These Instant Pot Swedish Meatballs are covered in a creamy gravy sauce and taste just like the ones at IKEA! Make them super easily in the pressure cooker.
Ingredients in Swedish meatballs
The following recipe will make both the meatballs and the gravy that is the signature for Swedish meatballs right in the Instant Pot. To make the dish you will need:
- Extra lean ground beef – this is beef that is at least 96% lean and at most 4% fat
- Beef broth
- Sour cream
- Seasonings and pantry staples
How to make Swedish meatballs in the Instant Pot
Because of all the features on an Instant Pot, you can brown your meatballs and make the gravy in the same pan you use to cook the meatballs. Not only that, but it will be done in almost no time when you use your Instant Pot! Here’s how to make them:
- Mix the meatball ingredients and shape into one inch balls. Be careful not to overmix the meat. The more you work it, the tougher your meatballs will end up.
- Saute the meatballs in the Instant Pot until brown.
- Add the broth.
- Cook for three minutes under pressure.
- Perform a quick release. This stops the cooking process immediately to avoid drying out the meat.
- Remove the meatballs and broth into separate containers.
- Make the sauce in the Instant Pot on saute mode then add meatballs back to the pot and serve!
Do you have to saute the Instant Pot Swedish meatballs?
If your only concern is cooking the meat to a safe temperature, you do not have to saute the meatballs. The Instant Pot will cook them completely in the three minutes they are under pressure.
However, sauteing the meatballs serves several important functions for the taste and texture of the meatballs.
Sauteing the meatballs makes the exterior cook first and sets them in place. They will keep their round shape while pressure cooking if they are first sauteed.
By browning the fat on the outside of the meatball, you also increase the flavor. The oil you fry them in adds to the intensity of flavor as well.
Making the gravy
After cooking the Instant Pot Swedish meatballs, you can remove them and prepare the gravy right in the Instant Pot. Here’s how to make it:
- Return to using the saute function.
- Melt the butter.
- Add the flour and whisk until it is incorporated and smooth.
- Pour the broth back into the pot and allow it all to come to a boil.
- Add the sour cream and stir to combine.
- Pour the sauce onto the meatballs before serving.
This recipe will make Swedish meatballs that taste just like what you can order at Ikea. But you have lots of freedom to adjust these to suit your tastes. Try some of these changes:
- Use ground chicken, turkey or pork. Ikea’s meatballs are a combination of beef and pork. They also have a chicken version.
- Experiment with Ikea’s newest favorite: the veggie ball. It’s made of a combination of vegetables like carrots, kale, red peppers and peas combined with chickpeas.
- Use panko instead of breadcrumbs.
- Try chicken or vegetable stock.
- Use heavy cream instead of sour cream.
- Add a dash of soy sauce or Worcestershire sauce to the gravy.
What to serve with Instant Pot Swedish meatballs
Swedish meatballs are traditionally served with potatoes – either mashed or boiled – and lingonberry jam. But lots of other food will turn these amazing meatballs into a complete meal. Here are some other side dish ideas:
- Egg noodles
- Dill potatoes
- Cabbage with apples
- Cucumber salad
- Glazed carrots
- Green beans
- Roasted broccoli
Storing and reheating
Swedish meatballs will last for five days in the refrigerator.
To warm an individual portion, you can pop it in the microwave for a minute or two. If you prepared the Swedish meatballs in advance and need to reheat the entire meal, warm them in a pan on the stove top.
Freezing these meatballs
Swedish meatballs can be frozen either before or after cooking. Feel free to double or even triple this recipe if you want to stock your freezer with easy delicious pre-made meals.
You can mix and shape the meatballs and then freeze. I recommend putting them on a baking tray in the freezer for about an hour first and then transferring them to a container. This ensures that they don’t stick together when frozen. They will last in the freezer for three to four months.
If you already cooked the meat, allow it to cool and then store in the freezer. Stop following the recipe after making the meatballs. Flour based sauces do not freeze well and should be made fresh. Cooked meatballs will last for two to three months in the freezer.
To thaw the meatballs, put them in the refrigerator overnight. After you thaw them, continue making the gravy in the Instant Pot or in a pan on the stove. Add the meatballs to warm them completely.
More Instant Pot comfort food
Meal prep tools for this recipe
- Grab some glass meal prep bowls if you plan on turning these meatballs into your weekly lunches.
- I get all my grass-fed beef from Butcher Box, conveniently delivered to me frozen.
- Use these Ziploc bag holders if you’re adding meatballs to a freezer bag then freezing
- Freeze this recipe in glass microwave-safe bowls with lids up to 3 months
Instant Pot resources
If you’d like some more help with your Instant Pot, then you’ll love my free resources! Sign up for free below when you get my weekly newsletter:
Instant Pot Swedish Meatballs
- 1 lb extra-lean ground beef
- 1/2 cup breadcrumbs
- 1 egg
- 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp onion powder
- 1/2 tsp each salt & pepper
- 1/4 tsp allspice or nutmeg
- 3 tbsp butter
- 3 tbsp flour
- 1 1/2 cups beef broth
- 1/2 cup sour cream
- Mix together the ingredients for the meatballs in a large bowl. Roll each meatball into 1-inch balls.
- Add 1 tbsp olive oil to the bottom of Instant Pot. Saute meatballs for 5 minutes to get a light browning on them. Add beef broth, then place lid on Instant Pot and make sure valve is set to seal. Press the pressure cook button and set to high, then cook for 3 minutes. Instant Pot will take about 5-10 minutes to come to pressure then pressure cook for 3 minutes.
- Do a quick release of the pressure on the Instant Pot by flicking the switch at the top with a spoon. Open the lid when pressure gauge has dropped and the lid opens easily.
- Remove meatballs from Instant Pot, and pour broth into a small bowl and set aside.
- Turn Instant Pot back to saute mode. Melt butter, then add flour, whisking until smooth. Add broth back to pot, then bring to a boil. Stir in sour cream. Pour sauce over meatballs, then garnish with parsley. Serve and enjoy!