Influenza virus is a continuous and severe global threat to mankind. The continuously re-emerging disease gives rise to thousands of deaths and enormous economic losses each year, which emphasizes the urgency and necessity to develop high-quality influenza vaccines in a safer, more efficient and economic way. The influenza subunit and VLP vaccines, taking the advantage of recombinant DNA technologies and expression system platforms, can be produced in such an ideal way. This review summarized the recent advancements in the research and development of influenza subunit and VLP vaccines based on the recombinant expression of hemagglutinin antigen (HA), neuraminidase antigen (NA), Matrix 2 protein (M2) and nucleocapsid protein (NP). It would help to get insight into the current stage of influenza vaccines, and suggest the future design and development of novel influenza vaccines.