Meatballs covered in hot marinara sauce topped with Swiss or Provolone cheese. Served on a fresh toasted hoagie bun. Mouthwatering delicious!
Meatball Marinara Sub Recipe
This recipe uses only four ingredients: ground chicken (or ground beef); a jar of marinara sauce, cheese slices and hoagie buns. To make it even easier you can use frozen meatballs. Keep a package in the freezer for an easy dinner idea.
Another great sandwich recipe to try (and use any extra hoagie buns) is our Chicken Cheesesteak with bell peppers and onions. It’s a delicious alternative to a classic Philly Cheesesteak.
Need a good side dish to go with your sub? Corn Casserole provides the right balance to this Italian sandwich.
What kind of cheese is best to use?
I like to use Swiss Cheese because of the flavor and texture. Other options include provolone, pepper jack, Mexican 4 blend shredded cheese, or mozzarella.
Which bread is best?
Classic hoagie rolls with sesame seeds provide a soft texture. You can toast the buns in a skillet on medium heat or in a toaster oven. If that is not available you can serve it on untoasted and unheated bread. Put the sliced cheese on the bottom and pour sauce over it to melt it. The toasted version holds up a little longer, but we usually eat them immediately so that is not a problem!
How to Cook Meatballs
Shape ground chicken into 19 or 20 small balls and place in a large boiler. If you are using ground chicken instead of ground beef the meatballs are very soft. Just roll them in your hands and put them straight into the saucepan to cook. I like to wear disposable gloves when preparing raw meat.
Cook a few minutes over medium high heat turning occasionally with tongs until outsides are cooked and no longer raw. The meat turns white and drier as it cooks.
Adding Marinara Sauce to Meatballs
Pour a 24 oz. jar of marinara over the meatballs. Cover and simmer on medium heat, stirring occasionally, for about 20 minutes until chicken is cooked through. You can pour it into a serving dish or serve directly from the boiler.
How to Assemble a Sub Sandwich
First put a slice of Swiss cheese on the bottom of a split sub bun that you have toasted. Some buns are already sliced. If they are not just carefully slice them in half with a bread knife. You can toast the buns in a toaster oven or in a skillet on medium heat. I wouldn’t put them in a regular toaster because they will get stuck. Alternately, you can use them untoasted. Be sure to put the cheese slice on the bottom to help keep the bread from becoming soggy.
Spoon 4 or 5 meatballs and sauce on top of the cheese so that the cheese melts beneath it. You can add any topping that you like.
Some suggestions include lettuce, spinach, tomato, bell pepper, onions, and jalapenos. Be sure to add right before serving so the toppings like lettuce and spinach don’t wilt.
DO NOT REHEAT IN THE MICROWAVE. Due to the moisture content in the meatballs they do not reheat well in the microwave. They tend to pop and splatter and who wants to clean up a mess when you are ready to eat!
You can freeze the cooked meatballs and marinara sauce in Ziploc bags. Be sure to remove the air from the bag before freezing. Thaw in refrigerator overnight or in a bowl of cold water. Remove sauce and meatballs from Ziploc bag and reheat in a covered boiler on the stove on medium heat, stirring occasionally until heated through.
Ideas for Side Dishes for Meatball Marinara Subs
Chips go well with the sub, especially if you load your sub with veggies such as spinach and bell pepper. For other side dish ideas try our recipes for pasta salad, fresh corn on the cob, deviled eggs, or easy coleslaw.
Meatball Marinara Sub Recipe
- 1 lb ground meat (chicken, beef or turkey) (or frozen meatballs)
- 1 24oz. jar Marinara Sauce (Newman's or any brand)
- 4 slices swiss cheese (or provolone cheese)
- 4 buns classic soft hoagie rolls
- Shape ground chicken into 19 or 20 small balls and place in a large boiler. (Or use frozen meatballs)
- Cook over medium high heat turning occasionally until outsides are cooked and no longer raw.
- Pour a 24 oz. jar of Newman's Own Marinara Sauce over the meatballs. Cover and simmer on medium heat, stirring occasionally, for about 20 minutes until chicken is cooked through.
- Serve by putting a slice of Swiss cheese on the bottom of a toasted split sub bun. You can toast the buns in a toaster oven or in a skillet on medium heat. Alternately, you can use them untoasted. Be sure to put the cheese slice on the bottom so it won't get the bread so soggy.
- Spoon 4 or 5 meatballs and sauce on top of the cheese so that the cheese melts beneath it.
- Serve immediately.