Who said only Italians could tackle a great meatball sandwich? Try this mashup recipe ... combining a sweet BBQ flavor with hearty meatballs in a perfect sandwich.

A classic meatball sub is dripping with marinara sauce and melted cheese. It's truly an iconic sandwich at the top of many stores' menu boards. But what if there was a barbeque spin on this classic sandwich?

There is ... and we love it! We tried this recipe while my husband was traveling for work. My boys quickly devoured the sandwiches and asked for more. It's now on the regular rotation of our menus.

The sandwiches are quick and easy; perfect for game day or on those extra-busy days. While the sandwiches are simple, they lend themselves well to variations and substitutions. 

BBQ Italian Meatball Sandwich Recipe:

Preparation Time: 30 minutes


  • Frozen meatballs (enough for four meatballs per sandwich)
  • Sliced cheese (provolone, cheddar)
  • Ciabatta buns (or hoagie rolls)
  • BBQ pizza sauce (I recommend Paesana New York's Barbeque Pizza Sauce.)
  • Coleslaw mix (optional)


  • Bake the frozen meatballs according to the package directions. I use a wire rack on top of a sheet pan to help drain the grease.
  • Meanwhile, butter and toast the inside of the buns on a griddle over medium heat.
  • Top each bun with a slice (or two) of cheese, hot meatballs, a drizzle of sauce, and a garnish of coleslaw mix (optional). Placing the cheese on the toasted bun before the hot meatballs help melt the cheese.
  • You can also top with additional cheese and broil the open-faced sandwich. Serve hot.

Have you tried these easy BBQ meatball sandwiches? Tell us what you think in the comments.