Gluten and Dairy Free Scandinavian Meatballs

Scandinavian meatballs
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  • 55 mins
  • Prep: 25 mins,
  • Cook: 30 mins
  • Yield: 2 dozen large (8 servings)

Gluten and dairy free Scandinavian meatballs are just as delicious as the original recipe made with cracker or bread crumbs and milk. A little nutmeg, allspice, and grated fresh onion add big flavor to this classic Scandinavian recipe.

This recipe is adapted to gluten-free cooking from a recipe published in Immanuel Cookery" by the Immanuel Lutheran Church in Eden Prairie, "Danish Meatballs."

What You'll Need

  • 1 pound lean ground pork
  • 1/2 pound lean ground beef
  • 1 small onion (freshly grated)
  • 1/2 cup gluten-free cracker crumbs (finely crushed; I used Glutino brand Vegetable Crackers. Alternatively, you can use dry  gluten-free bread crumbs with good results)
  • 2 tablespoons potato starch (or cornstarch)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/4 plus 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon allspice
  • 1 egg (lightly beaten)
  • 1/2 cup coconut milk (OR your favorite dairy-free milk substitute)
  • 1/2 cup potato starch (or cornstarch to roll meatballs in before pan frying)
  • 2 cups gluten-free beef broth (I used Pacific Natural Foods brand Organic Beef Broth)
  • 2 tablespoons potato starch (or sweet rice flour to thicken gravy)
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable shortening (for browning meatballs)

How to Make It

  1. Put gluten-free crackers in a plastic bag and use a rolling pin to finely crush crackers. Add crackers as necessary to total 1/2 cup crumbs. In a large mixing bowl combine ground pork or beef, grated onion, cracker crumbs, 2 tablespoons potato or cornstarch, seasonings, and eggs. Use an electric mixer to thoroughly combine ingredients. Add coconut milk or your favorite milk substitute. Beat on high for 1 minute.
  1. Shape meat mixture into about 1 1/2-inch to 2-inch balls and dust each meatball with potato starch or cornstarch. I used a level 1/8th cup scoop to shape my meatballs but you can make them smaller if you like. Heat vegetable oil in a large heavy skillet. Brown meatballs in batches, turning to evenly brown.
  2. Remove browned meatballs from the skillet to drain on a plate. Leave pan drippings from browned meatballs in the skillet. Whisk 2 tablespoons potato starch or cornstarch into 1/2 cup of the beef broth. Add this mixture along with remaining beef stock to the skillet. Add 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg to the gravy. Whisk and simmer over medium heat until the mixture thickens. Add browned meatballs and simmer on low for about 15 minutes.
  3. To serve remove meatballs with a slotted spoon and pile in a large serving dish. Pour hot gravy over meatballs.

Reminder: Always make sure your work surfaces, utensils, pans, and tools are free of gluten. Always read product labels. Manufacturers can change product formulations without notice. When in doubt, do not buy or use a product before contacting the manufacturer for verification that the product is free of gluten.