SFGuide

The Best Sandwich Spots In San Francisco

From banh mi and tuna melts to Philadelphia-style hoagies, here are the 20 best sandwich spots in the city.

Much like the creators of dry shampoo, puffer jackets, or blenders, the inventor of the sandwich really was onto something. The handheld classic is endlessly versatile and consistently delicious. And lucky for us, San Francisco is a fantastic sandwich town with plenty of banh mi, Philly-style hoagies, and massive subs that could double as a doorstop. Here are the 20 best sandwich spots in SF.

Get The Infatuation in your inbox

Get our newest guides & reviews first, plus more restaurant intel you won’t find anywhere else.

Select the newsletters of your preference

You will receive one daily newsletter per selection.

The Spots

Saigon Sandwich imageoverride image

Saigon Sandwich
8.7

Vietnamese in Tenderloin

$$$$

Get Directions  |   415-474-5698  |  Website

Hours: SATURDAY7:00AM to 5:30PM
    Perfect for
  • Lunch
  • Serious Take-Out Operation

This cash-only Tenderloin institution has been around for decades, and it’s earned legendary status for one simple reason: it’s home to the best banh mi in San Francisco. Biting into the crackly, fresh-baked roll feels like a shot of serotonin thanks to the well-spiced meat, mayo, and pickled daikon and carrots that come in every sandwich. Plus, at around $5 each, lunch here is a deal that’s hard to beat.


It’s easy to take this Italian deli on Columbus Avenue for just another North Beach tourist trap. But Molinari is the real deal—you’ll find as many locals as visitors here ordering one of their hefty sandwiches with fantastic cured meats. Definitely add their basil-garlic spread to whatever you get, or roll with one of their pre-designed sandwiches like the Renzo with prosciutto, coppa, and fresh mozzarella.


Lucinda’s Deli & More imageoverride image

Lucinda’s Deli & More
8.2

Sandwiches in Nopa

    Perfect for
  • Lunch
  • Serious Take-Out Operation

Walk anywhere in the vicinity of Alamo Square and you’ll probably see a few people on a park bench, gazing lovingly at a tightly-wrapped sandwich from Lucinda’s Deli & More. The NoPa spot just opened in 2020, but is already considered SF sandwich royalty—their baguette sandwiches are stuffed with so much filling that they look like burritos, and each has expertly balanced levels of salt, sweet, and spice. Case in point: their spicy tuna melt masterpiece with rainbow layers of pickled jalapeños, cheddar, arugula, and tomato. It’s also our go-to, but it’s impossible to go wrong with anything on the menu.


Deli Board review image

Deli Board
8.4

Sandwiches in Soma

$$$$

Get Directions  |   415-552-7687  |  Website

Hours: SATURDAY11:00AM to 4:00PM
    Perfect for
  • Lunch
  • Serious Take-Out Operation

It’s not that hard to make a good sandwich. But making a great one that’s worthy of planning an entire day around? That’s a feat in itself—and no place does it like Deli Board. The SoMa spot cranks out tank-sized sandwiches that are well-stuffed with everything from corned beef to tuna salad and falafel. Whatever you order off of their usual menu or eponymous board of daily-changing specials will be fantastic, but when in doubt, get anything with pastrami.


Palm City review image

Palm City
8.5

Sandwiches in Sunset

    Perfect for
  • Casual Weeknight Dinner
  • Drinking Good Wine
  • Lunch
  • Serious Take-Out Operation

Palm City is a wine shop in the Sunset that also serves excellent Philadelphia-style hoagies. They’re absolutely gigantic, but the fresh toppings—like broccoli rabe or a salad’s worth of arugula—make the sandwiches taste light and almost refreshing. The one that keeps us coming back weekly is the Italian American hoagie with thinly sliced mortadella, ’nduja mayo, and a long, sesame-covered roll. We love grabbing a seat at one of their big tables and ordering a bottle of natural wine to go with it.


SF Chickenbox imageoverride image

SF Chickenbox
8.2

Sandwiches in North Beach

    Perfect for
  • Casual Weeknight Dinner
  • Lunch
  • Serious Take-Out Operation

Simplicity is often the key to greatness, as proven by our trusty pair of white sneakers. SF Chickenbox knows this well. The takeout-only North Beach spot specializing in fried chicken sandwiches tops theirs with only house sauce and shredded lettuce. Add their flawless fried chicken breast and squishy buns to the mix and you have one of the best fried chicken sandwiches in the city. We also come here for the sides alone, like the refreshing macaroni salad or housemade ube mochi muffins.


The Best Fried Chicken Sandwiches In SF guide image

SF Guide

The Best Fried Chicken Sandwiches In SF

La Torta Gorda imageoverride image

La Torta Gorda
8.0

Mexican in Mission

Hours: SATURDAY7:00AM to 4:00PM
    Perfect for
  • Dining Solo
  • Lunch
  • Outdoor/Patio Situation
  • Walk-Ins

The tortas at this Mexican restaurant in the Mission live up to La Torta Gorda’s oversized moniker. Sandwiches here come in two sizes (junior or regular) and both are monstrous. Don’t believe us? Kindly refer to the Mega Cubana, a behemoth featuring milanesa, sausage, pierna, ham, chorizo, eggs, turkey, queso fresco, and American cheese that’s large enough to feed five or six people. Share it with friends at a table inside the diner-inspired spot, or under an umbrella out in the back garden.


Flour + Water Pasta Shop imageoverride image

Flour + Water Pasta Shop

Sandwiches in Mission

    Perfect for
  • Serious Take-Out Operation

Flour + Water’s new outpost, Flour + Water Pasta Shop, is where they make all of their pasta and also sell things like wine, sauces, and provisions to take home. But we’re grateful for this casual spot because it introduced us to their calabrian fried chicken sandwich, a slightly spicy behemoth with pickled banana peppers and a creamy slaw. Grab a glass of natural wine to wash it down and chill on one of their sidewalk tables.


Newkirk’s review image

Newkirk's
8.0

Breakfast in Mission

    Perfect for
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Quick Eats
  • Serious Takeout Operation

The BEC breakfast sandwich from this Mission spot is more effective at getting us out of bed than our sunrise alarm lamp. That’s because of the bacon, American cheese, and over-medium egg that comes together to create an amalgamation of gooey, salty goodness. Newkirk’s also has other “East Coast-style” sandwiches that we’ll always wake up an hour early for, with things like pastrami, grilled ribeye, and hash browns.


Family Cafe review image

Family Cafe
8.3

Japanese in North Beach

    Perfect for
  • Coffee & A Light Bite
  • Dining Solo
  • Lunch

Editor’s Note: Family Cafe will be closing permanently on January 29th.

The King George sando from this Japanese cafe in North Beach is less of a sandwich and more of an entire garden’s worth of vegetables packed between two vegan sourdough slices. The layers of beets, avocado, shredded cabbage, and julienned carrots and cucumber make the whole thing so big it’s almost hard to bite into. If you want to involve meat with your sandwich, go with the chicken katsu with housemade katsu sauce—the chicken is fried to a deep golden-brown until it’s all gorgeous and crisp.


Devil’s Teeth Baking Company review image

Devil's Teeth Baking Company
8.2

Bakery/Cafe in Sunset

Hours: SATURDAY7:00AM to 4:00PM
    Perfect for
  • Breakfast
  • Serious Take-Out Operation

We start most mornings weighing the pros and cons of going to get the Special Breakfast Sandwich from Devil’s Teeth. And since there really are no cons, we usually end up in line at the Sunset bakery with others who also made the very good decision to start their day with one of the delicious, saucy works of art. As soon as you unwrap it, the smell of bacon and buttery biscuit will hit you like a brick. The thick chunks of avocado cut through the richness nicely, and the soft-scrambled eggs melt in your mouth. This is the best breakfast sandwich in SF, hands down. See you in line tomorrow.


Cafe Okawari review image

Cafe Okawari
8.5

Japanese in Soma

    Perfect for
  • Casual Weeknight Dinner
  • Eating At The Bar
  • Lunch

We usually come to Cafe Okawari to chill with a book and a matcha latte and enjoy their relaxed space. We also come to the Japanese spot in SoMa to get our hands on their incredible chicken katsu sandwich. The milk bread they use is so soft it’ll feel like you’re sinking your teeth into a cloud. And the golden-brown chicken thigh is even more tender than the opening montage in Love Actually. Order a side of potato croquettes and you have yourself a perfect lunch.


Cielito Lindo imageoverride image

Cielito Lindo
8.0

Mexican in Richmond

    Perfect for
  • Casual Weeknight Dinner
  • Lunch

Quesabirria tacos are a highlight at this Mexican spot in the Richmond, but don’t sleep on the tortas. There are nine on the menu, but we especially love the milanesa and carne asada. You do also have some customizable options: monterey jack or queso fresco (queso fresco, always). And it’s $2 cheaper for a smaller size, which, unless you’re sharing with another person or two, is something to consider—these tortas are huge.


Lou’s Cafe review image

Lou's Cafe

Sandwiches in Richmond

Hours: SATURDAY8:00AM to 4:00PM
    Perfect for
  • Breakfast
  • Literally Everyone
  • Lunch
  • Quick Eats

The huge subs from Lou’s Cafe deserve their own national holiday. And while we probably won’t have time off to honor Turkey Cranberry Sandwich With A Generous Swath Of Garlic Aioli Day any time soon, we can still grab the actual sandwich from this family-run Richmond spot. For something this big and this good, $9.40 for one is a steal. They also have tons of other options, from hot pastrami brisket to meatballs covered in housemade marinara.


The Bird review image

The Bird
8.2

Sandwiches in Soma

    Perfect for
  • Casual Weeknight Dinner
  • Lunch
  • Serious Take-Out Operation

There are now two locations of The Bird: the original in SoMa, and a newer outpost in Hayes Valley. Both serve one of the best hot chicken sandwiches in the city. Massive chicken thighs are dipped in a bright red spicy sauce that will stain your fingers and lips in the best way. The sandwich is then topped with mayo, pickles, and a sweet apple slaw that cools your tongue down nicely. If you want something milder, get it “classic”—either way, we like to order the “Happier Meal” (a sandwich, curly fries, and a beer) and eat it somewhere sunny.


RT Rotisserie review image

RT Rotisserie
8.0

American in Hayes Valley

$$$$

Get Directions  |   415 829 7086  |  Website

    Perfect for
  • Casual Weeknight Dinner
  • Keeping It Kind Of Healthy
  • Lunch
  • Quick Eats
  • Serious Take-Out Operation
  • Vegetarians

RT Rotisserie is the casual spinoff of one of the best restaurants in the city, so it’s no surprise that their sandwiches are also top-tier. You can get them with things like the titular rotisserie chicken or roasted cauliflower, but we like the version with fried chicken. It’s loaded with tangy pickled onions and a chipotle yogurt sauce that complements the chicken perfectly. Just be sure to save room for dessert, as their sweet milk and seasonal fruit soft serve is incredible.


Turner's Kitchen imageoverride image

Turner's Kitchen

The sandwich GPS in our brain always directs us first to Turner’s Kitchen when we’re on our way to spend an afternoon at Dolores Park (Turner’s is right around the corner). What makes them so exciting to come back to is their constantly-rotating sandwich specials, like tuna salad with chipotle-lime coleslaw or roast turkey and mole negro. Or you can always stick to the trusty standbys like the french dip or the Thanksgiving-inspired “Gobbler.” Just be sure to check their Instagram for suggested chip and drink pairings before heading over.


Lucca Delicatessen imageoverride image

Lucca Delicatessen

Hours: SATURDAY9:00AM to 6:00PM

During the primetime lunch hour, the Italian deli in the Marina is crammed with people ordering half pounds of prosciutto, stocking up on pantry essentials like olive oil or crackers, or grabbing a tray of meatballs to go. Successfully navigating the crowds just to get to the ticket dispenser should be considered a sport. But once you order, and one of their Italian combos or caprese sandwiches lands in your hands, the effort will all be worth it. Or maybe just order online in advance.


Breadbelly imageoverride image

Breadbelly
8.1

Bakery/Cafe in Richmond

    Perfect for
  • Breakfast
  • Coffee & A Light Bite
  • Lunch
  • Serious Take-Out Operation

The char siu sandwich from this Richmond bakery and cafe is a sight to behold. The milk bread is so thick it could double as a mattress. And the sticky-sweet glaze on the char siu is so shiny we can almost see our reflection. You’ll stare at the stunner for so long you might forget to start eating—but when you finally dig in, you’ll marvel at how light the whole thing tastes. Make sure you save room for some of Breadbelly’s fantastic pastries for dessert.


Arguello Market is a grocery store in the Richmond that also happens to make a phenomenal roasted turkey sandwich on a Dutch crunch roll. It’s so great, in fact, that we actually refer to Arguello Market as Turkey Sandwich Emporium. Their deli case also has plenty of other housemade pastas and salads. Get whatever looks good, and don’t leave without stocking up on drinks and chips.


Suggested by writer

.