There’s something magical about a well-made sandwich. Whether it’s a creation as simple as a grilled cheese or as towering as a triple-decker club, sandwiches satisfy in a way few other foods can. And sandwiches have range. Which is why we had to set a few ground rules before we cultivated our list of Lehigh Valley’s best sandwiches. First, we ruled out cheesesteaks, which are a category onto themselves around these parts. And, second, we did the same for hot dogs, which also felt separate. That still left us with a ton of options. So we ate. And ate. And ate. Until we found these 10 sandwiches—which are pure magic.
Best Pressed Sandwich
The Tripleta at Sandwichera El Punto
410 Tilghman St, Allentown
This massive sandwich—nearly the length of your forearm—comes fully loaded with chicken, ham, and beef. Lettuce, tomato, onions, cheese, and mayo lend harmony and the crusty-fluffy bread ties the whole Puerto Rican sandwich experience together at Sandwichera El Punto. Yes, you’re going to need extra napkins.
Best Turkey Sandwich
The Pepperpot at Brookside Deli
1915 Brookside Rd, Macungie
Don’t write off this longtime favorite sandwich shop just because it’s attached to a gas station. Brookside Deli's menu is stuffed with incredible options, but the true standpoint is this combo of peppered turkey, pepper jack cheese, hot and/or sweet peppers, and peppercorn mayo. (See what they did there?) All housed within a fresh kaiser roll, the Pepperpot is delightfully fiery in a lip-tingling way.
Best Ham Sandwich
The Strugglebus (with or without wheels) at The Goosemen
102 W. Fourth Street Bethlehem, PA
You’ll find this stack of pepper ham, bacon, Cheddar Jack cheese, and mayo on The Goose’s secret menu. The “wheels” are cucumber rounds—so up to you in terms of their inclusion. Either way, the one-two punch of the dual pork products, coupled with the sharp-spicy cheese, makes for one heck of a lunch.
Best Reuben Sandwich
Reuben—on an everything bagel at Syb’s West End Deli
2151 Liberty St, Allentown, PA
Who says you can’t order a Reuben for breakfast? Syb's, a homey deli near Muhlenberg College, mounds corned beef, kraut, Swiss, and Thousand Island on rye, but you can ask for it on a toasted everything bagel for a whole new experience—and an excuse to eat a pickle before 9:00 a.m. The sandwich also pairs well with coffee. No, seriously.
Best Banh Mi Sandwich
Banh Mi Heo Quay at Vietnamese Noodle House
425 Northampton St., Easton, PA
Of the seven (count ‘em, seven!) banh mi sandwiches this new-ish Easton spot has on its menu, this stack of roasted pork belly, tangy pickled vegetables, fresh cilantro, and sliced cucumber is The One. It’s meaty. It’s filling. It’s one of those sandwiches you’ll crave long after the last bite.
Best Roast Beef Sandwich
Roast Beef, Horseradish & Cheddar at Baked
228 Main St Emmaus, PA
The beauty of a Baked sandwich is that they let their bread—yes, this team bakes it themselves—stand as the foundation of their creations. The tender roast beef, bracing horseradish, and creamy Cheddar keep things simple so as not to overwhelm the soul-satisfying power of fresh-baked bread.
Best Veggie Sandwich
Veggie Panini at Birthright Brewing Co.
57 S Main St, Nazareth, PA
Another underwhelming avocado toast, this is not. Birthright takes a garden’s worth of roasted zucchini, squash, red peppers, and shrooms, tosses on a little arugula for color and bite, and then pulls a switch-up. Where most spots might add hummus or (cringe) veganaise, they opt for a slather of romesco sauce, which is a roasted-red-pepper sauce thickened with almonds. Match the sandwich’s fresh flavors with one of their double IPAs.
ABEmpire Melt at Ciao! Sandwich House
12 N 3rd St., Easton, PA
Gooey Vermont Cheddar and Pepper Jack enrobe a small hill of maple turkey at Ciao! Sandwich House in Easton. Lettuce, tomato, and (watch out!) pickled jalapenos liven things up. And mayo brings out the richness of the whole decadent adventure-on-a-roll.
Best Falafel Sandwich
Falafel Flower at Hummus House
518 E 3rd St, Bethlehem, PA
If you’re always kind of meh about falafel sandwiches, allow Hummus House to change your mind. This panini-pressed sandwich starts with crisp-soft falafel and then turbocharges it with banana peppers, cauliflower, tomatoes, tahini sauce, and (whew) garlic sauce.
Best Wild Card Sandwich
The O.G. at Sticky Pig Food Truck
The O.G. isn’t exactly a Cubano, a panini, or really like anything you’ve ever tasted before. Pork or chicken (your pick) matches up with roasted garlic aioli, coleslaw, and mixed greens. Then all that tucks itself into a long roll. Finally, the whole shebang squeezes beneath a plancha and gets toasty. An O.G. is worth tracking down, wherever Sticky Pig may be.