TikTok's Meatball Hawaiian Roll Sliders Are A Mess, Not A Sandwich

Most people aren't debating whether or not a slider is a sandwich. In the case of TikTok's meatball Hawaiian roll sliders, however, we'd argue they're anything but. The viral recipe, as demonstrated in a TikTok video from user @amy_doe_cooking, begins with slider-sized Hawaiian rolls, but instead of separating them and slicing each one in half, you're meant to leave them intact and carve out a deep hole in each one. A spoonful of sauce goes into each of these openings, followed by a single meatball, more sauce, and cheese, after which the "sliders" are put into the oven to bake.

Admittedly, the recipe does sound pretty tasty, but does it sound like a sandwich? First of all, the makeup of this miniature meatball sub makes it nearly impossible to eat sans fork and knife, let alone without a plate, which is the beauty of slider sandwiches. All of that sauce is destined to get all over your hands and face, and it'll potentially even ruin your favorite shirt. Furthermore, if we're getting technical, Merriam-Webster defines a sandwich as either "two or more slices of bread or a split roll having a filling in between," or "one slice of bread covered with food." A hollowed-out roll with a meatball stuffed inside doesn't quite sound like either of those things. But if they're not sandwiches, what are they? Simple: a mess.

How to improve TikTok's meatball Hawaiian roll sliders

The mess that is TikTok's meatball Hawaiian roll sliders may not be ideal for your next tailgate, but with a few improvements, they can easily become the star of game day. If you want to make a more manageable version, stick with the Hawaiian rolls, but don't hollow them out. Instead, cut them in half as you would with a traditional slider. This will make them easier to hold and will create space for you to pack in at least one extra meatball.


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♬ original sound – Amy Doe Cooking

Speaking of meatballs, you have a few prepping choices. You're welcome to keep them whole and cook them in sauce like the TikTok recipe recommends — just keep in mind that this leaves room for a meatball to spill out when you go in for your first bite.

Another option is to cut the meatballs in half and lay them flat side down on the bottom bun. You could even try stacking two layers of halved meatballs and putting cheese in between to act like a glue. If you want a more classic slider, try breaking up and frying the meatballs to create miniature meatball patties. Given the success of mini hamburger patties in sliders, this may be the best — not to mention the cleanest — technique of the bunch.