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Chik’n’s Christmas burger is one of London’s best Christmas sandwiches
Chik’n’s Christmas burger
Chik’n [Official Photo]

London’s Best Christmas Sandwiches 2020

Classic turkey and stuffing, fried rabbit, moistmakers, bread sauce mayo, bacon XO, and more

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Chik’n’s Christmas burger
| Chik’n [Official Photo]

Christmas really is the most wonderful time of the year. As the weather gets parky and countless fleeces are demothballed and recruited for their annual service once again, something truly magical happens to the nation’s tastebuds. It’s almost as if there’s an unspoken agreement that, as soon as the first of December rolls around, we must all suddenly — and collectively — develop an appetite for chestnuts, cranberries, and a staggering assortment of ingredients that we neglect for eleven months of the year. Although there’ll be no parties for hosting this time round, one of the greatest culinary traditions surrounding the hap-happiest season of all remains resolute in 2020: Christmas sandwiches.

From Bodega Rita’s burly Deliveroo-exclusive sangers to a rabbity revival of last year’s hottest sandwich trend in the form of Shack-Fuyu’s Christmas “katsu sando”, there’s a load of great Christmas sandwiches in London demanding attention. These are the sort of sandwiches fashioned out of Boxing Day leftovers if the creator had access to the very best produce available. Most are only available for a limited time, though, so be quick to try them all before the year is up.

Honourable mentions:
While 40 Maltby Street and Cafe Deco don’t have explicitly Christmas-themed sandwiches — complete with kitsch names and slightly too much cranberry sauce — on their blackboards, what they do have is an ever-changing range of seasonally influenced sandwiches that make the most of excellent winter produce. Check out their respective Instagram accounts each week to discover what delicious festive feast they’ve got on the board (and between two slices of bread).

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.
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Roast chicken is objectively better than roast turkey (don’t @ me), so it shouldn’t really be all too surprising that one of the best Christmas sandwiches this year contains the more diminutive (and delicious) poultry. Big Jo’s Xmas special is a showcase of what the bakery does best: the simple, headstrong flavours of roast chicken, sage and onion stuffing, and cranberry all coming through strong between thick slices of Big Jo’s signature sourdough and a generous smear of bread sauce mayo. Be quick, though, as these sarnies are selling out at a clip.

The Good Egg Stoke Newington

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Even the most ardent of Grinches will find it hard to resist humming along to The Waitresses’ ‘Christmas Wrapping’ once armed with The Good Egg’s festive bagel. Available for the whole of December, this sesame-coated Montreal bagel is filled with smoked turkey, red sauerkraut, harissa mayo, pork and pistachio stuffing, and a handsome drizzle of zhoug. Not only will that chewy bagel deliver on festive cheer but The Good Egg will also donate £1 of every bagel sold to the Local Buyers Club London Winter Toy Appeal. 

The Dusty Knuckle Bakery

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All of the sandwiches at The Dusty Knuckle Bakery are gift-wrapped delights worthy of place under the Christmas tree but the vegetarian-friendly charred greens and romesco number is far and away the most festive of the lot. Not only does this sandwich proudly display the colours of the Christmas season but the caramelised and chargrilled hispi cabbage, sprout tops, and crispy shallots all play off each other very nicely under a coating of vibrant romesco sauce.

Sons + Daughters

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The ‘Christmas S+Dwich’ at Sons + Daughters is back and, this year, v2.0 is even bigger and better than the 2019 debut. Here’s what to expect: two cushiony slices of white bloomer stuffed to the rafters with roast Swaledale turkey, spicy cranberry and smoked bacon XO, bread sauce mayo, a Marsala gravy-soaked moistmaker inspired by everyone least favourite palaeontologist, pickled red cabbage, and a pinch of peppery watercress. Yes. Please. 

Plaquemine Lock

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Louisianian gastropub Plaquemine Lock never fails to pull out the stops with its 12” po boy sandwiches — this year’s unique Christmas riff is no different. Moist slices of roast turkey are laid to rest in a toasted carb boat with a sweet and spicy combo of cranberry and jalapeño before being joined by lettuce, tomatoes, pickles, and mayo. Nothing fancy, just good flavours.

Dom's Subs

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The heroes at Dom’s Subs have created two festive masterpieces to see sandwich fans through the bleak midwinter. The ‘Papi Noel’ is packed with chilli spice-rubbed roast turkey, green chorizo stuffing, cranberry salsa, mole-inspired gravy, and curtido. The vegan ‘Feliz Mala-Dad’ contains hot and numbing Brussels, salted black beans, Xinjiang spice-coated crisps, shredded iceberg, coriander, black vinegar-laced vegan mayo, and toasted sesame seeds. Both come served in Dom’s fresh semolina sub rolls. 

The Quality Chop House

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Not even a global pandemic could prevent the Quality Chop House from putting out its near-peerless festive sandwich. Available at the shop from midday til 2 p.m. for the whole of December, the QCH Christmas sandwich’s ingredients list reads like a Greatest Hits of Christmas Day eats. Roast Fosse Meadows Bronze turkey breast (thicc-cut) and leg. Gravy mayo. Cranberry sauce. Crispy bacon. Stuffing. Need to know more? Oh, that all of that comes rammed in a sweet and squishy brioche bun? Yeah, thought as much. See you in the queue.

CHIK'N Restaurant Baker St

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The ‘Twisted Xmas Sandwich’ from the Carl Clarke’s Chik’n is pretty much an entire Christmas meal in and of itself. Juicy buttermilk-brined fried chicken breast is joined in a glossy potato bun by cranberry hoisin, crispy bacon, kewpie mayo, and pink pickles sourced from London-based Eaten Alive. What’s more, for every sandwich sold, Chik’n will sponsor a room for the night for a young homeless person via the Centre Point charity. 

Chik’n’s Christmas burger is one of London’s best Christmas sandwiches

The Allotment Kitchen

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The ‘AK Christmas Sarnie’ is The Muppets Christmas Carol of Christmas sandwiches: a wholesome, hearty, and utterly charming delight that one could quite easily consume every day of the month without getting tired. Two handsome wedges of Bread Station sourdough encase slow-cooked Stepney City Farm pork shoulder, roast turkey breast, mushroom and spinach stuffing, homemade cranberry sauce, mayo, and a token lettuce leaf to tie it all together. Is the lettuce necessary? Absolutely not. But green is good in December. The sandwich is available at Allotment Kitchen for the whole of December and there’s even a vegetarian version knocking about for the non-meat eaters.

Shack-Fuyu Soho

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For those who want to get their hands on the festive sandwich of Elmer Fudd’s dreams this December, get down to Shack-Fuyu and order the ‘Christmas Katsu Sando’: a creation of fried, breaded rabbit, cranberry sauce, red cabbage, and romaine lettuce for a tidy £8.50. That’s what’s up, Doc. 

Bodega Rita’s

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Bodega Rita’s has teamed up with Sea Containers hotel and Lyaness bar to offer not one, but two seasonal sandwiches available exclusively via Deliveroo. ‘The Grinch’ is a meaty treat of the highest order; herbed chicken mayo, honey roast ham, green herb stuffing, and green chilli relish all make their individual presences felt on white sourdough bread alongside crisp gem lettuce dressed with a rosemary vinaigrette, gravy butter, and cranberry sauce. Those who don’t fancy meat can get their chops around ‘The PSF’ instead — pumpkin spiced falafel, whipped goats’ cheese, sautéed spinach, red pepper relish and tahini on white sourdough bread. ⁣5 percent of food sales will be donated to The Felix Project and for every sandwich sold the hotel will pledge one meal towards the fight against hunger this winter.

Honest Burgers Borough

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Is a burger a sandwich? Yes. Yes, it is. Does that mean that Christmas burger is a Christmas sandwich? Yes. Yes, it does. This festive special from Honest Burgers is a proper joy to the world — a well-timed beef patty shrouded in a smörgåsbord of smoked bacon, deep-fried camembert, cranberry sauce, and rocket. There’s even a vegetarian option available with a Beyond Meat plant patty and This Isn’t Bacon for those looking to pass on the meat.

Ole & Steen

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For a Christmas sandwich with subtle Scandi accent look no further than the ‘Jule Feast’ turkey stuffing melt toastie from Ole & Steen. Available at all of the Danish bakery’s London outposts, this sandwich is equal parts huge and hygge. Served in fresh focaccia and toasted till crisp and golden, each sandwich is filled with a Christmas dinner’s worth of roasted turkey, pork and apple stuffing, sweet cranberry sauce, tarragon mayo, Cheddar cheese, and spinach. The vegan version subs out the meats and cheese for plant-based alternatives and roasted squash.

Peckham Cellars

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Queen’s Road wine bar Peckham Cellars has pulled out all the stops this festive season. PC’s Christmas sandwich is a showcase of all those favourite Boxing Day flavours with turkey schnitzel, bacon jam, homemade stuffing, brie, and cranberry sauce all wrapped up under slices of soft white bread. It comes served with a ramekin of jus (gravy) on the side for essential dunking. 

Forza Wine

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A deconstructed sandwich is still a sandwich, goddamnit, and the grilled flatbread with bacon and Brussels sprout tops at Forza Wine is the best damned deconstructed sandwich in town this festive season. Impeccably charred isosceles of bread are thrown on the plate with reckless abandon and topped with a showering of bacon bits and caramelised brassica tops — a great snack to have with a couple of glasses of wine or sherry.

Larry's

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Available until the 31st of December, the Christmas sandwich from Peckham’s American diner-inspired spot Larry’s is large and in charge. Crisp and craggly Turkey breast schnitzel comes sandwiched in light and airy focaccia alongside an acid mixture of sprout top Kimchi, fermented cranberry umeboshi ketchup, mustard mayo, and melted cheese that gives the whole thing a lively brio. Like umami? You’re gonna love this. 

Sub Cult

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The Christmas Quacker special from submarine sandwich specialists Sub Cult looks set to be one of the hardest to get ahold of this month. Only available at Brockley Market on the 12th and 19th of December, this grailed sub — which does away with tradition — is definitely worth seeking out. Confit duck may have the lead role but its the supporting cast of pigs in blankets, orange and cranberry sauce, buttered Savoy, roast chestnuts, and sage mayo that bring the whole thing home in triumphant fashion. 

Big Jo

Roast chicken is objectively better than roast turkey (don’t @ me), so it shouldn’t really be all too surprising that one of the best Christmas sandwiches this year contains the more diminutive (and delicious) poultry. Big Jo’s Xmas special is a showcase of what the bakery does best: the simple, headstrong flavours of roast chicken, sage and onion stuffing, and cranberry all coming through strong between thick slices of Big Jo’s signature sourdough and a generous smear of bread sauce mayo. Be quick, though, as these sarnies are selling out at a clip.

The Good Egg Stoke Newington

Even the most ardent of Grinches will find it hard to resist humming along to The Waitresses’ ‘Christmas Wrapping’ once armed with The Good Egg’s festive bagel. Available for the whole of December, this sesame-coated Montreal bagel is filled with smoked turkey, red sauerkraut, harissa mayo, pork and pistachio stuffing, and a handsome drizzle of zhoug. Not only will that chewy bagel deliver on festive cheer but The Good Egg will also donate £1 of every bagel sold to the Local Buyers Club London Winter Toy Appeal. 

The Dusty Knuckle Bakery

All of the sandwiches at The Dusty Knuckle Bakery are gift-wrapped delights worthy of place under the Christmas tree but the vegetarian-friendly charred greens and romesco number is far and away the most festive of the lot. Not only does this sandwich proudly display the colours of the Christmas season but the caramelised and chargrilled hispi cabbage, sprout tops, and crispy shallots all play off each other very nicely under a coating of vibrant romesco sauce.

Sons + Daughters

The ‘Christmas S+Dwich’ at Sons + Daughters is back and, this year, v2.0 is even bigger and better than the 2019 debut. Here’s what to expect: two cushiony slices of white bloomer stuffed to the rafters with roast Swaledale turkey, spicy cranberry and smoked bacon XO, bread sauce mayo, a Marsala gravy-soaked moistmaker inspired by everyone least favourite palaeontologist, pickled red cabbage, and a pinch of peppery watercress. Yes. Please. 

Plaquemine Lock

Louisianian gastropub Plaquemine Lock never fails to pull out the stops with its 12” po boy sandwiches — this year’s unique Christmas riff is no different. Moist slices of roast turkey are laid to rest in a toasted carb boat with a sweet and spicy combo of cranberry and jalapeño before being joined by lettuce, tomatoes, pickles, and mayo. Nothing fancy, just good flavours.

Dom's Subs

The heroes at Dom’s Subs have created two festive masterpieces to see sandwich fans through the bleak midwinter. The ‘Papi Noel’ is packed with chilli spice-rubbed roast turkey, green chorizo stuffing, cranberry salsa, mole-inspired gravy, and curtido. The vegan ‘Feliz Mala-Dad’ contains hot and numbing Brussels, salted black beans, Xinjiang spice-coated crisps, shredded iceberg, coriander, black vinegar-laced vegan mayo, and toasted sesame seeds. Both come served in Dom’s fresh semolina sub rolls. 

The Quality Chop House

Not even a global pandemic could prevent the Quality Chop House from putting out its near-peerless festive sandwich. Available at the shop from midday til 2 p.m. for the whole of December, the QCH Christmas sandwich’s ingredients list reads like a Greatest Hits of Christmas Day eats. Roast Fosse Meadows Bronze turkey breast (thicc-cut) and leg. Gravy mayo. Cranberry sauce. Crispy bacon. Stuffing. Need to know more? Oh, that all of that comes rammed in a sweet and squishy brioche bun? Yeah, thought as much. See you in the queue.

CHIK'N Restaurant Baker St

Chik’n’s Christmas burger is one of London’s best Christmas sandwiches

The ‘Twisted Xmas Sandwich’ from the Carl Clarke’s Chik’n is pretty much an entire Christmas meal in and of itself. Juicy buttermilk-brined fried chicken breast is joined in a glossy potato bun by cranberry hoisin, crispy bacon, kewpie mayo, and pink pickles sourced from London-based Eaten Alive. What’s more, for every sandwich sold, Chik’n will sponsor a room for the night for a young homeless person via the Centre Point charity. 

Chik’n’s Christmas burger is one of London’s best Christmas sandwiches

The Allotment Kitchen

The ‘AK Christmas Sarnie’ is The Muppets Christmas Carol of Christmas sandwiches: a wholesome, hearty, and utterly charming delight that one could quite easily consume every day of the month without getting tired. Two handsome wedges of Bread Station sourdough encase slow-cooked Stepney City Farm pork shoulder, roast turkey breast, mushroom and spinach stuffing, homemade cranberry sauce, mayo, and a token lettuce leaf to tie it all together. Is the lettuce necessary? Absolutely not. But green is good in December. The sandwich is available at Allotment Kitchen for the whole of December and there’s even a vegetarian version knocking about for the non-meat eaters.

Shack-Fuyu Soho

For those who want to get their hands on the festive sandwich of Elmer Fudd’s dreams this December, get down to Shack-Fuyu and order the ‘Christmas Katsu Sando’: a creation of fried, breaded rabbit, cranberry sauce, red cabbage, and romaine lettuce for a tidy £8.50. That’s what’s up, Doc. 

Bodega Rita’s

Bodega Rita’s has teamed up with Sea Containers hotel and Lyaness bar to offer not one, but two seasonal sandwiches available exclusively via Deliveroo. ‘The Grinch’ is a meaty treat of the highest order; herbed chicken mayo, honey roast ham, green herb stuffing, and green chilli relish all make their individual presences felt on white sourdough bread alongside crisp gem lettuce dressed with a rosemary vinaigrette, gravy butter, and cranberry sauce. Those who don’t fancy meat can get their chops around ‘The PSF’ instead — pumpkin spiced falafel, whipped goats’ cheese, sautéed spinach, red pepper relish and tahini on white sourdough bread. ⁣5 percent of food sales will be donated to The Felix Project and for every sandwich sold the hotel will pledge one meal towards the fight against hunger this winter.

Honest Burgers Borough