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Slow-Cooker Meatball Sandwiches

Our approach to meatball sandwiches is a simple one: Cook the meatballs low and slow, load them into hoagie buns, and top them with provolone and pepperoncini. —Stacie Nicholls, Spring Creek, Nevada
  • Total Time
    Prep: 5 min. Cook: 3 hours
  • Makes
    8 servings


  • 2 packages (12 ounces each) frozen fully cooked Italian meatballs, thawed
  • 2 jars (24 ounces each) marinara sauce
  • 8 hoagie buns, split
  • 8 slices provolone cheese
  • Sliced pepperoncini, optional


  • Place meatballs and sauce in a 3- or 4-qt. slow cooker. Cook, covered, on low 3-4 hours or until meatballs are heated through.
  • On each bun bottom, layer cheese, meatballs and, if desired, pepperoncini; replace tops.
Nutrition Facts
1 sandwich: 526 calories, 20g fat (7g saturated fat), 93mg cholesterol, 1674mg sodium, 55g carbohydrate (15g sugars, 4g fiber), 32g protein.

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  • cynandtom
    May 31, 2020

    I have honestly never had frozen store bought meatballs, but since I came across this recipe while my freezer happens to be homemade meatball-less, I thought it was the perfect time to give this recipe a try. I used Delgrosso meatballs and Michaels of Brooklyn Marinara, my favorite high quality jar sauce. Although, I prefer homemade meatballs, I would absolutely make this again. The only changes I made were garlic toasting the buns, and then putting them in the oven to melt the cheese. Quick, easy, and delicious. ??

  • Marilyn
    Apr 30, 2020

    I’m Italian so I make meat balls from scratch and fix them like the owner of this recipe.

  • Gale
    Apr 27, 2020

    I leave them off the pepperocini as I don’t like them! One trick from I learned while living in CT - drizzle your “hoagie” bun (they are grinders in CT) with flavored olive oil and then toast the buns before loading up with meatballs, provolone and marinara sauce, adds another layer of flavor to an already delicious sandwich!

    Oct 3, 2018

    I use this recipe quite often for potlucks at work. Always have frozen meatballs and marina in the larder, and just pick up the buns and some shredded cheese and peppers on the way. With staggered lunch breaks, this is perfect!

  • katandalan
    Mar 11, 2018

    @suzannahnoelle - Great comment! You said it all. Loved it. I personally have not made this recipe yet but I plan to and I also plan to use the suggested meatballs. I'm retired and have all the time in the world but love shortcuts when it comes to cooking. Not all the time but every now and then and this is a time saver.

  • Chargett
    Feb 12, 2018

    Excellent party food!

  • tt2b123
    Jan 28, 2018

    This should have fed my family for a week, but my husband couldn't resist dipping into the slow cooker to sneak a meatball a few (or 10 times). It was such a hit I made another batch the next week.

  • suzannahnoelle
    Jul 3, 2017

    My gosh, pood49, what a sour person you are! This recipe is for people who work and don't get to sit around at home all day. This recipe is for those who are short on time and have many other preparations to make. This recipe is for those who simply enjoy using their crock pots! Also, there's a world of difference in taste between Marinara and spaghetti sauce. MANY Americans know the difference! Geez, don't be such a crab box! Great recipe, Stacie Nicholls; thank you for posting it.

  • pood49
    Jul 3, 2017

    I can't imagine why you would want to do already cooked meatballs and sauce in a slow cooker. This recipe is for people who don't know how to cook or are lazy. Why don't you call Marinara sauce what it really is, which is Spaghetti Sauce, this is America.

  • MissCarol44
    Mar 11, 2017

    Very good recipe, done it before and it should be a winner with college students too. :)