Ikea Meatball pan pizza

If you’ve ever wandered through the aisles of IKEA, you’re likely familiar with the mouthwatering aroma of their famous Swedish meatballs wafting from the cafeteria. Those delicious meatballs, served with lingonberry sauce and creamy mashed potatoes, have a cult following for a reason. But what if we told you that you could bring that unmistakable IKEA meatball flavor into your own kitchen and combine it with another beloved dish—pan pizza?

Let’s go on a journey to create the ultimate fusion of flavors. Imagine the rich, savory goodness of IKEA meatballs nestled atop a perfectly baked pizza crust. This is not your average pizza night or my Halloween Spooky pizza, it’s a flavor-packed extravaganza that will leave your taste buds dancing.


What is a pan pizza?

Pan pizza is a distinctive pizza style celebrated for its thick, fluffy crust and crispy, golden-brown edges. This pizza is characterized by its doughy base, which is typically pressed into a deep, rectangular or round pan, creating a substantial canvas for an array of toppings. 

These are baked in deep-dish pizza pans or cast iron skillets, resulting in a satisfying contrast between the soft interior and the crunchy exterior. Various regional variations, like Detroit-style pizza, have emerged, each with its own unique crust recipes and topping combinations, making pan pizza a beloved choice for those seeking a hearty and indulgent pizza experience.

What are the ingredients of pan pizza dough?

The ingredients for pan pizza dough are fairly standard and include the following:

  1. Bread Flour: This is the primary dry ingredient that forms the base of the dough. 
  2. Yeast: used to leaven the dough, causing it to rise and become light and airy. You can use either active dry yeast or instant yeast.
  3. Water: Water is necessary to hydrate the flour and activate the yeast. The temperature of the water is crucial; it should be warm (typically around 105°F to 110°F or 40°C to 43°C) to activate the yeast properly.
  4. Sugar: A small amount of sugar is often added to feed the yeast and promote fermentation. Sugar also contributes to the crust’s browning during baking.
  5. Salt: Salt enhances the flavor of the dough and regulates yeast activity. It’s important for overall dough flavor.
  6. Olive Oil: Olive oil adds moisture and richness to the dough, contributing to its flavor and texture. It also helps in forming a crispy crust.
Pan Pizza dough

Ingredients for our delicious Homemade Pan Pizza

  • Pizza dough (we make our own)
  • Ikea Meatballs
  • Ikea Gravy sachet
  • Ikea Lingonberry Jam
  • Potatoes (I know… you can use cheese if can’t help it…)

And you’ll need ideally a cast iron skillet but, hey! we’ve used a normal one and it’s fine ;), a spatula, and a bowl.

IKEA Meatball Pan Pizza Recipe:

Step 1 – Make the dough

Pretty obvious step, I know. Make it yourself the night before or grab it from the supermarket, your choice. It has to be at room temperature a few hours before cooking. Like ours here in a large mixing bowl covered in plastic wrap.

You can see our instructions here for manual dough making. If you have a stand mixer then congrats, it makes it soo much easier with the dough hook.

Pizza dough ready to use

Step 2 – Boil potatoes

I know right… Are you crazy? – You’re thinking.

No, I am not. Of course that cheese would be absolutely great as a topping but we’ve chosen the mash and in a very original way as you’ll see.

So if you are adventurous as we are, basically make a bit of mash potato to your liking. We add butter, salt and pepper and set aside.

Step 3 – Cook meatballs

Yes, at the same time when making the mash, just bake the meatballs as per instructions. They need to be cooked when they go on top of the pizza.

If you have an airfryer, don’t hesitate to use it!

Ikea Meatballs

Step 4 – The Gravy

Yes, easy-peasy, just make it as indicated with a bit of cream or simply water. If you use the exact amounts it might be a bit too runny. In that case, add a teaspoon of corn flour to thicken it. 

Ikea gravy

Stir really well to avoid lumps. That’ll be our pizza sauce.

Step 5 – Let’s cook the pan pizza!

So whether you have your cast iron pan or, like us, a regular one, put it in your stovetop and let it heat a lot, like A LOT… it needs to be really hot.

Place the dough in the pan

Place the dough in the pan and start adding the toppings in this order:

Pizza toppings

First pour the gravy (as much as you want), then the grated “non-cheese” mash (we use this awesome gadget), then the meatballs (we cut them in half).

Cooking pan pizza

Keep checking and make sure the base is cooked and then put the pan in the oven (which is really high temperature) in the higher tray so the grill is really close. Cook there for 2 or 3 minutes until you can see it golden.

Step 6 – The Jam

Once cooked add tablespoons of lingonberry jam and decorate. Yummy! Get that slice! There won’t be any leftovers, sorry.

Lingonberry jam

Now, be creative and use sausage instead of meatballs, add olives, red pepper flakes, bacon mushrooms or even the controversial pineapple! Come on! We are creators and we create even our pizzas!

You can see our Youtube video here.


What is difference between pan pizza and normal pizza?

The primary difference between pan pizza and normal (also known as hand-tossed or traditional) pizza lies in the characteristics of the crust. 

Here are the key distinctions:

CharacteristicPan PizzaNormal Pizza
Crust ThicknessThick and doughy, often pressed into a deep panThinner in the center, slightly thicker towards the edges
TextureCrispy and golden-brown exterior, soft and fluffy interiorThin and crisp throughout
Baking MethodBaked in deep-dish pizza pans or cast-iron skilletsBaked directly on a pizza stone or oven rack
ToppingsCan accommodate a generous amount of toppings due to the thick crustToppings tend to have a more balanced ratio with the crust
Regional VariationsVariations like Detroit-style pizza with a square shape and crispy cheese edgesDifferent regional styles, including New York-style and Neapolitan

Where did pan pizza originate? 

Pan pizza, including Detroit-style pizza, originated in Detroit, Michigan, in the United States. It gained popularity in the mid-20th century, possibly starting at a pizzeria called Buddy’s Rendezvous (later Buddy’s Pizza) in Detroit. 

It is known for its square shape, thick and airy crust, crispy cheese edges, and baking in rectangular pans. Its distinctive style has made it a beloved pizza variation in the Detroit area and beyond, with unique features like the caramelized cheese edges setting it apart from other pizza styles.

How big is pan pizza? 

That’s a great question but there is no one answer, lol. The size of a pan pizza can vary depending on the pizzeria or the specific recipe being used. However, pan pizzas are often baked in pans that range in size from 8 inches to 16 inches or even larger. The size you choose can determine the number of servings and the thickness of the crust.

Here are some common pan pizza sizes and their approximate number of servings:

  1. Small Pan Pizza: Typically around 8 to 10 inches in diameter, a small pan pizza serves 1 to 2 people.
  2. Medium Pan Pizza: With a diameter of about 12 inches, a medium pan pizza serves 2 to 3 people.
  3. Large Pan Pizza: A large pan pizza can measure around 14 to 16 inches in diameter and serves 3 to 4 people.
  4. Extra-Large or Family-Sized Pan Pizza: Some pizzerias offer even larger pan pizzas, which can be 18 inches or more in diameter and serve 4 to 6 or more people.

Keep in mind that these serving estimates are approximate and can vary based on personal appetite and the number of toppings added to the pizza. 

The one we have made is literally good for one person if that is a main meal or for two people to share.

What are pizza meatballs made of? 

Pizza meatballs, also known as meatball subs or meatball sandwiches when used in pizza-inspired dishes, are typically made from a blend of ground meats. These meats are combined with breadcrumbs, eggs, onions, and seasonings like garlic, oregano, and basil to create flavorful and tender meatballs. They may also include grated Parmesan cheese for added savory richness. They are sometimes infused with tomato sauce and feature melted mozzarella cheese, mirroring the classic flavors of a pizza, and can be served in various creative forms, offering a delectable fusion of pizza and meatball goodness.

But no, we are not making the typical pizza meatballs here, remember? We are creative and we are using IKEA meatballs especifically. And not only that but the rest of exactly same ingredients that the Swedish brand uses to sell their mega famous dish!

What are Ikea Meatballs made of?

IKEA’s classic Swedish meatballs are made from a mixture of ground meats, typically beef and pork, along with a combination of ingredients to season and bind the meat.

Here is a general breakdown of the ingredients used in IKEA meatballs:

  1. Ground Meat: A combination of ground beef and ground pork is commonly used to give the meatballs a rich and savory flavor.
  2. Breadcrumbs: Breadcrumbs are added to the meat mixture as a binder and to help maintain the shape of the meatballs. They also contribute to the desired texture.
  3. Onions: Finely chopped onions are typically sautéed until soft and then mixed into the meatball mixture. They add flavor and moisture to the meatballs.
  4. Eggs: Eggs are used as a binding agent, helping to hold the meatballs together during cooking.
  5. Milk: Milk is often added to the mixture to keep the meatballs moist and tender.
  6. Seasonings: Various seasonings are used to enhance the flavor of the meatballs. These can include salt, white pepper, and sometimes spices like allspice or nutmeg, which are common in Swedish cuisine.
  7. Gravy or Cream Sauce: IKEA meatballs are typically served with a creamy gravy or sauce made from ingredients like beef broth, cream, and seasoning.

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