Most of you know I adore meatballs, especially my husband Mike’s incredible recipe for Italian Meatballs and Spaghetti Sauce. If you’ve made them, you know how good they are! I also make my Cheesy Bacon Burger Bites all the time because they are so easy and so good! Today we’re adding to the meatball repertoire with rich and delicious Swedish Meatballs with Creamy Gravy.
Back in the 60’s, a hostess was practically required to serve a big chafing dish full of Swedish Meatballs at a cocktail party. Firm little balls stabbed with toothpicks in a usually bland and too thin sauce did their best to stand up to martinis, whiskey sours, cheese balls and lots of cigarette smoke.
Thank goodness they’ve made their way from smoky cocktail parties to kitchens and hearts because Swedish Meatballs with Creamy Gravy are a delight when done right! Authentic Swedish Meatballs with Creamy Gravy have loads of delicate flavor from the meat, chopped onion, and fragrant spices like nutmeg and allspice. The creamy gravy is super simple to make and truly makes the meatballs luscious! If you can find lingonberry jam, it’s the perfect Swedish compliment to the meatballs. If you happen to live near an IKEA, they have yummy lingonberry jam!
Typically you would use a combination of ground beef and ground pork for Swedish Meatballs with Creamy Gravy, but in the interest of health, I just use grass fed ground beef. You are free to use both beef and pork if you like.
I like to keep these gluten free as most recipes add either bread crumbs or bread soaked in milk. I use either gluten free bread crumbs like these Aleia’s Gluten Free Panko Crumbs or 2 slices of Ezekial bread soaked in milk. It isn’t necessary if you’d rather leave all bread out, your meatballs may not be quite as tender but they will still taste fantastic!
One more tip, I use cornstarch to thicken the gravy instead of flour. You can also try tapioca starch. Start with 2 tablespoons and add more if the gravy needs to thicken more.
- 2 pounds grass fed ground beef or 1 pound ground beef and 1 pound ground pork
- 2 organic eggs
- 2 slices Ezekial (or your favorite) bread soaked in ¼ cup of milk or a cup of bread crumbs
- ½ cup finely chopped onion
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- ½ teaspoon ground pepper
- ¼ teaspoon allspice (freshly ground is best if you have a mortar and pestle)
- ¼ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- 3 tablespoons butter, refined coconut oil or ghee
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 2-4 tablespoons corn starch or tapioca starch
- 3 cups beef broth or chicken stock
- ¼ cup heavy cream
- Melt 1 tablespoon butter in cast iron or other large skillet. Cook onions until soft, 1-2 minutes. Set aside.
- Combine beef, eggs, bread, spices and onions in the bowl of a stand mixer. Mix about 2 minutes, or until well blended.
- Form mixture into 1 inch balls and place on a parchment lined sheet pan.
- Heat the remaining 2 tablespoons butter in the skillet and when hot, add the meatballs in batches and cook until browned on all sides.
- Remove meatballs to wire rack or strainer to drain off some of the fat.
- Pour the beef stock or chicken broth into the hot pan and scrape up all the brown bits. Whisk 2 tablespoons of the cornstarch into ¼ cup of cold water till blended and smooth. Pour into skillet and bring mixture to a simmer, whisking until it begins to thicken. Add cream and cook until gravy reaches desired consistency. Keep it at a simmer, don't boil it hard or it will thin out. If the gravy is too thin, add more cornstarch that's first been whisked into a little cold water and simmer to desired thickness.
- Add meatballs back to the gravy and simmer 10 minutes more.
- Serve with mashed potatoes, spaetzle,buttered noodles or quinoa.
Kate’s Tips for Swedish Meatballs with Creamy Gravy
- I adore the sweet and tart flavor of Wild Organic Swedish Lingonberries with Swedish Meatballs with Creamy Gravy but if you like, you can try a morello cherry jam or any sweet/tart jam you love. It really compliments the flavor of the meatballs and somehow makes the gravy seem even creamier!
- The cornstarch works beautifully in this recipe but if you’d prefer, try tapioca starch or even rice flour.
- Swedish Meatballs with Creamy Gravy is kid-friendly and kid-approved! Most kids love to help make the cute little meatballs too 🙂
- This recipe doubles easily. When making the meatballs, make a double batch and freeze half for another day. When you’re ready all you have to do is defrost the meatballs, brown them and make the gravy. Easy!
- I absolutely love serving these with smashed and buttered red potatoes but you could use cauliflower rice, quinoa or buttered noodles.
- The easiest way to form the meatballs is with one of these: Stainless Steel Scoop, 1 Tablespoon. They make forming the meatballs super fast and they’re great for cookies too!
I hope you love Swedish Meatballs with Creamy Gravy as much as I do! Enjoy!