Easy Cuban Sandwich Recipe

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The delicious Easy Cuban Sandwich is layered with two kinds of pork, loads of melted swiss cheese, pickles, and mustard. Toasted in butter and pressed to perfection, this is one ultimate sandwich for pork lovers.

I love any kind of delicious pork, whether it’s on a sandwich, cooked as a roast, or served with mashed potatoes and gravy! If you love pork then be sure to try this Skillet Pork Cacciatore or this Slow Cooker Mississippi Pork Roast next!

A Cuban sandwich sliced in half with the two halves stacked on each other on a plate.

Easy Cuban Sandwich Recipe

This hearty sandwich is all about the layers and each one plays a significant flavor role in taste. The main ingredient, however, is the two kinds of pork. Layers and layers of smoked ham are paired with thinly sliced pork tenderloin. The Cubano is the ultimate sandwich with the tangy and tart taste of the pickles and mustard paired with melted swiss cheese and pork.

Not only is this sandwich packed with flavor but it’s actually really easy to make! All of the different ingredients complement each other so well and it will make you want this sandwich every week for lunch! It’s also easy to change things up and make this your own. But trust me, once you try this recipe, it will be your new classic, go-to sandwich of choice!

Ingredients in a Cuban Sandwich

This delicious sandwich has a handful of main ingredients and depending on whether you’re from Miami or Tampa you might have different opinions on the correct variation! Check out the recipe card at the bottom of the post for exact measurements.

Pork Tenderloin

  • Pork Tenderloin: This cut of meat is a MUST for this sandwich!
  • Olive Oil: This will help the seasonings stick to your pork
  • Orange Juice: The citrus flavor adds a nice touch to the meat.
  • Lime Juice: Add in a splash of lime to complement the flavors in the meat.
  • Garlic Cloves: If you don’t use fresh garlic cloves then you can use minced garlic. ½ teaspoon equals about 1 clove of garlic.
  • Dried Oregano: This seasoning is just the right flavor.
  • Cumin: The cumin adds in some flavor but don’t worry, it doesn’t add in heat!

Sandwich

  • Cuban Bread: I like to use my homemade Cuban bread recipe but Italian bread will also work!
  • Swiss Cheese: I love the contrasting flavor that this cheese brings to the sandwich.
  • Smoked Ham: Grab this at the deli and it will be sliced and ready to go!
  • Dill Pickles: You can’t ever have enough pickles on a sandwich! These are the best!
  • Mustard: Regular mustard is what I use but you could use dijon mustard if you want to amp up the flavoring.
  • Butter: I used unsalted butter.

How to Make a Cuban Sandwich

This sandwich is all about the layers, and the most cumbersome part of the prep is cooking the pork tenderloin (only because of the time it takes to cook).

Pork Tenderloin

  1. Prep: Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit and line a rimmed baking sheet with foil. 
  2. Make Seasoning and Pour: Place the pork tenderloin on the prepared baking sheet. In a small bowl whisk the olive oil, orange juice, lime juice, garlic cloves, oregano, and cumin together and pour over the pork. 
  3. Cook: Cook for 30 to 40 minutes or until the meat reaches an internal temperature of 145ºF. Thinly slice the meat and set aside.

Sandwich

  1. Slice the Bread: Slice each loaf of bread in half lengthwise and then cut it into 4 equal parts.
  2. Layer: Begin layering the ingredients by adding half of the cheese to the bottom layer of the sandwich bread. Top with the smoked ham, sliced pork, and pickles. Place the remaining cheese on top. Spread mustard on the top piece of bread and place on the sandwich.
  3. Toast: Melt the butter in a skillet or griddle over medium heat. Add the sandwiches and set a heavy skillet, such as an iron skillet, on top of the sandwiches to press them down. Once toasted, flip the Cuban sandwich and repeat. If you want, you can use a panini press to toast this sandwich to perfection!
6 pictures showing how to put together a Cuban sandwich.

Do You Have to Use Cuban Bread?

This depends on who you ask, but truthfully you can use any soft loaf bread to prepare this sandwich. If the bread is too hard it won’t press easily when cooking it at the end.

The close up of someone holding one half of a Cuban sandwich.

Which Pork is Best?

This particular recipe calls for pork tenderloin because it’s easier and quicker to prepare than pork shoulder. Either type of pork cut will work and the shoulder can be flavored slightly more than the tenderloin. The choice is yours!

A Cuban sandwich on a plate with a bite taken out.

Easy Cuban Sandwich

5 from 1 vote
The delicious Easy Cuban Sandwich is layered with two kinds of pork, loads of melted swiss cheese, pickles, and mustard. Toasted in butter and pressed to perfection, this is one ultimate sandwich for pork lovers.
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Author Alyssa Rivers
Servings: 8 Sandwiches

Ingredients
  

Pork Tenderloin

  • 1 pound pork tenderloin
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup orange juice
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice
  • 3 garlic cloves minced
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin

Sandwich

  • 2 loaves Cuban bread (Italian bread will also work)
  • 1 pound Swiss cheese sliced
  • 1 pound smoked ham sliced
  • 1 cup dill pickles sliced
  • 1/4 cup mustard
  • 2 tablespoons butter

Instructions
 

Pork Tenderloin

  • Preheat the oven to 375º Fahrenheit and line a rimmed baking sheet with foil.
  • Place the pork tenderloin on the prepared baking sheet. In a small bowl whisk the olive oil, orange juice, lime juice, garlic cloves, oregano, and cumin together and pour over the pork.
  • Cook for 30 to 40 minutes or until the meat reaches an internal temperature of 145º Fahrenheit. Thinly slice the meat and set aside.

Sandwich

  • Slice each loaf of bread in half lengthwise and then cut it into four equal parts.
  • Begin layering the ingredients by adding half of the cheese to the bottom layer of the sandwich bread. Top with the smoked ham, sliced pork, and pickles. Place the remaining cheese on top. Spread mustard on the top piece of bread and place on the sandwich.
  • Melt the butter in a skillet or griddle over medium heat. Add the sandwiches and set a heavy skillet, such as an iron skillet, on top of the sandwiches to press them down. Once toasted flip the sandwich and repeat.

Notes

If you have a panini press you can also use it to toast and press the sandwiches.
Originally Posted on February 21, 2020
Updated on November 25, 2022

Nutrition

Serves: 8

Serving1sandwichCalories582kcal (29%)Carbohydrates29g (10%)Protein42g (84%)Fat33g (51%)Saturated Fat15g (75%)Polyunsaturated Fat3gMonounsaturated Fat12gTrans Fat0.1gCholesterol124mg (41%)Sodium1377mg (57%)Potassium536mg (15%)Fiber2g (8%)Sugar3g (3%)Vitamin A621IU (12%)Vitamin C6mg (7%)Calcium564mg (56%)Iron4mg (22%)

All nutritional information is based on third party calculations and is only an estimate. Each recipe and nutritional value will vary depending on the brands you use, measuring methods and portion sizes per household.

Course lunch, Main Course
Cuisine Cuban
Keyword Cuban, Cuban Sandwich Recipe, easy, sandwich
Tried this recipe?Mention @alyssa_therecipecritic or tag #therecipecritic

Alyssa Rivers

I am Alyssa and the blogger behind The Recipe Critic. I started my blog in June of 2012 as a place to share my passion for cooking. I love trying new things and testing them out with my family.

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Comments

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  1. Aimee, I’d like to share this recipe with a screen grab of a photo on my blog for a Cuban-inspired Super Bowl menu. Please let me know if that’s cool. Thanks!

    1. Because after grilling sandwiches in butter both sides you cut them in half again. 8 sandwiches..

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