Sandwich Fillings

Soft Fillings
Meat Products
Other Fillings
Food Combinations


A filling is, as the word suggests, placed inside or in between bread or layers of bread.

Soft fillings can include (but are not limited to):

  • Flavoured butters
  • Cream cheeses and soft cheeses
  • Meat paste pates
  • Vegetable pastes – pesto, tapenade, hummus, chutney etc.
  • Fruit sauces – e.g. cranberry sauce

Meat Products

Meat products – both processed and unprocessed are often used as sandwich filling. They can be served on a sandwich as slices, shaved or as a meat paste (pate etc.). Meat products might be:

  • Processed – e.g. ham, bacon, salami, devon, pepperoni, chicken and turkey
  • Roasted – chicken, beef, turkey, pork, game meats
  • Marinated and cooked – teriyaki chicken or lamb, honeyed beef, satay chicken or beef – there is a wide range of meat marinades that can be used
  • Minced – burger patties (either domestic or game), terrines



Cheeses also form a common sandwich base. There are over 1000 named types of cheese, each with its own characteristics. Differences in cheese products stem from:

  • the type of milk used (Goat, sheep, horse or buffalo)
  • the method of production  the cream content of the milk (full cream or skim)
  • the amount of time the cheese has been aged (matured)

Cheese types can include:

  • Fresh cheese – Unripened, short life span, eaten immediately after making; cottage cheese, Cream cheese, mascarpone, Quark, Neufchatel, Ricotta, Curd Cheese
  • Soft cheese – Briefly ripened, easy to spread, contain high percentage of moisture and fat. Some are ripened with mould either sprayed on the outside, e.g. camembert, or introduced into the cheese, e.g. blue vein cheese, Gorgonzola, Roquefort, Camembert, Brie, Mozzarella, Fetta
  • Firm cheese – Matured; some moisture and can have high fat content. Good for melting - Gruyere, Manchego, Edam, Cheddar, Emmenthal, Jarlsberg
  • Hard cheese – Long maturation period – low in moisture. May contain up to 50% fat. Good for grating - Parmesan, Romano, Provolone

Other Fillings

The range of vegetable products that can be used in sandwich fillings includes, but is certainly not limited to:

  • tomato
  • cucumber
  • avocado
  • grated carrot
  • whole vegetables (lettuce leaves)
  • sprouts

Vegetables can be fresh or processed as in the case of pickles, olives, jalapeños, beetroot, sundried tomatoes etc. Mixed salads, for example coleslaw or tabouli, can also be used to fill sandwiches.

Food Combinations

Many foods can be combined to provide specific taste and texture sensations – all to make a more attractive and flavoursome dish. This applies equally to the sandwich. Classic combinations such as roast beef and horseradish, roast turkey and cranberry, smoked salmon and capers can all be used in sandwich making.

Other classics include Club sandwich and BLT. Combinations are only limited by the chef’s imagination and knowledge of various ingredients.

Combinations that can be used in sandwiches include, but are certainly not limited to:

  • Beef – roasted or marinaded. Mignonette lettuce, sliced or semi-dried tomato, mustard, chopped parsley, grilled zucchini or eggplant, horseradish cream, artichoke. Garnish with fresh basil.
  • Chicken – roasted or marinaded. A range of mayonnaises, ranch dressing, deep fried leek, baked capsicum, designer lettuce, olives, jalapeños, hummus, tabouli, coleslaw. Garnish with fresh curled chilli or chives, fresh basil sprigs.
  • Smoked salmon – Thinly sliced cucumber, fresh avocado, butter lettuce, watercress cream, capers, thin slices of fresh onion. Garnish with salmon roe, fresh dill or watercress.
  • Roast turkey or processed turkey slices – Cream cheese, camembert cheese, cranberry sauce, grilled eggplant, avocado or guacamole, designer lettuce. Garnish with fresh curled chives, finely diced chives, fresh violet flowers.
  • Prawns or lobster – Various types of seafood sauce, lettuce, avocado (fresh or guacamole), delicate cheese (camembert, brie), finely sliced tomato. Lemon twist. Garnish with fresh lemon thyme and tomato wedges.
  • Cheeses – A wide range of sundried, demi-dried or fresh salad vegetables, chutneys and fruit sauces, salami and similar processed meats. Garnish with parmesan silvers and any fresh herbs.
  • Burger patties – game or domestic – meat-based or vegetarian. A wide range of salad vegetables; fried onions, fried egg, cheeses, pickles, tomato, barbeque or specialist sauces, bean sprouts, salad dressings etc. and garnish with chopped chives curled celery or chilli, parmesan slivers.

Sandwiches do not necessarily require a meat or cheese base; a tasty, satisfying sandwich can be filled with a variety of vegetables and salad vegetables. The combinations are up to you, your imagination and the blending of flavours.

The breads and rolls used to make these sandwiches also depend on your imagination and the needs of the customer. Unleavened breads - such as pita bread, rice breads, roti (including potato breads) – can be used to make attractive, presentable and flavoursome hot or cold wraps.

Regardless of the style of sandwich you make, quality depends on freshness, flavour, cleanliness and neatness and presentation methods.