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Meatball Subs | A marvelous sandwich filled with plump meatballs, marinara and melted Provalone

Easy Italian Meatball Subs

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Is it sad to admit that I’d never eaten Meatball Subs till I worked on this post? My boys love to order these when they’re at a sub shop, so I knew they were big fans. Now I am, too!

Easy Italian Meatball Subs on a white square plate on a checked napkin

Easy Italian Meatball Subs

I have always loved meatballs, so it was no surprise when I fell hard for this meatball sandwich topped with gooey, melted Provolone cheese. The large meatballs flavored with Italian seasonings were tasty on their own, but they truly shined served on a brioche bun with a simple marinara and cheese. I’d made Mozzarella Stuffed Meatballs, but

Meatball Subs on a white plate with a bowl of buns in the background

Tips for Making Meatloaf Subs

Meatball subs are a super easy dinner recipe that your family will request again and again. Here are a few tips for making them.

  • For a lighter version, I served myself a mini version of these easy Italian meatball subs on small whole wheat rolls.
  • For the rest of the family, I look for those lobster roll brioche buns that are sliced from the top down instead of horizontally. But traditional hot dog buns work fine, too.
  • Mozzarella would be a delicious topper, as would any melty cheese you love.  Feel free to put your cheese on first and let the hot meatballs do the melting for you.
  • You could definitely use ground dark meat chicken or a meatloaf mix (beef, pork and veal) to make your meatballs. Or even purchase already made meatballs found in the frozen foods section of your market, though they may be smaller. Just pile on more!
  • You can use jarred marinara or homemade. If I make marinara, I like to make a double batch and freeze half for later.
  • Leftover spaghetti sauce would also work in a pinch instead of marinara.

I’m going to have to make these meatball sandwiches again when Nick is home for spring break. And we’ll invite big brother, Tom, over to enjoy them, too. I have a feeling they’ll love them as much as Bill and I did. And if you’re a fan of meatballs, scroll down to see all the terrific meatball recipes below.

Meatball Sandwich on a white plate with gooey cheese topping

More Beef Recipes You’ll Love:

Our family loves beef! Though I may make more chicken recipes, burgers in the summer and beef tenderloin or prime rib for the holidays will always put smiles on my family members’ faces!

Check out this Easy Mongolian Beef from Spend with Pennies. These Instant Pot French Dip Sandwiches will also thrill your family, or for company, try these Flank Steak Roulades with Spinach, Mushrooms and Provolone. This Pot Roast with Mushrooms, Tomatoes and Red Wine is another winner!

Easy Italian Meatball Subs on a white square plate on a checked napkin

Easy Italian Meatball Subs

Cheese topped meatball subs are a deli classic you can make at home!

Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Yield 8 servings



  • 1 1/2 pounds ground chuck
  • 3/4 cup fresh bread crumbs
  • 2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons chopped parsley
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan
  • 2 eggs, whisked slightly
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

For Sandwiches:

  • 8 sub rolls or hot dog buns
  • 2 cups marinara sauce
  • 8 slices Provolone cheese


  1. Preheat oven to 350º. Line baking sheet with foil and set aside (for easier clean up).
  2. In a mixing bowl, add all the meatball ingredients. Mix gently with your hands till well combined. Using a medium cookie scoop (about 2 tablespoons), scoop out rounds of meat and shape into balls. Place on baking sheet.
  3. Bake for about 20 minutes or till cooked through.
  4. Warm marinara sauce and toast buns if desired. Add the meatballs to the warmed sauce.
  5. To make subs, spoon 3 meatballs and sauce onto buns. Top with cheese and return to oven for a couple minutes to melt the cheese. Serve immediately.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:

1 sandwich

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 430Total Fat: 17gSaturated Fat: 8gTrans Fat: 0gCholesterol: 117mgSodium: 938mgCarbohydrates: 35gFiber: 3gSugar: 7gProtein: 35g


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43 comments on “Easy Italian Meatball Subs”

  1. Wow, I could have used this round-up back when my PIGskin Challenge was 17 weeks of meatballs! Your sandwich sounds great and I’m sure the boys will love it:@)

  2. Meatballs are one of my favorite things to eat. Olivia adores them now too. I add them to subs when Mr. J decides that he is all meatballed out. Somehow the sandwich version makes it better.

  3. I love that you enjoyed a mini version! Meatballs are a favorite of ours around here and we’d love your version of a meatball sandwich!

  4. You know I don’t think I have had one either but these look good!

  5. Nothing like a great meatball sandwich! Love that cheesy top!

  6. It’s sad to admit that I do eat meatball subs, something I consider a sin, calorie wise. I sometimes order one when I’m out as a real treat. Now, I can be good to myself and make my own. Rather that’s a good idea or bad one, I’m still happy to have your post today.

  7. I love making spaghetti and meatballs and having enough leftover for subs the next day.

  8. I’ve never had a meatball sub, but that melty cheese is luring me in!

  9. These look SO delicious, Liz! My husband orders meatballs a lot too and I can’t wait to make them at home for him now. Love that melty cheese!

  10. I would love to pick that up and sink my teeth right into it!!

  11. I’m not sure why I don’t make meatball subs more often. They’re SO good!

  12. After reading your recipe for meatballs, Liz, I would swear that you grew up with these meatball sandwiches just like I did. I’m sure that your Bill was just as happy to eat them as mine was . . . seriously heavy man-food. Maybe they are related! I like how you prepared yours for a lighter version! This was a fun theme!

  13. Hi Liz, these look delicious, my husband would go crazy if I prepared something like this for him. Love that you served these on a brioche bun.

  14. I am a fan of meatball subs too!. These look yummy. I could go for one right now.

  15. Your meatball subs look fantabulous! Better even than the ones I remember from childhood when visiting my mother in Cambridge, MA. (And that’s a big compliment!)

  16. Meatball subs are a regular when we have a big group of friends over. It’s so easy to just fill the crock pot with meatballs and let everyone build their own. Yours look fantastic!

  17. Can a meatball sandwich be sexy? Because those certainly look amazing! Yum!

  18. Meatball subs turn up here every once in a while if I have leftovers from a spaghetti and meatball dinner. They are always a huge hit.

  19. aghhh I so so so need to make meatball subs at home! I love ’em and these ones look amazinggg

  20. A mini for me and maxi for my guys! I’m a bit weary of my routine menu and this is the perfect choice for shaking things up a bit.

  21. This is also an amazing recipe for leftover meatballs. Plus, we can use your recipe both for meatballs with pasta as well as for the sandwiches:) Drooling over those photos Liz, excellent work!
    Have a great week ahead dear!

  22. Those meatballs are gigantic and look awesome!

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