These Meatball Sliders are packed with flavor. They’re the perfect accompaniment to game day, a potluck, or feeding your hungry family on the weekend. Tangy, juicy, and topped with melted cheese – they’ll have you cheering from the sidelines!

Meatball slider being served from a baking dish with cheese pulling down to the dish.

Meatball Sliders

One thing I love about Meatball Sliders is that they’re done in no time. With pre-cooked ingredients, I can get them to the table in about 30 minutes without breaking a sweat.

Easy to make, easy to eat! That’s the motto.

Nutty pesto, tangy marinara, juicy meatballs, and melty cheese are all you need to make this stand-out appetizer. Even though it’s not a complicated appetizer, this recipe will leave a lasting impression on anyone who tries it.

The butter and parmesan brushed slider buns take this recipe to the next level. Once your guests try a bite of these decadent Meatball Sliders, they will beg you to share the recipe.

These sliders are perfect for casual gatherings because they can be assembled in advance and baked at a moment’s notice. Make and freeze for emergency snacking when an unexpected guest drops in.

Meatball slider on a black and white checked plate with a bowl of marinara in the background.

How To Make Meatball Sliders

  1. Lay out the bottom buns. Line the bottom of a 13 x 9 baking dish with the bottom half of your slider rolls. This is going to make assembly and serving the sliders super easy. 
  2. Layer the slider fillings. Next, spread pesto over the rolls and top each slider bun with a spoonful of marinara sauce. Place a meatball on each slide bun, then top those with the leftover marinara sauce. Finally, layer the provolone and mozzarella cheese on top of each meatball. 
  3. Top the sliders and flavor the top buns. Spread the remaining pesto on the inside of the buns’ top halves, then place them on the top of the sliders. Brush the outside of the rolls with butter, and sprinkle parmesan cheese over top to make the tastiest rolls ever. 
  4. Cover and bake. Cover the baking dish with foil and bake the sliders for 15 minutes at 350°F. Covering the sliders, you’ll get meatballs and sauce heated through and melty cheese without overcooking the buns. 
  5. Uncover and finish. Once you remove the foil, bake the sliders for 10 minutes to crisp the crust of the rolls. They’ll still be soft and fluffy on the inside, but the outside will be buttery, crisp, and addicting.
  6. Serve and enjoy! Pull the baking dish from the oven, pop it on a trivet, and try to resist digging in until the dish has cooled enough to grab a slider. No need to create more dishes; you can serve these right from the baking dish. Everyone can reach in, grab a slider, and get back to the game. 
Meatball Slider being dipped into a glass bowl of marinara.

Tips & Tricks

  • Win your time back. I recommend premade meatballs to save prep time. With that said, you can always substitute homemade meatballs if you’ve got extra time and energy.
  • Bake covered at first, then uncover. Covering the sliders for the initial bake will prevent the buns from overcooking or drying out. This way, you can achieve the perfect soft and melty interior with an expertly buttery and crispy crust.
  • Swap ingredients to your preferences. This recipe is so easy to customize. Try making these with vodka sauce instead of marinara, spread ricotta on the rolls instead of pesto, or create a garlic herb butter to brush on the buns. The possibilities are endless. 
Meatball slider on a pile of sliders with a bite taken out and a white plate with a single slider in the background.

Do I have to thaw the meatballs before using them?

So long as the meatballs were cooked before being frozen, there’s no need to thaw them first. But if you’re starting with raw meatballs, cook them fully before baking the sliders.

What should I serve alongside these Meatball Sliders?

Other finger-food recipes are excellent for creating an appetizer spread. But, if you’re looking to round out these sliders as a meal for your family, you can’t go wrong with this Zesty Italian Pasta Salad or a classic Antipasto

Check out these other recipes, perfect for game day!

For more easy tailgate recipes, follow us on Instagram and Facebook!

Meatball slider being served from a baking dish with cheese pulling down to the dish.

Get the Recipe: Cheesy Meatball Sliders Recipe

Game day eats! Easy Cheesy Meatball Sliders are so super simple to make and great for a crowd!
5 from 1 vote


  • 12 slider or small dinner rolls
  • 1/4 cup basil pesto
  • 12 Italian Meatballs
  • 1/2 cup marinara sauce
  • 9 slices provolone cheese
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 4 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese


  • 1 baking dish


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Arrange the bottom half of the rolls in a 13×9 inch baking dish.
  • Spread half the pesto over the bottom half of the rolls.
  • Spoon half the marinara over the pesto and top each roll with a meatball.
  • Spoon the remaining marinara over the meatballs.
  • Layer the provolone over the meatballs and sprinkle with the mozzarella.
  • Spread the remaining pesto over the cut side of the top half of the rolls.
  • Place the top half of the rolls on the cheese.
  • Brush the tops of the rolls with the melted butter and sprinkle with parmesan cheese.
  • Cover the sliders with foil and bake for 15 minutes. Uncover and bake for an additional 10 minutes.
  • Serve immediately


Meatball sliders can be assembled in advanced but are best if baked right before serving and served hot.
Serving: 1g, Calories: 320kcal, Carbohydrates: 21g, Protein: 14g, Fat: 19g, Saturated Fat: 9g, Cholesterol: 44mg, Sodium: 642mg, Potassium: 159mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 1g, Vitamin A: 530IU, Vitamin C: 0.8mg, Calcium: 317mg, Iron: 1.9mg