Turkey and Spinach Meatball Sandwiches Recipe

Turkey and Spinach Meatball Sandwiches
Photo: Hector Manuel Sanchez, Prop Styling: Heather Chadduck Hillegas; Food Styling: Torie Cox
40 Minutes
40 Minutes


Serves 4

Sneak some spinach onto everyone’s plates with tender turkey and spinach meatballs nestled in crusty hoagie rolls with plenty of melted provolone cheese and tangy marinara sauce. The mix of spicy turkey Italian sausage and ground turkey gives the meatballs tons of flavor and a great texture, while the spinach and breadcrumbs make the meatballs extremely light. The meatballs are cooked in marinara sauce a large skillet on the stovetop—no frying required. Serve them as a hearty sandwich or over spaghetti for a fast and filling meal everyone will love.


  • 1 (8-oz.) package fresh baby spinach, divided
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons minced garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper, divided
  • 1/2 pound ground turkey (with dark meat)
  • 1/2 pound spicy Italian turkey sausage, casings removed
  • 1/2 cup fine, dry breadcrumbs
  • 1/3 cup minced onion (from 1 small onion)
  • 1 1/2 ounces Parmesan cheese, grated (about 1⁄3 cup)
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 1/2 cups jarred marinara sauce
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 4 ounces provolone cheese, shredded (about 2 cups)
  • 4 French hoagie rolls

How to Make

  1. Thinly slice 1 cup of the spinach; set aside. Heat oil in a Dutch oven over medium. Add garlic; cook until lightly browned and fragrant, about 1 minute. Stir in remaining spinach; cook, stirring constantly, until wilted, about 2 minutes. Add 1/4 teaspoon each of the salt and pepper; cook, stirring often, 2 minutes. Drain well, and finely chop spinach mixture.
  2. Stir together ground turkey, sausage, breadcrumbs, onion, Parmesan cheese, eggs, chopped spinach mixture, and remaining 1/4 teaspoon each salt and pepper in a large bowl until well blended. Gently shape mixture into 20 (1-inch) balls.
  3. Bring marinara sauce and water to a boil in a large skillet over medium, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat to medium-low, and maintain at a simmer. Add meatballs, and cook until meatballs are cooked through, 6 to 8 minutes. Reduce heat to low; cover and cook 10 minutes.
  4. Remove from heat; sprinkle with provolone cheese. Let stand, covered, until cheese melts, 1 to 2 minutes. Divide meatballs and sauce among hoagie rolls. Top evenly with reserved sliced spinach. Serve immediately.
Test Kitchen Tip

Mild fresh spinach can be slipped into just about any recipe. Simply wilt it in a pan with a little water or oil until it cooks down. Let the spinach cool; then wring out any excess moisture. Add it to pastas, top a pizza, or whisk it into scrambled eggs.