Sneaky Meatball Subs Recipe


For the Meatballs

  • 1 lb ground beef, turkey, or chicken
  • 1/2 cup grated zucchini
  • 1/4 cup grated carrot
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped onion
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1/3 cup breadcrumbs (regular or gluten-free)
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tsp Italian seasoning
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper

For the Subs

  • 4 sub rolls or hoagie rolls
  • 1 1/2 cups marinara sauce (homemade or store-bought)
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • Optional: Fresh basil for garnish


1. Prep the Veggies

  • Grate the zucchini and carrot.
  • Finely chop the onion.

2. Make the Meatballs

  • In a large bowl, combine all meatball ingredients and mix thoroughly, using your hands for best results.
  • Shape the mixture into 12-15 evenly sized meatballs.

3. Cook the Meatballs

  • Baking: Preheat oven to 400°F (200°C). Place meatballs on a wire rack set over a baking sheet for even cooking. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until cooked through.
  • Pan-frying: Heat a drizzle of olive oil in a large skillet. Cook meatballs over medium heat, turning frequently, until browned and cooked through (about 10-12 minutes).

4. Assemble the Subs

  • Slice open the rolls and place them on a baking sheet if desired.
  • Place 3-4 meatballs on each roll.
  • Spoon marinara sauce generously over the meatballs.
  • Top with shredded mozzarella cheese.

5. Melt the Cheese

  • Oven: Broil for a few minutes until cheese is melted and bubbly.
  • Skillet (pan-fried meatballs): Cover the skillet with a lid for a minute or two to melt the cheese.

6. Optional

  • Garnish with fresh basil and serve immediately.


Add your favorites: Customize the meatballs with other finely chopped veggies like spinach or bell peppers.

Make it a meal: Serve with a simple side salad or roasted vegetables.

Freeze for later: These meatballs freeze wonderfully, either cooked or raw. Prepare in advance and have a quick meal ready anytime.


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