Miami is a city that takes its sandwiches seriously. We didn’t put Little Havana’s famous Cubano on the map for nothing. Go beyond fast food to discover some of the best sandwich shops in Miami (and restaurants and Miami coffee shops with great sandos on the menu)—you’ll thank us when you’re scarfing down that baguette after a late night of boozing in South Beach.
Best sandwich shops in Miami
Wynwood’s only Cuban restaurant has found its niche, catering to hipsters and out-of-towners with inexpensive sandwiches made with buttery Cuban bread that are piled high with pork, croquettes and all sorts of fillings. The steak sandwich and frita (Cuban hamburger) are perennial favorites. Lunch specials are generous and appealing, but not as tempting as stopping by the walk-up window for an afternoon cortadito.
Second only to Pizza Rustica for late-night bingeing, South Beach’s original gourmet sandwich bar caters to a fabulous mix of clubbers, drinkers, limo drivers and tattoo artists, along with anyone else who appreciates a well-made prosciutto and mozzarella, ham and turkey, or veggie sandwich on a fresh baguette.
When you spend years creating gourmet dishes that can be easily eaten in the dark, you learn a thing or two about what makes a good handheld meal. Enter Justin Sherrer, Doce Provisions’ chef and co-owner, who spent nearly a decade as executive chef of Cinebistros across the country. These days you’ll find him and girlfriend/co-owner Lisetty Llampalla at their Little Havana restaurant, slinging Latin-style sandwiches inspired by current culinary trends—locally sourced ingredients, Asian preparations, gastropub-influenced. The sandwich portion of the menu, dubbed “Pan y Tostada,” which is Spanish for bread and toasts, features some names you might recognize but made with ingredients you wouldn’t necessarily expect. There’s a Cubano stuffed with Italian soppressata in addition to traditional pork loin and a steak sandwich (pan con bistec) smothered in truffle cheese and shallot marmalade.
The idea of gorging on your childhood favorites is often better than the real thing—adult palates don’t quite take the same to juice boxes and processed pizza. A grilled cheese sandwich done right, however, is a meal for all ages. At Ms. Cheezious, the popular food-truck-turned-brick-and-mortar, the kiddie classic is made especially for grownups. There’s the pulled-pork version, with barbecued pork and sharp cheddar; a popular goat cheese and prosciutto on marble rye bread; and a southern friend chicken sandwiched between two buttermilk waffles—just to name a few.
When you have James Beard Award-winning chef Michelle Bernstein at the helm, trust that the menu is anything but ordinary. The same is true of Crumb on Parchment’s sandwiches, ranging from homespun to totally original. In the wintertime the roast beef sandwich with creamy horseradish is a hit while spring calls for a lighter grilled chicken sandwich. Michelle’s Favorite, and ours too, is Tuscan salami with arugula, Parmigiano-Reggiano and truffle butter tucked inside a crusty baguette. They’ve also got an incredible selection of home-baked cookies—which always pair well with bread.
Miamians have loved Sarussi Subs’ oversized sandwiches way before Subway’s footlongs were ever a thing. The restaurant’s dining room isn’t much of a looker, but most customers opt for takeout anyway—clutching large white paper bags speckled with Sarussi’s secret sauce seeping through. While the original (smoked ham, baked pork, mozzarella cheese, pickles and the secret sauce) is still unquestionably the favorite, Sarussi’s growing menu includes steak, pork, chicken and chorizo sandwiches, among others.
Most people know this Brickell restaurant for its heaping portions of incredibly delicious pastas (available for just $10 on Thursdays—if you’re willing to wait in line) but the secret only locals are privy to is their selection of delicious baguette sandwiches. Sandwiches are served on the same fresh-baked loaves diners receive as part of their bread basket and made right on the spot. The menu has a light tuna option, caprese and traditional Italian, but the world-famous chicken salad sandwich is everyone’s favorite.
A Miami Beach mainstay, this big square room is studded with big TV screens tuned to sports and big pink menus of all-American favorites—the likes of sandwiches, burgers, pastas, pizzas, all-day breakfasts and even TV dinners on a tray. The family-style table arrangement promotes camaraderie, which, late at night, erupts into full-blown rowdiness. For the pickiest little eaters, the kids' menu includes macaroni cheese and chicken fingers. Takeouts are delivered by a fleet of little pink VW Beetles.
Portions at this fast-casual restaurant are huge, but quantity doesn’t stand in for quality. You’ll find plenty of great-tasting options in the exhaustive menu of sandwiches, all cleverly named after news outlets and publishers from around the country. Local media reps include the Miami Herald—breaded chicken with provolone and arugula salad on ciabatta bread—and a Sun Sentinel turkey club. There’s even a Time Out sandwich, a whole grain hoagie filled with egg salad, crispy onion strings, shredded iceberg and tomato.
A longtime fave of pink brunchers in London, Balans’s first U.S. venture is on Lincoln Road. Curiously, despite the laid-back locale, it’s more uptight than its Anglo counterpart. Still, the food is good (a mix of Asian and Mediterranean), and the sandwiches are a great value for lunch. Nothing pairs quite as well with a fresh mozzarella sandwich than people watching on Lincoln Road.