In the mood for a sandwich? Well, you aren’t alone. Americans eat more than 300 million sandwiches every single day of the year. That’s close to exactly one per person each day.
Around the world, the number one carbohydrate consumed by people is bread and man (and woman) simply cannot live by bread alone. You have to have something in it and that means sandwich time!
So, we’ve put together our list of the Top 10 Sandwich Breads of all time, it wasn’t an easy task and we’ve eaten so many sandwiches that we thought we might turn into one; in fact, Joy may be a mouthful away from becoming a grilled cheese as we speak.
But we’ve enjoyed it, we love the results and we are 100% positive that so will you. For more information about Sandwich Bread in general we recommend some old-school research on Wikipedia for Sandwich Bread.
It may beloved by Americans and people everywhere but let’s be honest about this. Plain old white bread is something of a bore when it comes to sandwiches. It’s fine when there’s nothing else around or you’re in a lunchtime rush and it’s all there is at the supermarket but honestly? You can do better and what’s more, you should do better.
Best sandwich: Peanut Butter & Jelly
It’s marginally healthier than white bread but wheat bread is not much better in the taste or looks department. It’s dull and worse, it’s bossily dull because everyone insists that you ought to eat sandwiches made out of it to stay in shape. We recommend eating it in front of other people to seem virtuous only if you have to.
Best Sandwich: Tuna Salad
Now, this is where the list gets interesting. Potato bread is a half way meeting between potatoes and bread. It’s packed with flavour and has a beautiful spongy texture that makes every mouthful a gasp of pleasure. It can handle sweet and savory fillings with aplomb and somehow, there’s something about it that speaks of sandwich elitism.
Best sandwich: Grilled Cheese
Our only complaint about multi-grain is that it’s hard to keep the seeds from getting stuck between your teeth. Otherwise, it’s healthy and usually extremely tasty too. It’s one of the few mass produced loaves that retains its dignity too. You can’t go wrong with multi-grain, really.
Best Sandwich: Scrambled Egg & Ham
The baguette is, according to French law, made from a basic lean dough and is easily recognized by its length. It’s worth noting that we often prefer to skip sandwiches with this beauty and turn it swiftly into garlic bread. However, we think it hands down beats the submarine roll in its ability to be packed full of fillings and devoured.
Best Sandwich: Philly Cheese Steak
We know it’s a flat bread. That means when you turn focaccia into a sandwich; you’re going with a Swedish style open topped sandwich and that’s not a bad thing. If you’re trying to reduce your carb intake this can be a good way to go – we also think it’s a nice way to shove on a bit more of the sandwich filling than might be achieved otherwise. Italians say that this is one of the best sandwich breads in the world and we agree, though it’s not the only Italian entry on our bread list.
Best Sandwich: Ham, turkey, pastrami, cheese, onion and tomato. Simply divine. We break the rule about stacking the filling on top of the bread for this one, though, and we slice it down the middle.
You may be thinking that the ciabatta has a long, rich history but, in fact, as breads go – it’s almost brand new! It was invented in 1982 by a baker in the city of Verona (like Romeo and Juliet) and was made from wheat flour, water, olive oil, salt and yeast. It was designed to confront the rising popularity of French Baguettes in Italy at the time.
What makes it so good for sandwiches? It’s the consistency of the center, it’s light, fluffy and substantive enough to support nearly any filling. We love it.
Best Sandwich: Cubano
The French also get a second entry on the list. Boule (“ball”) is the shape of the bread and it’s a rustic loaf that is leavened. You can use pretty much any type of flower to create boule bread and, indeed, any type of yeast.
It’s the archetypal French loaf and the word “boulangerie” (baker) is taken directly from it. We find that, done right, this is one of the most texturally consistent loaves ever. It’s also very easy to slice and that makes it very easy to make a great sandwich out of it.
Best Sandwich: Ham and brie with a little salad
Rye Bread is one of the oldest known forms of bread making from Europe.
Rye was introduced into Great Britain back in 500 AD by the Vikings (and it’s worth noting it wasn’t even called Britain back then).
Rye breads can contain quite widely varying amounts of rye and the darker the bread, the more rye that has been used, is a useful rule of thumb For our sandwiches we like a shade that approximates the wheat bread that we mocked at the beginning of our list.
This just has so much more taste and distinction. Also, rye bread lasts forever but be warned – never eat moldy rye bread.
Best sandwich: Avocado, Lime & Radish
Our king of sandwich breads is the sourdough loaf.
It has been around since the middle ages in Europe. And was the traditional way of leavening bread for hundreds of years.
It was brought to the USA by French bakers during the California Gold Rush believe it or not and it’s as close to gold in bread form as you’re ever going to get.
It is perfectly crunchy on the outside and soft and savory within. And while the Amish add sugar and milk to the mix when they make it , we prefer to stay traditional with our sourdough.
Best sandwich: Reuben
So there you have it! Our picks for the top 10 breads for sandwiches. Armed with the basics of the various breads for making awesome sandwiches it’s time to get started: Check out our Top 50 Sandwiches Ever and get started!
If you’d like to get inspiration for using these breads with other dishes check out our 25 Best Cookbooks of All Time.