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Swedish Meat Balls for Christmas Eve

Updated on December 14, 2015

Why For Christmas Eve???

Well, obviously these can be made for any occasion. But there are between 20 and 30 people that come over my house every Christmas Eve, so I need dishes that are economical, easy to make, makes a lot and of course delicious. Everyone in my family loves this recipe. Like I wrote below, there are different ways of making them, but this recipe was given to me by my sister, Marian. She gave me several really good recipes. Another one is the Carrots and Mushroom recipe which I already posted as a hub. There have been others, but back to, but back to the Swedish Meatballs.

So for Christmas Eve along with other dishes, we will be enjoying these Swedish Meatballs. I would love to hear about some of your special dishes you make for Christmas. Enjoy!


Some Information About Swedish Meatballs.

I was interested in finding out if Swedish meatballs were actually from Sweden and what was their origin. So I googled it and found out a little information.

Swedish meatballs, or kottbullar, must be prepared, above all, with love. This is why 'Mom's meatballs' are a widespread concept in Sweden, and there are many different favorite recipes. Some people feel there should be grated onion in the meatball mixture, while others prefer to dice the onion and fry it separately. Some people feel that their meatballs should be served with thick brown gravy, while others prefer it with a thin meat juice. As part of a smorgasbord buffet, it is better to skip the gravy altogether.

In southern Sweden many people prefer their ground meat with a little more fat, but the further north you go, the less port you will find in the meatballs mixture. However, bread allowed to swell in milk are important. It gives the meatballs their special soft consistency.

Dredging the Meatballs in Flour

An easy and quicker way to dredge the meatballs is to make them all first and place them in a tray and then dust them with flour by putting some flour in a small sifter and shake it over the meatballs. Then as you are taking them out of the tray, just roll them around a little so all sides get some flour.

Photos of Preparing Swedish Meatballs

Swedish meatballs ready to eat in their gravy.
Swedish meatballs ready to eat in their gravy. | Source
The breadcrumbs soaked in milk.
The breadcrumbs soaked in milk. | Source
Hamburg mixture.
Hamburg mixture. | Source
135 little meatballs
135 little meatballs | Source
Rolling them in the flour after being dusted on top.
Rolling them in the flour after being dusted on top. | Source
Meatballs dredged in flour.
Meatballs dredged in flour. | Source
Meatballs browning in pan.
Meatballs browning in pan. | Source
Browned meatballs before the gravy.
Browned meatballs before the gravy. | Source
Pouring the broth in to make the gravy.
Pouring the broth in to make the gravy. | Source

Please Vote

5 stars from 2 ratings of Swedish Meatballs

Christmas Eve

These are just a few pictures of Christmas Eve. I have been doing this for about 30 years so there are tons of pictures, but not all on my computer.

Some Pictures of Our Christmas Eve

All the cousins posing on the stairs.
All the cousins posing on the stairs. | Source
Opening presents.
Opening presents. | Source
Opening presents.
Opening presents. | Source

Hints

When browning the meatballs, don't crowd the frying pan. You will have to do them in batches. If you crown the pan, the meatballs will steam and not brown properly.

Also you can add a little more butter if you need to and if it is getting too thick while they are simmering then you can add a little more broth.

Prep time: 36 min
Cook time: 46 min
Ready in: 1 hour 22 min
Yields: This recipe made 135 1" meatballs
  • 3 cups bread crumbs
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 6 tablespoons onions, chopped
  • 8 tablespoons butter
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper, or to taste
  • 3 teaspoons salt, or to taste
  • 2 lb.s ground beef
  • 2 cups chicken or beef broth, which ever you prefer
  • 2 eggs, slightly beaten

Directions

  1. Soak bread crumbs in milk.
  2. Saute onion in 3 tablespoons of butter until they are soft. Let them cool a little
  3. Add all the ingredients to the ground beef. Make small meatballs, about 1".
  4. Roll them in flour. Heat your pan and melt the rest of the butter. Add the meatballs on medium heat, turning them around to brown on all sides. When they are all cooked then you can return them all to the frying pan.
  5. Add broth; cover and simmer about 10 minutes until the broth has thickened into a light gravy. (See notes titled "Hints" above before browning the meatballs).

Comments

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    • Rachel L Alba profile image
      Author

      Rachel L Alba 17 months ago from Every Day Cooking and Baking

      Hi peachpurple, Thanks for stopping by. Yes, you certainly can use chicken meat, but I would use the dark meat for the taste and moisture.

      Blessings to you.

    • peachpurple profile image

      peachy 17 months ago from Home Sweet Home

      I could have this meatball on any other dinner days, maybe I would use chicken meat since I don't eat beef

    • Rachel L Alba profile image
      Author

      Rachel L Alba 17 months ago from Every Day Cooking and Baking

      Hi Peggy, Thank you for visiting my hubs and for the really nice comment. I appreciate it.

      Blessings to you.

    • Peggy W profile image

      Peggy Woods 17 months ago from Houston, Texas

      As you mentioned, these meatballs could be enjoyed year round. Looks like you have a fun time with your family during the Christmas season. Most people enjoy eating meatballs. Will be sharing this recipe of yours.

    • Rachel L Alba profile image
      Author

      Rachel L Alba 19 months ago from Every Day Cooking and Baking

      Thank you ChitrangadaSharan, I appreciate your visit and love your comments. I served these on Christmas Eve and everyone loved them.

      Have a Blessed New Year.

    • ChitrangadaSharan profile image

      Chitrangada Sharan 19 months ago from New Delhi, India

      These Swedish meat balls sound delicious and your instructions are so easy to follow with helpful pictures.

      I would love to try them . As you mention they can be processed earlier and that makes it easier to serve for a big dinner party.

      Thank you!

    • Rachel L Alba profile image
      Author

      Rachel L Alba 19 months ago from Every Day Cooking and Baking

      Hi Audrey, We did have them on Christmas Eve. One of the great things about this recipe is that it can be made weeks ahead of time and frozen. I defrosted them and put them in the slow cooker on low early in the day and by the evening they were hot and ready to eat.

    • AudreyHowitt profile image

      Audrey Howitt 20 months ago from California

      I hope you make this tonight and that you have a wonderful time with your family!! Happy holidays to you!

    • Rachel L Alba profile image
      Author

      Rachel L Alba 20 months ago from Every Day Cooking and Baking

      Thank you Cornelia. I would like to know how your daughter and class mates like the meatballs. Children always like meatballs that are small. Thanks for the visit and great comment. I appreciate it.

      Merry Christmas to you and your family.

    • CorneliaMladenova profile image

      Korneliya Yonkova 20 months ago from Cork, Ireland

      Beautiful photos, Rachel. And I won't be waiting for Christmas to make these Swedish Meat Balls. Tomorrow two kids will come to our house, they are friends and class mates of my little daughter and now I know what meal I'll prepare for lunch. :)

      By the way the photos are beautiful. You are all so sweet :) Have a happy Christmas and God bless! :)

    • Rachel L Alba profile image
      Author

      Rachel L Alba 20 months ago from Every Day Cooking and Baking

      Hi Phyllis, thanks for trying. I can see why someone wouldn't want to give out a recipe. Especially if it's really great, you wouldn't want anyone to copy it. Blessings to you

    • Phyllis Doyle profile image

      Phyllis Doyle Burns 20 months ago from High desert of Nevada.

      Hi Rachel and a very Merry Christmas to you and yours. I have tried to get my brother's recipe, but he is very secretive about it, just as I am with my Christmas fudge and cookies recipes. I love Christmas Eve with the buffet table set with all our festive recipes.

    • Rachel L Alba profile image
      Author

      Rachel L Alba 20 months ago from Every Day Cooking and Baking

      Hello Phyllis, I would like t0 see your brother's recipe too. Like it says in my notes, there are different ways of making them.

      Thanks for visiting and I wish you a Merry Christmas also.

    • Rachel L Alba profile image
      Author

      Rachel L Alba 20 months ago from Every Day Cooking and Baking

      Hello Purl3agony. I'm sure your mother's recipe is really good too. Most recipes do have nutmeg in it. Thank you for your visit and comment.

      They are appreciated.

      Merry Christmas

    • Rachel L Alba profile image
      Author

      Rachel L Alba 20 months ago from Every Day Cooking and Baking

      Hi Aesta1, we do have a great time. There are a lot of different recipes out there. This is the one my sister gave me. Thanks for taking the time to visit and commenting.

      Merry Christmas

    • Rachel L Alba profile image
      Author

      Rachel L Alba 20 months ago from Every Day Cooking and Baking

      Hi Jackie, Everyone brings food or wine or something. It's a tradition that we really enjoy. Thanks for visiting and the really nice comments.

      Merry Christmas

    • Phyllis Doyle profile image

      Phyllis Doyle Burns 20 months ago from High desert of Nevada.

      Our family loves Swedish meatballs. My brother makes them best and we have them every Christmas Eve. Thanks for sharing your recipe, Rachel. The browned meatballs in your photo look so yummy.

    • purl3agony profile image

      Donna Herron 20 months ago from USA

      "Swedish" meatballs were a standby of my mother's cooking repertoire, and I've always loved them. We never put nutmeg in our meatballs, but I'll have to try it. I also like your broth gravy, maybe with sauteed mushrooms added. Thanks for sharing this recipe!

    • aesta1 profile image

      Mary Norton 20 months ago from Ontario, Canada

      We do make meatballs but the way you make it is different from what we usually do so we'll try this recipe. You have a happy family from the pictures. Have a fabulous Christmas with them.

    • Jackie Lynnley profile image

      Jackie Lynnley 20 months ago from The Beautiful South

      Yum! I have been thinking about these things lately; well ones like them a friend of mine use to make. She put grape jelly in hers though so I suppose it wasn't really Swedish meatballs, was it? Anyway these are delicious I am sure and I bet you have to really make plenty for all that company! I hope they bring you plenty of presents in appreciation! Shared!

      Have a Merry Christmas Rachel!