vegan swedish meatballs

Authentic Vegan Swedish Meatballs With Gravy, Hasselback Potatoes, Lingonberries, and Cucumber

This recipe is a classic! Both on my blog Javligt Gott and here in Sweden. There is a reason as to why they are called Swedish Meatballs. I’m pretty sure that it has to be our national dish, and if it isn’t it sure is the informal one. It’s one of those dishes where it just so happens that your dads/mothers/uncles/grandma’s recipe is way better than everyone else’s, and everyone has a very strict idea of how they are supposed to be cooked. I prefer them as my father used to cook them for Christmas, filled with tons of allspice and dijon mustard, rolled small (so that you could eat many!) and fried hard in butter so that they got a crunchy exterior. This recipe is also one of the recipes that helped me really get my blog started big time and to reach out beyond just my closest family and friends. I hope you’ll like it too!

Authentic Vegan Swedish Meatballs

By Gustav Johansson

35 mins to prep
25 mins to cook
Yields 4



  • 11.5 Ounces veggie mince or vegan meat crumbles
  • 1/2 Cup breadcrumbs
  • 1 + 1/2 Tablespoons potato starch
  • 1/2 Cup plant-based cream or milk
  • 1/3 Cup water (may use less)
  • 2 Tablespoons dijon mustard
  • 1 yellow onion
  • 1 + 1/2 Tablespoons concentrated vegetable broth
  • 1 Tablespoon soy sauce
  • 10-12 whole allspice seeds
  • vegan butter to fry
  • salt and black pepper


  • 1 + 1/4 Cups plant-based cream
  • 1 + 1/2 Tablespoons vegetable broth
  • 1 Tablespoon vegan blackberry jam
  • 1 Tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 Teaspoon dried thyme
  • salt and black pepper

Pickled Cucumber

  • 1 large fresh cucumber
  • 1 Teaspoon salt
  • 2 Tablespoons vinegar (12% concentration)
  • 1/3 Cup water
  • 3 Tablespoons sugar
  • 1 Pinch white pepper
  • 1 a small fist of chopped parsley

Raw Lingonberry Jam

  • 1/2 Cup fresh or frozen lingonberries*
  • 1/2 Cup sugar

Hasselback Potatoes

  • 10-12 medium firm potatoes, about the same size
  • 2/3 Cup breadcrumbs
  • 3 x 1/2 Tablespoons vegan butter


  1. 1
    MEATBALLS: Chop the onion and fry in just enough butter so that the onion doesn’t burn. 
  2. 2
    Grind the allspice in a mortar and pestle or a spice grinder. 
  3. 3
    Add the mince and the ground allspice to the pan with the onions and simmer for a few minutes.
  4. 4
    Add soy sauce, dijon mustard and vegetable broth. Fry for a few minutes and add a little water if needed to ensure it doesn’t burn. Fry until the mixture is fragrant and then set the pan to the side.
  5. 5
    Mix bread crumbs, potato starch and plant cream (or milk) in a bowl and let it set for 30 seconds. Then mix the seasoned mince with the bread crumbs and stir thoroughly so that everything is well mixed.
  6. 6
    Season with salt and pepper and taste. Add more mustard and allspice if necessary. If the mixture is too dry and hard, add a little more cream. If it is too wet, add a little more breadcrumbs. The mixture should be easy to shape into balls without falling apart or feeling too runny. 
  7. 7
    Test fry one small ball to see if you have enough potato starch in the mince. If your ball holds it’s round shape then it’s perfect. If it falls apart or changes shape the mince is too wet and you need to add more crumbs, if turned flat it needs more starch.
  8. 8
    Hand-roll your balls, about 1 inch each in diameter. Fry them first on high heat, partially submerged in vegan butter, for about 5-10 minutes then allow them to gently simmer for a few minutes on low heat.
  9. 9
    GRAVY: Add all the ingredients into the hot saucepan where you just fried the balls and then simmer the gravy for 2-3 minutes.
  10. 10
    Season with salt and pepper and let the meatballs boil in the gravy for the last minute.
  11. 11
    PICKLED CUCUMBER (GERKAN): Rinse the cucumber and peel it if you prefer. Cut it in thin slices with a knife or a mandolin.
  12. 12
    Place the slices on a plate or in a low bowl and salt them liberally. Then put another plate tightly over them so that they are under pressure and put something heavy on it. Press the cucumber for about 30-40 minutes to get as much liquid out of the cucumbers as possible.
  13. 13
    Mix the rest of the ingredients into a cold brine by whisking until the sugar has dissolved. Pour off the excess liquid from the cucumber and put the slices into the brine.
  14. 14
    Pour into a clean glass jar and let rest for at least one hour before serving.
  15. 15
    LINGONBERRIES: Mix lingonberries and sugar into a bowl and mash them with a fork. If they are frozen, you may need to heat them a little in the microwave until they can be mashed.
  16. 16
    Add more sugar or lingonberries to taste until you find a level of acid you like.
  17. 17
    POTATOES: Make thin even cuts into the potatoes with a knife, about 3/4 through. Do not cut all the way through the potato. 
  18. 18
    Put the potatoes in an oven tray and put one dab of vegan butter over each. If the butter is room temperature, it is much easier.
  19. 19
    Bake on the center rack of the oven at 450 degrees Fahrenheit for 20 minutes.
  20. 20
    Take them out, spread on more butter and let it melt into the slices and sprinkle over bread crumbs. Bake for 25 minutes more or until the surface of the potatoes are crispy and brown and they are tender on the inside. Serve Immediately!

Recipe Notes

*If you cannot find lingonberries, cranberries may be substituted. You can also skip the homemade jam recipe and buy store-bought.