the essence of homemade Slow Cooker Meatball Subs with an inviting image: A golden crust on the perfectly toasted sub roll, oozing melted cheese, and plump meatballs drenched in rich marinara sauce, garnished with fresh basil

Slow Cooker Meatball Subs

Looking for an easy and tasty dinner? You’re in luck! We’ll show you how to make delicious slow cooker meatball subs with only a few ingredients and your slow cooker.

Get ready for a hearty and satisfying meal that the whole family will adore. Put on your apron and get cooking – these meatball subs will soon become a favorite!


Tracing the origins of slow cooker meatball subs requires exploring the history of meatballs and their incorporation into sandwiches.

Meatballs have been a popular dish for centuries, though their exact origin is uncertain as they’ve evolved separately in different parts of the world.

Putting meatballs between bread has been around for a long time. For instance, ‘polpette’ – Italian meatball sandwiches – have been a staple street food since the early 20th century.

The meatball sub gained popularity in the US, particularly among Italian-American communities, in the 1970s. It’s now a much-loved comfort food, with the slow cooker adding convenience and flavor to the traditional sandwich.

Ingredients for Slow Cooker Meatball Subs

-2 lbs. frozen meatballs

-1 (28-ounce) jar marinara sauce

-1 teaspoon Italian seasoning

-1 (16-ounce) package hoagie rolls

-1 (8-ounce) package shredded mozzarella cheese

-1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

-Optional Toppings: Sliced pepperoni, sliced mushrooms, sliced onions, sliced bell peppers, chopped fresh basil


Let’s get into the process of making these delicious slow cooker meatball subs! Follow these easy steps to make a great meal:

  1. Combine ground beef, breadcrumbs, Parmesan cheese, minced garlic, chopped parsley, beaten egg, salt, and pepper in a mixing bowl. Mix everything together until fully blended.

  2. Shape the mixture into small meatballs, about 1 inch in diameter. Place them in the slow cooker.

  3. Pour marinara sauce over the meatballs, making sure they’re fully covered. You can use store-bought sauce or make your own.

  4. Cook on low for 6-8 hours or on high for 3-4 hours, until the meatballs are cooked through and tender.

Once the meatballs are ready, assemble your subs by placing them on toasted sub rolls and topping them with additional marinara sauce and shredded mozzarella cheese. Enjoy your slow cooker meatball subs!

Tips for Cooking

Cooking slow cooker meatball subs can be easy and delicious when following these helpful tips. To start, opt for lean ground meat to avoid excess grease. Get creative and combine different types of ground meat, such as beef and pork, for added flavor. Generously season the meat mixture with salt, pepper, and your favorite herbs and spices for enhanced taste. Browning the meatballs before adding them to the slow cooker will give them a nice crust and extra flavor. Be sure to monitor the cooking time since slow cookers vary in temperature. Check the meatball’s internal temperature to make sure they are cooked through. Refer to the table below for reference:

Tips for Cooking Slow Cooker Meatball Subs
Use lean ground meat
Mix different types of ground meat
Season generously with salt and spices
Brown meatballs before slow cooking
Check internal temperature for doneness

Final Thoughts

Slow cooker meatball subs are an easy and delicious way to enjoy a flavorful and hearty meal. With the slow cooker doing most of the work for you, the flavors can blend together and the meatballs can become tender and juicy. It’s a great convenience, especially for those days when time is short and you don’t want to spend it standing at the stove.

Plus, the aroma of the simmering meatballs in the sauce will have your mouth watering. When it’s time to serve, simply pile the meatballs, sauce, and your favorite toppings onto a soft sub roll. It’s a meal that the whole family will enjoy and leave you feeling full and content.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I Use Frozen Meatballs for This Recipe?

Yes, it is possible to use frozen meatballs for this recipe. The slow cooker will cook the meatballs along with the other ingredients, resulting in tasty meatball subs. Try it out and enjoy!

Can I Substitute the Marinara Sauce With a Different Type of Sauce?

Yes, you can swap out the marinara sauce for a different type. Just ensure it goes well with the meatballs and the other flavors of the dish. Feel free to try different combos to find the one you like the best!

Can I Use a Different Type of Cheese for the Meatball Subs?

Yes, you can substitute a different type of cheese for the meatball subs. Cheddar or provolone would be excellent choices. Just make sure it melts well and enhances the flavors of the meatballs and sauce.

Can I Make This Recipe Vegetarian by Using Plant-Based Meatballs?

Yes, it’s possible to make this recipe vegetarian by using plant-based meatballs. It’s a great option for those who don’t eat meat but still want to savor the delicious flavors of meatball subs. Making the switch is easy and you can still enjoy all the same flavors without sacrificing anything.

Can I Cook the Meatballs on High Heat Instead of Low Heat in the Slow Cooker?

Yes, you can cook the meatballs on high heat instead of low heat in the slow cooker. Bear in mind that they may cook faster and could potentially become dry or overcooked.

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