Like putting down your phone or petting a dog, a sandwich is never a bad idea. Especially the ones on this guide. These are our favorite sandwiches in Miami, and they’ve been there for us through miserable Wednesdays, late-night meals, and every other occasion where we needed bread expeditiously. They range from the classic pan con minuta to the simple BLT - but one thing they all have in common is our unwavering love. And, well, they’re all sandwiches.
It feels just a little wrong to order a sandwich at a restaurant with such great barbecue meats. But it won’t feel wrong once you taste El Balbiquiu’s tripleta. It will feel so gloriously right. The tripleta has a small encyclopedia of ingredients: chicken, pork, beef, papitas, iceberg lettuce, and a garlic-mayo-ketchup that binds everything together. But it’s not an overwhelming mess. It’s a beautiful, delicious sandwich that pulls the best out of each ingredient like a great high school football coach. Plus, they wrap it in foil, so the slightly sweet bread gets steamed and soft.
Fried Oyster Sandwich
The Citadel food hall has a seafood vendor called The Shores, and we have yet to find a dish on their menu that doesn’t make us as happy as watching a Pixar movie. But one in particular that makes us want to cry the happy tears of a person who just finished Coco is the fried oyster sandwich. The perfectly crispy oysters sit between two thick slices of sourdough bread. Also involved: crunchy iceberg lettuce, a tomato slice, some sort of creamy mayo situation, and beautiful house potato chips that are as satisfying as the third act of Inside Out.
Smoked Turkey BLT
Ever since Hometown Barbecue opened in Miami, people have been telling us to try the smoked turkey BLT. We usually nod politely before proceeding to order ribs or brisket, but when we finally decided to give it a try, we felt like writing a heartfelt apology to all the people we ignored. You all were right - this sandwich is amazing. The turkey is smoky and so much juicer than the Thanksgiving birds we’ve consumed over the years. It’s served on Tempur-Pedic soft pullman bread and comes with an “avocado mayo” that is our new favorite condiment. And now we will be the one begging strangers to order this.
Pulled Chicken Sandwich
Foirette is a vendor inside MIA Market that specializes in rotisserie chicken. And one amazingly brilliant thing they do with that chicken is pull it into tender strips and put it between a brioche bun with scallion, cucumber, avocado, and a chili bonito aioli. Every bite is a little crunchy and creamy, and somehow it all stays together until the last delicious bite. Unless your sandwich dexterity needs some work.
Pan con Minuta
Coming to La Camaronera and not ordering a pan con minuta would be like coming to La Camaronera and not ordering a pan con minuta. We tried to think of a more extreme metaphor, but we simply can’t. The pan con minuta, if you’ve never had one (you poor thing), is a lightly fried snapper filet (tail included) on a Cuban bun with diced white onions, ketchup, and tartar sauce. It’s simply a deep-fried miracle. The snapper is just crispy enough on the outside, but still incredibly juicy and tender on the inside. The onions add texture and the ketchup and tartar sauce form a surprisingly great condiment duo.
To be clear: every sandwich at Proper Sausages is amazing. But we have a particularly strong love affair with the BLT. Like all of life’s great pleasures, it’s simple. Bacon, lettuce, tomato, mayo. And yet, it doesn’t taste simple at all, because the tomatoes are fresh and local and as plump as a water balloon that’s about to pop. The bacon is absurdly good and cut nice and thick. And the Portuguese muffin adds just enough sweetness to balance with the salty bacon. This sandwich is a testament to the power of quality ingredients, and if we don’t eat at least one a month, we’ll start being mean to our loved ones.
Disco De Lechon
The little disco volador deserves a spot on Miami’s sandwich Mount Rushmore. The Cuban sandwich (whose name means “frisbee” in English) is essentially a little pocket of filling enclosed in a circle of crispy, toasted bread. And no one in Miami does them better than Caja Caliente. They offer discos stuffed with queso, croquetas, and vaca frita. But we really like the disco de lechon, because it’s lechon stuffed inside buttery, toasted bread and there is simply no statistical possibility where that combination is not going to be delicious.
Like nearly every restaurant on the planet, Stanzione started making sandwiches during the pandemic. We are extremely not complaining about this, because their Italian subs turned out to be excellent. And in even better news, they’re still available on their menu. The one we love is the Stanzione - a hefty combo of prosciutto cotto, sopressata, mozzarella, onion, tomato, lettuce, and house dressing. It’s everything we want in a big Italian sandwich: meaty and cheesy with a chewy bread infused with just a touch of oil and vinegar. We still remember it fondly, like that middle school best friend you lost touch with.
N’duja, Salami, And Mozzarella Panini
In more big Italian sandwich news: this n’duja, salami, and mozzarella panini from Botta. It’s one of our favorite to-go sandwiches because Botta is quick and convenient, with a tiny parking lot where you can pretty much always find a spot. The ratios of the n’duja, salami, and mozzarella are just right - and it has a slight muffuletta vibe thanks to an olive spread they use. But the best part about this sandwich might just be the crispy focaccia, which is very crunchy but won’t make you worry about chipping a tooth.
The fried chicken sandwich was one of the first things Rosie’s started serving when they became a pop-up during the pandemic. And while the Allapattah brunch spot has since developed a bigger and consistently excellent menu, their Chicky Sandwich is still never a bad idea. The perfect chicken is probably our favorite part about this sandwich, but the B&B pickles, lemon aioli buffalo sauce, and spiced salt and vinegar chips don’t hurt either.
Sunday is a plant-based food truck that recently moved into Space Park, where it’ll be operating every Friday and Saturday night. The last time we ate here was at their previous location in west Kendall. During that meal we had not one but two sandwiches - a “chicken” katsu and a fried artichoke po’boy - that were so good we now feel comfortable saying that any sandwich they’re making here is going to be excellent. Currently on the menu, they have Marina’s Milanesa, with cashew romesco, zhoug, and whipped cashew mozzarella. We haven’t tried it yet but it looks, in a word, wow.
La Sandwicherie is not the sandwich you seek out for a light Monday lunch. You order from La Sandwicherie to be comforted by a small mountain of bread and cheese and as much vinaigrette is left in the squeeze bottle. Maybe it’s been a hard day or you’ve had between three and six cocktails. When that’s happened to us, we go for the Alaskan, which comes with smoked salmon and glacial wedges of mozzarella. There are Sandwicherie locations in Wynwood, Brickell, North Beach, and Coral Gables - but our heart will always belong to the South Beach location, where this sandwich has, on many occasions, acted as a hangover-eliminating sponge after a long night of drinking at Mac’s.
Cheesy Organic Egg Omelette Bánh Mì
We love breakfast sandwiches. We love bánh mì. And therefore it’s mathematically impossible for us not to love Benh Mi’s egg omelette bánh mì. When we first ordered this, we thought, “Won’t this egg just get smushed under the weight of the crunchy baguette?” But it didn’t. Instead, the whole thing stayed together until the last crunchy, cheesy bite. Really, all the sandwiches at Benh Mi are great (try the fried chicken and char siu mushroom too), but we’ve woken up thinking about this one every day since we ate it. Especially because there is an option to add bacon.
The Rachel is essentially a reuben sandwich that swaps pastrami for the usual corned beef. And the version at Kush Hialeah (formally known as Stephen’s Deli) is just beautiful. The grilled rye is crunchy on the outside, and soft and chewy inside. There’s enough pastrami - but not too much - like one of those overstuffed deli sandwiches that requires you to unhinge your jaw like an anaconda. And the Swiss cheese and coleslaw cut through the fattiness of the pastrami like sun through a meaty cloud.
There are few places in the city that do sandwiches as deliciously as Tinta Y Cafe, a small shop with locations in Coral Gables and Miami Shores. You should make it your goal to try every sandwich on the menu here, especially the Patria, their version of a Cuban sandwich. They bend the rules here just a little by adding mortadella and using a baguette rather than Cuban bread. But rules are meant to be broken - especially when they taste this good.
Zak The Baker is probably responsible for about 80% of the sandwiches in this city, since a ton of restaurants use their bread. But no one puts that bread to better use than this Wynwood bakery. Every sandwich here is a great choice, especially any option that utilizes Zak’s incredibly good salmon bacon. But the salmon reuben is a Zak classic we order often, and generally eat within 15 seconds. And if you, too, fall in the venn diagram of people who like both salmon and reuben sandwiches (we have to assume it’s a big circle), then this is the move.
The chivito is the national dish of Uruguay and you’ll find a stellar version at 1811, a Uruguayan and Paraguayan food truck that parks in Edgewater Tuesday through Sunday starting at 5pm. It’s a messy but delicious combination of sliced beef tenderloin, ham, cheese, bacon, and a fried egg. You will need somewhere between three and fifteen napkins, as well as a dining companion who won’t judge you for getting yolk all over your cheek.
We tried (and failed) to pick a favorite sandwich from Babe’s. But we just can’t. They’re all too good - the bacon banh mi, Montreal smoked pastrami, Italian roast pork, Cuban sandwich, BLT. Please, do us a favor and order them all. Maybe not at once. Start with the Cuban - which is outstanding - and then maybe venture into the smoked pastrami and banh mi. And after you’ve tried them all, don’t feel bad if you, too, simply can’t hurt the feelings of Babe’s sandwiches by picking a favorite.
Fried Chicken Sandwich
It is hard to get a reservation at Boia De. But it is slightly less hard to get one of their takeout sandwiches, which they offer only on Sundays from 11:30am-2:30pm. And their fried chicken sandwich is very worth setting an alarm at 11:31am. The chicken is fried to perfection and topped with crunchy vinegar slaw, aioli, and a scoop of creamy avocado. And even if you are so incredibly sick of the words “fried chicken sandwich” after the year 2020 - this will make you excited.
We could easily load this guide up with all sorts of delicious Cuban sandwiches, but we already have a Cuban Sandwich guide, so we’re going to be more selective here. Of course, there is simply no way we can have a guide with the words “favorite” and “sandwiches” and not feature Sanguich De Miami. It is still home to the platonic ideal of a Cuban sandwich, a perfect example of the combined powers of ham, roast pork, pickles, mustard, and Swiss cheese between two triangular slices of pressed Cuban bread. But they also have an outstanding pan con bistec as well as the sleeper hit of the menu, the Sanguich De Miami, which is basically a BLT with Swiss cheese and turkey.
A bagel is not always a sandwich, but when you stuff it with more than three ingredients - as they do at MiMo’s El Bagel - it becomes a bagel sandwich, at least in our opinion. Disagree if you’d like, but one thing that is not up for debate is that El Bagel is great. This is probably why they often sell out before some people have even woken up. But on the days when we are lucky enough to place an online order while supplies last, we get the King Guava. If you prefer something more savory than sweet, go for the EB Original. But if you’re like us, you will love the sweet/salty contrast of the guava marmalade, bacon, potato stix, and slightly runny egg. If you are also like us, you’ll get half this sandwich on your face while inhaling it over the sink.
We are eternally grateful to the person who came up with the idea to put croquetas inside a Cuban sandwich. We think of that person fondly every time we come to Enriqueta’s in Edgewater and order a croqueta preparada. It’s a brilliant feat of engineering. The croquetas get all squished and spread throughout every corner of the sandwich like a condiment. They bind everything together and somehow do the impossible: improve on an already perfect sandwich.
Key Biscayne’s Flour & Weirdoughs is one of our favorite bakeries in Miami. They have amazing cinnamon rolls, danishes, babka, and more baked goods. But they also make sandwiches on their fresh baguettes, including a stellar lechon sandwich. It’s got 48-hour marinated pork, ham, gruyère, whole-grain mustard, and sliced pickles. It’s a great beach picnic option or just a solid reason to cross the bridge over to Key Biscayne.
Pan Con Bistec
Mary’s Cafe is open 24 hours a day and the building pulls double duty as a laundromat. You won’t have to worry about spilling crumbs on some poor dude’s towels though. The food portion of Mary’s takes place outside on the sidewalk, where a small crowd is usually eating one of Mary’s many sandwiches. Chances are, at least one of those people are eating the pan con bistec, because it’s great and stuffed generously with potato sticks. If you are looking for some late-night food after a long night of doing none of our business, this is what you need.
We, personally, do not believe that a burger is a sandwich. But we also don’t believe that a frita is a burger. But rather than sit here like a piece of short circuiting artificial intelligence, we just decided to include a frita on this guide. Just to be safe. And our favorite version in Miami is from El Rey De Las Fritas. The menu includes eight varieties, but the best is still the frita original: a mixture of spiced meat and onions placed onto a Cuban bun, and then topped with a Dikembe Mutombo-sized handful of crispy potato sticks.