Frozen Foods You Should Be Buying At IKEA

Shopping at IKEA really puts you through the ringer. You have to navigate the enormous parking lot, then wind your way through the cleverly-designed store aisles that seem to intentionally mis-direct you, meaning that you wind up in kitchenware when all you wanted was a cheap set of twin bed sheets for your guest bedroom. But did you know that among all of the household goods and tchotchkes, there are actually a ton of frozen foods you should be buying at IKEA?

The Swedish retail giant has a surprisingly tasty selection of foods. You can pick up a jar of their iconic lingonberry jam, or some oat biscuits to eat at snack time with a cup of tea. But where they really shine is in the freezer section.

Here, you'll find a bunch of your favorites from the IKEA food court, from their famous Swedish meatballs (frozen for your convenience), to sweet dessert items you can keep on hand for when you have a craving but don't want to bake.

Not sure what to fill your cart with? These are the best frozen foods at IKEA.

IKEA's KÖTTBULLAR Frozen Meatballs

There's probably no item from IKEA's food court more legendary than their classic Swedish meatballs. Sure, they've faced their share of scandal, from claims that in general, Swedish meatballs actually hail from Turkey. And there were more sinister incidents, like when IKEA, along with other European food purveyors, had to recall their meatballs in Europe because they were found to contain horse meat. Luckily, the meatballs across the pond in the USA were not affected by the recall, and these days, we spend most of our shopping trips at IKEA planning out our Swedish meatball feast in the food court.

Well, if you don't feel like braving the madness of the Swedish home goods retailers simply to get your lunch, there's good news. The next time you head to the store to pick up a MALM dresser or some seasonal decor for your living room, you can also stop by the food section and pick up a few packages of IKEA frozen meatballs. They're simply made with meat, onion, breadcrumbs, egg, water, salt, and pepper, so they taste homemade even though they actually come frozen. Pair with a savory, creamy gravy, some mashed potatoes, and a dollop of IKEA's lingonberry jam for the authentic experience.

IKEA's SJÖRAPPORT Salmon balls

If the horse meat scandal freaked you out too much, there's still hope for you tucked into the IKEA freezer section.

Pescatarians (or those who just want something a little bit different for dinner) can buy salmon balls at IKEA. They're a similar shape and size as IKEA's famous traditional Swedish meatballs, but they're made with salmon and cod.

If you're worried about sustainability, fear not. IKEA's salmon balls meet the Aquaculture Stewardship Council's global standards for farmed seafood, and they also meet the Marine Stewardship Council's global standards for sustainability.

If you're trying to capture the classic flavors of that IKEA Swedish meatball meal, you can serve these salmon balls with white, creamy gravy, mashed potatoes, and tart-sweet lingonberry jam. But if you're looking for something a little different, IKEA's serving suggestions include pairing the salmon balls with tomato and spinach ragout or a lemon and dill butter sauce.

IKEA's SJÖRAPPORT Peeled shrimp

Some people prefer buying shrimp that's still in its shells, so the shells can be used to make flavorful seafood stock. But does anyone really have the time to shell (and de-vein, yuck) their shrimp when they just want to throw together a quick dinner? Maybe the Martha Stewart's of the world, but for the rest of us, we're looking for something a little easier.

That's why we always reach for a bag of IKEA's peeled frozen shrimp when we go shopping at the mega retailer.

According to IKEA, their cold-water shrimp is caught in the wild from sustainable fisheries in the Northeast and Northwest Atlantic, and their shrimp also meets the Marine Stewardship Council's sustainability standards, so you can feel good about what you're eating, and don't have to worry about the ramifications of eating, for instance, farmed shrimp from Thailand, which has been linked to slave labor.

The shrimp comes pre-cooked, so all you need to do once you bring it home is heat it up and add it to your recipe before chowing down.


Whether you're vegetarian, practicing meatless mondays, or simply want to pack more veggies into your meals, IKEA's got a meal solution for you. They now sell frozen veggie balls that are 100 percent vegan, so everyone in the family can enjoy them. They're also free of gluten, soy, and nuts, making them one of the more allergy-friendly vegetarian meals we've seen.

The veggie balls are made with chunks of hearty chickpeas, green peas, carrots, bell peppers, corn, and kale. While they don't taste like a traditional Swedish meatball, they're still a great substitute, and can satisfy your Swedish meatball cravings when paired with mashed potatoes and creamy white gravy.

You could also pair them with marinara sauce to make spaghetti and "meat"balls, and IKEA also says you can eat them cold, sliced up, and served in a sandwich.

IKEA also serves their veggie balls in the food court, so if you're skeptical, you can give them a try there before committing to bringing a whole bag home.

IKEA's GRÖNSAKSKAKA Vegetable medallion

When we're stocking our freezer, we like to make sure it's filled with items that are versatile. That's why we're so fond of IKEA's vegetable medallions. We always pick some up after our latest round of furniture shopping.

The medallions have a creamy, cheesy potato base, and are loaded with broccoli, leek, and onions. You can eat them as a vegetarian entree (try them as a substitute for your usual veggie burger), but they work equally well as a hearty side dish served alongside your favorite meaty entree. You can even cook a few up in the morning to have with your eggs and bacon — think of them as a super-fancy hashbrown alternative.

If you want to keep your entire meal IKEA-based, the retailer recommends serving these veggie patties with their marinated salmon or salmon fillet, topped with their mustard and basil sauce.

With a name like GRÖNSAKSKAKA, it's gotta be good!

IKEA's ALMONDY Almond cake

We love dessert, but we're not always up for baking — especially if we need to make something gluten-free that won't come out with the texture of a hockey puck. That's one of the reasons why we always keep a couple of IKEA's Almondy cakes in our freezer — we can just thaw and serve.

The cake itself has a nutty almond base. It's layered and frosted with a sweet golden cream, and is topped with toasted almond flakes for crunch. The taste is similar to the Scandinavian Tosca cake, which is made with almonds and has a sweet almond topping. IKEA's version is way easier to prepare — you don't even have to turn on your oven.

You can serve the cake for dessert, or start practicing Fika, the Swedish coffee break. The bitterness of a cup of coffee will help balance the sweetness of the cake, while the nuttiness of your coffee beans and of the almonds play in perfect harmony.

IKEA's RÖSTI Potato fritters

We're always looking for new ways to eat potatoes. Stopping through the drive-thru to get our hands on some crispy fast food French fries, finding tasty new ways to cook potatoes — it's basically a passion.

If you feel the same, then you should try IKEA's RÖSTI potato fritters.

Rösti potatoes are traditionally a Swiss dish — in fact, some consider it to be the national dish of Switzerland. But you don't have to go to Switzerland to get a taste for these crispy potato pancakes, you can just pick up a box at your favorite Swedish retailer.

While some traditional rösti potatoes require you to parboil your spuds and chill them overnight, IKEA's just need to be heated up before you eat them. Even better? You don't have to deal with that pesky splattering oil. You can serve your rösti with breakfast, as a hash brown alternative, or as a side dish. IKEA recommends eating them with pork and lingonberry jam, though you could also go the latke route and serve with sour cream and applesauce.

IKEA's PAJ OST Cheese pie

Easy appetizers are something we're always looking for, so we can feed last-minute party guests, spend more time with our guests than stuck in the kitchen, and, if we're being honest, so we have something yummy to snack on when we're having solo movie nights.

IKEA's food section has been an unexpected boon to our appetizer purchasing, whether we're picking up a jar of lingonberry jam to add to a cheese plate, scoring some oat biscuits for tea time, or stocking our freezer with a few boxes of the chain's Paj Ost cheese pies.

These savory little morsels feature a butter pastry crust that's filled with cheddar cheese and leeks. To serve, just heat them up (we recommend the toaster oven or oven — they don't crisp up as nicely in the microwave). You can pair them with a light green salad and a crisp glass of white wine for an easy, elegant lunch, or set them on a platter and serve with a bottle of bubbly at your next party.


IKEA's waffles aren't your average EGGO. They're shaped like hearts, cook up to be crispy on the outside and chewy-tender inside, and can be used to make both sweet and savory snacks.

You can treat them like a traditional breakfast waffle, toasting them and topping with butter and syrup (or berries and whipped cream if you want to feel fancy). But you can also put a savory spin on the waffles to make an unexpected hors d'oeuvre. Pair your waffles with cured salmon, caviar, shrimp, and sour cream with dill, or make kid-friendly open-faced ham and cheese waffle sandwiches.

Waffles are a popular food in Sweden, where they've been enjoyed since the 1600s. There's even a holiday called Våffeldagen, or Waffle Day, which takes place on March 25, when everyone celebrates by eating waffles. Swedish waffles usually come in a heart shape, and because they aren't made with yeast, they tend to be thinner than big Belgian waffles.

According to customer reviews, IKEA's waffles seem to be a pretty authentic version of the Swedish classic, and are definitely worth the room in your freezer.


Is there any IKEA meal more classic than a plate of Swedish meatballs, mashed potatoes, gravy, and lingonberry jam from the food court? It's a spread we spend a lot of time dreaming about, but we don't always feel like navigating the winding aisles of IKEA (or the parking lot, for that reason) just to satisfy our craving at the food court.

Luckily, thanks to IKEA's food section, you can buy pretty much all of the ingredients for the meal in the freezer case, so you can have them on hand at home for when those unexpected cravings strike. Yes, even the mashed potatoes!

IKEA's frozen mashed potatoes don't require any pesky peeling, cubing, boiling, or even mashing. They come frozen, and all you need to do before serving is heat them up in a saucepan with a little water or milk, or you can bake them in the oven so they get a little crispy around the edges. Those skeptical of mashed potatoes not made from scratch can rest easy after reading the reviews on IKEA's website — they've got 4.6 out of 5 stars.


Anyone with a skillet can make American-style pancakes at home, but crepes are another matter entirely. You need a crepe pan, a crepe spatula, and the patience to flip your crepes without tearing them.

Well, IKEA has an easier solution than all that. Their Pannkakor pancakes, which are sold in the freezer section, are actually more like European crepes than they are your typical thick American pancakes.

These thin crepes can be heated up and served in a number of ways. You could go savory, and serve them with ham and cheese (a French favorite), serve them with butter and syrup, American-style, or follow IKEA's suggestion and top them with strawberry jam and a dollop of whipped cream. If you really want to go over-the-top, you could even try layering them on top of each other — spreading pastry cream between each layer — to make a decadent crepe-cake. 

If you're curious about what these taste like, you might be surprised to hear that they're actually similar to a chain restaurant favorite. Several reviewers on IKEA's website said that Pannkakor reminded them of the Swedish pancakes at IHOP. They have great reviews (4.9 out of 5 stars from 414 customers) so if you're interested, they're worth giving a try.

IKEA's KAFFEREP Gooey chocolate cake

If you've got a sweet tooth and constantly crave something new for dessert or to eat with your afternoon cup of coffee, look no further than IKEA's Kafferep line of frozen baked goods. We're particularly fond of their Gooey Chocolate Cake.

You don't have to lug out your heavy stand mixer or worry about getting cocoa powder and sugar all over your countertops with this rich, decadent dessert. All you have to do before serving it is let it thaw for 30 minutes at room temperature (though IKEA also recommends adding a topping of strawberries and whipped cream).

This chocolate cake isn't light and fluffy like an American-style sponge cake. It's thin and gooey, with layer of chocolate cream on top. Reviewers say it's like a "delicious chocolate cake pie brownie combo," "a mix between the Lava cake and 'fondant au chocolat,'" and "the best gooey chocolate cake I've ever had." If it happens to crack when it thaws, no worries — you can just cover up any blemishes with some whipped cream (which can also help cut through the intense, but delicious,  flavor). 

If you're a chocolate lover, why not pick one up the next time you're at IKEA?

IKEA's KAFFEREP Cinnamon bun

Nothing hits the spot like an ooey, gooey cinnamon bun on a cold morning. But kneading the dough, waiting for it to rise, and clearing off your counter space so there's room to roll the dough out mean that usually, these fluffy treats are a special-occasion only item.

If you go to IKEA, though, that needn't be the case. That's because in the freezer section you can pick up a box of pre-made cinnamon buns, which are part of their Fika-celebrating KAFFEREP line. The buns are frozen, but the dough is raw. You can move them straight from their packaging to a baking sheet, then place them in the oven. The frozen buns are baked through after just 15 minutes.

The result? A warm pastry filled with buttery cinnamon sugar, topped with chunks of nib sugar, and made in less time than it takes to go through the checkout line at IKEA.

You get six buns per package. Bake them all at once, or cook one at a time so you can have a warm, fresh cinnamon bun whenever the craving strikes. They're delicious with tea and coffee, or you could even top the warm buns with some vanilla ice cream and serve them for dessert. Either way, they're one treat you'll want to keep on hand.

IKEA's KAFFEREP Cream cake with almond paste

IKEA's Cream cake with almond paste sounds simple, but in our opinion, it's a Swedish princess cake in disguise.

Princess cake is usually covered in a green marzipan coating that looks like fondant, but in IKEA's case, they've opted for a smooth pink marzipan coating instead. Beneath the layer of marzipan, you'll find a sponge cake that's layered with smooth vanilla custard and sweet raspberry jam.

The cake combines some very classic flavors, but don't be fooled by its seeming simplicity — a cake similar to this one baffled bakers on an episode of The Great British Baking Show, so before you think you can attempt to bake it yourself, you may as well just grab one from the freezer section of IKEA. Just thaw for 30 minutes and you'll have a sweet delicacy at your disposal.

IKEA recommends serving this cream cake with coffee for Fika. You can invite friends to celebrate with you, too — each package comes with four individually wrapped cakes.