Just like any other city and culture, Miami’s lunch offerings are heavy-handed when it comes to Cuban sandwiches. At the end of the day, who doesn’t love a sandwich? There is a saying that everything is better between two slices of bread, and there may be some truth to that statement. What differentiates Miami’s sandwich offerings from those at other cities is that here, our most popular selections are based around the Latino (especially Cuban) culture.
Although the origin of the Cuban sandwich is widely contested, it is irrefutable that the best can be found in Miami. The Cuban sandwich consists of mojo-marinated roast pork, ham, swiss cheese, pickles, and mustard between Cuban bread, a baguette-shaped roll of dough with a crunchy exterior and light-as-air interior. The final touch to an authentic Cuban is that it is pressed.
Where to try them in Miami: Luis Galindo’s Latin America. 898 SW 57th Ave Miami, FL 33144. (305) 267-9995
The Media Noche is a variation on the Cuban, made using the same ingredients except for the type of bread. Instead, the Media Noche uses a sweeter and more dense egg roll similar to challah. It is not typically pressed.
Where to try them in Miami: Morro Castle. 2500 NW 7th St Miami, FL 33125. (305) 642-4747
For those not too keen on Pork, the Elena Ruz offers a unique take on a Cuban sandwich. This sandwich consists of turkey, cream cheese, and strawberry jam.
Where to try them in Miami: La Carreta. 3632 SW 8th StMiami, FL 33135. 305-444-7501
The Croqueta Preparada (meaning “prepared croquette”) is basically a Cuban Sandwich with the addition of croquettas smashed in between as well. The croquetta typically used is of the ham variation in order to compliment the roast pork and ham from the sandwich. The croquetas add a creamy and rich component to an already indulgent sandwich.
Where to try them in Miami: Enriqueta’s. 186 NE 29th St Miami, FL 33137. (305) 573-4681
Fritas are most akin to Cuban hamburgers than anything else. This sandwich is composed of a paprika-seasoned beef patty sometimes blended with chorizo topped with diced white onions, julienned potatoes, and ketchup on a cuban roll. It is usually prepared on a flattop and can be topped with cheese and a fried egg, but most traditionalist scoff at the addition of these products. They claim fritas are perfect as is.
Where to try them in Miami: El Rey de las Fritas. 1821 SW 8th St Miami, FL 33135. (305) 644-6054
The Minuta is a battered and fried snapper sandwich served on a Cuban roll with diced onions. Don’t be surprised to find the tail still on the fish, as this how the butterflied fish is traditionally served. If the Minuta does not come with a tail-on fish, you can rest assured that the fish is not fresh. Although some may not be adventurous enough to eat the tail, others believe that it results in a crisp bite that is surprisingly pleasant. A few drops of hot sauce and a slathering of tartar helps make this dish of the best (and cheapest) finds in Miami.
Where to try them in Miami: La Camaronera Seafood Joint and Fish Market. 1952 W Flagler St Miami, FL 33135. (305) 642-3322