How do you reheat a Meatball Sub?

What is the best way to reheat a Meatball Sub or a Hoagie Roll?

I have been buying these for years on my way home from work on route 111 in Boxoboro, MA. and they are always great. But, when we get them home they are almost cold.  Is there any trick that will make them ready-to-eat, just like I walked out of the Sub or Pizza Store? Thanks!

We also have another post on – How To Reheat Subway – with lettuce and vegetables which is a slightly different method,

The Best Ways to Heat Up Your Leftover Meatball Sub – How to reheat a leftover sub without losing its crunchy texture.

Furthermore, I have been told that the best way to heat a sandwich like this one would be in an oven. Is there any truth behind this?

Yes, the oven is a good way – but I like the broiler.

If you want your reheated Italian meatball sub to be just right every single time, then follow along with our top 5 ways different ways to warm up a leftover sub so that you never again need to worry about messing up your favorite sub sandwich or leftover meatballs.

This is the best and quick method to reheat a meatball sub is by using a broiler.

The Broiler Method to Reheat a Meatball sub is

  1. start by deconstructing the meatballs from the bread or hoagie buns
  2. Turn on the broiler
  3. remove the subs top bread
  4. remove the meatballs and scrape off some of the sauce
  5. Put the cooked meatballs and sauce on a square of aluminum foil or baking sheet
  6. set the timer 3 minutes and then turn the meatballs – check they are not burning
  7. also, slide in the bread to toast it back to crispiness
  8. take out the parts of the meatball sub from the oven and reconstruct the meatball sub

This is my top choice for how to heat a leftover or cold meatball sub.

Melted Cheese Like Parmesan adds flavor to the meatballs
Melted Cheese Like Parmesan adds flavor to the meatballs

What are the top 5 ways to reheat a meatball sub sandwich in 2024

  1. Reheating a Meatball Sub in Broiler: I have been doing it for years and it is always the best way in my opinion to make a cold sub warm – I use my broiler pan, but you can also do it on top of a stove with a dutch oven – I did try that once – it was pretty good – but I still think the broiler method is the best way to reheat a meatball sub. See above for the method.
  2. Reheating a Meatball Sub in the oven How do you reheat a meatball sub on an airplane? They use an oven – admittedly it is a special oven – I rate this as one of the top ways to warm up a meatball sub. See our method below.
  3. Reheating a Meatball Sub in the microwave How do you heat your meatball sandwich without nuking it or making the bread go so soggy and soft you can not eat it? Should I bake, broil, or toast bread before eating it? – See our microwave method below.
  4. Reheating a Meatball Sub in Toaster Oven How do you heat up your leftover Thanksgiving meat for sandwiches? My meatball sub with melted cheese has got cold on the drive home – We have some great tips and tricks that will help make sure it’s as delicious as possible when you reheat it in a Toaster Oven.
  5. Reheating a Meatball Sub in Air Fryer How long does it take for the air fryer to heat up? And how quickly can I warm up my meatballs and sauce and get them back in my Italian herbs bread? Can I use my oven as an air fryer to reheat food? – Yes you can, but it is not as efficient –  See our method for using your air fryer to make a perfectly warm toasted sub. Is there any difference between using convection and non convection setting on your air fryer?  Yes, when reheating a meatball sub use the convection setting on your air fryer.

How to Reheat Meatball Sub in the Oven

Recipe for reheating meatball subs in the oven:

  • Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit
  • Scape off the meatballs and tomato sauce and  put on some aluminum foil then place on a baking tray
  • Start Baking the meatballs  until warm, about 10-15 minutes
  • 5 minutes before the meatballs are heated – add in the bread roll to warm it up

This method works best if you like your meatballs sub hot all the way through the bread roll and filling and not mushy.

If you want them more moist or less heat just adjust accordingly.

I would recommend using an instant-read thermometer when cooking these things. You can use the probe end to check that they’re done without having to break open the sub meatball or the whole thing.

Italian Herbs and Cheese Metals - the Perfect Sub
Italian Herbs and Cheese Metals – the Perfect Sub – with a side of French Fries

How to Reheat a Meatball sub in the Microwave

Recipe for reheating a meatball sub in the microwave: This method works well if you are in a rush because microwaves cook food quickly and do not burn it.  The negative is that while you can bet the meatballs and tomato sauce piping hot, it is very easy to make the bread a soft mess. If you are in a hurry you can heat them all together – but I recommend separating the filling from the sub bread.

You need to be careful though because once you start heating something in the microwave you can get the meatballs pretty hot. – so be careful biting into them.

To reheat using the microwave, simply follow these steps:

  • Separate the sub filling and sauce
  • Use a microwave-safe plate
  • To make the tomato sauce a go a little further add ½ tbs of water before cooking.
  • Microwave the Meatballs with sauce and the bread high power for 60-90 seconds.
  • Check the temperature
  • Place them back, and put them in the roll, and heat for a further 30 seconds

Reassemble your meatballs and bread.  You are ready to eat.

How to Reheat a Meatball Sub in Toaster Oven

Recipe for reheating meatball subs in the Toaster Oven:

  • Preheat the Toaster Oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit (not as hot as a full oven)
  • Separate the meatballs and  tomato sauce from the bread then put it on some aluminum foil then place on the toaster oven tray
  • Heat the meatballs  until warm, about 12 minutes
  • 4 minutes before the meatballs are ready – put back in the bread to make it hot and crispy.

This method works best if you just have one sub and the toaster ovens are not that big, But they do heat the meatballs, sauce, and bread right through give you a piping hot reheated sub.

I use this technique when I am cooking for 1 or 2 people.

Spice it up – You can make your homemade marinara sauce by adding some crushed tomatoes with basil leaves in them. You could even add garlic too!


1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil

3 cloves garlic minced

4-5 fresh basil leaves chopped fine

Salt & pepper to taste

How To Reheat Meatball Sub  In The Air Fryer

I’m a real sucker for Meatballs in a sub – load it up with cheese, please! 

Recently I have been experimenting on how to reheat and eat a Meatball Sub done in an air fryer. 

The great thing is you can leave the whole thing together and reheat it that way.

Recipe for reheating Meatball Sub – Air Fryer

  1. Start by Preheating your air fryer to 320F. Do not have your cook temperature too high so the bun is not over toasted
  2. Place Meatball sub in the basket and into the air fryer for 2-3 minutes
  3. Take out and check it is heated through. If not add back for 1 minute and repeat.
  4. Now sprinkle on some kosher salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes (optional) this makes it look amazing.
  5. As an alternative dust with Parmesan cheese
How do you reheat a Meatball Sub?
How do you reheat a Meatball Sub? – All these Methods are good.

How to Reheat Leftover Meatball Sub

Meatball Sub familiar problem: When you heat a leftover meatball sub in the microwave, the may bread turn soggy or mushy. But when the oven is used the bread is nice and good, maybe the meat is a little cool though. 

I’ve tried heating my leftovers on both sides of the sandwich with no luck. The inside is too hot while the outside stays cool. Any ideas?

How do you reheat meatball subs?

You can heat them by placing them under an oven broiler or heating them in your microwave. We recommend using a paper towel to remove any excess grease from the bread before microwaving.

You may also want to place them between two pieces of aluminum foil if they seem too greasy after being heated.

To reheat a single leftover meatball sub the best option is to reheat it in a toaster oven at 350F degrees

 What are the best fillings and condiments to give extra flavor to a reheated meatball sub sandwich?

  • Mozzarella Cheese – makes it a bit like a pizza texture
  • Garlic powder – just a light sprinkle of garlic powder is enough
  • Red pepper flakes
  • Provolone cheese
  • Italian seasoning
  • Dried Oregano
  • Diced Onion

So now you know the best ways on How do you reheat a Meatball Sub? – I like this for big groups served with tacos, burritos or pasta salad.