Full disclosure – the meatballs in this recipe are straight-up from my Grandma’s Meatball Stroganoff recipe sans the diced mushroom. I mean, you totally could add the diced mushroom if you’re feeling like a fun-guy (see what I did there 😂).
All joking aside, these homemade meatball subs are easy to make as the name suggests. They’re also fairly quick, especially if you happen to have made (and froze) a bunch of extra meatballs whilst making a delicious batch of Grandma’s Meatball Stroganoff. And maybe the best news is that these delicious, albeit messy, sandwiches are kid and husband approved. 😉
Don’t forget the rules of food safety! Here is the short list:
- Always wash your hands before and after handling raw meat.
- Never thaw meat on the counter. Thaw in the refrigerator, microwave, or cool water bath.
- Always wash cutting boards and plates after having been in contact with raw meat.
- Always cook to appropriate internal temperatures. Safe internal temperatures vary based on cut. Hamburger must reach a safe and savory 160 degrees, while steak is safe at 145 degrees.
1 pound ground beef
6 saltine crackers, crushed*
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/4 cup finely chopped onion
28 ounces of marinara sauce
Shredded Mozzarella, or cheese of your choice
In a mixing bowl, mix ground beef, crackers, salt, pepper, onion, and egg. Don’t be afraid to get your hands meaty, really get in there and mix it all together. Then, shape the meat mixture into one-inch balls. I typically place all the meatballs on a baking sheet and pop them in the freezer for 10-15 minutes, which I think helps them hold their shape during the sear. But that certainly isn’t a requirement.
Grab a large skillet and heat that baby up over medium-high heat. Once the skillet is hot, add the meatballs and brown on all sides. Drain any excess fat from the meatballs, pour in the marinara, give it quick stir, bring everything back up to a simmer over medium heat, and let it simmer for 15-20 minutes.
Now for assembly, spoon 4-5 meatballs and their accompanying marinara into a hoagie roll and top with cheese. At this point, if you like your bread crusty and your cheese extra melty, you could put your subs open-faced on a (clean) baking sheet in the oven under the broiler for a couple of minutes. Or you could fold up the sub and enjoy as-is, which is what we normally do. Enjoy whichever way you choose!
I’ve been known to use Ritz crackers and even bread crumbs in a pinch. And by in a pinch, I mean when I’ve accidentally run us out of saltines.