JALAPEÑO CHEDDAR MEATBALL SUBS

June 1, 2020
Elysia Moccia

With my husband being half Italian, a meatball sub will always read classic to him. And while I agree there is definitely a place for the traditional meatball, marinara, and mozzarella cheese on a crusty sub bun, I wanted to try something new. And from that my jalapeño cheddar meatball sub was created. Guys, this is INDULGENT. It checks all the boxes of the classic; just with my own twist. The cream cheese bacon spread melts together with the sweet caramelized onions, gooey sharp cheddar cheese, and the spicy bite of the jalapeño. The turkey meatballs are tender and full of flavor because they’re also mixed with even more cheddar and jalapeño, layering the flavors in every bite. The spicy ranch tops it off to trick your taste buds with a cool break, only to bring a nice level of heat to balance everything out.

My husband was silently eating for what felt like a very long few minutes when he finally noticed that I was eagerly staring at him waiting for a star rating. I’m happy to report that he gave this sub a solid five.

This recipe makes approximately 40-45 meatballs. Any extra meatballs can be stored in an air tight container or freezer bag and frozen for up to two months.

Jalapeno Cheddar Meatball SubJALAPEÑO CHEDDAR MEATBALL SUBS
Serves six subs

3 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon butter
4 yellow onions, divided, 3 and 1/2 sliced and 1/2 minced
2 and 1/2 teaspoon salt, divided
2 pounds ground turkey
3/4 cup panko breadcrumbs
2 eggs
2 tablespoons garlic, minced
7 jalapeños, divided, 5 minced and 2 sliced
1/2 cup parsley, minced
1 cup sharp cheddar, shredded
2 teaspoons pepper
1 and 1/2 cups cream cheese, softened
3/4 cup cooked bacon, finely chopped
3 green onions, finely chopped
1 cup ranch dressing
3/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
1 teaspoon hot sauce
6 french rolls, partially sliced
16 slices sharp cheddar

Over medium heat, warm olive oil and butter in a sauté pan until butter melts. Add the sliced onions, gently folding to coat onions. You may need to turn heat down to medium-low to prevent the onions from browning too quickly or sticking.

Once onions have begun to sweat, add 1/2 teaspoon salt, stirring occasionally. Add a splash of water if onions dry out too quickly. Once onions begin to break down, after about 20-30 minutes, turn heat to low and allow them to rest for a few minutes.

As onions begin to brown, stir every few minutes to ensure even caramelization. Continue to stir and scrape the bottom of the pan as brown bits form. Once onions are an even, rich brown color, remove from heat and set aside.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Combine ground turkey, panko breadcrumbs, eggs, minced onions, garlic, minced jalapeños, parsley, shredded cheese, 2 teaspoons salt, and pepper. Use a 1 and 1/2 inch scoop or large spoon to form meatballs (making sure mixture is well pressed into scoop). Arrange meatballs on parchment lined baking sheet.

Bake for 17-20 minutes, or until meatballs reach an internal temperature of 165 degrees and are slightly golden brown.

While meatballs are baking, combine cream cheese, bacon, and green onion until well folded.

In a separate bowl, mix ranch, cayenne pepper, smoked paprika, and hot sauce until well combined.

Before you assemble sandwiches, move the oven rack to a lower-middle position and turn your broiler on low. Assemble subs by spreading the cream cheese and bacon mixture on both interior sides of the sub bun. Layer sliced cheddar onto bun. Add layer of caramelized onions. Place meatballs into sub.

Arrange subs on parchment lined baking sheet. Bake for 4-7 minutes, or until cheese begins to melt.

Top with sliced jalapeño and spicy ranch.

Meatball Sub IngredientsMeatball Ingredients in BowlRaw Meatballs

JALAPEÑO CHEDDAR MEATBALL SUBS
 
Author:
Ingredients
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 4 yellow onions, divided, 3 and ½ sliced and ½ minced
  • 2 and ½ teaspoon salt, divided
  • 2 pounds ground turkey
  • ¾ cup panko breadcrumbs
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tablespoons garlic, minced
  • 7 jalapeños, divided, 5 minced and 2 sliced
  • ½ cup parsley, minced
  • 1 cup sharp cheddar, shredded
  • 2 teaspoons pepper
  • 1 and ½ cups cream cheese, softened
  • ¾ cup cooked bacon, finely chopped
  • 3 green onions, finely chopped
  • 1 cup ranch dressing
  • ¾ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon hot sauce
  • 6 french rolls, partially sliced
  • 16 slices sharp cheddar
Instructions
  1. Over medium heat, warm olive oil and butter in a sauté pan until butter melts. Add the sliced onions, gently folding to coat onions. You may need to turn heat down to medium-low to prevent the onions from browning too quickly or sticking.
  2. Once onions have begun to sweat, add ½ teaspoon salt, stirring occasionally. Add a splash of water if onions dry out too quickly. Once onions begin to break down, after about 20-30 minutes, turn heat to low and allow them to rest for a few minutes.
  3. As onions begin to brown, stir every few minutes to ensure even caramelization. Continue to stir and scrape the bottom of the pan as brown bits form. Once onions are an even, rich brown color, remove from heat and set aside.
  4. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  5. Combine ground turkey, panko breadcrumbs, eggs, minced onions, garlic, minced jalapeños, parsley, shredded cheese, 2 teaspoons salt, and pepper. Use a 1 and ½ inch scoop or large spoon to form meatballs (making sure mixture is well pressed into scoop). Arrange meatballs on parchment lined baking sheet.
  6. Bake for 17-20 minutes, or until meatballs reach an internal temperature of 165 degrees and are slightly golden brown.
  7. While meatballs are baking, combine cream cheese, bacon, and green onion until well folded.
  8. In a separate bowl, mix ranch, cayenne pepper, smoked paprika, and hot sauce until well combined.
  9. Before you assemble sandwiches, move the oven rack to a lower-middle position and turn your broiler on low. Assemble subs by spreading the cream cheese and bacon mixture on both interior sides of the sub bun. Layer sliced cheddar onto bun. Add layer of caramelized onions. Place meatballs into sub.
  10. Arrange subs on parchment lined baking sheet. Bake for 4-7 minutes, or until cheese begins to melt.
  11. Top with sliced jalapeño and spicy ranch.

 

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