Tender Turkey Swedish Meatballs

Did someone say meatballs? These tender Turkey Swedish Meatballs are a great way to turn ground turkey into a fantastic, moist, and flavorful dinner idea — all covered in a creamy gravy that is downright tasty!

tender turkey swedish meatballs in a cast iron skillet

So who wants in?

This saucy low-carb meal is loaded with flavors from simple ingredients like onion, basil, and grated parmesan. Blended with ground turkey, many of these ingredients are pantry staples and items you may already have in your kitchen. So, you’ll be making this recipe in no time.

Swedish Meatballs are typically made with a 50-50 ratio of ground pork and ground beef, but for this better-for-you version, I used ground turkey. I’ve also made some minor adjustments to the typical seasonings and replaced nutmeg and allspice with more Italian flavors, like Italian breadcrumbs and garlic.

And while these meatballs are great served solo, they can also be the basis for a complete meal when paired with your favorite veggie or egg noodles (for a more traditional approach).

Ingredients you’ll need to make tender Swedish meatballs:

  • At the foundation of this recipe sits tender turkey meatballs. You’ll combine lean ground turkey, Italian breadcrumbs, parmesan cheese, an egg, onion, and basil. Basil is one of those herbs that can enhance any dish. The basil gives the meatballs and the sauce a well-balanced aroma with its herbal flavors. The grated parmesan cheese is also an everyday go-to because of the creaminess it can provide and the nuttiness this dish needs.
  • You will season these meatballs with smoked paprika, black pepper, sea salt, and ground thyme.
  • And to make the creamy gravy, you’ll need beef broth, onion, heavy whipping cream, Worcestershire sauce, Dijon mustard, and of course, garlic. You will season the gravy with sea salt, black pepper, and garlic powder.
  • The consistency of the gravy comes from the cornstarch and water combo that gets added at the end.
overhead shot of turkey swedish meatballs served with sides of egg noodles and sauteed spinach

How to make Swedish meatballs:

  1. Begin by adding all meatball ingredients into a large bowl and mixing everything well with your hands.
  2. You will form the meatballs into palm-sized balls and then sear them on high heat for a few minutes before removing them from heat.
  3. The gravy will be made in the same pan, so you will add the garlic and chopped white onions on medium heat, cooking for 4 minutes.
  4. Pour the beef broth, Worcestershire sauce, Dijon mustard, basil, and remaining seasonings into the pan, stirring them together before adding the meatballs back to the pan.
  5. Spoon some gravy over the meatballs before covering and allow the meatballs to cook for 10 to 12 minutes.
  6. Once done, you will add the whipping cream and parmesan cheese, followed by the cornstarch and water mixture (add to a small bowl first and mix before adding to the pan with all ingredients).
  7. Allow to cool for 3 to 5 additional minutes before serving.
turkey swedish meatballs served with spinach

How do you make tender turkey meatballs?

There is nothing like biting down on a tender meatball. The most important thing to remember is you must add moisture in to get the moisture out. And that certainly holds true to a protein like ground turkey, which is much lower in saturated fat when compared to ground beef. The combination of the egg, breadcrumbs, and grated parmesan cheese are your keys to staying clear of dry meatballs.

turkey swedish meatballs served with egg noodles

This recipe is fully loaded with flavors and is super easy to prepare. You can enjoy your turkey meatballs Swedish style served over egg pasta, or you can low carb it out and serve it with a side of spinach. However you serve this dish, I think you will enjoy this any day of the week.

turkey meatball cut open with fork and served with sauteed spinach

Love meatballs? You should also try my:

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close up of turkey Swedish meatballs in cast iron skillet

Turkey Swedish Meatballs

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  • Author: Eric Jones
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 4 1x


This Turkey Swedish Meatball recipe is a great way to turn ground turkey into a flavorful dinner idea — all covered in savory, rich gravy.


Units Scale
  • 1 1/2 lb ground turkey
  • 1/3 cup Italian breadcrumbs
  • 1/4 cup grated parmesan
  • 1/2 cup white onion, chopped and divided
  • 1 large organic egg
  • 2 tbsp dried basil, divided
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 1/2 tsp black pepper, divided
  • 1/2 tsp ground thyme
  • 3/4 tsp sea salt, divided
  • 2 tbsp minced garlic
  • 1 1/2 cup beef broth
  • 2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tbsp cornstarch
  • 1 tbsp water
  • 1/4 cup whipping cream
  • 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese


  1. Add ground turkey, Italian breadcrumbs, grated parmesan, ¼ cup white onion, organic egg, 1 tbsp dried basil, smoked paprika, 1 tsp black pepper, ground thyme, and ¼ tsp sea salt into a large bowl. Mix thoroughly.
  2. Form the meatballs into palm-sized balls and set them to the side.
  3. Add olive oil to a large cast iron skillet (paid link). Heat to medium-high heat and sear meatballs for 2 minutes on each side. Remove from heat and set to the side.
  4. In the same cast iron skillet (paid link), add the minced garlic and ¼ cup white onion. Cook on medium heat for 4 minutes. Pour in beef broth, Worcestershire sauce, Dijon mustard, 1 tbsp dried basil, ¼ tsp sea salt, ½ tsp black pepper, and garlic powder. Stir together. 
  5. Add meatballs back to cast iron skillet (paid link). Cover skillet and cook on medium-high heat for 10 to 12 minutes until meatballs are golden brown and cooked throughout.
  6. Add cornstarch and water to a small bowl and stir until combined. Carefully add the mixture into cast iron skillet (paid link).
  7. Add whipping cream and grated parmesan cheese into the skillet stir. Cover on simmer for an additional 3 to 5 additional minutes.
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Category: Dinner
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Swedish


  • Calories: 592
  • Sugar: 2.1g
  • Sodium: 1097mg
  • Fat: 32.2g
  • Carbohydrates: 12.1g
  • Fiber: 1g
  • Protein: 63.5g
  • Cholesterol: 253mg

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