Paleo Meatball Subs

The Ultimate Paleo meatball sub

The meatball sub (or hoagie, hero or grinder as you may call it, depending on where you live) has allegedly been a part of culinary history since the late 1900’s. And I think it’s safe to say that this sandwich has won the hearts (and taste buds) of Americans across the nation.

After all, what’s not to love about the combination of crusty Italian bread, rich tomato sauce, fresh herbs, moist meatballs and melted cheese?

But since adopting a grain-free, gluten-free lifestyle, the days of digging into this bready, delicious sandwich have become a thing of the past for me and my family.

Until now…

The Ultimate Paleo Meatball Sub

Last week, I was whipping up one of my favorite things to cook – grass-fed meatballs with hearty organic tomato sauce.

While I typically serve these over spaghetti squash, my beloved meatball sub came to mind.

Could I re-create it?

Using our Better Bread Mix, I whipped up a quick batch of dough. But instead of shaping into one standard loaf, I simply divided the dough into four submarine-shaped rolls, and baked as usual. After cooling slightly, I sliced them in half and filled the center with meatballs and sauce.

The result… just like Grandma Giovanni used to make (okay, my grandmothers are not Italian, but you get the point).

While I enjoyed my Paleo meatball sub without cheese, my husband, Jon, added organic mozzarella to his for an authentic treat.

If you love submarine sandwiches, but have given up grains, I encourage you to try this simple and delicious recipe for our Paleo meatball subs.

Paleo meatball subs for pinterest

Paleo Meatball Subs: A Quick Step-By-Step

Making the Paleo bread for our subs takes less than 10 minutes hands on. But I wanted to include a few shots of the process to familiarize you with each step. So here goes!

After you have added your Better Bread Mix to a bowl, pour in the egg whites and vinegar. Using a hand mixer, beat on low speed to combine. The “dough” will look about like this:

Mixing the paleo meatball sub dough

Now, get your water boiling. (NOTE: I do recommend you do NOT do this in the microwave due to dangerous “super-heating,” which can cause the water to boil instantly – and virtually explode – when it is removed. It has happened to me.) Pour your boiling water into the dough and mix on low speed. You will notice the mixture begin to change consistency, going from a mush-like substance to a smooth and stretchy dough that will be easy for you to pick up and work with.

A more manageable sub dough after adding the water

Roll the dough into a ball with your hands. Then divide into four equally-sized balls (each about 150 grams apiece).

The dough will be easy to work with

Shape each dough ball into a flattened log about 6 inches long, 2 inches across and 1 inch high. Place on a greased baking sheet. Score the dough several times across the top using a sharp knife. This will allow the subs to expand evenly.

Form the sub dough into 6-inch logs

Pop them into the oven and bake for 45 minutes until golden brown. This bread is the REAL DEAL!

REAL DEAL Paleo sub rolls

Of course, you can slice, stuff and fill with anything you’d like. But grass-fed beef meatballs and red sauce are a delicious choice!

Paleo Meatball Sub Recipe

5 from 1 reviews
Paleo Meatball Sub Recipe
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Yield: 4
  • 1 Better Bread Mix
  • ⅔ cup boiling water
  • 2 Tbsp. organic apple cider vinegar
  • 8 egg whites (or liquid equivalent)
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a baking sheet.
  2. Add Better Bread Mix to a medium bowl.
  3. In a small bowl, combine egg whites and apple cider vinegar. Heat water to boiling (No exceptions!).
  4. Add egg whites and apple cider vinegar to Better Bread mix. Blend on low speed to combine.
  5. Pour in boiling water and blend on medium speed until dough comes together.
  6. Separate dough into 4 pieces. Shape each piece into a submarine-shaped log and place on greased baking sheet (NOTE: Dough will triple in height. Create slightly-flattened 6 inch long sub rolls with 2 inch width and 1 inch height for best result). Score the top of the dough on the bias – this will help the rolls keep their shape when they rise.
  7. Bake for 45-50 minutes – sub rolls should be very firm.
  8. Let cool slightly, slice lengthwise and fill with grass-fed meatballs.
Nutrition Information Per Serving (Large Sub Roll)
280 calories, 16 g fat, 4 g saturated fat, 8 g monounsaturated fat, 4 g polyunsaturated fat, 0 mg cholesterol, 700 mg sodium, 196 mg potassium, 20 g carbohydrate, 12 g fiber, 4 g sugar, 8 g protein


BONUS RECIPE: Paleo Grass-Fed Meatballs

5 from 1 reviews
Paleo Grass-Fed Meatballs
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Yield: 6
  • 1 lb.grass fed beef
  • ½ tsp. sea salt
  • ¼ cup organic onion, minced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 Tbsp. organic Italian seasoning
  • 1 pastured egg, beaten
  • ½ cup almond flour
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Grease a rimmed baking sheet (jelly roll pan)
  2. In a large bowl, mix all of the ingredients (gently but thoroughly).
  3. Scoop out golf ball-sized amounts and form into meatballs.
  4. Place on baking sheet and transfer to oven. Bake for 20 minutes.
  5. Simmer in your favorite organic tomato sauce for one hour, then create Paleo meatball subs.



  1. AG says

    If someone is dairy free, Daiya mozzerella cheese is delicious.
    I think I’ll do this with shrimp parmigiana – I had it last night and was missing the bread – you must have heard me!

    • Kelley says

      Shrimp parm sounds amazing! I hope you enjoy enjoy it and thanks for the dairy free suggestion, too.

      Be Well!

    • Kelley says

      Hi Diana!
      Thanks for stopping by.

      One bag of Better Bread Mix makes 2 free-form loaves, one large standard loaf, four large sub rolls (pictured above), or 16 dinner rolls.

      Sometimes I make a half batch, which is really easy to do and great if you have a small household. In the Paleo meatball sub post I actually did a half batch. The bag is resealable for convenience.

      We currently sell Better Bread Mix in 3, 6 and 12 packs.

      Be Well!

    • Jon Herring says

      Hi Herb… to be honest, I can’t make heads or tails of your comment… but if it’s the ingredients in our products you’re looking for, you can find those listed on the back of each package. Simply click on the image beside each product description.

      In the case of our Better Bread mix, featured in this post, the ingredients are: almond flour, organic coconut flour, organic psyllium husk powder, organic golden flax, organic coconut sugar, baking soda, sea salt.

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