Italian-American Meatball Subs Recipe

The art of the meatball sandwich is all about the construction…well, and the meatballs, of course. [Photographs: Vicky Wasik]

The perfect meatball sandwich first needs perfect meatballs and great sauce. Once you have those two in place, the rest is a matter of construction and detail. Here’s how we like to build ours.

Why this recipe works:

  • Trimming the ends of the loaf removes the tough, difficult-to-eat parts.
  • Halving large meatballs makes it possible to overlap them for good, even coverage.
  • Yield:Serves 4 to 6
  • Active time:15 minutes
  • Total time:15 minutes
  • Ingredients

    • 4 individual-sized Italian-style rolls
    • Extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling
    • 1 medium clove garlic, halved
    • 1 recipe cooked Juicy and Tender Italian-American Meatballs in Red Sauce, warm
    • Pargmigiano-Reggiano, for grating
    • 1 pound fresh or low-moisture mozzarella, sliced about 1/4 inch thick


    1. 1.

      Preheat oven to 350°F. Warm rolls in oven, 5 to 10 minutes. Slice off and discard ends of each roll. Cut rolls in half lengthwise.

    2. 2.

      Drizzle cut sides of top and bottom roll halves with olive oil and rub with clove of garlic until fragrant. Arrange bottom roll halves on a baking sheet, cut side up. Spoon a generous layer of tomato sauce onto each of the bottom halves.

    3. 3.

      Slice meatballs in half and arrange on sandwiches, overlapping as necessary for even coverage. Spoon more tomato sauce on top of meatball halves and grate Parmesan all over.

    4. 4.

      Lay sliced mozzarella on top of meatballs. Transfer baking sheet to oven and bake until mozzarella is fully melted, about 4 minutes; warm roll top halves in oven for last minute of cooking.

    5. 5.

      Close sandwiches and serve immediately.

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