Swedish meatballs are such a treat, smothered in a rich gravy either as an appetizer or served over a bed of egg noodles for a comforting dinner on a chilly night. Often served with lingonberry jam on the side, each little bite-sized ball is a flavor bomb! My version of this perfectly-sized cocktail favorite is not only gluten free, but also dairy free — and I bet you’ll be surprised to see what I substitute for the traditionally-made, dairy cream sauce! Check out my recipe below and leave me a comment if you make them!
- Mix ground beef and ground pork for a tasty combination, or use all beef
- The meatballs can be made ahead of time, but I recommend making the sauce right before you’re ready to serve them
- To make the bean puree, rinse and drain a 15-ounce can of beans; add half the beans to the bowl of a food processor. Add a little water to the empty can to keep the “sauce” loose as you blend it. Save the other half of the beans for another use.
- Makes about 24 1.5″ meatballs; there will be enough of the sauce for more than this amount of meatballs if you decide to make a bit more.
- To make the meatballs ahead of time, they can be frozen raw or partially cooked. The method is the same. Place balls on a baking sheet and freeze for about 30-60 minutes until they harden. Then place in a container or plastic bag. If you don’t freeze them prior to placing in freezer-safe container, they will stick together.
Healthier Swedish Meatballs (Gluten Free & Dairy Free)
- For the meatballs:
- 1 pound ground beef & pork (or all beef)
- 1/4 cup gluten free panko
- Freshly chopped Italian parsley
- Pinch of allspice
- A few gratings of fresh nutmeg
- 2 tsp. dried, minced onion
- 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 1/2 tsp. sea salt
- Pinch of sugar
- 1 large egg
- 1 Tbsp. olive oil
- 1 Tbsp. dairy free butter
- For the sauce:
- 4 Tbsp. dairy free butter
- 3 Tbsp. sweet white rice flour
- 2 cups beef broth, low sodium
- 1/2 cup pureed cannellini beans (see notes above)
- 1 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce, plus a few extra dashes
- 1 tsp. dijon mustard
- Salt & pepper to taste
- Step 1 In a large bowl, mix together all of the meatball ingredients through the egg. Roll into small balls and set on a waxed-paper lined plate. Set aside while you puree the beans.
- Step 2 In a large saute pan, heat the olive oil and one Tbsp. of butter.
- Step 3 When the oil and butter are melted and the pan is hot, add the meatballs. Fry until golden all over but not fully cooked through.
- Step 4 Remove the meatballs to a paper-towel lined plate and drain off any blackened oil from the pan, reserving some of the fat and bits of meat.
- Step 5 Over medium-low, add the remaining 4 Tbsp. of butter and the rice flour to the skillet and stir until the flour is absorbed by the butter and it begins to thicken, about 3 minutes.
- Step 6 Pour in the beef broth and whisk gently, bringing to a boil. Add the Worcestershire sauce and dijon mustard. Mix well and season with salt and pepper if needed. Nestle the meatballs into the pan, turning once in the sauce. Simmer over low heat for about five minutes or until the meatballs are cooked through, whisking in the pureed bean mixture at the end of the five minutes.
- Step 7 Serve over gluten free noodles or mashed potatoes or with jam on the side as an appetizer.