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TikTok Grinder Sandwich

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Learn how to make this trending Italian Grinder Sandwich of TikTok fame! Made from a thick and crusty bread roll piled with layers of thinly-sliced deli meats, melty Colby Jack cheese, and a zesty grinder salad tossed in a creamy dressing.

A slice of a grinder sandwich on a cutting board with other slices

The Viral Italian Grinder Taking TikTok by Storm

Today we’re making the latest food sensation to grace our social feeds! If you’ve been on a scroll lately, you may have already come across this fully-loaded grinder sandwich making the rounds on TikTok. It’s meaty, it’s cheesy, it’s creamy and crunchy – basically, it’s all kinds of satisfying all at once.

This thick submarine sandwich is piled high with three different kinds of Italian meats, cheese, and creamy grinder salad, and is touted as the best Italian-style sub sandwich ever. We think it lives up to the hype!

With some melty Colby jack cheese and zesty mayo dressing, let’s recreate this trending grinder in all its glory. 

What is a Grinder Sandwich? 

A Grinder sandwich is an Italian-style sub typically made with crusty Italian bread and piles of meats, veggies, and cheeses. The bread’s thickness and chewiness make it much harder to bite into than your average ham and Swiss sandwich on fluffy white bread. This earned the “grinder” its name, as your teeth need to grind through every bite!

Side view of an assembled grinder sandwich

What You’ll Need

This recipe makes two full sub sandwiches packed to the hilt with flavorful ingredients. Below is everything you’ll need to make the sandwich itself as well as the tossed grinder salad. Don’t forget to check the recipe card for the full recipe details!

For the Grinder Salad

  • Iceberg Lettuce – A hardy lettuce works best here. Iceberg lettuce, romaine, or butter lettuce all hold up well when combined with the dressing ingredients.
  • Mayonnaise – Mayo forms the base for this creamy salad dressing. If you’d prefer to make a no-mayo version, you can use plain Greek yogurt instead.
  • Parmesan Cheese – Freshly shredded parmesan will have the best flavor.
  • Red Vinegar – Or another similar variety, like white wine or balsamic vinegar, for a nice hint of acidity in the dressing.
  • Seasoning – You’ll season your salad with a combination of dried oregano, garlic powder, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper, and (of course) Italian Seasoning.
  • Pepperoncini – These are sweet and mild, pickled chili peppers. They also go by the name of Tuscan peppers or Italian peppers.

For the Sandwich

  • Sandwich Rolls – To make an authentic Italian grinder, you’ll want to use the freshest, thick and crusty Italian sandwich bread you can find. Look for hoagie-style rolls or similar at your local bakery or Italian deli.
  • Cheese – Colby Jack to layer into the sandwich, as well as freshly grated parm to sprinkle over top. You can also use other kinds of cheese, like provolone or Pepper Jack.
  • Deli Meats – This grinder sandwich recipe calls for thinly sliced salami, Capocollo, and turkey breast. Other meat options are prosciutto or parma ham.
  • Tomato – Also thinly sliced.

Let’s Make the TikTok Grinder Sandwich!

While it may look like there’s a lot going on, this grinder sandwich couldn’t be easier to put together! With your ingredients ready to go, it’s time to build this Italian grinder:

  • Make the salad. Toss iceberg lettuce in a bowl with the rest of the salad ingredients to coat. 
  • Melt the cheese. Slice your bread loaves in half. Lay two slices of cheese over one-half of each roll, then place them in the oven at 350ºF until the cheese is melted.
  • Assemble the sandwich. Next, layer the deli meats over the bread with the melted cheese. Follow this up with a few slices of tomato and the dressed salad. Finally, sprinkle the sandwich with parmesan, close it, and serve!
Side view of an assembled grinder sandwich

Tips and Tricks

Some bonus tips when making the ultimate grinder sandwich:

  • Pay a visit to your local Italian deli. Not only are you likely to find better quality meats and cheeses, but a deli will be able to slice them nice and thin with their deli slicer. You may even be able to pick up fresh hoagie rolls while you’re there – another important ingredient for a grinder sandwich!
  • Have all your ingredients ready to go. It makes assembling the sandwich a breeze, and leftover ingredients are easy to store!
  • Make the salad in advance. Iceberg lettuce will hold up in dressing without becoming soggy too quickly. For this reason, you can get a head start on your grinder and make the salad a few hours ahead of time if you’d like. Toss the ingredients and then leave them in the fridge until you’re ready to assemble your sandwich.
Close up of a slice of a hoagie sandwich

What to Serve With an Italian Grinder Sandwich

A fully-stacked grinder sandwich is extra filling all on its own, so you don’t need much to round out a meal! Of course, you can never go wrong with a sandwich and a side of chips or fries.

How to Store Leftovers

Like most sandwiches, once assembled, this grinder sandwich is best enjoyed fresh. Storing the sandwich for too long will turn the bread soggy. If you’d like to make it ahead or store leftovers, wrap the sandwich airtight to keep in the fridge for up to 2 days.

More TikTok Recipes


TikTok Grinder Sandwich

Two slices of a grinder sandwich

Make a TikTok Grinder Sandwich in a few simple steps! This easy recipe makes a delectable sandwich made with crunchy bread, melty cheese, crisp salad and three kinds of meat.

  • Author: Rustic Family Recipes
  • Prep Time: 8 minutes
  • Cook Time: 4 minutes
  • Total Time: 12 minutes
  • Yield: 2 sandwiches
  • Category: Lunch
  • Method: Assemble
  • Cuisine: American


Grinder Salad:

  • 1 ½ cups iceberg lettuce
  • ¼ cup mayonnaise
  • ⅓ cup Parmesan cheese (shredded)
  • ½ tablespoon red vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 teaspoon Italian Seasoning
  • 2 pepperoncini peppers
  • Kosher salt and pepper to taste


  • 2 medium sandwich bread rolls
  • 4 Slices Colby Jack cheese
  • ¼ cup Parmesan cheese (shredded)
  • 8 slices Salami
  • 8 slices Capocollo
  • 8 slices Turkey
  • 1 Tomato


Mix all ingredients for salad dressing in a bowl, add shredded iceberg lettuce, and toss until the salad is fully coated.

Preheat the oven to 350F. Cut each bread in half lengthwise. Place the 2 slices of Colby Jack cheese in one half. Cook until cheese is melted for about 3-4 minutes.

Top the melted cheese with layers of salami, capocollo, and turkey. Then and slices of tomato over the meat.

Top with half of the salad mixture. Sprinkle with grated Parmesan. Close the sandwich and serve immediately.

Last Step:

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Keywords: tik tok sandwich, grinder sandwich, hoagie sandwich, Italian sub sandwich

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Reader Questions and Reviews

  1. Leslie Hall

    Looks like the Grinders we used to get from a shop in Lewiston, Maine during the 1950’s. I must try this recipe. Avery filling and enjoyable sandwich. Thank uou5 stars