How Does IKEA Make its Swedish Meatballs?
IKEA is a furniture store through and through. It’s full of tables, patio furniture, recliners, and more. What IKEA could not have anticipated, however, is the popularity their Swedish meatballs would attain. They have become so popular that IKEA sells pre-packaged frozen meatballs in the store.
The meatballs are made with a variety of ingredients. It’s not as simple as just being a ball of meat. They use ingredients like onion, potato, beef stock, and more to get that perfect savory flavor. By making this traditional Swedish dish, IKEA helps consumers connect with their culture. They try to make these meatballs with all-natural ingredients that help with their sustainability mission.
IKEA’s Swedish meatballs can be started by mixing beef, pork, onion, and panko in a bowl. They also add allspice and pepper. The mixture is then shaped into 1 ounce balls. Then the balls are evenly coated in flour around the whole ball. They are then cooked in a buttered pan for 20 minutes. When they’re done cooking, a little beef stock is added.
That would be the expected end to the making of meatball, but it is not. They are many steps following this. After that, more beef stock is added, as well as flour and cream.
They round out the meatballs with some white pepper, and that’s that. They can be frozen, recooked and made later. Of course, they’re not truly Swedish meatballs without some lingonberry jam.
IKEA’s Swedish meatballs are served with lingonberry jam, which can be purchased in the store. Lingonberries are usually found in the Northern Hemisphere, and resemble cranberries. They’re as popular as other berries, like strawberries or raspberries, but they do make for the best jam. The lingonberry jam is said to offset the savory taste of the meatballs with something sweet. It’s very simple to make. The lingonberries are mixed with water and sugar in a saucepan. It’s dissolved, cooled down, and served. It’s a much simpler process than the meatballs.
While the meatballs are certainly the most popular food at IKEA, they want vegetarians and vegans to enjoy the delicacy, too. They currently offer veggie balls that consist of chickpeas, carrots, peas, peppers, and kale that’s all mixed in a ball. They’re tasty, but not on the same level as the meatballs. In the age of “impossible meat” and “beyond meat,” IKEA has decided to make a new meat-alternative ball, too.
There’s been no official release date for these meatballs. IKEA is currently in the test tasting stage, so they will be out shortly. Releasing these non-meat meatballs helps maintain IKEA’s love of sustainability. They recycle materials in the store and use plant-based materials for their food. What’s not to love?
By creating a signature dish that many customers love, and expanding it to those who can’t try it, they continue to grow their connections. They can reach a consumer that otherwise might not come into IKEA.
This is how IKEA makes their meatballs, lingonberry jam, and what their plans are for the future of everyone’s favorite dish.