Last Updated July 22nd, 2020 at 03:03 pm by Lisa
Cheesy Meatball Sub Sandwiches with turkey meatballs and a simple homemade marinara are perfect for a lazy weekend or a big game party like the Super Bowl.
You can make and freeze meatballs ahead, or even buy good quality meatballs and keep them in the freezer ready for this recipe.
What makes these true Cheesy Meatball Sub Sandwich, is the melted sliced mozzarella cheese.
Toast them under the broiler to get the bread crispy and the cheese gooey and golden melty. (Those are official culinary terms)
Make The Turkey Meatballs:
Try to use good french baguettes or rolls. San Marzano makes incredible chopped tomatoes for the marinara sauce. Tomato paste adds a deep level of rich flavor.
Make the marinara sauce:
The marinara sauce for this recipe is very easy, and you could make a double batch and freeze the extra for spaghetti another night. Now that's how I like to impress my family, it to whip out a "homemade" meal (from the freezer) shhh...don't tell them that is how I roll.
Cheesy Meatball Sub Sandwiches are a classic comfort food, and so worth the effort. Homemade sauce and meatballs are so delicious, and when made in batches, are great for other meals tucked in the freezer for fast weekday lunches and dinners!
We will be enjoying these again on Sunday during the big game, and from the way it sounds, we have quite a few people stopping by for the food, fun, oh and of course the game.
All The Best Dishes,
Cheesy Meatball Sub Sandwiches
Cheesy Meatball Sub Components:
- 1 package sliced mozzarella cheese
- 3 baguettes sliced open and cut into 3 or 4 sections (or sub rolls cut open)
- 25-30 frozen or homemade meatballs see meatball recipe below
- 16 oz Marinara Sauce see marinara recipe below
Turkey Veggie Meatballs:
- 3 lbs lean ground turkey ground beef or italian pork sausage
- 1 small onion
- 5 carrots any color
- 5 celery stalks cut into 2-3" pieces
- ½ cup finely chopped basil
- ½ cup finely chopped parsley
- 16 oz can of diced tomatoes
- 1 small can tomato paste
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 cup breadcrumbs or ground almonds
- ½ cup grated parmesan cheese
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 large yellow onion diced
- 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning mix
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon sugar
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 28 oz can diced tomatoes
- 6 oz can tomato paste
Make the Meatballs:
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Pulse rough chopped veggies in batches in Cuisinart or grate on box grater: 1 sm onion, 5 carrots, 5 celery stalks. Process veggies in Cuisinart, and place into a large mixing bowl to make more room for the next veggie. Process the next veggie until done.
- Add ½ cup finely chopped basil, ½ cup finely chopped parsley into the mixing bowl, toss together.
- Heat large pan, add 1 tablespoon olive oil and saute the veggies 3 minutes on medium high heat, keep stirring, then turn off the heat.
- Place the sautéed veggie mixture in a large mixing bowl, and cool. Next, add 3 lbs ground turkey (or ground beef, Italian pork sausage etc), 1 cup breadcrumbs (or ground almonds) and ½ cup grated parmesan cheese.
- Stir and completely mix with 2 forks to "fluff".
- Scoop meatballs: Use a 2" ice-cream scoop onto a large baking sheet pan lined with parchment paper. The ice cream scoop makes the meatballs all the same size, and is faster than hand rolling.
- Roast: 400 degrees 25-30 minutes until golden brown with crispy edges.
Make the Homemade Marinara Sauce:
- Heat butter and olive oil in a large heavy pan, add diced onions, saute until soft 5 minutes, then all 6 seasonings, canned tomatoes, and tomato paste.
- Stir until the marinara sauce thickens about 10-15 minutes. Keep marinara sauce warm.
Assemble the meatball sub sandwiches:
- Place 3-4 meatballs on the sliced open baguette or roll, and cover with a few spoonfuls of marinara sauce.
- Top with slices of mozzarella and place into oven under broiler until the cheese has melted and turned golden about 5 minutes. Keep an eye on these under the broiler.
- Serve immediately and enjoy.