Easy Italian Meatball Sub Recipe

Easy, Italian Meatball Sub Sandwich recipe made from homemade meatballs, delicious marinara sauce, served toasted with extra cheese! The perfect weeknight dinner.

Easy, Italian Meatball Sub recipe made from homemade meatballs, delicious marinara sauce, served toasted with extra cheese! The perfect weeknight dinner.

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When it comes to easy dinners, this Meatball Sub recipe tops the charts.

I use my favorite turkey meatball recipe, making them a little larger than normal, and simmering them in a flavorful marinara sauce. 

I put the meatballs in a crockpot or slow cooker with sauce and turn on low until I’m ready to assemble them. This adds extra flavor to the meatballs, and makes dinnertime a snap.

Making several batches of meatballs ahead of time and freezing them is my favorite Sunday activity. We’ll serve some in this Spaghettio’s and Meatballs recipe, and also dish them out using this Cocktail Meatball recipe.

Ready to start?

How to Make Meatball Subs

Easy, Italian Meatball Sub recipe made from homemade meatballs, delicious marinara sauce, served toasted with extra cheese! The perfect weeknight dinner.

Start by cooking your meatballs. This can be done in the morning, or do it days/weeks in advance and freeze them until ready to use.

For the meatballs, you can use ground beef or ground turkey. I usually opt for the ground turkey, but either is delicious in this basic recipe.

In a large bowl, mix the ground turkey with egg, bread crumbs, garlic, salt and pepper, and milk. Use your hands!

Shape meat into bite size balls (smaller than a golf ball). 

Heat a large skillet with 1 Tbsp oil. Cook in single layer, turning frequently until completely cooked. 

OR 

For an easier clean up, place a sheet of foil on a baking sheet. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Place meatballs onto baking sheet and bake for 20-25 minutes (no need to flip).

Remove from oven and use immediately in crockpot, or freeze for later use.

For the meatball sub recipe, place meatballs in slow cooker. Top with tomato sauce, garlic salt, and italian seasoning. Cover and cook on low for 6 hours.

When ready to serve, turn oven to broil. Place about 4-5 meatballs on each sub roll, with sauce. Add parmesan cheese and mozzarella cheese.

PRO TIP: Adding provolone cheese slices to the bun BEFORE adding meatballs gives these hoagies an extra cheesy flavor!

Bake until golden brown and cheese is melted, about 5 minutes. ENJOY.

Easy, Italian Meatball Sub recipe made from homemade meatballs, delicious marinara sauce, served toasted with extra cheese! The perfect weeknight dinner.

Quick Steps for making Meatball Subs

  • Make Meatballs. Either use freshly made or already prepared, frozen meatballs.
  • Add sauce. Simmer all day in crockpot or on stove top in 15 minutes.
  • Prepare the bun. Choose a hoagie roll, or french roll, slice in half and add meatballs, sauce, and cheese.
  • Broil. 5 minutes is all you need to toast your meatball subs.
  • Eat. Dig in to this easy, versatile dinner!

Can you freeze Meatballs

Absolutely. You can freeze them cooked or raw.

For raw meatballs, place on a foil lined baking sheet. Flash freeze for 30 minutes. Remove from sheet and slide into a ziploc freezer bag. 

Use in your favorite meatball recipe within 3 months.

For cooked meatballs, allow to cool completely after cooking. Place in ziploc freezer bag.

You can add your frozen meatballs to the crockpot for today’s meatball sub recipe. No need to thaw first!

Easy, Italian Meatball Sub recipe made from homemade meatballs, delicious marinara sauce, served toasted with extra cheese! The perfect weeknight dinner.

PRO TIP: Meatball Subs are great for a crowd. You can easily double or triple the batch of meatballs. Line up your hoagies on a cookie sheet, fill, and broil. Serve and enjoy!

What to serve with Meatball Subs

Looking for the perfect side dish for your meatball subs?

This simple Italian Salad with homemade Italian Dressing is our favorite weeknight side dish. It’s the perfect green salad.

Treat your dinner guests or potluck friends and family to an Easy Taffy Apple Salad recipe. Made with apples, pineapple, whipped cream, peanuts & more. 

Cheesy Hashbrown Casserole (or Funeral Potatoes). It doesn’t get better than these!

Ritz Cracker Mac and Cheese is made with two kinds of cheese and is topped with buttery Ritz crackers for a creamy, rich side or main dish that the whole family will love.

More meatball recipes

Easy, Italian Meatball Sub recipe made from homemade meatballs, delicious marinara sauce, served toasted with extra cheese! The perfect weeknight dinner.

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Yield: 6 servings

Meatball Sub

Meatball Sub
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 6 hours 30 minutes
Total Time 6 hours 45 minutes

Easy, Italian Meatball Sub recipe made from homemade meatballs, delicious marinara sauce, served toasted with extra cheese! The perfect weeknight dinner.

Ingredients

For the meatballs

  • 1 lb ground turkey (or ground beef)
  • 1 egg
  • ¾ cup plain bread crumbs
  • garlic salt
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 Tbsp milk

For the sauce

  • 2 cans (15oz) tomato sauce
  • 2 Tbsp Italian seasoning
  • 1 1/2 tsp garlic salt

For the subs

  • 1 cup parmesan cheese, grated
  • 2 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
  • 6 Hoagie buns

Instructions

  1. Mix ground turkey (or beef) with egg, bread crumbs, garlic, salt, pepper and milk in large bowl. Shape into small bite size balls. Cook in hot skillet, turning, until completely cooked. At this point you can let them cool, and freeze them. Or, use them immediately.
  2. Put your meatballs in a crockpot set on low with the tomato sauce, garlic salt, and Italian seasoning. Cook for 4-6 hours.
  3. When ready to serve, set oven to broil. Place about 5 meatballs on each hoagie, with sauce, parmesan and mozzarella cheese. Broil until cheese turns golden brown, about 5 minutes. Enjoy!

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

6

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving:Calories: 777 Total Fat: 32g Saturated Fat: 12g Trans Fat: 0g Unsaturated Fat: 16g Cholesterol: 155mg Sodium: 2583mg Carbohydrates: 76g Fiber: 7g Sugar: 11g Protein: 47g
*Nutrition facts are an estimate and not guaranteed to be accurate. Please see a registered dietitian for special diet advice.

Recipe originally published April 2011, photos updated, April 2019

**There may be affiliate links in this post! By clicking on them, or purchasing recommended items I may receive a small compensation. However, I only recommend products I love! Thank you for supporting Shugary Sweets! See my disclosure policy for more info**

13 comments on “Easy Italian Meatball Sub Recipe”

  1. Anonymous

    Is it an exploding meatball sub? If you don’t watch that show, then nevermind.

    -jeff

  2. Jeff, I have no idea what show you are referring to? Please explain 🙂 Can’t wait to see you next week!

  3. How I Met Your Mother. Great show! This weeks episode was about an exploding meatball sub.

  4. BTW, that was Jeff. I changed my name to Tom in case you don’t remember for security reasons.

  5. Lovely meal option, I’m gonna try this out real soon!

  6. Hi Aimee,
    Thank you so much for bringing your wonderful Meatball Sub’s to share with us at Full Plate Thursday, we look forward to seeing you next week!

  7. That meatball sub looks so yummy and I love that you prep the meatballs ahead of time. I hadn’t even noticed that it wasn’t a hoagie roll until your pointed it out 🙂

  8. These look delicious! Can you believe I’ve never made meatballs? I know my hubby would love them (I would too) and I keep considering it but just haven’t done it.

    Your recipe looks super easy and delicious…maybe this will get me to do it finally! 🙂

  9. Cheryl S

    My husband loves this recipe!! it’s on a regular rotation

  10. This quickly became a favorite at my house! So delish!

  11. Rachael Yerkes

    Such an awesome sandwich!

  12. Taylor

    This is one of my go-to weeknight dinners! So easy and delicious!

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