The Best Sandwich Spots In Atlanta

Stock up on napkins, and enjoy the best sandwich situations Atlanta has to offer.
Chicken salad sandwich at The General Muir in Atlanta.

photo credit: Amy Sinclair

There’s a reason why sandwiches are the go-to lunch for everything from boardroom meetings to school field trips. They’re versatile, practical, and have universal appeal—they’re essentially the denim jeans of the food world. And because we’re not tied down to one city signature, ATL sandwich makers run wild in that playground of possibilities with cold subs, cubanos, cheesesteaks, bánh mìs, reubens, po’boys, and more. While there isn’t one sandwich to rule them all, these 15 spots give us the magic combo of bread and fillings that we love.


photo credit: Courtesy of Politan Row



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It’s not a stretch to say our city will put lemon pepper seasoning on everything. Just know it actually works on Zaddy’s Cajun lemon pepper tuna, since it’s a slightly citrusy, spiced-up take on an old-school tuna sandwich and the thing to order here. Although the food stall in Colony Square’s Politan Row only offers a few sandwich options, they’re all phenomenal thanks to big fluffy multigrain bread, generous portions of meat, and their signature tangy jerk mayo. That includes their vegan sub with plant-based mayo, roasted eggplant, and peppers, which is also one of best things to eat in the whole food hall.

This small Mediterranean pizzeria in Westview makes some of the best pizza in the city, but even those are eclipsed by Firewall’s incredible stuffed pitas. Just like the pies, the sesame pitas get a lovely crunch and subtle smoky flavor from the wood-fired oven. Unlike the thin pizza, these bread vessels are able to support a mound of seasoned roasted cauliflower, creamy hummus, sweet pecans, and sour pickled vegetables, which are all loaded into the Flying V. But our favorite pita is the Southern Italian. Inspired by Philly’s famous roast pork sub, it’s stuffed with braised shredded pork, provolone, vinegary hot peppers, and damn-near a whole pot of collard greens.

It takes guts to name yourself The Best Sandwich Shop. But this small, colorful counter service joint off Ponce in O4W has some serious subs to back it up. They use soft, sesame seed bread for everything and load 'em down with meats and toppings that usually spill out of the bread. The hot sandwiches are incredible like the Manna stuffed with seasoned ground beef and fried onions and lathered down with zesty comeback sauce. But more traditional cold subs like the Sunset Blvd packed with turkey, bacon, and avocado are hearty contenders, too.

There’s a segment of General Muir’s menu that’s labeled “delicatessen.” Anytime we see that word, it tends to mean sh*t is about to get serious where sandwiches are concerned. We’re happy to confirm this Emory Point hotspot’s tasty deli sandwiches are worthy of that assumption. Pull up a chair beneath the hanging orb lights that dot the spacious dining room and dive into a reuben stacked with huge hunks of tender corned beef and tangy sauerkraut on fresh-made bread—our favorite on the menu. Or opt for the excellent chicken club with a mayo-based chicken salad and a slab of pastrami.

You gotta cruise down the residential streets of Summerhill to find JD’s—a neighborhood secret that’s part takeout joint and part convenience store. Their menu is stacked with Caribbean-inspired dishes, but we gravitate towards their sandwiches because they're just too good to pass up. BLTs, tuna, and salmon sandwiches on toasted subs are touched with spicy jerk seasoning and are all amazing choices. But the best sandwich isn’t always on the menu. That would be the Philly cheesesteak loaded with melted cheese and red and green peppers. When they have it, get it.

We know Havana Sandwich Shop on Buford Highway has other sandwiches (Milanesa, chicken salad, etc.). And we know they’re good. But we can’t come here without ordering the cubano. It's packed with tender ham and tangy pickles all on a slightly crusty bread with a soft, chewy interior. One bite and you'll understand why Havana has been the go-to cubano shop for decades. Chow down in the casual one-room dining area and get some tasty rice and beans as your side.

Dave’s in Emory Village has more than 30 sandwich options. So whatever sub you’re craving from meatball to Italian, Dave’s has some iteration of it. Practically on Emory’s campus, this '60s rock-themed shop is usually crawling with students and operates best as a takeout joint. But don’t let the small, unimpressive interior fool you. Dave's subs are massive, and with an array of toppings like shredded cheese, banana peppers, and housemade slaw, they blow away those build-your-own sub sandwich chains in the area. First timers should get The Grateful Dave (turkey and avocado with a kick from hot pepper juice) to honor the man who started this Ohio-based chain.

This Buford Highway staple, sitting between a Chevron and a coin laundry business, serves up some of the best Vietnamese food in the city. What they’re really known for are their bánh mì sandwiches. Eight options, including fish, tofu, and eggs (scrambled or fried), means multiple trips to Lee’s is necessary to try them all. But the grilled pork topped with cucumbers, carrots, and mayo is our favorite and the most popular order here. Their bread (with just the right amount of crunch) is the standout. And when we're finished with our sandwich, we often buy a few loaves from the bread bin to help lessen our separation anxiety. So far, we’ve been unsuccessful in our attempts to recreate their bánh mì masterpieces at home, which just means more trips to Lee’s is in our future.

Sorry to our vegetarian friends, but this downtown deli is geared more toward carnivores than those on a plant-based diet (i.e. there's only one non-meat option lovingly labeled “rabbit food”). These giant subs and sandwiches have meats piled so high we half expect to find a Mission: Impossible stunt safety crew. Your favorite sandwich will largely depend on meat preference, but ours is the reuben with warm, tender pastrami, a slice of swiss, and a heaping portion of tart sauerkraut on toasted rye. With ordering instructions that tell you to yell at the folks behind the counter, Reuben’s is probably the closest you can get to eating at an NYC deli.

The Inman Park BeltLine spot isn't open as late anymore (another thing the pandemic ruined), but they still have $6 mini sandwiches that are perfect when you’re on the prowl for a light snack before 12am. Or when your sandwich life gets boring, come here for fun options like white anchovies topped with frisée and a drizzle of fresh lemon mayo or a vegetarian pastrami made with beets. But standard selections like Tea Bird, their version of a spicy chicken sandwich, are our must-orders. And while you munch, peep what’s playing on the projector—it’s usually some cult classic a la Johnny Sokko and His Flying Robot. And the ping pong table is waiting for you in the back room if you’re emboldened by your spiked slushie whiskey Coke slushies.

This stall in Krog Street Market is from the team behind The General Muir, so they’ve already got some sandwich cred. But Fred’s covers an array of meat and bread genres from po’boys to cheesesteaks and even bánh mìs. And they are all done exceptionally well. Our go-to is the Korean cheesesteak drenched in gochujang sauce with a hefty kick from some candied jalapeños. And for those who can't eat a sandwich without a potato side, Fred’s makes some of the best fries in the city, which can be spiced up with garlic, cilantro, aioli, and BBQ sauces.

Open ‘til 4am, Woody’s is a late-night hero that’s saved many relationships in risk of hangry ruin. This cheesesteak shack has been part of the Midtown scene since 1975. They’ve recently expanded with two new locations in Buckhead and EAV, but they're reliable no matter where you are. If you've never had Woody's, start your journey with a classic cheesesteak since they're some of the best in the city. Then explore other favorites like Woody's giant hot dogs or loaded cold subs.

New York Sandwich Shop sits at the end of a small West End strip mall and touts their submarine sandwiches as being “famous world wide.” That's definitely a stretch, but we can confirm they’re good and the best in the neighborhood. There are about 20 sandwiches on the menu offered sandwich style (on sliced white bread, throwing it back to our cafeteria school days) or submarine (how we usually order ours). The New Yorker with ham and turkey is our fave—get it “all the way” with mayo, mustard, lettuce, tomato, onions, and oil and vinegar. Just make sure you have paper money on you, ‘cause cards won’t jive with their cash register that looks like it's been going strong since the ’80s.

With a metro Atlanta location on Buford Highway, Baldinos is a Georgia chain that makes Jersey-style subs with fresh, sliced-to-order meats. A whole sub measures in at 13 inches. And while the extra inch might not seem that impressive, the amount of meat stuffed between the bread is. The American special is our go-to cold sub order, packed with turkey, ham, and roast beef served the “Baldinos way” with lettuce, onion, tomatoes, vinegar, and oil. We also dig their endearing dining area, which feels so much like a ’70s break room that we're surprised they don't have coffee and cigarette vending machines in the corner.

This Decatur spot offers a range of Creole and Cajun foods, but they aren't called the Po'Boy Shop for nothing. They've got 21 po'boy options with plenty of protein varieties like alligator, oysters, and crawfish. We’re partial to the Debris, which comes with tender roasted beef, gravy, all on Leidenheimer bread. We usually stock a pile of napkins the size of Everest because the excessive amount of tasty gravy makes the sandwich extra messy (there's even a warning label on the menu). Those over 21 can skip the upstairs order counter and head downstairs to the neon-lit oasis with a bar, pool tables, and darts.

The sounds of clanking metal spatulas and sizzling meat is your first indication that this place leans more grill than deli. Let that persuade you toward a hot item—our favorite dishes here—like the pastrami and corned beef reuben or grilled salmon sandwich. It’s not that the cold sandwiches are bad. They are packed with the same generous portion of meats and cheeses. But very few places in Buckhead do a quick and affordable hot lunch as well as Jack’s, so take advantage. Plus, Jack’s fresh-cut fries just pair better with a hot sandwich.

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