Swedish Meatballs - Bork Bork

About: Swedish expat living now living in Malaysia after spending some years working in Dubai.

Here's the way of making "authentic" Swedish meatballs.

It's quite simple to do it since no special skills nor any exotic ingredients are needed.

In Sweden we usually eat these with either boiled potatoes or mash, and ketchup or pickled cucumbers or lingonberry preserves as a condiment. They're often served with a brown gravy made in the frying pan (after the meatballs are finished) with a lot of cream, butter and some soy sauce.

Let's start....

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Step 1: Ingredients

For a big batch of meatballs, enough for 5-6 persons you need:

  • About 900 grams of minced meat
  • Two eggs
  • One onion
  • 3 dl of milk
  • 1 1/4 dl of dried breadcrumbs
  • Almost 1 tablespoon of salt
  • About 1 teaspoon of ground pepper (I usually use mixed black and white pepper.)

Since I live in Dubai my local supermarket don't carry any pork products so here I used 100% ground beef meet. In Sweden I usually use a mix of 80% beef and 20% pork in the mince to get the meatballs both a bit juicer and more tasty.

Step 2: Soak the Breadcrumbs

Take a large bowl and pour in the milk and stir it with the egg, the bread crumbs, the salt and pepper.

Let this stand for about 5 minutes so the bread crumbs is soaking up the liquids.

Step 3: Chop the Onion

Chop the onion into small pieces. You know how to do that - right? If not, see this Dice an onion instructable, but make the pieces much smaller.

The pieces should be really tiny, you don't want large chunks of raw onion in you meatballs.

Step 4: Add Mince and Onion

Add the finely chopped onion and the mince to the mix and mix it well together with a large spoon.

Don't use an electric blender/handmixer to do this since it can become slimy and strange if you stir it too much.

Step 5: Rolling, Rolling (on the River)

Ok, it's time for the messy part. Rolling the meatballs into something that at least resemble a round shape.

It's not that hard to do - unless your mix is too wet. When I did this instructable I got it a tad to wet and the meatballs looked quite un-round at start. But during the frying they got a nice rounder shape. And it really doesn't matter if they are perfectly round or has an irregular blob-shape, the taste will be the same anyway.

I usually take a piece of tinfoil and grease it up with some vegetable oil so they won't stick to it before the frying.

Wet your hands to avoid the mix stick to them, take a spoon of mix and put it in the palm. Use the other palm to gently form a sphere and put in on the oiled tinfoil. Repeat until ready.

Step 6: Into the Frying Pan

In Sweden I'd just use margarine to fry them in, but here I mix vegetable oil with ghee (clarified butter, popular in India). Use the ghee sparingly if you're concerned of your health, it's almost 100% saturated fat and thus is a risk factor for heart diseases)

I prefer frying them in a cast iron pan instead of those non-stick thingies, I think the browning of the food is both faster and smoother in a cast iron pan. But a teflon pan is ok to use if you don't have the "real thing" ;-)

Fill half the pan with meatballs and fry them for a wile on one side, roll them around a bit with a spatula. After a while you can shake the pan to get the meatballs moving around and getting round and fried on all sides.

When they are deep brown and done all the way into the core, take them up and put them in a bowl and keep them warm until it time to eat.

Step 7: The Result

Serve, eat and enjoy....

The leftovers can be used to do a "köttbullemacka" (open sandwich with meatballs), Take a piece of bread, butter it, and put cold meatballs cut in half on it. Add thin slices of pickled cucumber (Gherkin) and maybe some good mustard. I prefer to eat it on a crisp bread, but any bread is fine.

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    8 Discussions


    11 years ago on Introduction

    Any way you could convert the measurements to the US measurement system? I just made them, but I think my proportions were wrong and they came out really wet and salty :/


    11 years ago on Introduction

    I made these last night with spaghetti and my roommates loved them. Thanks so much!


    12 years ago on Introduction

    Looks tasty and easy. Thanks for linking to my instructable! What do you think about adding some minced garlic to the mix?

    1 reply

    Reply 12 years ago on Introduction

    They sure wont taste like swedish meatballs then... But once I actually did one batch with garlic and some thai red curry paste. It tasted quite different but very nice. I also enjoy sprinkling some allspice on them while frying, but that's not especially swedish either.


    12 years ago on Introduction

    never heard of fake lingonberry jam we dont have that in sweden (as far as i know) anyways im aiming to go to dubai i would love to see the "burj al arab" "the palm islands" and "the world" what line of work do you do down there ? tackar på förhand för svar as we say in "bushman"

    1 reply

    Reply 12 years ago on Introduction

    The Burj is really nice, but it costs like $50 to go in there unless you are a hotel guest. If you eat at one of their restaurants the "entrance fee" is deducted from the bill. You won't see much of any of the palm's (Jumeriah, Jebel Ali, Deira) or The World from the ground. But you can get a 30 minute helicopter ride for a reasonable amount and see them and some other landmarks from air. Be sure to have a good camera with you on the flight. And try to do it on a day when the weather is clear. Most of the days are rather hazy here, especially during the summer. I'm the CTO (swedish: "datachef") at a company doing payment solutions...


    12 years ago on Introduction

    Nice" I've been thinking of adding something like this but im simply just to lazy. And you should warn people about the "fake" lingonberry which contains more apple than lingonberry - It tastes awful! (IMO).