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Easy meatball subs

Sarah's love of food led her down what she calls "the culinary rabbit hole," leaving her management job to first apprentice on an organic vegetable farm and then to write about and photograph food professionally. Her agricultural backgro...

Make-ahead meatballs

Meatball subs are a smart lunch option because kids love them. You can also make a large batch to last the week or freeze to eat later.

Make-ahead meatballs

Make these meatballs to put in lunches throughout the week or serve them one day and freeze the rest to use at your convenience. The meatballs only call for five ingredients (plus salt!) mixed together in one bowl. They are braised in tomato sauce, which both gives the meatballs added flavor and the sauce a luxurious taste and texture.

Easy meatball subs

Makes 6 to 8 subs


  • 1/2 cup dried bread crumbs
  • 3 tablespoons milk
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1/2 yellow onion, grated or finely chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup roughly chopped fresh parsley
  • 3 cups prepared tomato sauce (store-bought or make your own)
  • 6 to 8 whole wheat hot dog buns
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese


  1. In a large bowl, add the bread crumbs. Pour in the milk and allow to sit for two minutes. Add the beef, onion, salt and parsley and stir until about evenly distributed. Shape the mixture into large meatballs, about 2 to 3 tablespoons each.
  2. In a large pan over medium-high heat, add the tomato sauce. Once simmering, nestle the meatballs into the sauce, cover and reduce heat to medium-low. Braise until cooked through, about 40 minutes, turning the meatballs about halfway through cooking.
  3. At this point the meatballs are ready to eat, or cool completely to store in the refrigerator or freezer. To serve, place several meatballs and some of the sauce onto a hot dog bun and sprinkle with a handful of cheese. If at home, you can place the sub under the broiler for two to five minutes or until the cheese is melted and golden.

Make-ahead meatballs

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