Best Subs, Grinders, & Hoagies

Best Subs, Grinders, and Hoagies Across America

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Best Subs, Grinders, & Hoagies

Sub Hunt

Tell someone you want a sub sandwich, and it's generally accepted that you want a sandwich served on a long roll or baguette. Say you want a po' boy, hoagie, banh mi, grinder, hero, spuckie, cubano, spiedie, or wedge, and you're getting into specific geographical, cultural, and stylistic differences between those sandwiches — which doesn't make them any less filling or delicious. Whatever you call them, find out where to get the tastiest across America.

Related: You Have to Try These Famous Sandwiches in Every State

Shrimp and Oyster Combo, Verti Marte, New Orleans
Narmer P./Yelp

Shrimp and Oyster Combo

Verti Marte, New Orleans
There are a lot of places vying for the po' boy crown in New Orleans, and we aren't going to insert ourselves into that mess. This little corner store in the French Quarter, however, has an expansive menu of po' boys and other sandwiches and is open 24 hours. Get this combo coated in Marte sauces and be prepared for an absolutely delicious mess.

Related: How to Make 16 Mardi Gras Treats and Drinks

The Bellybuster, Big Stash's Sub House, Kearny, New Jersey
Hotsauc E./Yelp

The Bellybuster

Big Stash's Sub House, Kearny, New Jersey
A sub in just about any corner deli in any town in New Jersey is going to be a master class in the style. The rolls are from nearby Italian bakeries, the meats and cheeses come through local distributors, and the lettuce, tomato, onion, and other veggies are all run though the slicer .. not chopped, as if by some murderer. Big Stash's has been on Kearny Avenue for 50 years selling sandwiches, cartons of Clinton's iced tea, and the occasional pack of Linden's cookies to workers and school kids. The Bellybuster — ham, prosciuttini, cappicola, salami, and provolone cheese, all preferably topped with oil, vinegar, and oregano — is a showcase of what this shop does best.

Lamb Spiedie, Lupo's S&S Char-Pit, Binghamton, New York
Clare D./Yelp

Lamb Spiedie

Lupo's S&S Char-Pit, Binghamton, New York
"Spiedie" comes from the Italian "spiedino," meaning "skewer," so these sandwiches were typically made with seasoned lamb, as you'd find on a skewer. While there are chicken, pork, and even Buffalo-spiced spiedies, order the traditional lamb spiedie at Lupo's — it's been serving them since 1951.

Related: 19 Best Fried Chicken Sandwiches in America

Turkish Delite, Thundercloud Subs, Austin, Texas
Kristin S./Yelp

Turkish Delite

Thundercloud Subs, Austin, Texas
Founded in 1975, Thundercloud has grown to locations in a dozen cities in Central Texas. Priding itself on fresh bread, ingredients, and "ThunderSauce," Thundercloud built itself on sandwiches such as this one. Featuring turkey, avocado, cucumbers, tomatoes, onions, mushrooms, sprouts, olives, and hummus (or cream cheese), the Turkish Delite can be a lighter, refreshing change from a pile of cheeses and cured meats.

Pork Meatball Banh Mi, Lardo, Portland, Oregon
Jean S./Yelp

Pork Meatball Banh Mi

Lardo, Portland, Oregon
Chef Rick Gencarelli bounced between restaurants on the East and West Soasts before opening his food cart in 2010, but this sandwich has been with him the whole ride. Now expanded to two Portland restaurants and a location in Las Vegas, Lardo is still slinging this take on the classic Vietnamese sandwich, complete with pickled vegetables, sriracha mayo, cilantro, and cucumber.

Saliba, Mudgie's Deli & Wine Shop, Detroit
Erin M./Yelp


Mudgie's Deli & Wine Shop, Detroit
This is a fussy artisanal sandwich shop that roasts its own corned beef and tinkers with nontraditional ingredients in traditional sandwiches. But its Saliba — top-sirloin meatloaf with roasted peppers, provolone cheese, and house-made marinara on an 8-inch Italian roll — is delightful in its simplicity. That the ingredients are local, the cocktails are plentiful, and the beer and wine is made to travel makes Mudgie's an even more vital stop in bar-saturated Corktown.

Related: 30 Best Delis Across America

Tom's Silver Medal
Tess C./Yelp

Tom's Silver Medal

Publican Quality Meats, Chicago
Publican, chef Paul Kahan's carnivore temple in the West Loop, is a fine stop in its own right, but this butcher-shop offshoot is a work of genius. This sandwich combines spicy capicola, lonza cotto, and ham with provolone, pickled peppers, piperade, and aioli on a hoagie roll. It doesn't just aspire to be an Italian sub, it shows other subs how to be Italian.

Custom Sub, Morris' Deli, Liquor, and Catering, Louisville, Kentucky
Jess A./Yelp

Custom Sub

Morris' Deli, Liquor, and Catering, Louisville, Kentucky
It's easy to get lost in the bitterly cold beer cooler here and think of this place primarily as a booze stop. But the "deli" portion of the name is emphasized for a reason. You can get house-smoked turkeys, country hams, and cured meats with baby Swiss, hot pepper cheese, smoked gouda, or myriad other cheeses, top it however you like (try the hot pickle), spice it with mustards and horseradishes, and follow it with a side of house-made pimento cheese. This would seem like a lot of effort to sell beer and liquor.

Related: 40 Unexpected Finds Hidden in Convenience Stores

Roast Pork and Broccoli Rabe, Tommy DiNic's Roast Pork, Philadelphia
Gary L./Yelp

Roast Pork and Broccoli Rabe

Tommy DiNic's Roast Pork, Philadelphia
On your first visit to DiNic's, which began in 1918 as a butcher shop called Nicolosi's, you're going to want to go right to this roast pork, served in it own juices, and add sharp aged provolone and broccoli rabe (which no one around you will call rapini). The pork will melt the cheese, but not soak the semolina roll, while the bitterness and garlic coating of the broccoli rabe will combine with the sharpness of the provolone in a lovely combination. Is it a hoagie? Probably not, but it's one of the best sandwiches on a sub roll Philly has.

Cubano, Versailles, Miami
Shawn H./Yelp


Versailles, Miami
The simple combination of ham, roast pork, Swiss cheese, pickles, and mustard on sub-style Cuban bread is pressed in a plancha until melty and crisp. If you taste salami, it means you're in Tampa and should get over to the coast and down the interstate ASAP. Everyone has their favorite spot — the best is always where the tourists aren't looking — but Versailles bakes its own bread, coats its own ham with a brown sugar/pineapple juice/clove before baking, and slow-roasts its own marinated pork legs.

Steak & Onion, Big John Steak & Onion, Flint, Michigan
Sami A./Yelp

Steak and Onion

Big John Steak & Onion, Flint, Michigan
Big John Steak & Onion first served sub sandwiches in Flint back in 1978. Now with 16 locations throughout Michigan, Big John still banks on its thin-sliced ribeye steak grilled with onions and served on an Italian sub roll with banana peppers. There are other subs on Big John's list, but why mess with success.

The Richman's Po' Boy, Ranelli's Deli & Cafe, Birmingham, Alabama
Christopher T./Yelp

The Richman's Po' Boy

Ranelli's Deli & Cafe, Birmingham, Alabama
This Italian-flagged shop has been doling out sandwiches since since 1971, but none match this one. There's ham, corned beef, peppered beef, Genoa salami, pastrami, Swiss cheese, provolone, mustard, and the signature house olive salad (tapenade, if you will) on an 11- or 16-inch Italian roll. There isn't any seafood in this, but as Ranelli's can attest, the name "po' boy" is whatever you need it to be.

Banh Mi, Banhwich Cafe, Lincoln, Nebraska
Vivian C./Yelp

Banh Mi

Banhwich Cafe, Lincoln, Nebraska
For around $5 apiece, you get ribeye, chicken, grilled pork, ham, pork ear, bulgogi, pork meatball, sardine, fried egg, or just vegetables served with pickled vegetables and aioli or soy vinaigrette. The menu is extensive without being expensive, which makes this cafe indispensable in a town filled with hungry, cash-strapped students.

The Italian, White House Subs, Atlantic City, New Jersey
Mike F./Yelp

The Italian

White House Subs, Atlantic City, New Jersey
Though it now has two locations, the original's been going since 1946 and is worth the trip. Its centerpiece sandwich is served on a chewy Italian loaf, packed with Genoa salami, provolone, ham, and capicola and topped with lettuce, tomato, sliced onion, chopped roasted peppers, Italian seasonings, oil, and vinegar. The line stretches around the block, so you'll have plenty of appetite for the full-length, foot-and-a-half sandwich, or the Special with double fillings.

The Godmother, Bay Cities Italian Deli & Bakery, Santa Monica, California
Ramon C./Yelp

The Godmother

Bay Cities Italian Deli & Bakery, Santa Monica, California
The filone bread comes out of the oven every 20 minutes. The Genoa salami, capicola, mortadella, ham, and prosciutto are piled high. The provolone, mayonnaise, mustard, lettuce, tomato, pickles, onions, dressing, and your choice of mild or hot peppers are all traditional and plentiful. This is a monster Italian sub, and it's developed a following.

Chased and Confused

Chased and Confused

Ike's Place, San Francisco
Ike's Place has locations throughout California, but got its start in San Francisco and made its name catering to all portions of that city — vegan, or looking for every meat known to humans, or for a sub made of mac and cheese. Ike's covers all the bases, especially with this San Francisco exclusive containing bacon, Flamin' Hot Cheetos, ranch, red pesto, and stuffed jalapeño poppers. The stuff that would make you crave such a thing? Not included.

Mr. G
Jose C./Yelp

Mr. G

J.P. Graziano Grocery Co., Chicago
Want to taste what this grocery store has been all about since 1937? The imported sharp provolone, hot sopressata, prosciutto di Parma, and volpi Genoa salami is topped with house-sold truffle mustard, balsamic vinaigrette, hot oil, Roman-style artichokes, fresh basil, lettuce, and a mix of red wine vinegar and oregano. Named after the owner's father, it's the daddy of all Chicagoland Italian subs.

Conquistador, Zunzi's Takeout & Catering, Atlanta and Savannah
Chasity B./Yelp


Zunzi's Takeout & Catering, Atlanta and Savannah, Georgia
Expect a wait for these giant sandwiches. This French-bread sub is loaded with baked chicken breast with lettuce, tomato, and a "special sauce" with a name we can't publish.

Grilled Pork, Lee's Sandwiches, Various Locations
John K./Yelp

Grilled Pork Banh Mi

Lee's Sandwiches, San Jose, California
Lee's has locations through the Bay Area selling various types of subs and sandwiches, including some on croissants, but the ones skewing closer to Vietnamese banh mi are still the strongest. This sandwich is loaded with grilled pork and crunchy pickled veggies and herbs.

Waiamea, Storto's Deli & Sandwich Shoppe, Haleiwa, Hawaii
Tammy Le P./Yelp


Storto's Deli & Sandwich Shoppe, Haleiwa, Hawaii
If you've gone up to catch waves on the North Shore, you've definitely gone by or visited Stortos. For four decades, this place has been stuffing locals and visitors alike with huge sandwiches. While this is just ham, turkey, and salami, adding some horseradish cheese, sprouts, veggies, and papaya seed dressing gives it local flavor.

The 505 Filthy
Jordan M./Yelp

The 505 Filthy

Slow Roasted Bocadillos, Albuquerque, New Mexico
We aren't big fans of the school of thought that says "Guy Fieri ate here on 'Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives,' so it's great," but Guy got this one right. Building all its dishes off of slow-roasted meats, Slow Roasted Bocadillos fills its area-code masterpiece with chicken breast, bacon, green chile, house-made chipotle mayo, lettuce, and tomato. Finished off with melted asadero cheese, it's a mess made with love.

Steak Bomb, Rondo's Sub Shop, South Boston
Rebecca B./Yelp

Steak Bomb

Rondo's Sub Shop, Boston
From outside its West Broadway location near the Broadway T stop, it looks like a bunker. But when you don't go frilling up the joint, you can keep a sandwich price under $10 and still give folks a lot for their money. The steak combo comes with cheese, peppers, onions and mushrooms — make it a New England-style "bomb" and Genoa salami comes either as topping or lining for the roll.

Related: Best Hole-in-the-Wall Burger Joint in Every State

The Cutlet
Simone T./Yelp

The Cutlet

Mike's Deli, Los Angeles
Mike's has made its name on high-stacked, overstuffed sandwiches with Boar's Head meats and cheeses, fresh veggies, and bread since 1996. But this fried chicken cutlet with grilled onions, melted American cheese bacon, romaine lettuce, barbecue sauce, cajun mayo, and ranch is exceptional. If that trio of sauces grosses you out a bit, swap them out for balsamic vinegar and change the cheese to provolone and you'll be ready to go.

The Fat Darrell
Hannah R./Yelp

The Fat Darrell

RU Hungry, New Brunswick, New Jersey
Open until 4 a.m. and in the immediate vicinity of Rutgers University's campus, "fat" sandwiches began served from a truck in the 1970s, rising in popularity after moving to a school-owned lot in the '90s and getting later hours. This classic concoction of chicken fingers, mozzarella sticks, french fries, and marinara sauce on a roll tells you all you need to know.

Bobcat Special
Matt K./Yelp

Bobcat Special

The Pickle Barrel, Montana
This shop has been in Bozeman for more than 30 years, but spread around the state after feeding huge hot and cold subs to Montana State University students. This pile of turkey, roast beef, Swiss, and Monterey jack cheese is a tribute to the original MSU faithful, but also a reminder of just how far hungry college students can take any business willing to feed them.

Related: 40 Mouthwatering Roast Beef Sandwiches Across America

Porchetta Sandwich, Salumi, Seattle
Sarah S./Yelp


Salumi, Seattle
Founded in 1999 by Armandino Batali (Mario's dad), Salumi is a cured-meat haven where the sandwiches serve only to showcase the wares. The porchetta is stuffed fennel seed, carrot, and celery-seasoned slow-roasted pork, and we'd advise it on a baguette with sautéed onions and green bell peppers — and with one of Leonetta's meatballs picked up a la carte for about $3.

The Wenzel, Alpha Delta Pizza, New Haven, Connecticut
Chelsea S./Yelp

The Wenzel

Alpha Delta Pizza, New Haven, Connecticut
The Northeast, and especially a Northeast college town, is littered with pizza places better known for sandwiches. In Alpha Delta's case, one student who ordered a chicken cutlet, coated with hot sauce, cheese, lettuce, tomato, and mayonnaise turned that sandwich into a staple, a pizza, and even a sauce that Alpha Delta bottles and sells.

Medianoche, El Palacio de Los Jugos, Miami
Cesar S./Yelp


El Palacio de Los Jugos, Miami
What do you get when you put roast pork, ham, mustard, Swiss cheese, and sweet pickles on a sandwich and grill it on a plancha? Using a crustier white roll, you made a Cubano. If you used a sweet, eggier bread, you just made a medianoche, which really is the Cubano in its peak form.

The Capri, Italian Store, Arlington, Virginia
Kristie J./Yelp

The Capri

Italian Store, Arlington, Virginia
In the pre-internet world, The Italian Store wasn't a "concept" that spawned lines around the block: It was a place where Italian families could get pasta, cheese, meat, and wine in Northern Virginia. More than 30 years into the shop's existence, however, it gets lunchtime lines for its sandwich menu, which includes this mix of prosciutto, capicola, salami, and provolone on an Italian roll.

Berkshire Pork, Phorage, Los Angeles
M L./Yelp

Berkshire Pork

Phorage, Los Angeles
Priding itself on fresh ingredients and sustainable meats, Phorage set out to make the banh mi all others should emulate. It marinates Berkshire pork shoulder and pork belly in lemongrass and slow-roasts it, putting it on a baguette with cucumbers, cilantro, craft pickles, and mayonnaise. It's street food without cutting corners, and it's brilliant.

The Gerber, Ruma's Deli, St. Louis, Missouri
Stan G./Yelp

The Gerber

Ruma's Deli, St. Louis
For more than 40 years, Ruma's has been dishing out big, filling sandwiches on French bread and making itself a St. Louis area staple. It's hard to call an open-face sandwich a "sub" in the true sense, but this sandwich's use of a sub roll and Provel — a processed blend of mozzarella, provolone, and Swiss cheeses native to St. Louis — over grilled ham and garlic butter is a strong argument for giving it a pass.

The Bomb, Sal, Kris & Charlie's Deli, Astoria, New York
Kenny C./Yelp

The Bomb

Sal, Kris & Charlie's Deli, New York City
You could walk by this corner store in Astoria, Queens, without blinking. It doesn't have a website, and it isn't as famous as its Manhattan and Brooklyn counterparts. But it has a sandwich that became legend thanks largely to the ConEd workers who eat it. Just some of its ingredients: ham, turkey, salami, pepperoni, mortadella, American, Swiss, provolone, lettuce, tomato, onion, roasted peppers, dressing (oil and vinegar), mustard, and mayo. It's nearly 2 feet long and as thick as a utility pole.

The Real Italian, DiPasquale's, Baltimore
Dee D./Yelp

The Real Italian

DiPasquale's, Baltimore
DiPasquale's expanded throughout Baltimore behind the strength of sandwiches such as this. Teeming with salami, pepper ham, mortadella, capicola, and provolone, this sandwich goes all-out on the Italian sub concept. Get it with "everything" means also olive oil and vinegar, a special blend of grated cheeses and spices, lettuce, tomato, onions, and hot peppers.

Meatball, Sausage, Cheese and Peppers, Riccotti Sandwich Shops, Bristol, Rhode Island
Steven P./Yelp

Meatball, Sausage, Cheese, and Peppers

Riccotti Sandwich Shops, Bristol, Rhode Island
The meatball sandwich has been done dirty by chains making it a flavorless economy sub at the bottom of their list. Riccotti not only makes a fine meatball and marinara, but maintains the New England tradition of making spicy Italian sausage one of the best hot sandwich meats available. Combine them on a baguette, add mozzarella, and you have one of the top sandwiches in the region, never mind the state.

The Spuckie, Cutty's, Brookline, Massachusetts
Kevin L./Yelp

The Spuckie

Cutty's, Brookline, Massachusetts
Derived from spucadella, a pidgin Italian term meaning "long roll," the spuckie is basically a sub by another name. This shop, which made a fine name for itself cranking out faithful renditions of Philly's roast pork and broccoli rabe as well as other regional sandwiches, gets to the core of the spuckie by filling it with fennel salami, hot capicola, mortadella, fresh mozzarella, and an olive-carrot salad. Don't be pedantic about Cutty's using a ciabatta roll instead of a baguette.

Southern Pot Roast, The Southern General, Johns Island, South Carolina

Southern Pot Roast

The Southern General, Johns Island, South Carolina
This General, a "craft sandwich" shop with an extensive menu, will conquer any appetite. Its Southern Pot Roast is a whole mess of slow-cooked sirloin, gravy, pan-roasted vegetables, and Bourbon-infused mushrooms on local-honey-tinged hoagie roll.

The Monday Special, Fiore's House of Quality, Hoboken, New Jersey

The Monday Special

Fiore's House of Quality, Hoboken, New Jersey
Hoboken prides itself on its "mutz." Not some store-bought mozzarella: The house-made mutz that turns sandwiches into stuff of legend. With more than 105 years of tradition behind it, Fiore's has been serving Hoboken's born-and-raised and politically connected for longer than most of you have been alive. While the classic move is to just get a sub roll full of mutz and roasted peppers, wait until Monday and add some Virginia ham to that mix.

The General, Gaglione Bros Famous Steaks & Subs, San Diego
Gaglione Bros Famous Steaks & Subs/Yelp

The General

Gaglione Bros Famous Steaks & Subs, San Diego
These siblings really wanted to start a Philly cheesesteak shop in San Diego, and even imported Amoroso's rolls from Philly to help out. But one of the best sandwiches at this chain is The General: a pastrami sandwich with Swiss cheese, Russian dressing, and coleslaw that forsakes rye bread for the sturdy roll built to contain juices and not oversaturate. You can get one up to 18 inches, but a 9-inch version will do just fine.

The Clancy
Rachel O./Yelp

The Clancy

Beaverton Sub Station, Beaverton, Oregon
Oregon isn't a state that prides itself on subs, which makes a place such as the Sub Station a true gem. Sure, it'll occasionally use cream cheese on a sandwich in a way that would disgust most people, but this sandwich's use of roast beef, turkey, or ham with avocado, provolone cheese, cheddar cheese, tomato, green pepper, onion, lettuce, mayo, and spices shows what an Oregon sub shop is capable of when it applies itself.

Buckboard Bacon Melt, Cochon Butcher, New Orleans
Laura G./Yelp

Buckboard Bacon Melt

Cochon Butcher, New Orleans
Chef Donald Link's Cochon restaurant expanded into this butcher shop/wine bar/tap room space in 2009, and its combination of house-cured Buckboard bacon and cheese is an absolute revelation. If the use of white bread so offends your "sub" sensibilities, Cochon also has ciabatta, bolillo, and Sicilian rolls kicking around, though the original may be one of the best sandwiches you can carry out of a New Orleans shop in wax paper.

Nicky Special, Defonte's, Brooklyn, New York
Molly E./Yelp

Nicky Special

Defonte's, New York City
Defonte's was founded in Brooklyn in 1922 by an Italian immigrant named Nicky Defonte, but these days it calls Staten Island home. Customers line up out the door for this namesake hero with fried eggplant, salami, ham, capicola, provolone, marinated mushrooms, and "hot salad" (hot cherry peppers and pickled veggies) with it.

Pulled Squash, Butcher and Bee, Charleston, South Carolina
Nicole G./Yelp

Pulled Squash

Butcher and Bee, Charleston, South Carolina
Opened in Nashville in 2011, Butcher and Bee focused on local, sustainable ingredients, but also on the idea a sandwich could be a full dinner. This combination of pulled squash, smoked cabbage, cilantro vinaigrette, barbecue sauce, and B&B pickles not only gives that idea a vegetarian boost but also challenges the notion of what a sub could and should be.

Steak Tips and Cheese, Nadeau's, New Hampshire
Kenneth H./Yelp

Steak Tips and Cheese

Nadeau's, New Hampshire
You'll find this marinated flap meat all over New England, for reasons still unknown, but seldom on a sandwich and rarely under cheese. Nadeau's rightly found this ridiculous and has been serving them in sandwich form since 1969. Its signature seasoning pairs just fine with the cheese.

The Old Fashioned, Philip's Steaks, Philadelphia
Ramses F./Yelp

The Old Fashioned

Philip's Steaks, Philadelphia
To avoid the nonsense and just get a decent steak on your way home from Shop-Rite, Philip's in South Philly gets it done. Just a little red-and-white stand on Passyunk in South Philly, Phillip's serves perhaps the greatest cheesesteak combination this town has devised: sliced-steak sandwich, provolone, grilled tomatoes, peppers, and just a little oregano. No onions, no Cheez-Whiz ... just a roll filled with joy, served beneath floodlights.

The MVP, MVP Sports Deli & Eatery, Anchorage, Alaska
Jin C./Yelp


MVP Sports Deli & Eatery, Anchorage, Alaska
This isn't some token entry for Alaska: This place makes a 1-pound sub that rivals or outright defeats anything in the Lower 48. Using a corned, dried beef cooked into a homemade pastrami with a secret-recipe dry rub, this place makes a cured cheesesteak by dousing it in white cheddar cheese sauce and and homemade Italian relish. You wouldn't think the roll would hold up, but the evidence says otherwise.

Joker's Dip, Tub's Gourmet Subs, Seattle
Mimi N./Yelp

Joker's Dip

Tub's Gourmet Subs, Seattle
In a sub wasteland, Tub's does enough heavy lifting to carry a state. Its menu spans nearly two pages, but has a local favorite and a great regional stamp on the sub sandwich genre in this combination of mayo, ham, turkey, roast beef, bacon, and cheddar cheese that's toasted on a baguette, topped with lettuce and tomato, and served with hot barbecue sauce for dipping.

Related: 25 Finger-Licking Barbecue Sauce Recipes

Turkey Brie, Mitchell Delicatessen, Nashville, Tennessee
Linh P./Yelp

Turkey Brie

Mitchell Delicatessen, Nashville, Tennessee
Granted, the showstopper on this menu is a club sandwich on sourdough, but that completely discounts what this place can do with a hoagie roll when motivated. Serving braised turkey, jalapeño cranberry relish, honey mustard, brie, and apples on its hoagie, Mitchell's masterfully blends flavors while still offering up a substantial sandwich that draws lines more than 10 years after this deli opened.