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Make Easy Meatball Subs with frozen meatballs in the crock pot. Slow cooker meatball sandwiches are perfect for a quick dinner on busy weeknights and make delicious game day food!

meatball sub sandwich with cheese and marinara sauce made with frozen meatballs

This frozen meatball sub recipe is a favorite dinner on busy days during the school year — especially during football season! It’s a simple recipe with minimal prep time that is easy, budget friendly and delicious!

Instead of spending money on takeout, you can make these meatball subs at home for a lot less. Another reason why it’s a favorite recipe! All you really do is add the ingredients to your slow cooker, and it does the work for you.

You can also cook frozen meatballs in the Instant Pot. But on busy nights when we’re on different dinner schedules, this crockpot meatball sub recipe works better.

Rao's marinara, crockpot, frozen meatballs and spices on counter


You only need a few simple ingredients to make easy crockpot meatball subs. If you don’t have them at home, you can find them in your grocery store.

  • Frozen meatballs — I used pork and beef Italian meatballs here, but all beef meatballs, turkey meatballs or any kind works
  • Marinara sauce — We love Rao’s, but use your favorite jar of spaghetti sauce
  • Seasonings — garlic powder, Italian seasoning, parsley for extra flavor
  • Hoagie rolls — or any thick crusty rolls
  • Cheese — we love provolone cheese and mozzarella cheese. Parmesan cheese works as a topper

Note — You can use homemade meatballs if they’re already cooked for homemade meatball subs. I have an awesome homemade meatball recipe, but I love frozen meatballs for convenience.

How to Make Slow Cooker Meatballs with Jar Sauce

First, spray the bottom of the crock pot with non stick cooking spray. You can use olive oil or crock pot liners if you like.

Next, add the frozen meatballs in a single layer on the bottom of the slow cooker.

frozen meatballs in crock pot

Then, pour the jar of pasta sauce over the meatballs. Sprinkle the garlic powder, Italian seasoning and dried parsley on top of the sauce.

Spread the tomato sauce evenly over the meatballs. Then, place the lid on the crock pot.

frozen meatballs covered with marinara sauce and herbs in slow cooker

Cook Time

Cook the frozen meatballs for 2 to 3 hours on high or 4 to 6 hours on low or until they are heated through.

Stir meatballs and sauce once or twice during the cooking process.

Italian meatballs in marinara sauce in crock pot

Meatball Sandwich Recipe

To make meatball sandwiches, slice open the hoagie rolls, and place a slice or slices of provolone cheese on the bottom of the roll so that it covers the top and bottom.

Spoon a few meatballs and sauce over the cheese, and close the roll so that the top of the cheese melts over the meatballs. Serve with extra sauce for dipping!

You can top with mozzarella cheese if you like for extra cheesy meatball subs.

Toast the soft hoagie bun first if you like crispy bread for subs or if you’re using hot dog buns. If you’re using thick crusty sub rolls or crusty bread, it’s not necessary.

Place the subs on a baking sheet and bake for 2 or 3 minutes in a hot oven for gooey melted cheese. Yum!

How to Store and Reheat

Store leftover meatballs in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. Reheat meatballs in the microwave until steaming.

You can freeze meatballs and sauce in freezer safe container for up to 3 months for best taste.

5 from 4 votes

Easy Meatballs Subs

By: Dee
Make Easy Meatball Subs with frozen meatballs in the crock pot. Slow cooker meatball sandwiches are perfect for a quick dinner on busy weeknights and make delicious game day food!
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 2 hours
Total Time: 2 hours 5 minutes
Servings: 7



  • 36 small frozen meatballs
  • 24 oz marinara sauce
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon parsley flakes
  • 7 hoagie rolls or sub buns
  • 7 slices provolone cheese
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  • Spray a 6 or 7 quart slow cooker with non stick spray
  • Place frozen meatballs in bottom of slow cooker in single layer
  • Pour marinara sauce over meatballs, and sprinkle garlic powder, Italian seasoning and parsley flakes over sauce
  • Place lid on slow cooker, and cook on high for 2 to 3 hours or low for 4 to 6 hours. Stir once or twice during cooking process
  • To make meatball subs, slice rolls lengthwise, place slice of provolone cheese on bottom of roll. Place 4 to 5 meatballs over cheese, and close bun so that part of the cheese melts over the meatballs


Add red pepper flakes and sliced bell peppers for extra flavor and spice.
You can toast the buns in the oven before or after adding meatballs and cheese if you like. 


Calories: 455kcal, Carbohydrates: 39g, Protein: 24g, Fat: 23g, Saturated Fat: 9g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g, Monounsaturated Fat: 8g, Cholesterol: 65mg, Sodium: 932mg, Potassium: 531mg, Fiber: 3g, Sugar: 8g, Vitamin A: 598IU, Vitamin C: 7mg, Calcium: 179mg, Iron: 12mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Main
Cuisine: American, Italian American
Like this? Leave a comment below!

For more crockpot frozen meatball recipes, try my Slow Cooker Swedish Meatballs, Crock Pot Cranberry orange meatballs or check out my crock pot recipes archives for more slow cooker meals.

My whole family thinks these crockpot meatballs make the best meatball subs! If you enjoy them as much as we do, please leave a star rating and comment.

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Recipe Rating


  1. Patrick says:

    Made this for a family get together over the weekend! Simple to just set and forget! Everyone loved them.5 stars

  2. Derek says:

    How simple can you get! Looks like you spent hours making it! Leftovers were great too!5 stars

  3. Patrick says:

    Another easy recipe even I can follow! Makes me look like I am a great cook! So delicious!5 stars