rolled around in a rich and creamy, savory, sour cream-based gravy. It is mellow, comforting, and flavorful all at the same time.
The meatballs in and of themselves are a world wonder, but let me fill out the plate for you for what to serve with Swedish meatballs.
- Creamy Mashed Potatoes <– I like these, obviously, because they’re very easy and have so much garlic herb flavor.
- Tangy Cranberry Sauce, for which we use the recipe on the back of the cranberry package.
- Vinegary Cucumber Salad, which seems a little strange at first glance but is so essential for cutting through everything and waking the whole plate up.
Let’s Make Swedish Meatballs!
Step 1: Soak your bread, sauté your garlic and onions, and make a paste out of the whole thing. The idea with the paste is that you get the flavor of freshly sautéed garlic and onion without the little bits and pieces in your meatballs.
Step 2: Mix up the meat, bread-garlic-onion paste, salt, pepper, and egg. Roll into balls.
Step 3: Sauté your meatballs long enough to get some browning on the outside. They don’t have to be done on the inside – just browned on the outside. Pop ’em in the oven to finish cooking while you make the gravy.
Step 4: Hello gray–vee! We are using our beloved Land O Lakes® Butter as the base here, which is a foolproof way to make sure you’re getting the best butter flavor and luscious texture in your gravy. Use the good stuff!
Step 5: Get your meatballs up in that gravy and serve with mashed potatoes, cranberries, and vinegary cucumber salad. HOLY HEAVEN.
Okay now friends, be warned: Swedish meatballs are a tad bit more diva-status than most of the recipes we share on POY. They’re gonna take a little time to make. You’ve got the rolling, you’ve got the browning, you’ve got the baking and gravy-making…
But they are SPECIAL. They are perfect for holiday meals or dinner club or just a little something extra on a Thursday.
May your gravy be creamy and your meatballs be extra-savory and your special dinner be one to remember. ♡
Watch our video for how to make Swedish Meatballs:
Swedish Meatballs that are perfectly tender and spiced, served with creamy, savory, tangy gravy. Comfort food at its best!
- 4 slices white bread, no crusts
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 2 tablespoons Land O Lakes® Butter, divided
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 4 cloves garlic, chopped
- 1 pound ground beef
- 1 pound ground pork
- 1 egg
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 2 teaspoons salt (more to taste)
- a few shakes of black pepper
- 4 tablespoons Land O Lakes® Butter
- 1/4 cup flour
- 2 cups beef broth
- 8 ounces sour cream
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce (more to taste)
- In a small bowl, soak the white bread in the heavy cream. Heat 1 tablespoon butter in a skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and the garlic; sauté for 5 minutes until softened. Add the soaked bread and the cooked onion / garlic mixture to the bowl of a food processor. Pulse for 10-15 seconds until mostly smooth.
- Add your bread / garlic / onion mixture to a large bowl with the remaining meatball ingredients. Mix well. Roll into meatballs.
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Add 1 tablespoon butter; sauté the meatballs in batches, turning occasionally, to get them browned on the outside (the inside doesn’t have to be cooked yet). Transfer browned meatballs to a pan, cover with foil, and bake for 30 minutes until cooked through.
- Gravy time! Wipe the skillet out so it’s clean. Melt the butter. Whisk in the flour; sauté for 2-3 minutes. Add the beef broth, slowly, stirring after each addition. Gradually a smooth sauce should start to form. Stir in the sour cream and season with Worcestershire sauce and extra salt.
- Put meatballs back in the gravy pan and let them get nice and coated. Serve over mashed potatoes, with a cucumber salad and cranberries.
You can use pan drippings to make your gravy, but the gravy will be more lumpy and flecked with meatball bits. I prefer a smooth gravy, which is why I like to wipe out the pan first and just start fresh with butter.
The meatball mixture is WET! That’s normal. We want that because it makes for a very tender meatball once it’s cooked. If you get your hands slightly wet, you’ll have an easier time rolling them.
If you are using thin, plain white sandwich bread, you may want to use 6-8 slices instead to make a thicker bread mixture.
- Category: Dinner
- Method: Sauté
- Cuisine: Swedish
Keywords: swedish meatballs, meatballs, swedish food, gravy recipe
Thank you to Land O’Lakes for sponsoring this recipe!