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  • Writer's pictureCarlos Sarmiento

Swedish Meatballs with Pappardelle

(Photo: Carlos Sarmiento)

Known for more then just household names like: Abba, IKE, Spotify, Volvo and H&M,

Sweden is a centuries-old Kingdom and beloved Nordic country. Rich in culture, history, industry and of course gastronomy.

By now, everyone has heard of Sweden’s famous food concept like the Smörgåsbord, or lavish buffet and wonderful food products and dishes such as: lingonberry jam, pickled herring and naturally, Swedish meatballs.

(Photo: TheDigitalArtist)

My first and still most memorable experience trying Swedish meatballs was quite literally in Sweden.

The year my family and I lived in London, England, we would often venture out to nearby countries during holiday weekends. One particular and unforgettable weekend had us visiting Denmark and East/West Germany (yes when the wall was still up in Berlin and there were two German nations).

In order to travel to East Germany from Denmark, we first had to travel to Sweden via ferry. The nearest place was the charming Swedish coastal of Malmo.

(Photo: Mikael Stenberg)

The boat ride from Copenhagen, Denmark was very short and we arrived one foggy evening. Being that it was near dinner time, we were hungry and since we only had a few hours before taking another ship to East Germany, we went in search for a traditional Swedish restaurant. Our first Swedish dinning experience was with meatballs and it’s delicious cream sauce.

(Photo: Otto Norin)

Not many places I know have come close to the exceptional Swedish meatballs dinning experience I had in Malmo, so I have decided to finally make them myself (and give it my own spin). I promise you will enjoy it as much as I did.

Let’s get cooking!


Swedish meatballs with pappardelle pasta & garlic-rosemary bread

Wine pairing:

2018 - Résonance Pinot Noir (Willamette Valley, Oregon, USA)

Serves 8



  • 3 lbs of lean ground beef

  • 2 medium sized yellow onion, grated

  • 1 cup of fresh Italian parsley, finely chopped

  • 3 tablespoons of dried oregano

  • 3 garlic cloves, minced

  • 3 eggs

  • 1 cup of bread crumbs

  • 1/3 cup of milk

  • Sea salt & cracked black pepper (1 tablespoon each)

Swedish Cream Sauce (if you want more sauce, double the amount):

  • 2 tablespoons butter

  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

  • 1 1/3 cup beef stock

  • 2/3 cup heavy cream

  • 3 teaspoons soy sauce

  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

  • 1/2 teaspoon of ground nutmeg

  • 3/4 cup of freshly grated Asiago cheese

Pappardelle pasta:

  • 1 (8.8 ounce) package of Pappardelle Egg Pasta

  • 2 tablespoons butter

  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh parsley

  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt

  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


  • One baguette or sourdough bread, cut in 1/4 inch, thin rounds or thin slices

  • 1/3 cup extra Virgin olive oil

  • 2 tablespoons of fresh rosemary, finely chopped

  • 2 garlic cloves, finely minced

  • 1 teaspoon of sea salt

  • 1 teaspoon of cracked black pepper

Cheese mix for extra topping when serving:

  • Mix of 1/4 cup of freshly grated Asiago cheese and 1/4 cup of freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Directions Meatballs:

  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

  • In a large bowl, mix ground beef with grated onion, garlic, parsley, and oregano. Add salt and pepper, mix again.

  • Add mil, then egg and slowly add bread crumbs. Mix well.

  • Shape mixture into balls (no more than 2 inches thick)

  • Bake for 30-35 minutes or until cooked through (internal temperature needs to reach 160 degrees F).

Swedish cream sauce:

  • Melt the butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Whisk in the flour and cook for 1 minute or until it is lightly browned.

  • Add the beef stock and whisk until smooth. Cook until the sauce thickens, about 3-4 minutes.

  • Reduce the heat and stir in the cream, soy sauce and Dijon mustard and simmer for another 1-2 minutes.

  • Add nutmeg and then Asiago cheese. Stir slowly. If the sauce seems too thick, add more beef stock 1-2 tablespoons at a time.

Pappardelle pasta:

  • Bring a large pot of water to a boil, season with sea salt, and add the pappardelle pasta. Cook for 9 minutes, drain, and return the noodles to the pot (off the heat) with the butter, parsley, sea salt, freshly ground black pepper. Stir, then cover with a lid until ready to serve.


  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. In a small mixing bowl, add olive oil, garlic, rosemary, salt and pepper and mix well.

  • On non-stick cookie sheet (or foil-lined baking sheet) arrange bread rounds evenly on sheet.

  • Drizzle oil mixtures evenly on top of every bread round.

  • Toast in oven until edges begin to slightly get a golden brown color. Remove from oven.

Serve it up!

This fantastic dish merits to be served family style.

Meatballs & Pasta:

If you have a bowl that is large enough to hold the pasta, mestballs and sauce together, make sure to first coat the pasta with cream sauce. Then carefully add meatballs, toss pasta again and top off with extra mestballs, sauce and some cheese.

If you, like in my case, do not have serving bowls that are large enough, I highly recommend two separate bowls. One for the pasta (again, mixed with ample cream sauce) and one for the meatballs (save some sauce to add on top of meatball bowl).

Garnish both with a little cheese and extra parsley.


Arrange toasted rounds with on a flat serving dish.

Smaklig måltid! Enjoy your meal!

(Photo: Carlos Sarmiento)

(Photo: Carlos Sarmiento)

(Photo: Carlos Sarmiento)

(Photo: Carlos Sarmiento)

(Photo: Carlos Sarmiento)

(Photo: Carlos Sarmiento)

(Photo: Carlos Sarmiento)

About the wine...

Special thanks to my friends at Kobrand Wines & Spirits and Résonance & Découverte Vineyards (in association with Maison Louis Jadot) for their wonderful contribution of this silky smooth Pinot Noir.

2018 - Résonance Pinot Noir (Willamette Valley, Oregon, USA)

(Photo: Carlos Sarmiento)

The Willamette Valley Pinot Noir from Résonance is sourced from both estate vineyards (Résonance and Découverte Vineyards) and top vineyards in the Willamette Valley.

The wine showcases the absolute best of the Willamette Valley, and elegantly blends Maison Louis Jadot’s winemaking with the Willamette Valley’s signature terroir.

Grapes: 100% Pinot Noir

Taste: A beautiful ruby color and a complex nose with notes of black cherry, blackberry, wild strawberry, peony, liquorice, graphite and delicate wood flagrance.

The palate is really vibrant, with a subtle harmony between the well-balanced structure, the expressive aromatic complexity and the energetic acidity.

Food pairing: Pairs well with poultry or red meat, as well with heavier seafood and roasted vegetables.


  • Sourced from estate vineyards and top vineyards in the Willamette Valley

  • Receives 15 months oak aging in French Oak, 20% new

  • Impresses upon immediate release and after patient cellaring


Decorative wine drip collar by:

(Special discount promo code: CFW15)

(Photo: David Becker)

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