When I was a kid, one of my au pairs, Anna, was from Sweden.  She used to make these phenomenal Swedish meatballs for me and I have been itching to cook these ever since I launched this blog.  Whenever I see Swedish meatballs in restaurants, however, they are meatballs covered in gravy... definitely not the way Anna used to make them.  she and I are still quite close and so I finally asked her if I could have the recipe.  She sent me a link to a general recipe and gave me some suggestions as to substitutions.  She used to serve these with mashed potatoes but Matt isn't too wild about mashed potatoes so I decided to bake them in the oven in "coins".  They were crispy and delicious, but some mashed potatoes would have also been a nice addition as well (you could also do both!).  So here they are: real Swedish Meatballs!

Meatball Recipe adapted from Gretchen Cooks (Recipe for Potato coins follow the meatball recipe):
The Elements:
1/2 lb. ground beef (extra lean) 
1/2 lb. ground pork
1/2 cup milk 
1 small onion
1/2 tsp. white pepper 
1/4 tsp. salt 
½ cup breadcrumbs

Dice the onion and place in a bowl
Add the two ground meats
Add the milk and then the breadcrumbs, salt and pepper
Mix all the ingredients together well with hands
Spray a pan with cooking spray and heat over medium to medium-high heat for a few minutes before adding the meatballs
Form meatballs--the smaller the meatball, the faster they will cook--I made mine the size of golf balls (or slightly larger) and they took approximately 25-30 minutes to cook but cooking time will vary based upon the size of your meatballs--just test one to see if it is done before serving the rest 

Serve with potatoes and lingonberry jam (you can get lingonberry jam at many specialty stores, such as Fresh Market or Dean and Deluca)
Potato Coins:
The Elements:
Dutch yellow potatoes (I used 8-9 small potatoes for 2 people and we had a little left over)
salt and pepper to taste

Slice potatoes into about 1/4 in slices
Preheat oven to 350
Spray a baking sheet with cooking spray
Spread out coins
Sprinkle with sea salt and pepper
Cook for approximately 40 minutes, turning potatoes over about halfway through

The Verdict:
Delicious!   They were just like the ones Anna used to make.  It's amazing how you can take a bite of something and it transports you to another time.  I was tasting a memory and it was fantastic.  I told you all to use regular pepper on the potato coins because I used white pepper and it was a little strong and had a strange after-taste.  If I was doing this again I would make some mashed potatoes in addition to the coins to add another texture to the dish.  You can serve with gravy if you'd like but we aren't really gravy people (unless it's thanksgiving).  If you do make gravy though, don't douse your meatballs with it, just serve it on the side.  The meatballs are incredible on their own, so adding gravy covering them will probably take away from the dish (and that's not how they do it in Sweden).  Definitely recommend you all try these!!!  These will become a staple in our weekly rotation for sure!


08/22/2011 22:36

I certainly love any kind of meatballs, but it's great to see a traditional recipe! Love that you served tehm with lingonberry jam! Delicious!

08/22/2011 22:43

Those meatballs sound so good. I can eat my weight in them. I am very intrigued by that lingonberry jam too!

08/23/2011 00:03

I have friends who are ADDICTED to Ikea's swedish meatballs [never heard of them until Ikea opened its doors here in the Dominican Republic]. Also Ikea opened a world of new-to-me jams like lingonberry and gooseberry. Tried em all! I will send this post to my friends :)

Christine octave
08/23/2011 15:44

Lil'Peanut would love those :) need to make some! Yuri in Belgium the swedish meatballs in IKEA are only 2 euro it's the cheapest meal down here! At my school we only eat them on Santa Lucia, Swedish holiday (Dec 13) what a shame!

Anna from Sweden
08/23/2011 16:11

Hi, looking great Lynn. So glad you tried it. If I can make an suggestion, use a shredder for the onion in the meatballmix. That makes them stick together easier, otherwise they might fall apart. You can also serve them with boiled potatoes. Ikea normaly carry Lingonberry jam, probably a bit cheaper than Dean and Deluca. Miss you girl <3

08/25/2011 22:08

Hi! I just found your blog! I'm about to start my third year at UNC law! woo woo! love the law themed recipes :)

08/31/2011 11:17

The meatball dish sounds good but it is interesting to see that you serve it with lingoberry jam.

09/02/2011 13:31

Nelly and Cassie, thanks so much for your comments ladies! Yuri, definitely pass this along and hopefully they will try it and like it, and then not have to trek to Ikea to get Swedish meatballs!

Christine, thanks for the comment, let me know how peanut likes them... I miss him already! :(

Anna, I'll try a shredder next time. The chunks of onion were quite large but I was okay with that. Next time I may try to use my food processor to have them be more fine and less chunky, or shred them for the same type of effect! I loveddd when you served these with boiled potatoes too so I would definitely recommend that to future readers as well. I got my lingonberry jam at Fresh Market. I'm sure Dean and Deluca is the most expenisve, but Ikea is all the way in Charlotte so I made do with Fresh Market :)

Hilary, so glad you like the blog! Please check back for future recipes and spread the word at UNC! I hope you have a great third year...enjoy it because then you have the bar! (although I'm sure you will do great!)

Quay Po Cooks, yes, the lingonberry jam makes a fantastic pairing with the meatball...it is a perfect mixing of sweet and savory so I definitely suggest you give it a try! Let me know if you try it and how you like it!

01/19/2012 22:45

My wife is swedish and does something similar. The only difference in ours is that we add veal and a dash of ground cloves. Add an little more flavor. I agree on the shredder for the onion. much easier than mincing it.

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10/01/2013 02:16

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