Tender and juicy meatballs in a homemade marinara loaded into a soft sub roll and then toasted with cheese. It is hearty and messy comfort food at its finest. Ready in 10 minutes, these Meatball Subs are a great way to use up leftover meatballs.
If you have ever wanted to make your own version of a Subway Meatball Sub, then this is how. You take some leftover meatballs (or you can make them fresh for this recipe), smother them in sauce and then toast with cheese and load with your favourite toppings.
Why you will love it
- Subway alternative - This meatball sub recipe is an alternative to heading to your local Subway sandwich shop, and it's cheaper to make your own.
- Total comfort food - I am not sure there is anything more comforting that juicy meatballs, in bread, with cheese. Homemade meatball subs are total feel-good food.
- Uses up leftovers - This meatball sandwich is a great way to use up leftover meatballs so that nothing goes to waste.
- Adaptable - Easy to change to suit your tastes. More on that below.
Ingredients and substitutions
- Bread - We used soft sub rolls, as we wanted it to be as close to a Subway Meatball Sub as possible. However, if you want something with a bit more texture then you could use a baguette which would have more crunch.
- Meatballs - The key to a good meatball sub is the meatballs. Quality is important here, but you have a few options. You can either make your own, or use store bought. But for this recipe, they need to be cooked first. Why not use leftovers from our Slow Cooker Meatballs or Air Fryer Meatballs?
- Marinara - This is really where all the flavour comes from. If you have used leftovers from our slow cooker meatballs, then that will already have sauce with it. If you just have plain leftover meatballs, then you will need some Marinara to go on it. Homemade is always best, but you could use a good quality store bought sauce if you prefer.
- Cheese - Anything goes here, but it needs to be something that melts well. We used gouda, but mozzarella or cheddar would work.
A full ingredients list with measurements is in the recipe card below.
How to make meatball subs - Step by step
Prep: Preheat your oven to 190°C/375°F/Gas 5.
One: Place the meatballs and marinara in a pan. Heat for 5 minutes, until the meatballs are heated through.
Two: Slice the sub rolls lengthways and fill with the meatballs.
Three: Add the cheese slices.
Four: Bake for 5 minutes, or until the bread is toasted and the cheese has melted.
These is a fairly simple recipe, so there aren't too many ways that you can change it up. We have mentioned above about the different bread you can use and you can either make your own meatballs or use store bought. Why not go for a lighter option and use Turkey Meatballs?
When it comes to the marinara, that is where all the flavour comes from. But if you wanted something a little different, then you could use our Homemade BBQ Sauce.
If you want to make these meatball subs a little more indulgent, then brush the tops of the bread with some melted garlic butter before they go in the oven.
What to serve with Meatball Subs
There are so many options when it comes to sides for meatball subs. It is a big and hearty meal on its own, but if you wanted to cut them up smaller and serve them with some sides then we have you covered.
We haven't even spoken about what to top the meatball subs themselves with. Well, like your local sandwich shop, almost anything goes. We added some fresh basil and some sliced pickles and chillies.
But you could add some sliced bell peppers and lettuce for crunch, or our Roasted Red Peppers for extra flavour. Why not go for the full Subway experience and add some of our homemade Southwest Sauce?
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes, if you follow our Slow Cooker Meatballs recipe for the actual meatballs, then you can follow the rest of the recipe as below.
These meatball subs are best eaten straight away, as they use leftover meatballs. However, if you make them fresh you could wrap them up and keep them in the fridge until the next day, but the bread would be a little soggy.
As long as you use gluten free meatballs and bread, and make sure that there is no cross contamination, then these can be gluten free.
• Take this sub sandwich to the next level by brushing the tops of the bread with melted garlic butter before they go in the oven.
• If you don't like marinara, you can swap it for BBQ sauce, or a mixture of the two.
• Feel free to add all your favourite sandwich fillings like lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers and peppers.
• These are best eaten fresh, so only make as many as you need.
More sandwich recipes
Homemade Meatball Sub
- 2 Sub rolls
- 10 Meatballs
- 1 portion marinara
- 3 slice Gouda cheese - cut in half
- Preheat your oven to 190°C/375°F/Gas 5.
- Place the meatballs and marinara in a pan. Heat for 5 minutes, until the meatballs are heated through.10 Meatballs, 1 portion marinara
- Slice the sub rolls lengthways and fill with the meatballs.2 Sub rolls
- Add the cheese slices.3 slice Gouda cheese
- Bake for 5 minutes, or until the bread is toasted and the cheese has melted.
- Take this sub sandwich to the next level by brushing the tops of the bread with melted garlic butter before they go in the oven.
- If you don't like marinara, you can swap it for BBQ sauce, or a mixture of the two.
- Feel free to add all your favourite sandwich fillings like lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers and peppers.
- These are best eaten fresh, so only make as many as you need.