Slow Cooker Italian Meatball Subs Recipe & 12 Italian Family Dinner Recipes

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If I had to pick my favorite day of the week, it would most definitely be Sunday. The weekdays are often busy with the kids and Saturdays fly by with household chores and errands but Sundays, they’re actually a day of rest and relaxation for us. It’s also the day I get to prepare real family-style meals that we can sit down and enjoy without any rushing around. My favorite Sunday dinners usually involve Italian dishes and here are 12 that I have tried or MUST try soon!

Speaking of Italian, one recipe that brings our whole family to the table is my slow cooker meatball subs with a homemade marinara. Minus the bread, this dish is made from scratch and despite the long list of ingredients, it’s really easy to make!

Slow Cooker Italian Meatball Subs Recipe

You could also turn this recipe into a simple spaghetti and meatballs dish or even stuff the meatballs with cheese! This recipe produces a lot of marinara sauce so plan on serving a crowd or saving or freezing the leftovers for your next Italian dinner!

Slow Cooker Italian Meatball Subs Recipe for Dinner

Slow Cooker Italian Meatball Subs Recipe
Cook Time
Total Time
Type: Slow Cooker
Cuisine: Italian
Serves: 6-7 subs (with 3 meatballs each)
Meatballs Ingredients
  • 1 lb ground pork or original pork sausage
  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 1 cup Italian bread crumbs
  • 1 cup shredded grated Parmesan cheese
  • 4 eggs
  • salt/pepper
  • 1 large onion, minced
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • handful of finely chopped flat leaf parsley (fresh Italian parsley)
Marinara Ingredients
  • 1 teaspoon dried parsley
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • 4 tablespoons fresh chopped basil
  • 2 bay whole leaves
  • 1 large can tomato sauce
  • 1 regular can petite diced tomatoes
  • 1 small can tomato paste
  • 2 large cans crushed tomato
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • salt/pepper
  • Fresh Mozzarella Cheese
  • Italian Sub Buns
  1. In a 7 quart slow cooker, add all of the marinara ingredients and heat on low for 10 hours.
  2. For the meatballs, preheat oven to 375 degrees F and spray a rimmed baking sheet with non-stick cooking spray.
  3. Add all of the meatball ingredients to the bowl of an electric mixer and mix on the lowest setting with the paddle attachment just until combined.
  4. Hand roll the meat into balls a a little bigger than a golf ball and spread on a baking sheet. At that size, you should be able to make about 20 meatballs.
  5. Bake for 45 minutes then add the meatballs to the slow cooker an hour before you plan on serving dinner.
  6. Add the meatballs to a sturdy sub bun, top with a little extra sauce, fresh Mozzarella cheese and bake at 375 degrees F until the cheese is melted.

What’s YOUR family Italian family dinner?

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  1. I love anything you can do in the crock pot!! Looks delicious, would be good for supper tonight!!

    Check out one of my recent post; Hot Fudge Cake
    Michael :)

  2. Yes, there is nothing better than a great home cooked meal!!

  3. Mmmm, those meatballs look scrumpteous.

  4. That looks so good and I’m starving! Love that it is made in the slow cooker.

  5. It’s like you read my mind! I’ve been in need of a good meatball recipe! I need to try this!

  6. Meatball subs are one of my favorite meals ever! I’m definitely trying these asap!

  7. I love meatballs and especially love that this is done in the slow cooker! I’m craving that sub!

  8. Oh. My. I want to devour that!

  9. I would have to say lasagna. Oh and we adore Tiramisu!

  10. trisha says:

    I love meatball sandwiches but they are hard to eat so i like to cut the min half so they are flatter.

  11. What a great sandwich. And, this would be great to prepare on a day filled with sports.