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IKEA Swedish Meatballs Copycat

This IKEA Swedish Meatballs recipe features all the great flavors of the classic restaurant version! Tender meatballs in a creamy gravy served with mashed potatoes, broccoli and lingonberry sauce.

IKEA Swedish meatballs on a plate with broccoli, mashed potatoes and lingonberry sauce

IKEA Swedish Meatball Copycat Recipe

These IKEA Swedish Meatballs are extra soft and so tender with the signature hint of nutmeg and All Spice smothered with a savory traditional Swedish Meatball cream sauce that is to die for!

It is all served over a bed of creamy mashed potatoes and their famous lingonberry sauce. You can purchase it in store from IKEA, or you can use cranberry sauce.

If you ever have a craving for this dish, there is no need to make a trip to IKEA. You can make them at home and enjoy them anytime!

Who doesn’t enjoy going into IKEA for a lamp and coming out with two rugs, a side table – and no lamp? Or getting lost in the home furniture department as you plan your dream bedroom? For me, one of the most important parts of a trip is for the famous IKEA Swedish meatballs!

IKEA Swedish meatballs on a plate with broccoli, mashed potatoes and lingonberry sauce

What are Swedish Meatballs?

Swedish meatballs are known as köttbullar in Sweden. When it comes to traditional foods, this dish is essentially as Swedish as it gets!

What Makes Swedish Meatballs Different?

Swedish Meatballs are typically smaller in size than Italian meatballs and they are usually made with a 50-50 ratio of ground pork and ground beef. Swedish Meatballs also contain spices like All Spice and nutmeg for flavoring, whereas Italian meatballs have mainly basil, parmesan and garlic for flavoring.

What is in IKEA Swedish Meatballs?

Swedish Meatballs Ingredients

  • Ground Beef and Pork – this combo keeps the meatballs tender. It is also the classic combo for Swedish meatballs.
  • Bread and Milk – the secret to moist meatballs is bread (or panko breadcrumbs) soaked in milk. It keeps the meat moist while cooking.
  • Onion and Garlic – grating onion is another way to keep meatballs moist as the onion gives off liquid when grated.
  • Spices – nutmeg, all spice, salt and pepper
  • Eggs – binds the meatballs together.

Sauce Ingredients

  • Vegetable and Beef Broth – I highly recommend using both vegetable and beef broth for added flavor, but you can also use just beef broth.
  • Butter and Flour – cooked together to create a roux that thickens the sauce.
  • Milk – the signature Swedish meatball sauce get’s it’s creamy texture from milk (or cream).
  • Soy Sauce – adds a deep color to the sauce as well as an umami flavor.
  • Dijon Mustard – adds a tangy flavor to the sauce (do not substitute with regular yellow mustard, if you do not have Dijon mustard then omit this ingredient from the sauce).

Accompaniments

The classic IKEA Swedish Meatball meal is served with mashed potatoes, steamed broccoli and lingonberry sauce (or cranberry sauce).

More Meatball Recipes You Will Love!

  • Meatball Subs on a Stick – a unique appetizer or main course the whole family will love! This twist on the classic meatball sub so is so easy and fun to make.
  • Cranberry Sweet and Sour Meatballs – a sweet and tangy appetizer perfect for the holidays! Use up leftover cranberry sauce in this quick and easy recipe.
  • Meatball Sub Cupcakes – a bite sized version of meatball subs perfect for get togethers and entertaining. A cute 2 bite appetizer your guests will devour.
  • Turkey Meatball Orzo Soup – the perfect family weeknight dinner. This hearty and healthy meal comes together in just 30 minutes!

How to Make IKEA Swedish Meatballs

Full Printable Recipe at Bottom of Page

Prepare the Meatballs

1 In a small bowl combine the bread (or panko breadcrumbs) with the milk. Mix until evenly coated. Set aside.

2 In a large bowl add the ground beef, ground pork, minced onion, garlic, soaked bread, egg, nutmeg, All Spice, salt, pepper. Gently mix together until evenly combined. Tip: do not overmix or compact the meat too much or the meatballs will be tough.

3 Using a tablespoon, measure out a heaping tablespoon (or use ice cream scooper) and place on a parchment paper lined sheet pan. Repeat with remaining mixture. Gently roll each meatball into shape. Optional: cover and refrigerate for 2 hours. Or, freeze to be cooked at a later time.

4 STOVE TOP COOKING METHOD

Add a splash of cooking oil to a frying pan on medium heat. Working in batches, add the meatballs to the pan and brown on all sides, about 3 – 5 minutes.

OVEN BAKING METHOD

Preheat oven to 400°F. Bake the meatballs on the parchment paper lined sheet for 20 – 25 minutes, or until cooked through.

AIR FRYER COOKING METHOD

Preheat Air Fryer to 400°F. Working in batches, add the meatballs to the air fryer (leaving a small space between each meatball). Air fry for 8 – 12 minutes or until cooked through.

steps for making a roux for the gravy

Prepare the Gravy

1 In a large frying pan or skillet on medium heat melt the butter.

2 Whisk in flour and stir continuously for 2 – 3 minutes, or until until golden in color.

3 Add in the vegetable and beef broth, stirring continuously until evenly combined.

4 Add the milk, soy sauce and Dijon mustard. Stir until evenly combined.

5 Add in the cooked meatballs and simmer for 4 – 5 minutes, or until the sauce has thickened.

Serve with mashed potatoes, steamed broccoli, lingonberry sauce or cranberry sauce and enjoy!

Tips for the Best Meatballs

Meatball recipes typically add breadcrumbs to the meat mix, but I like to add milk-soaked bread instead. It keeps just enough structure to mix with the meat while keeping the moisture in the meatballs as they cook. I also like to freeze the meatballs before they’re browned which keeps the shape of them as you brown them. They finish cooking through in the sauce.

Why Cook Meatballs from Frozen?

  • Meatballs brown evenly and maintain their shape and don’t cook down into lumpy balls.
  • They keep their interior moistness as they are still only about half cooked in the middle by the time the gravy is added.
  • The meatballs take almost no time to cook the day you want to make them because you only have to cook meatballs for 5-7 minutes, add gravy and serve with any side dish.
IKEA Swedish meatballs on a plate with broccoli, mashed potatoes and lingonberry sauce with a frying pan in the background

Looking for More Easy Dinners?

  • Sweet and Sour Pork – made healthier and even tastier then takeout! Crispy and tender pork stir fried with peppers, onions and pineapple in an irresistible tangy sauce.
  • Street Corn Chicken Tacos – have all the great flavors of elotes combined with flavor packed chicken tacos! A smoky and spicy crema finishes off these light and healthy tacos.
  • Chicken Gnocchi Soup – made at home is just as creamy and delicious as the classic Olive Garden soup! The best part is it can be made in your kitchen in just 30 minutes!

Enjoy!

– Sab

Disclosure: I only recommend products I would use myself and all opinions expressed here are my own. This post may contain affiliate links that at no additional cost to you, may earn me a small commission.

ikea swedish meatballs on a plate with mashed potatoes, broccoli and lingonberry sauce

IKEA Swedish Meatballs Copycat Recipe

This IKEA Swedish Meatball recipe features all the great flavors of the classic restaurant version! Tender meatballs in a creamy gravy served with mashed potatoes, broccoli and lingonberry sauce. If you ever have a craving for this dish, there is no need to make a trip to IKEA. You can make them at home and enjoy them anytime!
4.80 from 10 votes
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 25 mins
Total Time 40 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Swedish
Servings 5
Calories 538 kcal

Equipment

  • Air Fryer for air fryer cooking method
  • Frying Pan for stove top cooking method
  • Sheet Pan for oven baking method

Ingredients
  

Meatballs

  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 1/2 lb ground pork, or beef
  • 1 onion, shredded or finely minced
  • 3 garlic cloves, crushed or finely minced
  • 2 slices white bread, with crusts removed or ½ cup Panko bread crumbs
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp All Spice powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tbsp Olive oil

Gravy

  • 3 tbsp butter
  • 3 tbsp all purpose flour
  • 2/3 cup vegetable broth
  • 2/3 cup beef broth
  • 2/3 cup milk, or cream
  • 2 tsp soy sauce
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard, optional, do not substitute with regular yellow mustard

Instructions
 

Meatballs

  • In a small bowl combine the bread (or panko breadcrumbs) with the milk. Mix until evenly coated. Set aside.
  • In a large bowl add the ground beef, ground pork, minced onion, garlic, soaked bread, egg, nutmeg, All Spice, salt, pepper. Gently mix together until evenly combined. Tip: do not overmix or compact the meat too much or the meatballs will be tough.
  • Using a tablespoon, measure out a heaping tablespoon (or use ice cream scooper) and place on a parchment paper lined sheet pan. Repeat with remaining mixture. Gently roll each meatball into shape. Optional: cover and refrigerate for 2 hours. Or, freeze to be cooked at a later time. This recipe will make 36 – 40 meatballs.
  • STOVE TOP COOKING METHOD
    Add a splash of cooking oil to a frying pan on medium heat. Working in batches, add the meatballs to the pan and brown on all sides, about 5 – 8 minutes.
    OVEN BAKING METHOD
    Preheat oven to 400°F. Bake the meatballs on the parchment paper lined sheet for 20 – 25 minutes, or until cooked through.
    AIR FRYER COOKING METHOD
    Preheat Air Fryer to 400°F. Working in batches, add the meatballs to the air fryer (leaving a small space between each meatball). Air fry for 8 – 12 minutes or until cooked through.

Gravy

  • In a large frying pan or skillet on medium heat melt the butter.
  • Whisk in flour and stir continuously for 2 – 3 minutes, or until until golden in color.
  • Add in the vegetable and beef broth, stirring continuously until evenly combined.
  • Add the milk, soy sauce and Dijon mustard. Stir until evenly combined.
  • Add in the cooked meatballs and simmer for 4 – 5 minutes, or until the sauce has thickened.
  • Serve with mashed potatoes, steamed broccoli, lingonberry sauce or cranberry sauce and enjoy!

Video

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NUTRITION

Calories: 538kcalCarbohydrates: 14gProtein: 28gFat: 40gSaturated Fat: 17gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2gMonounsaturated Fat: 17gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 154mgSodium: 1075mgPotassium: 545mgFiber: 1gSugar: 4gVitamin A: 409IUVitamin C: 3mgCalcium: 124mgIron: 3mg
This nutrition information is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. See our full nutrition disclosure here.

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Recipe Rating




Tom B

Friday 28th of October 2022

I did not rate these since I have not made them. I did not see any where in the recipe that tells you what to do with the bread except soak it in milk. I assuming you don't mean soak the whole slices but what size cubes should they be cut into or should I put them in a food processor to make crumbs?