Meatball Sub Recipe (with a Freezer Option)

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Enjoy a meatball sub any day of the week without heading to a sandwich shop or going to a lot of work. This easy meatball sub recipe with a freezer kit option is just the ticket.

Meatball Sub on a plate

Nine years ago when we moved back to California, we created a lot of changes in our life. My husband went from self-employed general contracting to working for a state university. We went from being homeowners to tenants. We went from watching occasional videos or cartoons through the rabbit ears on our television to dabbling in the world of cable TV.

And with the latter, my kids found “a show”. A show that was theirs, if you know what I mean. A show that they watched every episode with Papa with great delight.

We can credit my husband’s co-workers with the discovery of said show. Without them, I doubt my kids would have ever heard about The Regular Show. Especially in the early years.

Meatball sub recipe

In the early years, The Regular Show was anything but … kid appropriate. It was on the edge, if you made excuses that your kids were too little to get some of the innuendos.

Thankfully, with each new season and an increasing main stream popularity, The Regular Show cleaned up its act, something you rarely see in TV. And thankfully, we don’t own those early seasons. Ahem.

Recently, my kids’ show came to a close. And one very sweet and sensitive 12-year old cried on my shoulder, telling me about the show finale. When I ended up watching it a week later, I could see why. Since he was about four years old, Rigby, Mordecai, Pops, Benson, and Skips had been his buddies.

And if we’re honest, they guided his food choices over the years. A Grilled Cheese Deluxe (with the cheese on the outside) wouldn’t exist in our kitchen if it hadn’t been for his television friends who ate at Cheezers on a regular basis. Every-Meat Burritos (minus the kangaroo, thank you) and saucy chicken wings might never have crossed his palate if it had not been for the guys who worked at The Park.

The same can be said for The Meatball Sub.

Meatball sub recipe ingredients

  • Meatballs – I made my Bulk Batch Supreme Meatballs, so if you make these ahead and freeze them you can have a meatball sub anytime.
  • Marinara sauce – Store bought is fine, homemade Marinara Sauce is so worth the extra effort.
  • Garlic butter – This is a combination of parsley, butter, and garlic.
  • Submarine rolls – If you see these on sale, grab some extra and throw them in your freezer.
  • Cheese – Cheese is another ingredient I always love to stock up on and have in my freezer. We used classic mozzarella cheese.

How do you make a meatball sub?

  1. In a medium stockpot on the stove, heat the meatballs in the sauce until piping hot.
  2. In a small mixing bowl, combine the butter, garlic, and parsley. Spread this mixture on both cut sides of the rolls. Broil the rolls for 2 to 5 minutes until toasted. Do not walk away.
  3. Assemble the sandwiches by piling 5 meatballs and sauce on each roll and topping with cheese. Return to the broiler if you’d like to melt the cheese a bit more. Serve immediately.
  4. To make a kit for the freezer, package each of the components: sauce, meatballs, unbaked garlic rolls, and cheese. Chill thoroughly before storing in the freezer. Thaw components before proceeding with the directions to assemble.

Meatball Sub ingredients on a cutting board

What toppings do you put on a meatball sub?

We kept ours pretty traditional with marinara sauce and mozzarella cheese. But you could also add mushrooms, peppers, onions if you would like.

What is the best bread for meatball subs?

You want a bread that can hold up to all that meat, cheese, and sauce. We love using a submarine roll. It’s the perfect shape and hearty enough to hold up to all that goodness in this meatball sub recipe.

Can I freeze these meatball subs?

I’d never made Meatball Subs, either, before The Regular Show. Now they are a fun addition to my meal planning repertoire, particularly when I’ve got a freezer kit of Meatball Subs on ice.

I use my smaller, Bulk Batch Supreme Meatballs for the meaty filling and this simple Marinara Sauce. Package them in meal-size containers alongside a bag of mozzarella and Easy Make-Ahead Garlic Bread and you’ve got a freezer meal kit to please any adolescent TV junky.

Or just make these Meatball Subs fresh one night and wish you had filled the freezer with more.

How to make this good and cheap:

Here are some of the strategies you can use to make this recipe more economical:

How I make this recipe easy:

This recipe really couldn’t be easier than it is, but having the right kitchen tools can really make your time in the kitchen more enjoyable. Over time, I’ve honed my collection so that they are perfect for my needs.

Here are the tools that I use for this recipe:

If you prepare this recipe, be sure to take a picture and hashtag it #GOODCHEAPEATS. I can't wait to see what you cook up!

0 from 0 votes
Meatball Subs
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
15 mins
Total Time
25 mins
 
Enjoy Meatball Subs any day of the week without heading to a sandwich shop or going to a lot of work. This easy recipe with a freezer kit option is just the ticket.
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Italian
Keyword: meatball sub
Servings: 8 servings
Author: Jessica Fisher
Ingredients
  • 40 small meatballs about 1/2 batch Bulk Batch Supreme Meatballs
  • 2 cups marinara sauce
  • 1/2 cup butter softened
  • 1 teaspoon chopped garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried parsley
  • 8 submarine rolls or hearty hot dog buns
  • mozzarella cheese for topping optional
Instructions
  1. In a medium stockpot on the stove, heat the meatballs in the sauce until piping hot.
  2. In a small mixing bowl, combine the butter, garlic, and parsley. Spread this mixture on both cut sides of the rolls. Broil the rolls for 2 to 5 minutes until toasted. Do not walk away.
  3. Assemble the sandwiches by piling 5 meatballs and sauce on each roll and topping with cheese. Return to the broiler if you’d like to melt the cheese a bit more. Serve immediately.
  4. To make a kit for the freezer, package each of the components: sauce, meatballs, unbaked garlic rolls, and cheese. Chill thoroughly before storing in the freezer. Thaw components before proceeding with the directions to assemble.

Meatball Subs (with a Freezer Option) | Good Cheap Eats

About Jessica Fisher

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Comments

  1. Pat says

    Haha! Do not walk away. Is that the difference between beautiful piping hot rolls and charcoal briquettes? Been there done that!
    Seriously these would make a great quick meal paired with soup or salad. Hum I have some Supreme Meatballs, your Red Sauce and cheese. Winner–just need rolls!!

  2. Sandi says

    I was about to parrot Pat about just needing the rolls, but then I remembered the frozen baguettes that I’m thinking would work well enough. I’ll add this to the “pick from these meals” version of menu planning that I do. I rarely make these kinds of sandwiches but I do enjoy them; I ate these often when I worked at Subway during college. Red sauce isn’t his favorite (unless it is on pizza), but I’m sure he’d deal with it like this.

    • Pat says

      Sandi
      If you’ve read my hamburger buns woes on the pantry challengers page then you would share your baguettes with me!!
      I’ll be going to the bakery outlet to get me some rolls!!

    • My 16yo likes meatballs and mushroom gravy on bread, so maybe the kid would like it that way. Not the same recipe, obviously, but an alteration of just the sauce.

  3. Stacy says

    Can you clarify what you mean by unbaked garlic rolls?? I always do meatball subs the same week as we have spaghetti and meatballs to use up the leftovers. What I am sometimes short on are the rolls.

    • I just mean, don’t broil the rolls if you’re going to freeze them. Prepare them with the garlic butter, but wait to broil until after thawing.

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