With a few tips, you can easily make the Best Meatball Subs right at home! From the toasted bun infused with garlic to the tender meatballs to just the right amount of cheese, these meatball subs are guaranteed to satisfy.
The Best Meatball Sub
In my opinion, there are decent Meatball Subs and there are knock-it-out-of-the-park Meatball Subs.
And I am sharing with you how to make the BEST Meatball Sub.
But what really makes this recipe the best, is the way the Meatball Sub is assembled. Served on a toasted bun that has been infused with garlic and layered with sliced provolone cheese, this Meatball Sub has texture, flavor, and the bun does NOT get soggy.
This Meatball Sub truly is perfection.
Notes on Ingredients
The difference between a good meatball sub and a great meatball sub is all in the details. With minimal ingredients needed to make a meatball sub sandwich, it is essential to choose your ingredients wisely.
- Homemade Meatballs: Yes, you can use any frozen or store-bought meatballs you like for meatball subs, but for the BEST meatball sub, I strongly suggest homemade meatballs, as the flavor is superior. I love my Baked Italian Meatballs for a meatball sub, but you can use Instant Pot Meatballs, Lentil Meatballs, or Chicken Meatballs.
- Spaghetti Sauce: You want to be sure you use a really good quality store-bought or homemade spaghetti sauce that is well flavored.
- Hoagie Buns: You want a thick bun that has room for 3-4 meatballs per sub. This is often referred to as a sub rolls or a hoagie bun. Hot dog buns can be used in a pinch, but you may need to cut your meatballs for them to fit onto your bun.
- Provolone Cheese: Thinly sliced provolone is best so that the cheese melts sufficiently to fully cover the bun and meatballs.
- Seasoned Olive Oil: Instead of just brushing the buns with olive oil before toasting, add garlic and oregano to the oil for an added layer of flavor to these meatball sandwiches.
How to make Meatball Subs
Step One: Prepare Meatballs
- Mix together the prepared meatballs with just enough spaghetti sauce to coat.
- Gently heat the meatballs and sauce in the stove or microwave to just warm through.
Step Two: Toast Buns
- Mix together the olive oil and seasonings.
- Brush the oil on the inside of the sub rolls, place them on a baking sheet, and toast the buns until just golden in the oven.
Step Three: Assemble Meatball Sub
- Place provolone cheese slices on bun, overlapping to cover surface of the bun. This layer of cheese will help the meatballs and sauce to not soak through the bun, making the meatball sub soggy.
- Place 3-4 meatballs on the bun. How many meatballs you need will depend on how large your meatballs are and the size of your bun.
- Top the meatballs with additional slices of provolone cheese to cover.
- Return to oven to bake for 5 minutes or until cheese is melted.
Meatball Subs need to be served immediately after preparing for best results. And the following sides pair beautifully with these subs.
- Easy Baked Fries
- Italian Pasta Salad
- Air Fryer Potatoes
- Baked Sweet Potato Fries
- Copycat Panera Greek Salad
- Broccoli Salad
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- Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
- Gently mix together the prepared meatballs with the spaghetti sauce in a small saucepan or microwave-safe dish. Heat the meatballs over low heat in a saucepan on the stove or in 1-minute intervals in a heat-safe dish in the microwave until just warmed through.
- Mix together the olive oil with garlic and oregano and brush on the opened sides of the buns.
- Place the buns onto a baking sheet and toast for 5 minutes, or until just browned.
- Remove the buns from the oven and place 2 slices of provolone cheese on each bun, slightly overlapping to cover the surface of the bun. Top with 3 large (or 4 smaller) meatballs and an additional slice of cheese to cover the meatballs.
- Return to oven and bake for 5-7 minutes or until cheese is melted.
- Close sandwich and serve meatball subs immediately.