A sandwich was the first meal I learned to make. And I still delight in eating them. I am not alone in this either. roughly 50% of Americans consume a sandwich every day. It is, after all, one of the most versatile, simple, and universally beloved foods we know, with countless variations to satisfy every palate, dietary restriction, and time of day.
And yet, for all its ease and accessibility, the sandwich is not infallible. Even the most basic iterations, like the PB&J and grilled cheese, can go awry—and that's not touching on more labor-intensive preparations, like meatball sub. It takes only one disappointing sandwich, homemade or store-bought, to realize just how much can end up wrong. So how do you maximize flavor, manage sogginess, maintain structural integrity, and achieve the most well-balanced and delicious sandwich possible?
Try these recipes below.
Alaska Salmon Salad Sandwich
15 1/2 ounces canned Alaska salmon
1/3 cup plain nonfat yogurt
1/3 cup chopped green onions
1/3 cup chopped celery
1 tablespoon lemon juice
Black pepper, to taste
12 slices bread
Drain and flake salmon. Stir in remaining ingredients except for pepper and bread. Season with pepper to taste.
Then spread the salmon mixture on half of the bread slices; top with remaining bread. Cut sandwiches into halves or quarters. Makes 6 sandwiches.
Avocado Bacon Sandwiches
1/4 pound bacon slices, chopped
1 ripe avocado
1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
Salt and pepper, to taste
3 tablespoons butter, softened
4 large slices whole wheat bread
Lemon twist and parsley sprig, to garnish
Fry bacon until crisp. Drain on paper towels.
Peel avocado, taking care not to remove bright green flesh just inside the skin. Cut in half and remove the seed.
In a bowl, mash avocado, then stir in lemon juice, salt, and pepper. Butter two slices of bread. Spread the avocado mixture on buttered sides of 2 bread slices.
Scatter bacon over the avocado. Cover with remaining bread slices, buttered sides down, and press together. Cut off bread crusts. Cut each sandwich into 4 triangles.
Arrange on a serving plate, garnished with a lemon twist and parsley sprig.
Avocado Chicken Melt
4 boneless skinless chicken breast halves
1/2 cup cornmeal
1 teaspoon garlic salt
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1/2 firm-ripe avocado, peeled and sliced thin, divided
1 cup shredded Monterey jack cheese
4 wheat bread slices, toasted
1/2 cup plain yogurt
1/4 cup chopped sweet red bell pepper
Rinse chicken with cold water and pat dry with paper towels. Place between two sheets of plastic wrap and pound to flatten to 1/4-inch thickness.
In resealable plastic bag, combine cornmeal and garlic salt. Add chicken; close bag and toss to coat well. In large nonstick frying pan, heat oil. Cook chicken in hot oil for 2 minutes per side or until lightly browned.
Remove chicken from pan and place in shallow baking pan. Place half of avocado slices over chicken and sprinkle evenly with shredded cheese. Bake at 350 degrees F for 15 minutes or until chicken is done and cheese is melted.
Place each chicken breast on a slice of toast.
Top with remaining avocado slices. In small bowl, combine yogurt and pepper; serve with chicken. Yields 4 servings.
1/2 cup onion, chopped
2 tablespoons flour
1 tablespoon prepared mustard
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 pound ground beef
6 tablespoons catsup
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup sour cream
8 hamburger buns
Brown onion and beef. Add flour, catsup, mustard, salt, and pepper. Add sour cream. Serve on lightly-toasted hamburger buns.
8 (10-inch) flour tortillas
12 ounces smoked or barbecued meat
2 cups shredded Cheddar cheese
1 cup sauteed red bell peppers, julienne
1 cup sauteed onions, julienne
1 cup sauteed sliced mushrooms
Saute onions, peppers, and mushrooms, and place in a bowl.
Shred or chop your meat and coat lightly with barbecue sauce. Preheat nonstick skillet on medium. Spray pan with Pam.
Place on the tortilla in the pan and cover entire tortilla with a layer of cheese. Top cheese with smoked sauced meat and sautÈed vegetables. Cover everything with another tortilla. Spray the top of the second tortilla with Pam and turn over after the bottom is browned. When the bottom of the second tortilla is browned, remove from pan and cut into wedges.
Repeat the process until all tortillas are used. Serve on a large platter with salsa, sour cream and guacamole.
2 cucumbers, peeled
1 medium onion
1 pound cream cheese
2 to 3 drops green food coloring
Grate cucumber and onion (may use a food processor) and drain well in a strainer, pressing down with a spoon to remove all liquid.
Discard liquid. Add drained cucumbers and onion to cream cheese and mix well in the food processor.
Color with 2 to 3 drops green food coloring. Use as a sandwich spread or as a dip. Benedictine may also be used to stuff cherry tomatoes for an hors d'oeuvre tray. Yields 2 cups.
1/4 pound bleu cheese
3 pounds lean ground beef
1/2 cup minced fresh chives
1/4 teaspoon hot pepper sauce
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon dry mustard
12 hamburger buns
Crumble the blue cheese into a large mixing bowl, and then thoroughly combine with ground beef, chives, hot pepper sauce, Worcestershire sauce, black pepper, salt, and mustard. Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours.
Preheat an outdoor grill for high heat. Lightly press the meat into about 12 patties. Cook on the preheated grill until browned on both sides and to your desired doneness.
Serve on hamburger buns.
Brats 'n' Beer
1 (12 ounces) can or bottle beer (not dark)
4 bratwurst (about 1 pound)
1 sweet or Spanish onion, thinly sliced and separated into rings
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
4 hot dog buns
Prepare coals for direct grilling.
Pour beer into a heavy medium saucepan with an ovenproof handle. (If not ovenproof, wrap heavy-duty foil around the handle.)
Place saucepan on the grill. Pierce bratwurst with a knife; add to beer. Simmer, uncovered, over medium coals, 15 minutes, turning once.
Place onion rings on the heavy-duty foil. Drizzle with oil; sprinkle with salt and pepper. Fold sides of the foil over rings to enclose.
Place onion slices on grill. Grill, uncovered, 10 to 15 minutes or until onion slices are tender. Transfer bratwurst to grill. Remove saucepan from grill; discard beer. Grill bratwurst, 10 minutes or until browned and cooked through, turning once. Place bratwurst in rolls.
Top each with onions. Garnish as desired.
Cajun Chicken Sandwich
2 (6 ounces) boneless, skinless chicken breast halves, butterflied or pounded thin
3 tablespoons Cajun seasoning
2 toasted buns, split
Preheat cast iron skillet over high heat on top of the stove.
Dredge chicken in Cajun seasoning.
Place a small amount of butter in the skillet and place seasoned chicken breasts in the skillet. Cook until seasoning is black, then turn and cook until done.
Serve on a toasted bun with your favorite sandwich toppings.
Makes 2 sandwiches.
Sandwiches get this bad reputation as being a food that isn't good for you. So, I'm going to break down just how easy, delicious, as well as nutritious sandwiches, can be for you. Let's get started
0:57 - Choosing Your Bread: Not all bread is created equal. Don't be fooled by the packaging label and the company's marketing - flip the loaf over and get into what's important: the nutrition label. Be mindful of serving sizes at the top of the nutrition label. The front might market and tell you that it's 110 calories, but then you flip it over and then that's per slice. You want to stick to bread made with 100% whole wheat flour that hasn't been processed because when that happens the flour loses its nutritional value.
5:09 - Choosing Your Protein: Almost any meat at the deli is a good option, however, stay away from the sausage. Here's the thing - you don't need to measure your food. That's for those looking to compete in bodybuilding shows and elite athletes. What you need to remember is to be conscious of not overindulging when it comes to your portions.
6:24 - Choosing Your Spread: Mayonnaise and mustard are two common options that men grab for their sandwich. What you want to do is be mindful of the caloric values, fat content, and sugar content of the spreads.
8:30 - Choosing Your Cheese: A lot of cheese can have quite a bit of fat in it. So, what do you do? Go for reduced-fat cheese. Cheese can be estrogenic, however, so again - be mindful to not overindulge.
8:57 - Choosing Your Veggies: You can buy pre-packaged and pre-washed veggie mixes in the produce aisle ready-to-go. These pre-packaged veggies come in large containers that you can use for your next meals throughout the day or for tomorrow too.
9:55 - Choosing A Side: Pickle spears are great as a garnish on the side and for an added crunch to your meal. Want some potato chips to go with your sandwich? Think again! Grab some of these rice cake chips instead to satisfy that salty and crunchy aspect. If I hadn't had to break down every part of picking the right ingredients for your sandwich, this would only take 2-3 minutes tops, guys. No cooking needed for a healthy, satisfying meal. It really is just that easy.
California Chicken Cobb Sandwich
2 small loaves French bread
3 skinless, boneless chicken breast, grilled
12 pieces bacon, fried crisp
1 avocado, peeled and seeded
12 small, crisp lettuce leaves
4 ounces cream cheese, softened
6 tablespoons mayonnaise
4 ounces gorgonzola or blue cheese, softened
Combine ingredients until mixed well. To assemble sandwiches: Slice the bread into 24 thin slices; toast the bread lightly on both sides. Spread the inside of each piece of bread with sandwich dressing.
Cut the grilled chicken breast into diagonal pieces to fit the small bread rounds. Top 12 pieces of bread and dressing with chicken, bacon pieces, avocado slices, and lettuce.
Top with remaining bread that has been spread with dressing. Serve at once or cover with clean, dry lettuce leaves to keep moist.
Chicken a la King
1/4 cup melted butter
3 tablespoons flour
1 cup chicken broth
1 cup milk
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups diced cooked chicken
1 can mushroom, drained
1/4 cup chopped pimento
Blend butter and flour in a frying pan.
Blend in chicken broth and milk. Cook until thick.
Add remaining ingredients and heat through. Serve over hot toast points.
If desired, you may add a few drops Tabasco to the sauce
Chicken Taco Pita Pockets
1 small avocado, thinly sliced
1 1/2 teaspoons lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 cups finely cut-up cooked chicken
1 (4 ounces) can chop green chiles, drained
1 small onion, sliced and separated into rings
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1/2 teaspoon salt
8 pita pieces of bread (about 3 1/2 inches in diameter)
2 cups shredded Monterey jack cheese (8 ounces)
1 cup shredded lettuce
1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 cup taco sauce
Sprinkle avocado slices with lemon juice and 1/4 teaspoon salt.
Mix chicken, chiles, onion, oil and 1/2 teaspoon salt in 1-quart microwavable casserole.
Cover tightly and microwave on HIGH for 4 to 5 minutes, stirring after 2 minutes until chicken is hot.
Split each pita halfway around the edge with a knife. Separate to form the pocket. Spoon about 1/4 cup of the chicken mixture into each pita. Top with cheese, lettuce, and avocado. Serve with sour cream and taco sauce.
Makes 8 sandwiches
Colorful Pepper and Mango Quesadillas
2 teaspoons vegetable oil
1/2 red bell pepper, seeded and chopped
1/2 green bell pepper, seeded and chopped
1/2 yellow bell pepper, seeded and chopped
1/2 red onion, chopped
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon oregano leaves
1 ripe but not too soft mango, peeled, seeded and chopped
1 tablespoon chopped cilantro
Juice of 1 lime 1 serrano or jalapeno chile, minced, or some crushed red pepper flakes to taste, optional Flour tortillas (great to use two or three different colors/flavors)
Heat oil in a large nonreactive skillet over medium heat. Add peppers, onions, chili powder and oregano. SautÈ 2 minutes until softened. Add mango, cilantro, lime, and hot pepper, if using. Stir to combine well; let cool.
Makes enough for about 3 (9-inch) quesadillas; each makes 3 to 4 appetizer servings or 2 entree servings. For each quesadilla, spread 3/4 cup filling over the tortilla. Spread 2 tablespoons of your favorite salsa over the filling. Sprinkle 1/2 cup shredded cheese over the salsa and top with the second tortilla.
Quesadillas can be assembled a day before cooking and stored stacked on a plate, covered well in your refrigerator. Bake quesadillas on a baking pan in a preheated 375 degree F oven 10 minutes or sautÈ them in a nonstick pan sprayed with no-stick cooking spray.
Cook 2 minutes on each side until lightly browned and cheese is melted. After cooking, cut into 2-inchwide wedges and garnish with cilantro sprigs. Serve with salsa and sour cream.
1 pound fresh crabmeat, drained and flaked
1/2 cup chopped green bell pepper
1/2 cup chopped celery
2 tablespoons mayonnaise or salad dressing
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 tablespoon butter or margarine, melted
1 (1 1/8 ounce) package Hollandaise sauce mix
4 English muffins, split and toasted
Combine first 5 ingredients; sautÈ mixture in melted butter until thoroughly heated. Prepare Hollandaise sauce according to package directions (or make your own!).
Spoon crabmeat mixture over cut sides of English muffins; top with Hollandaise sauce.
Makes 4 servings
Creole Bean Burger
1 (15 ounces) can red kidney beans, drained, rinsed and mashed
1 onion, chopped
1 tablespoon catsup
1 teaspoon mustard
2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
3 tablespoons flavored bread crumbs
1 tablespoon oil
4 hamburger buns
Thousand Island dressing
Combine beans, onion, egg, catsup, mustard, Worcestershire sauce, cumin and bread crumbs. Form into 4 patties.
Cook in oil in nonstick skillet for 3 minutes per side over medium-low heat. Serve on buns with lettuce and Thousand Island dressing.