Cold Weather Comfort Food: Swedish Meatballs

Andy Anderson !


My dad wasn’t the cook of the family; however, he did love to get in the kitchen and knock about. Once a month, or so, he would make his famous Swedish meatballs. Just thinking about them brings back fond memories. Although the traditional way to serve this dish is over wide egg noodles, he always used long-grained white rice, and I continue that tradition.

I wish I had his recipe, but I never got around to asking him for it. I’ve made a few changes to what would be considered a “traditional” Swedish meatball, but that’s what recipes are for…

So, you ready… Let’s get into the kitchen.

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25 Min
25 Min
Stove Top




2 slice
thick slab bacon, chopped
1/2 lb
mild italian sausage
1/2 lb
ground chuck
2 large
egg yolks
4 Tbsp
yellow onion, small chop
4 Tbsp
ricotta cheese
1 tsp
ground cumin
salt, kosher variety, to taste
black pepper, freshly ground, to taste
cayenne pepper, to taste
1 Tbsp
sweet butter, unsalted


2 c
beef stock, not broth
2 Tbsp
flour, all purpose variety
2 Tbsp
sour cream
salt, kosher variety, to taste
black pepper, freshly ground, to taste
cayenne pepper, to taste


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3Gather your ingredients.

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4Place the bacon in a large sauté pan or skillet over medium to medium-low heat.

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5Allow the bacon to slowly cook until all the fat has rendered, and the bacon beings to brown, about 12 to 15 minutes.

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6Remove the bacon with a slotted spoon, and leave the bacon grease in the pan.

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7Add the Italian sausage, ground chuck, egg yolks, onion, and ricotta cheese to a bowl.

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8Season with the salt, pepper, cumin, and the cayenne.

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9Chef’s Note: I usually use about 1/2 teaspoon of the salt, and pepper, and a couple of pinches of cayenne. I always use a teaspoon of cumin.

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10Gently mix the ingredients together.

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11Chef’s Tip: If you have a stand mixer, add the paddle attachment and mix on low. This will keep the mixture from becoming too compacted.

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12Form into 1-ounce balls, and allow to rest in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.

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13Add a tablespoon of butter to the pan with the bacon grease, and bring up to medium heat.

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14After the foaming subsides, give the pan a swirl to combine the bacon grease with the butter.

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15Add the meatballs to the pan.

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16Brown them on all sides, about 6 to 8 minutes.

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17Chef’s Note: If you have a small pan, you might have to do this in batches.

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18Reserve the meatballs.

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20Gather your ingredients.

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21Wipe out the pan, but return 2 tablespoons of the bacon grease.

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22Whisk the flour into the beef stock.

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23Add the stock to the pan, and bring up to a simmer.

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24As the gravy is simmering season with salt, pepper, and the cayenne.

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25Return the meatballs and the reserved bacon to the pan, and allow to slowly simmer, until the meatballs are cooked through, about 10 minutes.

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26Remove from the heat, and gently stir in the sour cream.

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28Serve over egg noodles, or as I do with long-grain white rice. Enjoy.

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29Keep the faith, and keep cooking.

About this Recipe

Course/Dish: Beef, Meat Appetizers
Main Ingredient: Beef
Regional Style: Swedish
Dietary Needs: Low Sodium, Soy Free
Other Tags: Quick & Easy, Heirloom