Garlic Bread Meatball Bombs are hollowed out dinner rolls which have been liberally smeared with homemade garlic butter. Each roll is stuffed with a meatball and sauce, then topped with cheese. Baked to a bubbling, gooey perfection, these bombs are the bomb!
GARLIC BREAD MEATBALL BOMBS
If you’re looking for a quick and easy meal that looks like you spent all day working on it, look no further! Garlic Bread Meatball Bombs is just the dish for you! And, you have the choice to use a lot of prepared ingredients from your grocery store, or you can make them all from scratch. There are options for both types of home cooks in this recipe.
You can serve these bombs as an appetizer, but I prefer to think of them as a main. They have everything in them you need to make a great tasting meal. Serve two bombs per person. That means each person gets two meatballs, two dinner rolls, lots of sauce, and some gooey, cheesy goodness. Serve these with a simple side salad to round out the entire meal. I say simple, because these bombs have so much flavour. Little else is needed.
You can halve the recipe if twelve bombs are too much for you and your family. However, these do re-heat really well, so you might want to consider that. To freeze, allow the bombs to fully cool. Wrap individually in aluminum foil and transfer each bomb to a sealable sandwich bag. Freeze for up to two months.
To reheat, remove the bombs from the freezer and remove the sandwich bag. Allow bombs to thaw at room temperate for one to two hours. Remove foil and place the bomb into a baking dish. Cover with foil and bake at 350 degrees F for ten minutes. Otherwise, cover with a paper towel and microwave on medium for one to two minutes.
INGREDIENTS NEEDED TO PREPARE THIS RECIPE
The following is a list of the ingredients needed to prepare this recipe. For exact amounts and measurements, refer to the printable recipe card located near the bottom of this post.
- Dinner Rolls – The best rolls for this recipe are homemade, but I was lazy and used store-bought. Use those super soft, white bread rolls that you can find in just about any grocery store! They’re usually baked in lots of twelve.
- Meatballs – You can make your own meatballs, or you can use store-bought frozen meatballs. If you want, you can use vegetarian meatballs too!
- Mozzarella Cheese – You can use cheddar or any good melting cheese.
- Italian Seasoning
- Non-Stick Cooking Spray
- Parsley – Optional; for garnish.
GARLIC BUTTER INGREDIENTS:
- Butter – Make sure your butter is at room temperature! Use salted butter if you have it. If not, you can use unsalted, but add 1/4 teaspoon of salt to this garlic butter mixture.
- Garlic – Fresh garlic will result in the best flavour every single time.
- Parmesan Cheese – I used freshly grated parmesan, but the stuff in the can works just as well for this recipe!
- Seasonings – Dried parsley, dried oregano, and ground black pepper.
- Sun Dried Tomato Pesto – I always have this on hand and use it in lots of savoury dishes. It adds so much flavour to the marinara.
- Marinara Sauce – Again, make your own or use a jar from the grocery store.
- Olive Oil
You have two options here. The first option is to buy dinner rolls already made from the bakery section of your local grocery store. Or, you can make them from scratch. I have a super-easy, no-knead dinner roll recipe that you can use. They are larger than store-bought dinner rolls, but they are soft and pillow-y; just perfect for Garlic Bread Meatball Bombs!
In the photographs you see in this post, I used store-bought dinner rolls. I wanted to show you just how easy it is to prepare the recipe using store-bought ingredients. But, like I said in the beginning, you can certainly prepare the dinner rolls from scratch if you like. For me, the decision would depend on whom I was making this dish for. For just my family, I’m opting for store-bought rolls. But, if I were to prepare this dish for guests, I’d make the rolls from scratch.
HOMEMADE GARLIC BUTTER
Just like the dinner rolls in the previous section, the garlic butter can also be purchased from your local grocer. There are so many garlic butter options out there, and I’ve tried quite a few of them. Here’s how I feel about store-bought garlic butter. They’re horrible. Too harsh? Let me explain.
Unless you shop at a higher-end grocery store, the garlic butter you buy from a store is not butter at all. It’s most likely going to be prepared with margarine. That’s strike one. Also, I have only ever found one store-bought garlic butter with real garlic in it; they always seem to use garlic powder. Again, it’s not the same. Fresh garlic has a better flavour. That’s strike two.
Lastly, here’s strike three. The cost of buying garlic butter at the store is far more than you would spend preparing it yourself. If you compare ingredient by ingredient, the cost is much less. And, chances are, you already have a few of the ingredients on hand. I’m assuming most home cooks would have butter on hand, and a stocked spice rack with parsley, oregano, and ground black pepper, right!?
USE EITHER HOMEMADE, STORE-BOUGHT, OR EVEN VEGETARIAN MEATBALLS!
I just realized that I do not have a homemade meatball recipe posted to my blog! I’m such a slacker! It’s now on my list of things to do. Wait, I should clarify that I don’t have a meatball recipe with real meat. I do, however, have a vegetarian meatball recipe that works very well in this recipe. I even have a cauliflower version, which has not been tested in this recipe, so you’re assuming all of the risk.
Most of us have a homemade meatball recipe that was passed down to us from someone in our family. Feel free to use that recipe. If you don’t have such a recipe and you want to make the meatballs from scratch, consider using this recipe here.
As previously mentioned, you can use frozen meatballs too. Just be sure to cook them according to the instructions on the package before assembling the bombs. Good news for vegetarians!!! Frozen vegetarian meatballs will work perfectly in this recipe. You can make this dish a vegetarian meal that’s hearty, wholesome, and one the whole family can eat. I have made these with vegetarian meatballs and they are really delicious.
HOW TO MAKE GARLIC BREAD MEATBALL BOMBS
LET’S PREP EVERYTHING FIRST!
First, let’s start with the meatballs. If you are using store-bought, frozen meatballs, cook them according to the package instructions. When cooked, set aside until ready to use. If you are preparing homemade meatballs, do that now. Cook them and set them aside until ready to use.
Next, lets prepare the garlic butter. In a small sauce pan, add the butter and garlic. Over medium heat, cook the garlic in the butter until fragrant and just starting to brown. Remove from heat and set aside to cool. While it cools, prepare the sauce by whisking together the sun dried tomato pesto, marinara sauce, and olive oil in a bowl. Set aside. Preheat your oven to 350°F.
ASSEMBLING THE MEATBALL BOMBS
To assemble, begin by hollowing out the top of each dinner roll with a sharp knife. The hole will need to be slightly bigger than your meatballs, but not so deep that you puncture the bottom. See the following photograph:
Set the hollowed out rolls into a 9×13″ baking pan which has been coated with non-stick cooking spray. Set aside. Next, whisk the parmesan, dried parsley, dried oregano, and ground black pepper into the butter and garlic mixture that has been cooling. Using a pastry brush, liberally smear the holes of the dinner rolls with the garlic butter. Use all of the butter evenly into each dinner roll. See the following photo:
Now, spoon about a tablespoon of the prepared sauce into each of the hollowed out dinner rolls. Place a cooked meatball into each hole. Top each meatball with the remaining sauce mixture. See the following photo:
Evenly distribute the cheese over each of the dinner rolls. Sprinkle on the Italian seasoning. See the following photo:
Bake for 10-12 minutes, until the cheese is melted and bubbly. Remove from oven. Using a sharp knife, slice between each dinner roll. Plate and garnish with parsley. Now, dig in, because these are best when they are piping hot with lots of gooey, stretchy, melted cheese!
SERVE WITH A SIMPLE SIDE
Garlic Bread Meatball Bombs have a lot of big, bold flavours. You would not want to overshadow that with a bold side dish as well. That’s why, I highly recommend that you serve these bombs with a simple salad. Do you remember the tossed/garden salads from the 80s? It’s perfect with these bombs! Just toss some chopped lettuce with quartered tomatoes, and slice cucumbers. Plate and drizzle over a little bit of your favourite dressing. It’s simple, delicious, and easy!
Garlic Bread Meatball Bombs
- 12 dinner rolls https://www.lordbyronskitchen.com/jumbo-no-knead-dinner-rolls/
- 12 meatballs, cooked
- 2 cups mozzarella cheese, shredded
- 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning https://www.lordbyronskitchen.com/italian-seasoning-blend/
- cooking spray
- parsley, optional
For the Garlic Butter
- 1/2 cup salted butter
- 3 cloves garlic, finely minced
- 2 tablespoons parmesan cheese
- 1 teaspoon dried parsley
- 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
For the Sauce:
- 1/2 cup sun dried tomato pesto https://www.lordbyronskitchen.com/sun-dried-tomato-pesto/
- 2 cups marinara sauce https://www.lordbyronskitchen.com/30-minute-marinara-sauce/
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- If you are using store-bought, frozen meatballs, cook them according to the package instructions. When cooked, set aside until ready to use. If you are preparing homemade meatballs, do that now. Cook them and set them aside until ready to use.
- Next, in a small sauce pan, add the butter and garlic. Over medium heat, cook the garlic in the butter until fragrant and just starting to brown. Remove from heat and set aside to cool.
- Prepare the sauce by whisking together the sun dried tomato pesto, marinara sauce, and olive oil in a bowl. Set aside.
- Preheat your oven to 350°F.
- To assemble, begin by hollowing out the top of each dinner roll with a sharp knife. The hole will need to be slightly bigger than your meatballs, but not so deep that you puncture the bottom.
- Set the rolls into a 9×13" baking pan which has been coated with non-stick cooking spray. Set aside.
- Whisk the parmesan, dried parsley, dried oregano, and ground black pepper into the butter and garlic mixture. Using a pastry brush, liberally smear the holes of the dinner rolls with the garlic butter. Use all of the butter evenly into each dinner roll.
- Spoon about a tablespoon of the prepared sauce into each of the hollowed out dinner rolls.
- Place a cooked meatball into each hole. Top each meatball with the remaining sauce mixture.
- Evenly distribute the cheese over each of the dinner rolls. Sprinkle on the Italian seasoning.
- Bake for 10-12 minutes, until the cheese is melted and bubbly. Remove from oven.
- Using a sharp knife, slice between each dinner roll. Plate and garnish with parsley.