The Best Places To Eat Egg Salad In The US

This is an ode to eggs, or more specifically, egg salad, and where to get the best of it in the U.S. You're probably reading this because you love egg salad sandwiches, and we're with you — when done right, they are delicious. It's not all that clear when people started putting hard-boiled eggs between bread or mixing hard-boiled eggs with mayonnaise, but it's been a while. A recipe book from 1866 called "Mrs. Crowen's American Lady's Cookery Book" suggests sliced hard-boiled egg sandwiches as a light lunch option. "The Boston Cooking-School Cookbook" published in 1901 includes entries for "Egg Salad I" and "Egg Salad II" (which adds chicken).

Egg salad's popularity in mid-20th century America solidified the sandwich stuffer as a bonafide classic. Your grandmother made it for picnics, your mom made it for lunch, and delis have sold it for as long as we can remember, but your next egg salad sandwich doesn't necessarily have to come from these places. In certain circles, egg salad sandwiches have become classed-up restaurant food, and we're here for the glow-up. Egg salad is made a little differently depending on the cuisine of the restaurant where you order it, what region of the country you're in, and who created the recipe. Whether you like your egg salad pure and simple, feel like getting fancy with some truffle butter, or just want to try something really tasty, here are our picks for the best places to eat egg salad in the U.S.

Cafe Okawari - San Francisco, California

We cannot bask in the awesomeness of egg salad without discussing Japan's influence on this humble food. The egg salad sandwich, or tamago sando as it's called, is a popular snack at bars and quick-stop spots, like the Japanese 7-Eleven, where tamago sandos are the stuff of legend. What sets a tamago sando apart is its use of milk bread — called shokupan — a fluffy, angelic form of (usually crustless) white bread with a subtle sweetness. Americans who tried tamago sandos in Japan raved about the experience online, but many shops in the U.S. that were known for selling them closed due to COVID-19. It's not easy to get your hands on an authentic tamago sando anymore, but Cafe Okawari in San Francisco still makes them.

The small space in the city's SoMa district is as comforting and simple as the food it sells. Cafe Okawari is big on chicken katsu and Japanese curry, but its tamago sando is a customer favorite, too. The minimal ingredients show admirable restraint, and the Jidori egg in the center looks like an edible art piece. What's a Jidori egg, you ask? It comes from the hen breed Hinai-Jidori, which produces eggs with a deep orange yolk, a trademark of their cage-free, vegetarian lifestyle. Cafe Okawari's tamago sando is sure to fulfill your egg salad desires, and if you want to get your fill of milk bread while there, consider a fruit sando for dessert.

Nielsen's Delicatessen - Houston, Texas

Deli sandwiches have fortified a place in American food culture, and for those in the Houston area with a hankering for egg salad, a stop inside Nielsen's Delicatessen is one you won't regret. Nielsen's has been in business since 1952 and is the oldest operating delicatessen in Houston. It proudly keeps old-fashioned sandwiches on the menu (hello, liver paste), and the egg salad sandwich is a popular pick among them.

Nielsen's was opened by husband and wife team Niels and Vita Nielsen who emigrated to the city from Denmark. Through Nielsen's the couple hoped to introduce Texans to smørrebrød, the open-faced sandwiches that are a centuries-old Danish culinary tradition. Although the Nielsen's ultimately decided to focus on the overstuffed, handheld deli sandwiches their American customers were accustomed to, Vita Nielsen' became renowned for her housemade mayonnaise, a key ingredient in most egg salad recipes.

Many decades later, Nielsen's Delicatessen remains family-owned, the mayonnaise continues to be made in-house, and customers are still loving the egg salad sandwich here — even earning an entry as one of Houston's best sandwiches from the Houston Press in 2018. Just don't forget about the sandwich being overstuffed. Nielsen's serves its egg salad sandwich with a spork on the side for a reason, which can make eating this big boy on the go a little challenging, all the more reason why you should take your time and enjoy it.

Kaufmann's Deli - Skokie, Illinois

Jewish delis are harder to come by in the Chicago area these days, but among the ones that have managed to stick around is Kaufmann's Deli, about an hour north of the Windy City in Skokie, Illinois. Established by Holocaust survivor Maury Kaufman in 1960, Kaufman's upholds authentic, old-school deli customs by offering more variety than one even thought possible, and its views on egg salad are no exception. This is one of the few places around where you will have a choice between regular egg salad, egg white salad, or even whitefish salad with mayonnaise and hard-boiled eggs (that's Kaufman's Chicago whitefish salad), but if you're on the fence we suggest going with the regular version. Kaufman's also bakes all of its breads, rolls, and bagels (you can even order your sandwich on the housemade rye), so the option you choose for your egg salad sandwich should by no means be an afterthought.

Kaufman's Deli has never been known to do things halfway, so the portions are hefty. It's also worth mentioning that this place is locally famous, so a trip here to indulge in some freshly made egg salad can sometimes involve a longish line (make sure you take a numbered ticket at the door), but it is certainly worth a visit.

Europane Bakery & Cafe - Pasadena, California

Open-faced sandwiches are not a prominent food staple in the U.S. the way they are in Scandinavia. Maybe it's because Americans just think they are toast, or we feel subconsciously conflicted about eating a sandwich with a fork and a knife. If you happen to be an open-faced sandwich naysayer but also an egg salad lover, we implore you to put these reservations aside and get into the Open Face Sandwich at Europane Bakery in Pasadena. The eatery has become well-known for the Open Face Sandwich featured on its breakfast menu, but it only comes one way — with egg salad.

Europane is the kind of place where you'll pay nearly $8 for oatmeal, but it's also the kind of place where the $10.50 egg salad sandwich feels worth every penny. This isn't just your typical creamy egg salad recipe with some celery or paprika thrown in, it's a thoroughly elevated sandwich, layered with tomato pesto, mixed greens, and fresh egg salad mixed with lemon, mayo, salt, and pepper, and sprinkled with chives. A condiment upgrade and photogenic looks aren't the only standout elements of Europane's egg salad — critics have praised the cafe's attention to detail, noting that the eggs are boiled with such precision that they taste more poached than hard-boiled, lending the egg salad a smoothness that you won't find in other sandwiches.

Wanpaku - Brooklyn, New York

New Yorkers have long relished the belief that they can get any kind of food at any time of day they want. It pains us to say it, but those days appear to be winding down. With 24-hour diners becoming rarer in the city and the stateside Japanese tamago sando verging on extinction, New Yorkers in search of on-demand egg salad sandwiches are forced to be more selective ... and more mindful of the clock. If you want a nicely made tamago sando (those viral egg salad sandwiches from Japan) and you are in the proximity of Greenpoint, Brooklyn, the one served at Wanpaku is yours for the taking.

Several well-known eateries that responded to Americans' late 2010s enthusiasm for creamy egg salad on crustless milk bread proved unable to weather the force with which the COVID-19 pandemic uprooted the restaurant industry. Luckily, Wanpaku, a ramen and izakaya shop in Brooklyn has acknowledged the need for tamago sandos, and is doing its part to fill the void. This place is cute and the egg salad is tasty, but Wanpaku skips a beat by choosing to serve its sandos on brioche instead of the Japanese shokupan (milk bread) that makes sandos feel so treat-like. Silver lining? The egg salad itself is good stuff, featuring plenty of Japanese mayo, celery, dill, and lemon zest. It comes with shoestring fries, a welcome sidekick to any sandwich.

Laurel Market - Charlotte, North Carolina

Since opening in 1991, Laurel Market has been a local favorite for sandwiches in the Eastover/Myers Park neighborhood of Charlotte. Although it has been around for over 30 years, nothing on this menu feels stuck in time — especially not the egg salad sandwich. Laurel Market's dedication to fresh ingredients is part of what makes its sandwiches so good, but so is the variety. The family-run market and deli boasts a downright impressive repertoire of sandwiches, but the egg salad is worth a try.

With so many unique choices on Laurel Market's menu, opting for your go-to egg salad sandwich order might seem too safe, but we haven't told you the best part yet. This egg salad sandwich comes with apple-smoked bacon and horseradish sauce, transforming it from the same-old deli standby into a decadent meal that punches with flavor. You can order Laurel Market's signature egg salad (which leans toward southern style and has a mild spice to it), without the bacon or horseradish if that's more your style, but for the hordes of bacon fans out there (who also happen to be down with horseradish sauce), this is a welcome addition.

Yelp reviews of Laurel Market's sandwiches are glowing, and they shout out the egg salad sandwich by name. One reviewer proclaimed, "Egg salad sandwich with bacon and horseradish is to die for!!!" in case you still need persuading.

NR - Manhattan, New York

Only in New York City will you pay $11 for a tea sandwich, but only in the Upper East Side will an egg salad sandwich be this luxurious. Delis and cafés be damned, when you order the Truffle Egg Sandwich at NR you are getting a multi-sense dining experience. NR's Western-influenced Japanese cuisine, dim lighting, and throwback decor are inspired by port town restaurants that cropped up during Japan's Meiji Era (1868 – 1912) when foreigners were permitted to enter the country for the first time in centuries. Naturally, a lot of fusion started happening during those years, and NR's twist on the egg salad sandwich is right in step with this historical culinary movement.

NR teeters into upscale territory, so when you come here, make it a special occasion, and forget about the outside world for a while. You probably don't use truffle oil in your egg salad or dip your sandwich into a ramekin of melted truffle butter on the daily, but a trip to NR calls for that. You can also wash that egg salad sandwich down with a cardamom and saffron tequila cocktail garnished with a peacock feather, but you only live once, right? If you find yourself in Manhattan, preferably with someone you love, make a night of it at NR.

Reuben's Deli - Atlanta, Georgia

A weekend morning trip to the deli is one of life's simple pleasures, and if it's an egg salad sandwich you're after, Reuben's Deli in downtown Atlanta, Georgia is just the place to turn your craving into reality. Reuben's sandwich selection consists of "Basic" Sandwiches, Signature Sandwiches, and Hot Sandwiches. Although you'll find the egg salad in the "Basic" section, we assure you it is anything but. The menu points out that Reuben's egg salad is "So fresh, Mama Hen is still looking for the eggs." Pair the egg salad with your choice of the deli's fresh-baked bread and you won't be disappointed.

Customers have praised the deliciousness of the egg salad sandwich with one Trip Advisor review calling it "one of the best egg salad sandwiches I have had in Atlanta." Reuben's may be a New York-style deli, but it is right at home in the South. The bustling eatery has been in business since 1996, and remains popular for its commitment to making high-quality, filling sandwiches every single day. Reuben's Deli was also named one of Atlanta's best lunch restaurants by the travel guide website — and it's because of the sandwiches.

Bell's Restaurant - Los Alamos, California

Christened by the Wall Street Journal as "The Egg Salad Even Haters Will Love," Bell's Restaurant is doing things differently in Los Alamos. Executive Chef Daisy Ryan, who co-owns Bell's Restaurant with her husband Greg, pulls all the right influences into her egg salad sandwich recipe, and it's had the power to convert some picky eaters to view the often polarizing salad in a favorable light.

So, what makes the egg salad at Bell's different? For one, the local, farm-fresh eggs are boiled to leave the yolks on the softer side, not crumbly like they tend to be in oversimplified recipes. Ryan goes easy on the mayo, using olive oil and the soft texture of the yolks as supplemental binding agents so that the egg can really shine through. She also mixes in minced chives and serves the egg salad on toasted pain de mie — France's version of the almighty milk bread, which we are convinced is the best thing to ever happen to the egg salad sandwich. Every egg salad sandwich at Bell's Restaurant comes with tomato jam, a house specialty, that even skeptical customers realize they like. When discussing the tomato jam with the Wall Street Journal, Ryan said, "Our servers say, 'If you don't like it, we'll send out a new one.' To my knowledge, we've never had to."

Martin Wine Cellar - Louisiana

The wine store isn't your typical spot to pull up a chair and stay awhile, but Martin Wine Cellar is changing minds with its adjacent deli and bistro, complete with an indoor dining area and patio. Martin Wine & Spirits has been a Louisiana staple since 1946, but the gourmet dine-in experience came later, in 1977, at the original New Orleans location. Wines by the glass and charcuterie boards are Martin Wine Cellar signatures, but don't sleep on the housemade egg salad sandwich with toasted bread— it's a great pick on the meat-heavy menu.

Martin Wine Cellar has two additional locations in Metairie and Baton Rouge, and save for a monthly rotating wine list, the deli and bistro menus are pretty uniform in all three places. The egg salad is part of the Build Your Own section of the menu which allows you to jazz up your sandwich with a respectable selection of cheeses and breads for no extra charge. Less predictable cheese options like blue, Havarti, mozzarella, and Parmesan enhance the list of otherwise usual suspects: American, cheddar, provolone, and Swiss. Bread choices range from rye, white, wheat, sourdough, and 7-grain, or you could get an onion roll, French bun, or pita. Customers are permitted to enjoy their purchases from the beverage side of the store, at the dining tables so order the egg salad, grab some friends, and make the most of all Martin Wine Cellar has to offer.

Feldman's Deli - Salt Lake City, Utah

For those of you who are influenced by customer reviews, we are pleased to report that the egg salad sandwich at Feldman's Deli is beloved by many. The Jewish deli melds the exposed-beam, industrial-style ceilings reminiscent of New York City eateries with airy, ski chalet vibes, and snow-capped mountain views that make Salt Lake City beautiful. Then there's the food. Feldman's Deli was opened in 2012 by Mike and Janet Feldman who relocated to Salt Lake City from New Jersey in the early 2000s. After recognizing the southwestern state's lack of an authentic New York-style deli, the Feldmans took it upon themselves to show the folks in Utah what they'd been missing — including a great egg salad sandwich.

More than a decade later, Feldman's is still serving the people of Salt Lake City, and the egg salad sandwich is still a menu highlight. The generous portion of egg salad with plenty of herbs stirred in and garnished with lettuce, tomato, and red onion, makes Feldman's sandwich feel balanced and complete ... well almost complete. Customer reviews suggest you order a side of Feldman's fries to go with it. Why? Because they're awesome.

The Bar at Willet - Bardstown, Kentucky

It's okay, we didn't know we should go to Bardstown, Kentucky either, but the magic happening in The Bar at Willett's kitchen is putting this small town on the map in a whole new way — and egg salad is a big part of it. In years past, tourists were drawn to Bardstown for its idyllic setting and lots of bourbon. Somewhat unsurprisingly, The Bar at Willett's egg salad has a direct connection to bourbon, it sits on the property of the historic Willett Distillery, dating back to 1936. Visitors flock to the bar for some majorly artful cocktails, but it's the food menu that's out of this world.

We cannot help but be enamored by the fact that the egg salad sandwich from The Bar at Willett is so innovatively beautiful it's not even immediately recognizable as a sandwich. It is the brainchild of Executive Chef John Sleasman, and what he has achieved in the sandwich's details is so unique. The egg salad, prepared with smoked Duke's mayonnaise, rests on a bed of brioche spread with yolk jam, which is made by cooking eggs sous vide, and mixing them with soy sauce. Shaved on top are curls of egg yolk that are salt-cured for seven days, and garnished with sprinkles of chives and nutritional yeast. The egg salad sandwich is one of The Bar at Willett's best-selling kitchen creations, and it's clear to see why.