Swedish Meatballs made from scratch that are so juicy and tender your jaw will drop in amazement bathed in a rich, creamy, dreamy gravy that tastes 1000X better than the Ikea version! These meatballs are baked and not fried for extra ease and time efficiency and I’ve included instructions how to freeze them as well! Serve you Swedish Meatballs with egg noodles, potatoes or rice for a new family favorite without the winding trip through Ikea!
Servings 6 servings
- 2 slices white bread roughly torn into pieces
- 1/4 cup milk
- 1/4 cup heavy cream
- 1 egg
- 1 egg yolk
- 1/2 cup fresh minced onion
- 1 tsp EACH salt, garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon dried parsley
- 1/4 tsp EACH pepper, ground nutmeg, ground allspice
- 1 pound lean ground beef
- 1/2 pound ground pork
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with foil and spray with nonstick cooking spray. Set aside.
Add bread to food processor and pulse until broken into small pieces (pea size). Add all remaining Meatball Ingredients EXCEPT beef and pork and pulse 3-5 times until completely combined. It will be paste-like consistency.
Add this mixture to ground beef and pork in a large bowl. Using your hands, mix just until combined. It will seem very wet which is good. Roll into approximately 24 meatballs using a 1 1/2 tablespoon scoop and space evenly on prepared baking sheet. If your meatballs are too wet to form for whatever reason then add some breadcrumbs to firm up. *If you are making your meatballs in advance, you can cover your meatballs with plastic wrap and refrigerate.
Bake meatballs for 15-20 minute at 400 degrees F or just until meatballs are cooked through (take care not to over cook your meatballs so they remain super tender).
The last 10 minutes or so of baking, make Gravy. Melt butter with 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Sprinkle in flour and cook for 1 minute. Reduce heat to low and slowly whisk in beef broth and heavy cream followed by all remaining Sauce ingredients.
Bring Sauce to a to simmer until thickened, approximate 5-7 minutes, stirring often. Taste and add salt to taste. Add meatballs (I dab off any extra grease from baking sheet), coat in sauce and continue to gently simmer until meatballs are heated through, approximately 1 minute.
Garnish with fresh parsley if desired and serve with egg noodles or mashed potatoes.
- I recommend the mixture of ground beef and ground pork as written for authentically delicious Swedish Meatballs but you may substitute the pork with lean ground beef, ground chicken or ground turkey (they won't be as juicy with the latter two).
- You can substitute the white bread for what bread you have on hand.
- You can substitute the 1/4 cup milk and ¼ cup heavy cream for half and half if you have it on hand. I chose to use both milk and heavy cream because we are already using heavy cream in the sauce and this keeps you from having to buy an extra ingredient.
- You can roll your meatballs, cover in plastic wrap and refrigerate them and then bake them when it’s dinner time.
- Don’t overmix your meatball ingredients – overmixing results in tougher meatballs.
- The meatball mixture will WET – don’t worry. Shape the meatballs the best you can and they will firm up when cooked but emerge crazy soft and juicy.
- DON’T try and cook your meatballs in a skillet because they are so tender they will fall apart. By baking them, they stay intact because you don’t touch them until they have baked into a tighter meatball.
- Do NOT use half and half in your Swedish Meatball Sauce or it can separate.
- You can omit the heavy cream in the Swedish Meatball Sauce and stir in room temperature sour cream to taste.
- You could also leave in the heavy cream and add sour cream for more of a rich tangy flavor.
HOW TO FREEZE HOMEMADE SWEDISH MEATBALLS (NOT SAUCE)
The Gravy does not freeze well. You will want to make fresh gravy at the time you defrost your meatballs.
- Bake Swedish Meatballs according to directions.
- Let meatballs cool to room temperature.
- Place entire baking tray with the meatballs in the freezer. You will want to make sure the meatballs are not touching so they don’t freezer together. If your freezer can’t accommodate your baking tray then use a small tray and freeze in batches. Freeze for 1-2 hours.
- When your meatballs are frozen enough that they won’t stick together, then transfer meatballs to freezer safe bags or containers.
- Label meatballs and store meatballs in the freezer for up to 3 months.
- I DO NOT recommend freezing the sauce. Flour based sauce do not freeze well.
- TO DEFROST: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Place meatballs on a foil lined baking sheet (for easy cleanup) so they are not touching. Heat meatballs 10 to 12 minutes or until heated through.