When I was 16 I cooked in a restaurant where I made these meatball sandwiches that every now and again, still all these years later, I get a hankerin for. Now back then they were made with frozen meatballs, but they were really good frozen meatballs. I remember trying to make some at home once for my family for dinner. Welp, that didn’t work out so well, needless to say my Mom’s stoneware plates weren’t meant to be in a 400° oven, oops. I cracked 2 of her plates and I wasn’t asked to cook dinner again for a while. That is how this casserole was born. I could get all the same tastes, just in casserole form. I hope you enjoy this dish that each time I eat it I am taken back to that 16 year old kid.
Meatball Sandwich Casserole
- 1½ pounds ground beef
- 2 eggs
- ½ cup seasoned breadcrumbs
- ½ cup shredded Parmesan cheese
- 2 tablespoons minced garlic
- 1 tablespoon garlic salt
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
- 24 ounce jar spaghetti sauce
- 4 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
- 1 loaf (1 pound) Italian bread, cut into 1 inch slices
- olive oil to drizzle over meatballs
- Preheat oven to 400° F.
- In a large bowl combine garlic salt, black pepper, minced garlic, Parmesan cheese and eggs.
- Crumble the ground beef over mixture and mix until just combined.
- Roll into 1½"-2" balls (about the size of a golf ball) and place onto a 12" x 18"x 1" baking sheet.
- Drizzle the meatballs with olive oil, rolling around to make sure they are completely coated.
- Place baking sheet into the oven to bake turning meatballs over after 15 minutes to brown the other side.
- Return to oven and bake an additional 10-15 minutes or until no longer pink inside.
- Lower oven temperature to 350° F.
- While meatballs cool slightly, arrange sliced bread in a single layer in an ungreased 9" x 13" baking dish.
- Cover bread slices with 1½ cups shredded mozzarella cheese.
- Slice meatballs in ½ and layer over mozzarella cheese.
- Top meatballs with your favorite spaghetti sauce.
- Sprinkle with remaining 2½ cups of mozzarella cheese.
- Return casserole to the oven and bake uncovered at 350° F for 30-45 minutes or until heated through and cheese is melted and bubbly.