Swedish Meatballs

This recipe is part of traditional smorgasbords and served with lingonberry preserves. If you can’t find this, you can substitute with cranberry sauce.

Serves: 12Hands-on: 40 minutesTotal: 50 minutesDifficulty: Easy

Serves: 12


  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 small onion, peeled and minced
  • 2 slices white sandwich bread, crust removed
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • 3 Tbsp. whole milk
  • 8 oz. lean ground beef
  • 8 oz. ground pork
  • ¼ tsp. ground nutmeg
  • ¼ tsp. ground allspice
  • ¼ tsp. ground black pepper
  • 2 cups vegetable oil
  • 1 Tbsp. butter
  • 1 Tbsp. all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 2 tsp. honey
  • 2 bay leaves
  • ½ cup whole milk
  • 3 Tbsp. lemon juice
  • 1 cup lingonberry preserves, warmed


  • Sprinkle salt over the onion and set aside. Cut the bread into cubes and place in a large bowl. Add the egg and 3 tablespoons milk and mash into a paste. Add the beef, pork, the onion, nutmeg, allspice, and pepper. Mix together with your hands. Use a tablespoon to create evenly sized meatballs.
  • Place skillet over medium-high heat and add enough oil. Once the oil is heated, add a single layer of meatballs so they don’t touch. Roll them frequently so they brown evenly for 8–10 minutes. Reduce the heat if the oil starts to smoke. Place the meatballs on paper towels to drain and keep warm.
  • Drain the oil from the pan, but leave the brown bits. Add the butter; when it has melted and is just starting to turn brown, sprinkle the flour over the surface and whisk for about 1 minute.
  • Stir in the broth, honey, and bay leaves, whisking and scraping the bottom of the skillet. Bring the mixture to a simmer and cook for 5 minutes.
  • Once the sauce has thickened, stir in the remaining milk. Return the meatballs to the skillet and simmer for about 5 minutes so they’re heated through. Discard the bay leaves and stir in the lemon juice. Serve with lingonberry preserves.