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swedish meatballs in gravy in pan
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5 from 11 votes

Swedish Meatballs

These Classic Swedish Meatballs are made with tender homemade meatballs in a rich and creamy brown gravy. 
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Total Time40 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: swedish meatball recipe
Servings: 4 servings
Calories: 597kcal



  • 2 slices white sandwich bread crusts removed and cut into 1/4" pieces (or chopped in a food processor)
  • 2 Tbsp heavy cream or whole milk
  • 1 medium yellow onion grated, saving any juices
  • 8 oz ground beef
  • 8 oz ground pork
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tsp dried parsley
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg freshly grated is best
  • 1/4 tsp ground allspice
  • 1 Tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 Tbsp unsalted butter


  • 3 Tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 3 cups reduced sodium beef broth
  • 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/3 cup heavy whipping cream
  • minced fresh parsley for garnish



  • Add bread cubes to large mixing bowl and top with heavy cream and grated onion (plus juices from grating the onion). Stir and let sit a minute or two. Mash with a fork.
  • Add beef, pork, egg, parsley, salt, pepper, nutmeg, and allspice.  Mix well.
  • Use small cookie scoop to scoop out and roll into roughly 1 inch wide meatballs.


  • Add oil and butter to large skillet and heat over MED/MED-HIGH heat. Add meatballs, working in batches (about half at a time), and cook on all sides, until browned and mostly cooked through, about 5-7 minutes.  Remove to a plate and repeat with remaining meatballs.


  • Drain off any excess oil but don’t wipe out the skillet.
  • Add butter to skillet and heat over MED heat.  Once melted, whisk in flour and cook, stirring occasionally for 2 minutes.
  • Slowly add beef broth, whisking as you add it, until all broth is added.  Whisk in Worcestershire sauce and bring to a simmer.


  • Once gravy is simmering, add all meatballs and simmer 5-7 minutes, until meatballs are cooked through and gravy has started to thicken.


  • Stir in heavy cream and simmer another 2-3 minutes, until gravy is a smooth and silky sauce that coats the back of a wooden spoon.
  • Serve over buttered cooked egg noodles or mashed potatoes and garnished with minced fresh parsley.


*** recipe can easily be doubled/tripled for larger crowds ***
  • HOW TO KEEP THE MEATBALLS SUPER TENDER - the secret to amazingly tender meatballs is a panade.  That's a fancy culinary term for a mixture of a starch and liquid.  In this recipe we're using sandwich bread, heavy cream and grated onion (which is pretty liquid-y).  Just stir it together, let it sit for a few minutes, then use a fork to mash it together.  Mix in the rest of the meatball ingredients and you're good to go.
  • PAN-FRIED MEATBALLS - I prefer to pan fry the meatballs in the same pan as the gravy is made in, because all those browned bits that are left in the pan equal amazing flavor.  However, these meatballs can be pretty tender and can fall apart if you don't roll them tightly enough.
  • BAKED MEATBALLS - if you'd rather not hassle with cooking the meatballs in the skillet in batches, you can absolutely bake them!  Bake at 400°F for about 15-20 minutes, or until cooked through.
  • HEAVY CREAM - I don't recommend substituting the heavy cream with lower-fat dairy alternatives, as it could potentially separate during the cooking process.


Calories: 597kcal | Carbohydrates: 16g | Protein: 27g | Fat: 47g | Saturated Fat: 24g | Cholesterol: 185mg | Sodium: 795mg | Potassium: 774mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 714IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 79mg | Iron: 3mg