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Savory Swedish Meatballs

Kelly Harrison
makes 35 meatballs

Chef notes

Full disclosure: I don't have a long, celebrated family history with Swedish meatballs, no recipe passed down from generations or inspired by a beloved aunt or grandparent. My introduction came while shopping at a world-famous furniture store (you know the one). Since everyone in my ginormous family drools over them, I was inspired to create my own spin as soon as I returned home from one of my shopping trips. I use oats soaked in milk (to keep them super moist) and allspice as the signature flavoring. Then, I simmer them in a lightened-up-yet-completely-indulgent cream sauce to take them over the top. Let's just say they go faster than we can wind our way through the entire store and find the exit!


  • 1/4 cup rolled oats
  • 1/4 cup skim milk
  • pounds lean ground turkey
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 yellow onion, finely minced
  • teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup minced parsley, plus more for garnish
  • 2 cups reduced-sodium beef broth
  • 6 tablespoons light cream cheese
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice


For the meatballs:


Preheat oven to 350 F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.


In a small bowl, combine the oats and milk and set aside for about 5 minutes.


In a large mixing bowl, use your hands to combine the remaining meatball ingredients with the oat-milk mixture. Do not overmix. Shape into about 35 small meatballs, about an inch in size. The batter will be very wet — this is normal. If you find it too fussy to shape, cover and place in fridge for about 30 minutes to firm up.


Place meatballs on prepared baking sheet and bake in oven for 25 minutes (a few minutes longer if you prefer a firmer texture). Remove from oven and set aside. (Note: You may have drippings on the bottom of the meatballs. This is normal, simply scrape off excess right before you add them to the pot with simmering sauce.)

For the sauce:

While the meatballs are cooking, make the sauce. Add all sauce ingredients into a blender or food processor and pulse until smooth and no lumps remain. Pour into a large saucepan or deep skillet and warm over medium-high heat for about 5-7 minutes, stirring occasionally. The sauce will eventually start to thicken. Season with additional salt and allspice, to taste.

To serve:

Add cooked meatballs to pot with warm sauce, reduce heat and simmer for another 5-10 minutes. Garnish with chopped parsley.