BBQ and Marinara Meatball Sandwiches

Meatballs are a party favorite.  Make it easy for your guests to enjoy them by making bite size sandwiches.  This recipe is fun and children can help!


Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Yield: 24 meatball sandwiches

1 lb turkey ground
2 tablespoons minced garlic
1 teaspoon smoked sea salt
1 teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1 teaspoon basil*
1 teaspoon oregano*
1 teaspoon marjoram*
1 teaspoon thyme*
1 teaspoon savory*
1 teaspoon rosemary*
1 teaspoon sage*
1 egg beaten
2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
½ cup crushed Italian season croutons
1 cup red wine
½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
½ cup grated Romano cheese
Olive oil or olive oil spray
1 cup sliced green peppers
1 cup sliced red onions
Barbecue sauce to taste
Marinara sauce to taste
2 loaves of French bread
*Can substitute with Italian seasoning
Pair of plastic cooking gloves
Mixing bowls
Large mixing spoon
1 tablespoon scoop
Medium cooking pan
13 x 9 baking pan
Wax paper
24 Toothpicks
Cutting paper



1. Pre-heat oven to 425.
2. Using plastic cooking gloves mix turkey, garlic and spices in a large mixing bowl and put to the side.

3. Beat egg in small mixing bowl.
4. Crush croutons in medium mixing bowl.
5. Add Worcestershire sauce, cheese and croutons to mixture.  Mix with hands using plastic cooking gloves.
6. Pour in beaten egg and mix with hands using plastic cooking gloves.
7. Pour in red wine.  Use large spoon and fold into mixture.  Let it stand.

8. Slice green pepper and red onion.
9. Scoop one tablespoon balls out of mixture and place on wax paper.  Continue to do this until all of the mixture is gone.

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10. Pour (or spray) olive oil onto your baking sheet.
11. Place green peppers and red onions in baking sheet.
12. Arrange meatballs in rows in baking pan.

13. Bake meatballs at 425 for 12 minutes.
14. Remove meatballs from the oven.
15. Flip each meatball and bake and additional 3 minutes.
16. Remove from oven and place baking pan on stove to cool.
(These meatballs are so flavor and moist that you can eat them now!)

17. Mix in sauce.

17a. Place meatballs in mixing bowl and toss in your favorite sauce. 17b. For warm sandwiches put meatballs in medium pan and warm on low heat on stove.
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If guests will make their sandwiches, transfer to slow cooker or warming chafer.

While the meatballs are baking, make flags in team colors.  You can write team names, football terms, player names or numbers. You can also use them for food tags.  I made barbecue and marinara sandwiches, so I used them for food tags.  One idea is to have the kids put their names on the flags. Your guests will know that the sandwich was prepared by one of your little all-stars!

1. Cut long triangles out of paper and decorate. 2. Tape triangles to toothpicks
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1. Cut French bread into slices about two inches wide 2. Cut each slice open; do not separate 3. Place one meatball in each slice.
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4. Close and secure with a flag.


Let me know what you think of this recipe and share pictures of your creations!

Get in the game!

Posted on January 30, 2015 at 1:47 pm

Written by

Shavannia Williams

Shavannia is the founder of Heels & Helmets and editor of its e-magazine, She also writes the football column, Gridiron, for the e-magazine. A sports marketing professional with over 13 years of experience, Ms. Williams has worked with the NBA, NCAA, NFL, NHL, and WNBA. As the owner of a marketing firm, Shavannia’s client roster includes: DC Women’s Business Center, NFL Players and United Way NFL Partnership. Her love for football began at The University of Michigan – Ann Arbor, where she worked for Michigan Football and received her B.A. in Sport Management and Communication. She is excited to bring talented women together to provide a resource to help other ladies “join the conversation at the office” and enhance their business relationships. Follow her on twitter @MzGridiron.
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