Italiano Ham and Pepperoni Sub

French Bread

I want to share an easy recipe for a delicious subsandwich I threw together years ago, but first let me give you a little back story. One of the first jobs I ever had was at a subsandwich shop fairly close to where I grew up. Probably the most recognizable one, so I’m sure you can guess what it was. It’s a shame they don’t cut the bread the same way they used to. But anyway, surprisingly enough it was a sandwich I bought at a different chain of sandwich shops that gave me the idea for this sub. I tried my best to recreate it because it was in all honesty a pretty good sandwich. I don’t know if I got the ingredients right (and it really doesn’t matter) but it ended up turning out quite well and one that we eat here on a semi-regular basis.

First things first though, you have to make sure you purchase the right bread. It has to be nice and crusty on the outside while being perfectly soft and chewy on the inside. Luckily for me, they sell something just like that at the store we frequent. It is precooked, but it needs to be finished in the oven at 400° F (about 200° C). If you can find something like that you will be set because it’ll be nice and fresh coming out of the oven. But if you enjoy making your own bread, go for it. Let it cool down enough so it won’t melt the cheese and you’ll be set to go to work. I really never came up with a name for this sandwich but I have been asked to make it by friends more than a few times. They say something like “Hey, you want to make that one sandwich for dinner tonight,” and then I reply something to the effect of “Hey that’s a good idea, I think I will do that!” And then that’s what happens. Everybody gets a huge sub to stuff their faces with and it makes everyone happy.

Italiano ham and pepperoni sub

I like to use provolone cheese for this particular sub and will defend that decision vehemently. It’s one of my absolute favorite cheeses. It’s perfect for cheese blends used on pizza, and hey you can’t have proper lasagna without it. So if you decide to use a different cheese, just don’t let me know. Now that that’s settled, we can talk about the ham and the pepperoni. Good old shaved ham from the deli or even just packaged sliced ham is what you want. I would steer clear of honey ham though, we don’t really need any honey getting involved here. But it certainly won’t make or break the deal though.

Next up, my favorite part. Pepperoni. I don’t think you can use too much either. Grab whatever size you want, it can be the smaller pepperoni used for pizza or the larger sandwich pepperoni, it doesn’t matter. Just pile it on. When satisfied that the pepperoni ratio is adequate, it’s time to move on to the next ingredients: romaine lettuce (or leaf lettuce if you prefer) and diced tomatoes. Sometimes I chop the lettuce and put it in a large bowl before dicing the tomatoes so I can just toss them together in the bowl to get them mixed up nicely before adding them to the sandwich.

After that, liberally drizzle on some olive oil over the lettuce and tomatoes and top it all off with some oregano. Oregano is another one of those spices you could say I’m fond of, so I have a hard time overdoing on the seasoning. It’s a pretty simple sandwich that doesn’t take a lot of time to make but it’s guaranteed to satisfy everyone but the pickiest of eaters. Try coupling this sandwich with some antipasto or a Greek pasta salad and a few pepperoncini and it should make a delicious dinner for the whole family. Or just yourself if you don’t feel like sharing. A few last words about pepperoncini though. Basically the Italian word “pepperoncini” is the plural form of “pepperoncino.” I didn’t know this, but in Italy it actually refers to the hotter varieties of chili peppers which are generically known as “pepperone,” and “Friggitelli” is the Italian word for the milder variety sold in the United States as pepperoncini. This is most likely what you will be purchasing at the store.

Italiano Ham and Pepperoni Sub

The Italiano Ham and Pepperoni Sub, overflowing with provolone cheese, pepperoni and shaved ham. Topped off with lettuce, tomatoes, olive oil and a liberal amount of oregano.

Italiano Ham and Pepperoni Sub

By: Semiserious Chefs
Serves: varies


  • 1 loaf of chewy baguette bread (about 2 feet)
  • 4 – 6 oz provolone cheese (sliced)
  • 12 oz sliced or shaved ham
  • 4 – 6 oz sliced pepperoni
  • 1/3 – 1/2 head lettuce (romaine or leaf chopped)
  • 1/2 large tomato (diced)
  • Olive oil (to taste)
  • Oregano (to taste)


  1. Slice the baguette bread evenly from one end to the other making sure not to cut completely through both sides. After making your cut, open up the bread and spread it apart like in the picture above.
  2. Lay slices of provolone cheese on the bottom section of bread from one end to the other. I use pre-sliced provolone that comes in round slices which I then cut in half before putting them on the sandwich.
  3. Continue laying slices of the ham and pepperoni from one end of the sandwich to the other just like with the cheese.
  4. Add the chopped lettuce and diced tomatoes, covering the sandwich evenly.
  5. Top the lettuce and tomatoes with drizzled olive oil and then add oregano to taste.

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