The Best Hoagies In Philadelphia guide image


The Best Hoagies In Philadelphia

Philly makes a lot of great hoagies. These are the 13 best.

Philadelphia is a sandwich town—the sandwich town, if you ask us—and there’s no sandwich we love more than the hoagie (though the cheesesteak and roast pork come pretty close). Nothing compares to meat, cheese, and vegetables stacked on a freshly made roll. Hosting friends for an Eagles game? Hoagies. Grabbing lunch with coworkers? Hoagies. Treating yourself because life is hard and cured meats help? Hoagies. We scoured the city to find the very best, from the ultimate meaty Italians to vegan jawns.


Pizzeria Beddia

When you hear “hoagie shop,” you probably picture a small corner deli. But as Patrick Swayze once said, nobody puts hoagies in the corner. Okay, maybe he didn't say that. Either way, Fishtown's Pizzeria Beddia offers a two-hour hoagie omakase experience in their dedicated hoagie room, complete with a full bar and meat-slicing station. You and five friends will take a tour of the menu’s standouts, stopping by the tangy hunks of tomato pie, crunchy chicory salad, and a few signature pizzas. But it’s the perfectly crafted hoagies, like the roasted vegetable with marinated mushrooms and sesame aioli or the cured meat-loaded Italian, that will (nearly) ruin eating hoagies anywhere else.

This South Philly institution is on our list of best cheesesteaks, pizza, and now hoagies. Like the pyramids in Egypt or Philadelphians saving parking spots with traffic cones, Angelo’s is something that will stand the test of time. The cash-only spot has earned legendary status for good reason: biting into anything here feels like a shot of meaty serotonin. Their hoagies are served on crackly housemade rolls and showcase the true power of cheese and premium cuts of cured meat. You’ll usually find as many tourists as locals lining the block in an excited frenzy to grab something hefty, but the standout is The Pops, stacked with prosciutto, soppressata, dry cured capicola, mortadella, and sharp provolone.

Consider Mi Pal’s your new BFF. The South Philly corner shop makes enormous hoagies and steak sandwiches, all on perfectly crispy-on-the-outside, fluffy-on-the-inside seeded rolls. They do everything well, from a standard turkey and cheese to the Italian (get the one with prosciutto), but the pesca-vegetarian options are just as good. Try the fried eggplant hoagie with roasted red peppers, creamy fresh mozzarella, and a drizzle of balsamic, or the tuna salad hoagie with American cheese and LTO. You know, when you’re looking for something “light.”

Ricci’s has been in South Philly since the 1920s, and they’ve spent the last century perfecting their hoagies. The small counter-service spot is where you can get a mayo-y stacked hoagie full of things like smoked turkey, corned beef, and salty ham for under $10. The bread here is perfect for piling on lots of toppings and still holding the weight of a very meaty sandwich. Grab the Old Fashioned Italian and make all your coworkers jealous.

Liberty Kitchen is a full-service deli, bakery, and international grocer in Fishtown. You can pick up everything from French cheeses and Italian meats to Vietnamese chocolates, but when you’re really hungry, there’s nothing better than their Roasted Turkey Salumeria. Their crusty seeded roll is stacked with turkey, mild provolone, a housemade creamy balsamic, LTO, and their hellish pepper relish. The tangy balsamic and hot relish complement the smoky, slightly sweet turkey perfectly, making one unforgettable hoagie.

Like listening to a Kacey Musgraves album post-break up, this takeout-only deli in Mayfair specializes in hoagies that always hit the spot. All of their sandwiches are must-orders, but we’re big fans of The Brous Avenue. It packs pork, provolone, lettuce, and roasted peppers on a long and soft Italian roll. It’s large but not messy, so you won’t need every napkin in the paper aisle at Target as you scarf it down. What you will need is your phone nearby, since you’ll want pictures so you can reminisce about it later.

Primo’s is like the Starbucks of hoagies (if Starbucks was awesome and didn't serve floppy sandwiches). There are locations all over the city, they have tons of options, and the sandwiches are consistently good. They make a great Italian and Suprimo (chicken cutlet with mozzarella and roasted red peppers), but the Turkey Schwartzie deserves all of your attention. Swiss cheese, crisp coleslaw, and plenty of Russian dressing get piled on top of roasted turkey breast. You’ll need extra napkins, but the mess is worth it. Plus, they cater, so you can make everyone at the block party happy with one massive platter.

You could go to Martha for the natural wine, cocktails, or the huge garden patio, but we go, again and again, for the hoagies. The two-story Kensington bar puts just as much focus into the food menu as it does the drinks, and features locally sourced products in everything from the cheese boards and pickle pots to small plates and salads. They serve four hoagies, but the standout is their vegan option. It layers fermented radish, marinated eggplant, spiced zucchini, and roasted beets, all slathered in a long hot pesto on a crusty roll. Don’t be fooled—it may be meat-free, but this bad boy will still give you a mean case of the meat sweats.

The hoagies at South Philly’s Lil’ Nick’s Deli prove the power of persuasion. Because if you're walking anywhere nearby, you’ll see people devouring their hoagies and immediately convince yourself that you can’t live without one. The casual storefront is a neighborhood icon—their toasty seeded bread is stuffed with premium cuts of meat, cheese, and toppings that all balance sweetness, saltiness, and spice (if you add hot peppers, which you should). Our go-to is the Italian Inferno, which stacks hot cured capicola, hot soppressata, and sharp provolone that works together in a peppery, meaty dance. And since they open at 10am, you can (and should) add it to your breakfast rotation and we wouldn’t judge you—nay, we applaud you.

The Italian hoagie at Dan’s Food Market is a meat lover's dream. The bread is crispy on the outside, squishable on the inside, and topped with a salty, hefty blend of salami, prosciutto, and provolone. Every sandwich at this Kensington shop is a hearty one, packed with generous amounts of everything you decide to throw in. This means there’s plenty for lunch, and lunch 2.0.

When does a hoagie stop being just a hoagie and become part of your daily routine, like brushing your teeth or sending spam calls to voicemail? When they come from P&S Ravioli Company, that's when. Every hoagie at this South Philly shop is gigantic, but the toppings like roasted pepper, lettuce, and balsamic glaze make them the most refreshing thing ever served on a roll. The one that keeps us coming back is the Spicy Turkey, layered with thinly sliced cracked pepper turkey and hot pepper cheese on a long, sesame-covered roll.

We all think we can make a good sandwich after picking up some bread, produce, and fancy spreads at the market. But making one so great that our dreams are full of cold cuts and pillowy bread? We’ll leave that to the people at Jack’s Place in the Northeast. Their hoagies come in small, half, and whole sizes—the last one being about as big as a baby whale’s fin. They can be stuffed with everything from oven-roasted turkey to tuna and genoa salami, but the Supreme is the showstopper. It pristinely layers soppressata, dry-cured capicola, prosciutto, and sharp provolone. Top it with crisp shreds of iceberg lettuce and extra peppers, and it will be the most crucial cargo you have in your possession next to your house keys and wallet.

Hoagies at this Rhawnhurst deli are oversized—it’s like someone fed them the “Eat Me” cake from Alice in Wonderland. Hoagies can come in 12 inches or you can pay $0.25 for an extra foot, and they’re all excellent. This is why if you've stopped by during lunch hour, it may get as crowded as 2 Street on New Year's Day. The traditional Italian is the way to go here. The roll is soft yet has a beautifully crispy exterior, and each bite is overflowing with piles of thinly-sliced meat and cheese. Just be sure to save room for a bag of chips near the checkout line, because who’s eating a hoagie without them?

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photo credit: GAB BONGHI

The Best Hoagies In Philadelphia guide image