FoodThese One-Ingredient Meatballs Are the Ultimate Dinner Shortcut
These Juicy Swedish Meatballs Have a Treasured Family Secret Up Their Sleeves
Our last contest, The Recipe You're Asked to Bring to Every Gathering, brought a big batch of delightfully tender Swedish meatballs right to the top of out next party menu.
Ahas the smallest-possible ingredient list and big everything else: flavor, creativity, wow factor. Psst—we don't count water, salt, black pepper, and certain fats (specifically, 1/2 cup or less of olive oil, vegetable oil, and butter), since we're guessing you have those covered. This week's recipe is as little as can be.
Meatballs and just about anything makes a great dinner. Maybe it’s. Or . Or . Or .
In other words, I’m always happy to eat meatballs. But I’m not always happy to make them.
The basic meatball ingredient list is: ground meat (beef, pork, veal, chicken, turkey), often bread or bread crumbs (or even), eggs, salt, and whatever bonuses you can dream up. Those bonuses are what make meatballs so versatile and wide-ranging.
This Weeknight Dinner Makes Its Own Sauce as It Cooks
Sauces can feel fussy, but this saucy, kid-friendly chicken dish couldn't be easier to make.
And also so time-intensive. Chopping—and maybe sautéeing—vegetables. Mincing herbs. Grating cheese. Microplaning aromatics like ginger and garlic. Sometimes, these extra steps are fun. (Say, on a Saturday. When the laundry is already washed, dried, and folded. And the groceries are bought and unpacked. And I have no other plans.) Other times, I’m more inclined to think: Eh! I’ll just go with chicken thighs or steaks instead.
This one-ingredient “hack” fixes all that. Instead of mixing ground meat with a bunch of other stuff, just buy fresh, loose sausage.
Ikea’s famous Swedish meatballs are about to get a big makeover
Ikea shoppers may seek out the Scandinavian furniture store for its inexpensive bookshelves and beds, but the chain has become a cult-favorite dining destination thanks largely to its Swedish meatballs. Unfortunately for vegetarians, the meatballs contain, well, meat. But veggie eaters are in luck; Ikea has announced it’s working on a plant-based version of their signature menu item. The 101 Most Iconic Restaurant Dishes in America “I am looking
For the record: This is not a classic, tradition-honored, play-by-the-rules meatball. It is a ball of meat, which just so happens to be well-seasoned, full of flavor, crusty on the outside, juicy in the middle, and extremely low-effort. It is a “meatball” for when you want meatballs, but don’t want to make meatballs.
A can't-go-wrong combo: pasta, sausage meatballs, broccoli rabe, olive oil, garlic, and chile flakes.Photo by Rocky Luten
All you have to do is pick whichever fresh sausage is speaking to you. (Psst: Pre-cooked sausage won’t work here.) Try sweet Italian. Or hot Italian. Or breakfast. Or spicy chorizo. Or swing by a local butcher and see if they have something custom mixed up. If you can only find sausage in links, these work too—just remove the meat from its casing. Roll the sausage into balls; these could be itty-bitty or gigunda (I like somewhere in the middle). And pan-sear in a slick of hot oil until golden-brown all over.
Ikea Will Test Plant-Based Meatballs Earlier Than Expected
Originally scheduled for early next year, the new balls are now slated to debut in 2019.
The best part? All that time you would have otherwise spent assembling the meatballs, you can now spend making whatever's going with the meatballs. And, just like that, what once was a weekend treat is a weekday fallback.
Here are some of my favorite ideas to get started:
- Sweet Italian sausage meatballs in chicken broth with escarole, Parmesan, and egg
- Hot Italian sausage meatballs with pasta, broccoli rabe, garlic, and olive oil
- Chorizo sausage meatballs with steamed rice, pinto beans, and limey cabbage slaw
- Breakfast sausage meatballs with garlicky yogurt, sautéed kale, and warm bread
Shortcut Sausage Meatballs
- 1 pound fresh, loose sausage
- 3 tablespoons canola oil, plus more as needed
Bonus Big Little Recipe
If you’re a Big Little fan, maybe you’re wondering: Where’s this week’s video? We’re taking a quick hiatus—yep, just like a TV show—to cook up the next season of episodes, premiering May 28. They’re gonna be bigger (and littler) and better than ever. Stay tuned! And if you have any meatball tricks up your sleeve, share 'em in the comments.
This Five-Ingredient Roasted Potato Wedge Recipe Is Your New Go-To Dinner Party Side.
A simple, yet delicious potato recipe that’s perfect for any occasion. When it comes to hosting a holiday or dinner party, there’s almost always some sort of potato dish—and why wouldn’t there be? They’re versatile, inexpensive, and irresistibly tasty. Although many of our beloved potato recipes call for butter and cream or a deep fryer, there are many ways to prepare a lighter rendition. This guilt-free potato recipe uses only five simple ingredients and is baked in the oven. The best part? They’re ready in less than an hour from start to finish.
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