Easy Meatball Sliders
Easy meatball sliders are a simple and delicious Italian sandwich perfect for lunch, dinner, or potlucks. Quick, easy and sure to become your new favorite!
Who doesn’t love a good meatball slider?
We’ve made them Bahn Mi style and with some tangy BBQ sauce but one of the most popular recipes on our site is our classic Italian meatball sliders.
I’ve got to admit nothing really beats the classic comfort food vibes of meatballs, pasta sauce, and lots of mozzarella cheese. It’s all the big flavors you expect in a meatball sub in an easy sliders recipe.
They make the perfect party appetizer or fun weeknight dinner for the kids. And they are a great football party food idea for the next time you have people over to watch the big game!
We’re kinda slider crazy so if you’re looking for more delicious slider options check these out!
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Ingredients You’ll Need
Here’s what you’ll need to make a great meatball slider.
- Slider buns – We always use Hawaiian slider rolls because, well, they are the best! You can use any small slider bun you prefer.
- Meatballs – You can use frozen, your own recipe, or one of our recipes to make great tasting meatballs for these sliders (see below).
- Pasta sauce – You can use your favorite sauce or make your own.
- Cheese – You’ll want to use both mozzarella cheese and Parmesan cheese.
- Italian seasoning – You can use any brand you like or even mix your own.
- Olive oil – You can use extra virgin or regular olive oil.
Step 1 – Preheat the oven to 350°F. As it heats, fill the bottom half of a casserole dish with the slider buns.
Step 2 – Build the sliders. First, spoon a little bit of sauce on each bun and then place a single meatball on each. Next, add a bit of sauce over each meatball and then top with mozzarella cheese.
Step 3 – Top off the sliders. Once the cheese is added, place the top of the buns on top and brush with oil. Next, mix the Italian seasoning and Parm cheese together in small bowl before sprinkling over the top of the buns.
Step 4 – Bake the sliders. Cover the dish with foil and bake for 10 minutes. When the ten minutes are up, carefully remove the foil and bake another 10 minutes. Remove them from the oven and use a knife to separate the sliders.
Serve and enjoy!
Do You Cook the Meatballs First?
Yes! This recipe calls for fully cooked meatballs that have been warmed through before adding them to the sliders and baking. I highly recommend simmering your meatballs in your pasta sauce for 15-20 minutes to warm them up and allow the flavors of the sauce to soak into them.
What Are the Best Frozen Meatballs to Buy?
Our favorite brands are Cooked Perfect Italian Style Meatballs or Mama Lucia Italian Style Meatballs.
When we heat them, we like to simmer them right in a good sauce, like Rao’s Marinara. You can use a crock pot or put them in a medium pot on the stove top. As they cook, they’ll absorb all of the yummy flavors!
How Do You Make Meatballs From Scratch?
We have a few great recipes for meatballs you can try!
You can try our Instant Pot Meatballs or Air Fryer Meatballs! Or for a lighter, protein packed meatball, you could make these Turkey Meatballs.
If you don’t have either an Instant Pot or Air Fryer (you should really get at least one!) you can easily back them in the oven following these directions.
First, follow the instructions in the recipes to make the meatballs. Next, place them on a baking sheet and cook for 15 to 20 minutes at 400 degrees F. Finish them off by simmering them in a pot with your favorite sauce for another 20 minutes to give them more flavor.
Give the Bread a Little Extra Flavor
Here’s a trick I learned when working at a Pizza Hut back in high school. By adding just a little olive oil, some Italian seasoning, and Parmesan cheese, you’ll take the toasted bread to the next level.
What Can I Serve with Meatball Sliders
Meatball sub sides can be as delicious as the sliders themselves. And the right sides compliments the meatball subs perfectly.
One of our favorites is our Air Fryer Sweet Potato Fries. If regular fries are more your thing, you can use your air fryer to cook perfectly crispy Frozen Fries. Either option is a healthy spin on these popular sides.
If salads are more your thing, you can go wrong with Mustard Potato Salad, Italian Pasta Salad, or this Classic Macaroni Salad. Or you can try this Panzanella Salad, which is an easy Italian bread salad.
How to Make it Ahead of Time
You don’t want to assemble these ahead of time because the bread will get soggy, but you can get your meatballs ready 2 to 3 days before. You can then store them in the sauce in the fridge.
When you’re ready to assemble, heat the meatballs up in the microwave or in a saucepan over medium high heat until warmed through, then follow instructions for assembling and baking the sliders.
Looking for More Easy Slider Recipes?
- Buffalo Chicken Sliders
- Ham Egg and Cheese Breakfast Sliders
- Philly Cheesesteak Sliders
- Chicken Parmesan Sliders
- Bacon Cheeseburger Sliders
- Chili Dog Sliders
- Copycat Big Mac Sliders
- More Slider Recipes…
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Easy Meatball Sliders
- 12 Slider buns
- 12 Meatballs, cooked
- 2 cups Pizza or Pasta Sauce
- 2 cups Mozzarella cheese, shredded
- 3 tablespoons Parmesan cheese
- 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
- 2 tablespoons Olive oil
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- Cut your slider buns in half lengthwise to separate the bottoms from the tops. Place the bottom half of the slider buns in a casserole dish.
- Spoon a little sauce on each bun then place a meatball on each one, and add just a little more sauce over the meatballs.
- Cover the meatballs in mozzarella cheese.
- Place the top buns over the meatballs and brush them with a little oil.
- Combine the Parmesan cheese and the Italian seasoning then sprinkle it over the buns.
- Cover the dish with foil and bake for 10 minutes, then remove the foil and continue baking for another 10 minutes.
So these were insanely good, except the bottom bun got disgustingly soggy. I had to remove the bottom buns completely. Any tips to avoid soggy bread?
Luckily we didn’t have that problem but I wonder if putting the cheese down first, then sauce, then meatballs would fix the problem? You could also try doing meatball, putting sauce on meatball then adding cheese. If you try it again let me know if that helps!
Read the comments before I made them, and put the cheese on the bottom before making them. It definitely helped with sogginess! Sooooo good! Will make again.
Awesome! Thanks for letting us know!
I would love to make these for our church fellowship meal. Do you think they would be to soggy if they sat in a warm pan for about 2 hours?
I think they will be fine. I suggest putting some sauce over the meatballs rather than under to keep the bottom buns from getting soggy. Just spoon some sauce over each meatball.
Can you use frozen meatballs with this?
Yes, but I would cooked them before hand.
What size casserole dish should
Be used for this? Thanks!
You can use a 9×13 inch dish
I would like to make the meatballs sliders. I have a package of frozen cooked meatballs. I assume I should defrost the meatballs completely before making the recipe. Please update the recipe. I have all of the ingredients!
The recipe calls for cooked meatballs so you will need to cook your frozen meatballs before making this dish.
The frozen meatballs are pre cook. They don’t need cooking again correct?
A friend made these for our Pokeno group. She heated frozen pre-cooked Swedish meatballs on a sheet tray in the oven, which helped eliminate excess moisture and grease. Once heated through, she added them to Marinara sauce and minimized amount of sauce on slider to avoid soggy bottom. They were delicious!
I LOVE Pokeno!!!
So raw meatballs correct?
No we used frozen meatballs that we had cooked with the sauce so they were warmed through
Love all your slider recipes….always looking for new tasty sliders!
Thank you! Hope you enjoy them 🙂
What brand of rolls do you use typically? Do you use Hawaiian rolls?
Yes, we almost always use Hawaiian rolls
Absolutely loved these! So easy and delicious!
I made these tonight and cooked the already cooked frozen meatballs……and there was something about them that didn’t taste right at all.
Were they store bought or homemade frozen meatballs?
Thank you! These are great. Kids loved them. Only put sauce on top shelf nice people kept saying they were soggy. Really good idea though.
I’m so glad you and the kids liked them!
Made this for a football party and everyone LOVED them! So flavorful and easy. Didn’t change anything about the recipe. Will be making again for sure!
Love hearing that Erin!
My mom made this and now i want MORE
Loved these! After seeing the soggy bottom comments, I decided to toast the bottoms for about 3 minutes while the oven was warming up. The toasted bottoms really helped to give the slider a solid bottom.
I make this all the time when it’s my turn to cook. It’s my fiancé’s favorite and he begs me to get the stuff every time we go to the store.
Yay! We love hearing that.
Made meatballs sliders for work.
They were a big hit .Thank you for sharing this recipe !
What are Hawaiian rolls
Hi Lucy, they are slider rolls or buns. If you can’t find that brand any small slider bun will work 🙂
All these recipies on this page looks amazing
This was a great recipe. Easy to make, kids loved it. Adults too. Shared recipe with a friend.
Making this again right now! My SUPER picky husband and boys (ages 5 and 2) absolutely love it and it’s SOn easy! Thank you!
Can these be made ahead and then just warmed up or would they get soggy ?
I think it will get soggy and then the bread may get over baked and hard when reheating.
Hi! I love this recipe, but since making it last I have lost the original meatball recipe and the link is no longer working. Do you have the recipe for just the meatballs?
Hi Katie, we actually used frozen meatballs for this recipe. You can use any brand you like but we prefer Cooked Perfect Italian Style if you can find them :).
Note: if using precooked, frozen meatballs, be sure to thaw and even warm the meatballs some before assembling the sliders otherwise they will still be cold! Learned the hard way☹️
This was a hit with the guys !
These were so good! I made as directed, sauce on bottom and more sauce + cheese on top. And yes, the bottom buns got soggy, but I loved it! I loved that gooey texture contrasted with the crisp top. Mmmmm, so good! This is going from a one-time SuperBowl appetizer to regular rotation.
Love this! Thank you so much for this.
I tried this as written the first time, but made adjustments the second time. I used meatless meatballs from Trader Joe’s, two per roll. Instead pasta sauce I used pizza sauce. The pasta sauce seemed too runny the first time. For the topping I used 2 tlbs butter, 2 cloves of minced garlic, and about 1/2 tsp Italian seasoning. The topping in the recipe the first time was dry and didn’t really add much in my opinion. This time around it was a hit!
These were delicious! No soggy bottoms with the cheese on the bottom layer. I used butter instead of oil for the topping , will add garlic next time! Great recipe!
YUM!! Based on the other comments, I toasted the bottom buns (lightly) prior to adding other ingredients. It was all super easy. I bought fresh pre-made meatballs from the Publix meat dept (our grocery store – they have great pre-made stuff!) and baked those at 400 for 20 minutes. When done, I dropped the temp to 350 and put in the bottom buns in the 9×13. After a few minutes, took those out and topped with mozz, a meatball, a spoonful of sauce and the top bun. I made a topping of salted butter and fresh minced garlic. Then topped with Italian seasoning & grated parm. PERFECTION! The only thing I’d change next time is cutting the buns apart for easier serving (I left them stuck together on the sides – only cut off the tops) and I think I’d like to put the meatballs in the sauce (I’ll try pizza sauce next time, as another commenter recommended) to have more of that flavor. I think toasting the bottom buns and putting cheese down removed all soggy risk so I’d do that again. DELICIOUS!! Easy, inexpensive, quick – I think it was done in maybe 40 minutes but most of that was bake time. Good enough for guests or a party.
Made it, family loved it! I don’t recommend the 10 minutes after you remove the foil unless you like crunchy bread on top and bottom. Maybe like 6 minutes for softer buns. I might’ve skimped a little on the sauce, next time I’ll add lots more for softer bread. We loved it, it was really good other than the buns being too crunchy. I did Hawaiian sweet rolls, home made meat balls, creamy rose marinara and sliced mozzarella cheese. Yummy!