Oh, man. Is there anything better than a good old-fashioned meatball sub? Why,…yes! Yes, there is! This Cheesy Barbecued Bacon Meatball Sub kicked the old italian-style subs to the curb!
I totally decked them out with all kinds of wonderful goodies, and this baby was an instant hit and new favorite!
Due to their jurassic size, my hubby and I split one, and I still could only manage to eat half of my half! But he polished off the rest of mine, so it really worked out perfectly for us.
But do keep in mind the size and length of rolls you want so that they aren’t too big for smaller appetites.
Two meatballs for a regular appetite, one for small appetites (or sliders), and three for those who seem to be able to INHALE food and never gain a pound.
That should be a pretty good guide for you!
So, to make these, we start by making my meatballs, and then simmer them in your favorite barbecue sauce. (*I used Sweet Baby Rays, which is a nice thick sauce so they wouldn’t be too drippy. And it happens to be my favorite! But you can use whatever kind you like.)
Next, we’ll butter the bottom bun and toast it under the broiler. For this, I used regular hoagie rolls and Minerva Dairy’s Maple Wood Smoked Butter!
If you’ve never tried smoked butter, (*not to be mistaken for artificially flavored!), you are missing out!! It’s simply a MUST in our house now!
Once the bottom is toasted, top with a handful of mixed field greens….
…then place your meatballs on top, adding a little extra sauce if you like.
Add a handful of whatever cheese sounds good such as what I used, a shredded Mexican blend, or a nice co-jack, cheddar or pepper-jack would be delicious, too! Whatever makes your tastebuds smile!
Also, butter the inside of the top roll, and broil both, side-by-side, until the top bun is toasted and the cheese has melted on the meatball side.
Then top with a piece of crisp-cooked and peppered bacon…
….a few fried or baked onion rings….
…and some juicy, red-ripe tomato slices!
Then just place on the top!
And…..what a masterpiece, eh?!!
If sharing with a friend, slice in half with a sharp knife…
…and take yourself a big ol’ bite!!!
Sorry for rhyming…I couldn’t stop myself…I was on a roll!!
And you can personally design this monster any way like. This is just how we had ours, but you can add or delete any topping that you want (or don’t want). Some of my homemade pickles or Jalapeño Cowboy Candy might be fun on this, for an example or two!
So, if you’re a meatball sub lover, these Cheesy Barbecued Bacon Meatball Subs are going to be your new BFFs!!
Easy to make, easy to prep, and actually not messy to eat at all! Just give it a little smash and chow down! Hope you all enjoy this fun sandwich as much as we did!
These Sandwiches Go Well With My:
- 1 stick (4 oz.) Minerva Dairy Smoked butter, melted
- 4 hoagie, sub or long rolls, buttered and broiled until toasted
- 1 - 2 cups mixed field greens, as desired
- 16 homemade meatballs, *recipe below
- your favorite barbecue sauce, (*I used Sweet Baby Ray's Original)
- 1½ - 2 cups shredded co-jack cheese or 4 Cheese Mexican blend (I used Sargento's®)
- 4 strips thick-cut bacon (baked with pepper)
- 12 - 24 onion rings depending on size, homemade (or frozen), cooked and kept warm in low oven
- 1 large fresh tomato, sliced, halve slices
- For Meatballs:
- 1 lb. lean ground beef
- ⅓ cup italian-seasoned dry breadcrumbs
- ¼ cup finely grated parmesan cheese
- 2 Tbl. finely grated asiago cheese, optional (but add it if you have it!)
- ½ tsp. Italian seasoning
- ½ tsp. oregano
- ¼ tsp. garlic powder
- 1 tsp. fennel seed
- 1½ tsp. dried minced onions
- 1 tsp. salt
- ¼ tsp. coarse ground black pepper
- ¼ cup milk
- 1 beaten egg
- ½ tsp. worcestershire sauce
- Make Meatballs First:
- In large bowl, crumble in ground beef, add rest of ingredients and mix all ingredients together WELL with hands. Pat into a mound, divide into fourths, and make 4 large meatballs out of each section, totaling 16. Place onto sprayed or parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Sprinkle tops with more coarse ground black pepper and bake in preheated 375º oven for 30-32 minutes. Remove from sheet with spoon scraping away any pooled fat and place into a small frying pan or medium saucepan. Add enough barbecue sauce to more than coat, fold to coat on all sides, and heat over medium-low heat until sauce is hot. Remove from heat and cover to keep warm.
- For Sandwiches:
- Heat oven to medium or high broil. Whatever you're comfortable with.
- Split open hoagie rolls and spoon melted smoked butter over insides, place bottom rolls only onto baking sheet, buttered side up. Lightly toast under broiler, WATCHING so that they don't burn.
- Top bottoms with small handfuls of field greens, then sauced meatballs, spoon more barbecue sauce over them, then top meatballs with lots of shredded cheese. Run under broiler, with buttered tops until cheese has melted and tops are now lightly toasted, too. WATCH CAREFULLY so that they don't burn!
- Finish sandwiches by topping each with a strip of crisp-cooked peppered bacon, onion rings, and halved tomato slices. Place on tops, cut in half if desired, and enjoy!