Ikea’s Swedish Meatballs

When the pandemic hit and people couldn’t go to Ikea for their Swedish meatball fix, Ikea generously posted their recipe for everyone. Granted, it’s not 100% the same, and the sauce is secret–so they posted a similar sauce. But it’s great. I generally ended up doubling the sauce and making a few other slight adjustments, so here’s the final recipe. Of course you should serve with lingonberries if you can find any (it’s hard), but I have served it with cranberry sauce or I think even raspberry jam once.

If you’re making this gluten free, I did try it once using crushed tortilla chips instead of breadcrumbs. Haha, I’ll never do that again. It ended up tasting like oily chips. So you could use gluten free breadcrumbs, cornstarch instead of flour, and gluten free soy sauce. I may even try using crushed up Rice Chex instead of breadcrumbs. We’ll see.

Ikea Swedish Meatballs

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: medium-hard
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Adapted from Ikea’s officially released recipe.

Ingredients

Meatballs

  • 1 lb. Ground Beef
  • 1/2 lb. Ground Pork
  • 1 small Onion, finely chopped
  • 1 clove Garlic (about 1/2 tsp. minced)
  • 100 g. Breadcrumbs (or gluten free breadcrumbs)
  • 1 Egg
  • 5 Tbsp. Milk
  • Generous Salt and Pepper

Cream Sauce (doubled from original, with some modifications)

  • Dash of Oil
  • 6 Tbsp. Butter
  • 2/3 c. Flour (or 1/3 c. cornstarch)
  • 2 1/2 c. Beef Broth
  • 2 c. Cream
  • 1 Tbsp. + Soy Sauce (or gluten free soy sauce/tamari)
  • 2 tsp. Dijon Mustard

Directions

In a large bowl, combine beef and pork, and break up any lumps with your hands. Add onion, garlic, breadcrumbs, and egg, then mix well. Add milk and season well with salt and pepper. Shape mixture into small balls, and place on a covered plate in the fridge for 2 hours (this will help them hold their shape while cooking). In a frying pan, heat oil on medium heat, then add meatballs and brown on all sides. When browned, add to a pan and cover. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes.
For cream sauce: Melt butter and whisk in flour or cornstarch, stirring for 2 minutes. Add stock and continue to stir. Add remaining ingredients and bring to a simmer, allowing sauce to thicken. Serve over mashed potatoes with lingonberry (or other berry) sauce.


Chili

My sister-in-law Stephanie makes a great chili, and she shared the recipe with us. I love hominy and bell peppers, so we add those in. We’ve also made this with a pound of cubed, cooked pork chops for an extra meaty chili–haha, we called it “Meaty Meat Meat Chili”. You can make this in a pot or let it simmer in the crock pot.

And this one is naturally gluten free.

Chili

  • Servings: 6?
  • Difficulty: medium
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It’s got a fair amount of spice, but you can add even more chili powder to up the heat.

Ingredients

  • 1 lb. lean Ground Beef
  • 1 lb. Sausage
  • 1 lb. Pork Chops, cubed (optional)
  • 1 Onion, diced
  • 3 Tbsp. Chili Powder
  • 1 heaping Tbsp. Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
  • 1 Tbsp. Paprika
  • 2 Tbsp. Cumin
  • 1/2 tsp. dried Oregano
  • 1 tsp. Salt
  • 1 tsp. Pepper
  • 2 tsp. Garlic Powder (or fresh garlic)
  • 2 c. Beef Broth
  • 1 (15 oz.) can Fire Roasted Tomatoes
  • 1 can Rotel
  • 1-2 Bell Peppers
  • 1 can Kidney Beans
  • 1 large can Hominy

Directions

Cook the meat, then add the onion (and fresh garlic if using). Add the spices (chili powder to garlic powder) and stir. Then add remaining ingredients and heat through.


Stroganoff

We often make stroganoff when my Dad visits because he enjoys it so much. It’s a good use of ground beef, but you can also use nicer beef like sirloin (just cube and brown it before adding the ingredients for the gravy). We’ve even made this with cubed, leftover prime rib from Christmas Eve if we bought too big of a roast (haha, I know leftover prime rib seems impossible).

If you’re making this gluten free, make sure to use gluten free cream of mushroom soup (the best option is from Walmart) and gluten free noodles.

Stroganoff

  • Servings: 6?
  • Difficulty: medium
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A great way to use ground beef.

Ingredients

  • 2 lbs. Ground Beef
  • 1 Onion, minced
  • 1 heaping tsp. minced Garlic
  • 2 cans Cream of Mushroom Soup (or gluten free cream of mushroom soup)
  • About ½ can Milk
  • Paprika
  • 2 c. Sour Cream
  • Salt and Pepper to taste

Directions

Brown the ground beef, adding onion and garlic to cook until soft. Sprinkle with paprika, salt, and pepper. Add soup and milk. Add sour cream at last minute to heat through. Serve on noodles (or rice or potatoes)–FYI, sometimes it makes a lot and you’ll need more than one package of pasta.


Spaghetti Sauce

I love this sauce, and it has a special place in my heart. I feel that this sauce was a springboard to my love of cooking and learning how to taste and adjust flavors while cooking. When I was 14 and Mom would let me try to make the sauce on my own, I felt so grown up. My mom was patient and helped me learn how to taste and adjust, adding more sugar if the sauce was acidic or more basil if it needed more seasoning. She perfected this spaghetti sauce. It’s a little sweet, and it’s got so much more flavor than most pasta sauces. Even Olive Garden is disappointing after we’ve had such a nice sauce. Of course like most recipes that use dried spices, the flavor gets stronger as it sits.

We use this spaghetti sauce for so many Italian dishes, like your standard spaghetti, lasagna, and manicotti. We just leave out the Italian sausage pieces for the lasagna and manicotti. Growing up, Mom would always use a jar of homemade, home-jarred pureed tomatoes and add some tomato paste to thicken it. But nowadays we usually make it with a jar of commercial pasta sauce and add extra stuff, but you can make it using a jar of unflavored tomato sauce also. So you might as well get the cheap sauce if you’re going to be doctoring it up anyway.

And luckily this one is naturally gluten free, as long as you choose a gluten free sauce (which  most are).

Spaghetti Sauce

  • Servings: 6?
  • Difficulty: medium
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Flavorful and great to use in several Italian dishes.

Ingredients

  • 1 lb. extra lean Hamburger
  • 1 Onion, minced
  • 1 heaping tsp. Minced Garlic
  • 1 Tbsp. Italian Seasoning
  • 1 tsp. Sweet Basil Leaf
  • 1 qt. homemade Tomato Sauce, 32 oz. can crushed tomatoes, or jar of pasta sauce
  • 1 (6 oz.) can Tomato Paste (optional, to make thicker)
  • 2-2 ½ tsp. Salt (to taste)
  • 2 Tbsp. Sugar
  • 1-2 pkg. Mild Italian Sausage (optional), sliced

Directions

Brown hamburger and add onion and garlic to cook. Add a little salt and pepper, then mix in Italian seasoning and basil. Add sauce, tomato paste, salt, and sugar. Check for flavor and adjust seasonings as needed.

For Italian sausage, slice each sausage in about 5 pieces and boil in a separate pot for 5 minutes. Drain and add to sauce.


Manicotti

The filling is good for manicotti shells or jumbo shells. And it makes great leftovers.

If you’re making it gluten free, good luck finding gluten free manicotti shells. I’m pretty sure those unicorns do exist, though, haha. I usually end up making gluten free rotini or penne, and layering it like I’d layer lasagna. It bakes nicely and is delicious.

Manicotti

  • Servings: 5
  • Difficulty: medium
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Delicious, great leftovers, and freezes well.

Ingredients

  • 10 Manicotti Shells, cooked in salt water
  • 1 pt. Ricotta Cheese
  • 1 Egg, beaten
  • ¼ c. Parmesan Cheese
  • ½ c. Shredded Mozzarella
  • 1 Tbsp. Parsley Flakes
  • Spaghetti Sauce
  • Mozzarella Cheese for topping

Directions

Combine ricotta, eggs, parmesan, and parsley. Stuff into shells either with a spoon or by putting the filling in a quart bag, cutting off the tip, and piping into the shells. Place some spaghetti sauce in the bottom of a 9×13 pan. Place stuffed shells on top of sauce. Pour remaining sauce over top of shells. Sprinkle with mozzarella. Cook at 350° for 30 minutes.


Lasagna

So delicious! Wonderful flavors, makes great leftovers, and freezes well. Great for special occasions or Sunday, but it does take a fair amount of time.

If you’re making it gluten free, you can certainly try gluten free lasagna noodles. I’ve never found them in the store, though, but I haven’t looked very hard. I usually end up making gluten free rotini or penne, and layering it like I’d layer regular lasagna. It bakes nicely and is delicious.

Lasagna

  • Servings: 9
  • Difficulty: medium
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Delicious, great leftovers, and freezes well.

Ingredients

  • 9-10 cooked, drained Lasagna Noodles
  • ½ lb-1 lb Cottage Cheese
  • 3 c. Shredded Mozzarella Cheese
  • Spaghetti Sauce (homemade)
  • Parmesan Cheese

Directions

In a greased 9×13 pan, place a thin layer of sauce. Layer 3 noodles, sauce, 1/2 the cottage cheese–not too thick–use a spoon to shake on over the top, then a light layer of mozzarella cheese. Repeat previous layer. Last layer: put on 3 noodles and remaining sauce. Put heavy layer of Mozzarella cheese and sprinkle with parmesan cheese to finish. Bake covered at 375° for 30 minutes. Uncover and bake 15 more minutes until cheese is lightly browned. Do not over brown. Let sit 10 minutes before cutting and serving.


BBQ Meatballs

Baked first then simmered in a sauce, these meatballs are a go-to every New Year’s Eve.

I haven’t made this gluten free yet, but you’ll need to use the special gluten free oats. If you can’t find gluten free quick oats, you can probably use the gluten free rolled oats. You may need to chop them a little, since quick oats are kind of chopped compared to regular rolled oats.

BBQ Meatballs

  • Servings: 48 meatballs?
  • Difficulty: medium
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Keep warm in a slow cooker or on the stove for New Year’s Eve.

Ingredients

    Meatballs:

  • 2 lbs. Ground Beef
  • 1 c. Quick Oats (or chopped gluten free oats)
  • 1 1/3 c. Milk
  • 2 Tbsp. Dried Minced Onion
  • 2 Eggs
  • 2 tsp. Salt
  • Pepper to taste
  • Sauce:

  • 2 2/3 c. Ketchup
  • 8 tsp. Dried Minced Onion (8 tsp. = 2 Tbsp. + 2 tsp.)
  • 1 1/3 c. Water
  • 8 tsp. Vinegar
  • 1/4 c. Sugar
  • 8 tsp. Worcestershire Sauce

Directions

For meatballs, combine ingredients and drop by spoonfuls on greased cookie sheet. Bake meatballs at 350° for 30 minutes. For sauce, simply mix all ingredients in a pot. Add meatballs to sauce and simmer for 20-30 minutes, stirring occasionally.