Start Your Culinary Engines and Go on a Sandwich Tour

If you were to take a road trip from coast-to-coast, you could experience classic sandwiches that have been celebrated for more than 100 years. Here are four sandwiches that have proven not all sandwiches are created equal.

Northeast

When hungry people think ‘Northeast’ many people think about sandwiches like the Philly cheesesteak and Katz’s famous Corned Beef Hot Sandwich in New York. When making a corned beef sandwich, the construction of placing pastrami and corned beef on a piece of rye bread, then topping with coleslaw, Russian dressing, and another piece of rye bread sounds simple enough, but the combination—when high-quality ingredients are used—creates a taste experience as memorable as New York City itself. Here’s an easy recipe for Slow Cooked Corned Beef for Sandwiches from Allrecipes. And if you’re feeling extra inspired, you’ll find recipes for Russian Dressing, Creamy Coleslaw, and a Reuben sandwich here, from The Washington Times.

Midwest

Bread and cheese have been combined and consumed for centuries and have even been noted in Ancient Roman cookbooks, but the grilled cheese sandwich that everyone knows today kicked into gear in the 1920s when Otto Frederick Rohwedder, an Iowa native, invented the bread slicing machine. Processed cheese had already been patented by James L. Kraft in 1916. The convenience of both sliced bread and processed cheese spontaneously brought the two together and consumers were quick to embrace this simple, satisfying sandwich. This Grilled Cheese Animal Style recipe from House of Yumm will become a new favorite. It’s made with grilled onions and a tasty sauce in classic In-N-Out animal style.

South

New Orleans is home to many famous foods, from gumbo to red beans and rice, and King cake to beignets. And muffuletta: a strapping cold-cut sandwich constructed of an entire loaf of Italian bread, deli Capicola ham, Genoa salami, and Provolone cheese, and an olive spread made with green olives, celery, onions, pimento, garlic, capers, oregano, parsley, olive oil, red-wine vinegar, salt, and black pepper. Laissez les bons temps rouler! Make this Classic New Orleans Muffuletta Sandwich Recipe from Serious Eats.

West

With California having the most farmers’ markets in the United States, it’s no surprise that the California Sandwich is a celebrity when it comes to sandwiches from the West. Multigrain bread, buttermilk ranch dressing, Monterey Jack cheese, tomato, sprouts, and avocado make this sandwich a healthy choice when a craving for something light and refreshing hits. This California Sandwich recipe from SAVEUR includes instructions for making a homemade buttermilk ranch dressing.