Sandwich Chains With Bacon Ranked Worst To Best, According To Customers

Bacon pretty much goes with everything. Cured pork has been around since 1500 B.C. and bacon as we know it today is one of the most beloved sandwich meats. Any sandwich chain worth its weight in carbs knows that putting bacon on its sandwiches is a must, but which places do bacon the best?

Any bacon lover will tell you that when it comes to what bacon is the best, personal preference comes into play. Whether it's the harmonious meat component in a club sandwich or the star player in the almighty bacon, egg, and cheese, the general perception of good bacon is that it should be crispy and flavor-packed. Bacon that's too thin, too fatty, or too greasy is often met with subpar customer reviews. Customer opinions largely inform our ranking, and we've also accounted for the cooking methods and quality of bacon these sandwich chains use. We'll get more in-depth on our methods at the end of the article.

Whether you're a brunch warrior or a club sandwich devotee, you'll want to know which sandwich chains are giving bacon the star treatment it deserves, and those that miss the mark.

12. Subway

It's the juggernaut of sandwich chains, but Subway doesn't do bacon as well as many of its competitors. When a sandwich chain has over 36,000 locations globally (with nearly 20,000 in the U.S.), sometimes the quality of ingredients suffers. Subway uses precooked bacon, and this decision contributes to the meat's mass-produced look and flavor. In 2021, a Mashed survey revealed that 44.2% of the 599 Americans polled said that Subway has the worst bacon of any sandwich chain.

The biggest issue with Subway's bacon is how it's presented on the sandwich. Many customers have taken issue with the fact that this pre-cooked bacon looks pretty ... raw. There are Reddit threads devoted to the uncooked appearance of the bacon at Subway, and it's common for former Subway employees to chime in, some noting that it looks that way because "the worker forgot to microwave the bacon."

These bacon-handling issues were further detailed by a TripAdvisor reviewer who said, "Last I checked, bacon is not supposed to be chewy and I had to tear it away from the sub." If the difference between Subway's bacon looking unsafe to consume and being edible is a few rotations in the microwave, we can safely say that this is not the place for bacon lovers to grab a sandwich.

11. Jimmy John's

Jimmy John's has built its empire on quick-serve grinders, but ordering a club sandwich or B.L.T. from them might leave you disappointed. "Jimmy Johns' bacon is about as fresh as the pre-cooked, microwave-able bacon that comes in boxes at the grocery" laments one Redditor. Meanwhile, a TripAdvisor reviewer warned, "Was served cold hard bacon. Asked them to heat it and was told they have no way to do that. Not impressed with this 'gourmet' sandwich." 

Jimmy John's decision to only sell cold subs is part of its "Freaky Fast" service, the chain's longtime pledge to craft every sandwich in 30 seconds or less. This mantra has come under fire in recent years — partly because throwing together a 30-second sub is a restaurant policy that doesn't appeal to everyone. Despite the rush, Jimmy John's maintains that "quality is our way of life", but where bacon is concerned, other chains do it better.

It's certainly possible to enjoy a bacon sandwich on untoasted bread if the bacon tastes good. However, Jimmy John's doesn't give bacon its due and has made excuses for this in the past. A 2015 post from the chain on X, formerly known as Twitter, reads, "All of my bacon is 100% pre-cooked, & served cold. It's the only way to do it so the veggies don't get yuck!"

10. Potbelly

Potbelly was on the verge of ruin during COVID-19 but has bounced back since then. Although the chain worked hard to improve its menu, some additional convincing may be in order. A Reddit post commented, "I just ordered and ate my go-to sandwich from Potbelly that I have been eating for years ... let me tell you, ever since their little menu revamp the quality of sandwich has gone to s***."

Over the last few years, Potbelly made a point to advertise its use of Nueske's Bacon, an Applewood smoked variety with black-peppered edges. These promotional shout-outs to Nueske's have been inconsistent — to the point where it's not entirely clear whether this is still Potbelly's choice bacon. Either way, not every customer was impressed by the Nueseke name. "Decent turkey, overly hyped nueske bacon, and a hodgepodge of lettuce, tomatoes, and onion, these standard ingredients didn't stand out but didn't disappoint" was one critique on Club Sandwich Reviews.

Potbelly's B.L.T.A. (B.L.T. with avocado) looks appetizing, yet quality control proves to be an ongoing issue for the sandwich chain. "My sandwich was filled with undercooked bacon! And Mushy brown Avocado." was a recent gripe posted to Yelp. Another Yelp reviewer took a similar issue saying, "I ordered a chicken club, the bacon on the sandwich was not cooked. I had to go back cause, who eats uncooked bacon? So now my new sandwich only has two pieces of burnt bacon."

9. Jason's Deli

Jason's Deli has built its reputation on wholesome, homestyle food. This means B.L.T.s, baked potatoes, and the like are on the menu. With this All-American menu, one would hope the bacon at Jason's Deli is worth it, however, the reviews are mixed.

One customer kept his TripAdvisor commentary short and sweet. "The Bigger Better BLT was just that; large portioned and tasty. In addition to the traditional bacon, lettuce, and tomato, this sandwich also had egg and avocado. Nicely done." Unfortunately, not everyone had such a stellar experience eating bacon at Jason's. A Google review portrays a far different experience. "The bacon was extremely overcooked and was better off being used to scrape the floor. It was not edible."

Since its inception in Beaumont, Texas in 1976, Jason's Deli has amassed 250 locations in 28 states. This kind of expansion proves that the sandwich chain is doing more than a few things right, however, it also seems like the food quality is inconsistent across the board. The difference between eating good bacon or sinking your teeth into something subpar might depend on which Jasaon's Deli location you place your order in.

8. Firehouse Subs

Firehouse Subs isn't blowing anyone's mind with its pre-cooked bacon, but the sandwich chain, which honors the service of first responders, makes a Turkey Bacon Ranch Sub that customers enjoy. "I love the turkey bacon ranch. Plenty of meat!" is just one of several positive Yelp comments this sandwich has earned. "My favorite. Sandwich nirvana", is how one Facebook reviewer summed it up.

For years Firehouse Subs was known for toasting all of its sandwiches by default (cold subs are now available too). Pairing the bacon with a warm, crisp, sub roll helps give bacon sandwiches that hot from the oven feel. Any Firehouse sub can be made a club by adding bacon, or you can build your own — the best choice for those in the mood for a B.L.T.

While a fair share of Yelp feedback noted that Firehouse's "Bacon had a delicious savory flavor with a hint of sweetness", other customers took issue with how their bacon was prepared. "I asked for a BLT on white bread toasted and I repeatedly said I wanted my bacon crispy but not burnt. My bread was not toasted and my bacon was soggy" was a recent TripAdvisor comment.

7. Homegrown

We often think of sandwich chains as huge, national, or international conglomerates, but some smaller chains have made an impression on the highly competitive U.S. sandwich market ... and bacon is a part of that storyline. Homegrown out of Seattle, Washington is a prime example. The first location was opened by Brad Gillis, a young, ambitious CEO whose focus on locally-grown produce and sustainability helped Homegrown expand into 11 locations around the city. Customers will find satisfaction in Homegrown's menu, which features an array of sandwiches, salads, and breakfast options.

When it comes to bacon, Homegrown's Yelp reviews aren't flawless, but many customers have given the chain's B.L.T. some potent praise. "I ate probably the best turkey BLT I've ever had right here at Homegrown. When you look for a restaurant in Seattle, the choices are endless. But trust me a trip to Homegrown will be worth the trip." Another Yelp reviewer (via Restaurant Guru) is of a similar opinion. "I know it sounds simple, but their BLT is incredible. Their delicious bacon together with fresh greens, grape tomatoes, and their garlic aioli are so, so good."

6. Jersey Mike's

It's one of the biggest sandwich chains and yet Jersey Mike's still manages to churn out freshly cooked bacon for its customers daily. Jersey Mike's may have upwards of 3,000 locations in the United States, but that doesn't mean the chain will be microwaving its bacon anytime soon. In fact, rather than cut corners, Jersey Mike's has sought to improve its sandwiches by prioritizing meat that's not only fresh but of excellent quality. In 2019, Jersey Mike's switched to Farm Promise NAE (no antibiotics ever) pork products, and the bacon got even better.

Jersey Mike's may not have been using bacon sourced from vegetarian-fed pigs when it first opened in 1956 (when it was just called Mike's), but it set its standards high from the get-go and became one of the original purveyors of the quick-serve sandwich chain market. Bacon lovers can order one of Jersey Mike's hearty meat combo submarines or a simple B.L.T. without having to fret about buyer's remorse. The Reddit chatter about Jersey Mike's bacon keeps it straightforward. "BLT all day. Best fast food bacon anywhere." mentions one customer on the thread. Feedback on TripAdvisor is equally positive, with one reviewer writing, "I just love the BLT sub. Bacon [is] always perfect."

5. Egg Shop

For New Yorkers, the bacon, egg, and cheese is no joke. It's the quintessential breakfast sandwich: portable, satisfying, and proudly served at countless bodegas. We could go on about bacon, egg, and cheese's importance to bodega cuisine, but since we're on the topic of sandwich chains, it's time to talk about Egg Shop.

It's the smallest chain on this list, but the bacon at Egg Shop has no shortage of flavor. Egg Shop's original spot in Soho was founded in 2014 by husband and wife duo Demetri Makoulis and Sarah Schneider, who entrusted the cooking to Chef Nick Kobe. A second location in Williamsburg, Brooklyn followed in 2017. At Egg Shop, egg sandwiches and Eggs Benedict command the spotlight, but the supporting role belongs to bacon.

The Egg Shop B.E.C. is the better-dressed interpretation of the standard bacon, egg, and cheese breakfast sandwich. "The best egg sandwich I have ever experienced. The softest, chewy almost brioche/pretzel-like bread bun with oozing egg yolk, black forest bacon, tomato jam, pickled jalapeño, and melting cheddar," Rosie Thomas wrote on her travel blog The Londoner in 2015. Egg Shop's TripAdvisor reviews remain consistently positive year after year, with one recent review proclaiming, "The side of bacon [was] beautifully crisp!"

4. East Hampton Sandwich Company

"Breakfast all day" are three words a bacon enthusiast longs to hear. East Hampton Sandwich Company is well aware of this and it delivers the goods. "Fluffy scrambled eggs, tasty bacon, great toast. Everything was fresh and warm" said one Yelp review. As for East Hampton's B.E.C., "the Hash BEC (bacon, egg, cheddar) was by far my favorite! The thing is massive and packed with bacon", was another customer's view on Yelp.

East Hampton is an unusual name for a sandwich chain born out of Texas, but founder Hunter Pond began the would-be chain in 2012 hoping to bring some New England flair to Dallas, Texas. East Coasters might be a tad skeptical about East Hampton's Connecticut and Maine lobster rolls, but the bacon has inspired a flurry of customer approval.

"Wow, we got a chicken wrap that had bacon, avocado, lettuce, and some type of sauce, and wow was it absolutely mouth-watering ... I also got the turkey club with bacon and lettuce [and it] was super delicious" was how another Yelp reviewer summed up their visit (via Restaurant Guru).

The chain offers bacon options, carrying both maple and applewood smoked bacon. East Hampton's customers say that when the bacon is paired with other flavorful ingredients — be it egg, avocado, or turkey — the medley of taste is a winner, and perhaps what more sandwich chains should aspire to.

3. Eggslut

Bacon is one of the things Eggslut pays a lot of attention to on its menu, and it's easy to see why. Eggslut's success is in the concept — people love eggs, people love egg sandwiches, and people really love egg sandwiches with bacon. The sandwich chain with the sassy name is a worldwide hit; it started as a Los Angeles-based food truck and now has locations in the U.K., Hong Kong, and South Korea. Eggslut sells unique breakfast items to suit many tastes, but one thing customers agree on is that the bacon should not be passed over.

"The bacon egg cheese sandwich is so good. The best fast food sandwich so far." raves a recent Yelp reviewer. To make its delectable bacon egg and cheese breakfast sandwiches, Eggslut uses cage-free eggs, fresh brioche buns and layers of hardwood smoked bacon — and there's no skimping on the meat in this sandwich. The over-medium egg, and soft, slightly sweet brioche bun perfectly offset the crisp, salty decadence of the bacon strips — and some have heralded Eggslut's offering as the best B.E.C. in Los Angeles.

One TikTok reviewer put this theory to the test and was not disappointed. "The bacon is beautifully crispy," he said between satisfied bites. Eggslut's bacon can also be ordered as a side or added to other sandwiches. Many customers recommend adding bacon to the Fairfax, a sandwich of fluffy scrambled eggs, caramelized onions, cheddar, and sriracha mayo.

2. Mendocino Farms

Perhaps best known as the sandwich chain inside Whole Foods, Mendocino Farms is a top-notch eatery in its own right. Mendocino Farms started in Los Angeles in 2005, and since day one, the restaurant established itself as a place where ethically sourced food was the main event. That means seasonal produce, real artisan bread from California-based Drago Bakery, and antibiotic-free meats from humanely raised poultry and livestock. So you can be sure that the bacon here is of the farm-fresh variety.

Mendocino Farms' bacon-forward sandwiches include The Farm Club with turkey and Applewood smoked bacon, a Chimichurri Steak & Bacon sandwich, as well as a summer-seasonal B.L.T. with heirloom tomatoes and avocado. The Yelp feedback for the bacon says it all. "I got the Farmers Club sandwich ... The sandwich was perfect; bacon was still crispy, avocado fresh". A customer who visited Mendocino Farms in San Diego seconded this with a glowing Yelp review, "The bacon was thick and extra crispy which I love, and had a nice sweet smokey taste."

Wondering where you can get a taste of Mendocino Farms' bacon? The sandwich chain has 67 locations, 55 of which are spread throughout its home state of California — with two more units slated to open in 2024. The other twelve locations are in the Houston and Dallas regions of Texas, and Seattle, Washington.

1. Daily Provisions

It's rare to hear someone gripe about the bacon at Daily Provisions. The New York mini-chain is the creation of Danny Myer, the guy behind big-name eateries like Union Square Cafe, Gramercy Tavern, and Shake Shack. Daily Provisions opened in 2017 as a neighborhood cafe of sorts, selling coffee, sandwiches, and salads, but it wasn't long before the bacon, egg, and cheese became the hot ticket menu item.

The sandwich consists of slab-cut Berkshire bacon, a fried egg, and American cheese on a poppy seed bun that's made on-premises. This B.E.C. is served all day and at $8.95, is a fraction of what other trendy NYC brunch spots are charging. A 2024 Yelp review of Daily Provisions says, "Best breakfast sandwich in Manhattan. The bacon, egg, and cheese sandwich is hands down the tasty breakfast sandwich I've had in NY. The thick bacon, fried egg, and gooey cheese are simply perfection." Need we say more?

Daily Provision's bacon is presented in thick, smoky cuts that resemble pork belly without sacrificing that delectable crispiness that bacon lovers crave. The New York Post gave the B.E.C. here a perfect four stars, exalting the chain's attention to detail. Yelp reviewers are in agreeance. "Absolutely the best bacon, egg, and cheese breakfast sandwich that I've ever had" said one, while another commented, "I found my new obsession. This place has the best bacon egg and cheese in existence."


Hundreds of reviews were considered as we compiled this bacon-ranking list. As we read through the customer comments on sites like Yelp, TripAdvisor, Reddit, and more, we looked for feedback that mentioned the sandwich chain's bacon in particular. Chains with consistent praise ranked higher on the list, and at the same time, places where the bacon was regularly met with less than savory critiques, fared on the lower end.

Large chains like Panera Bread and Quiznos whose bacon had largely middle-of-the-road reviews didn't make the ranks on either side of the list. Of course, our writer wasn't happy letting everyone else do the tasting and we ventured out to grab a few of these bacon sandwiches ourselves so that our tastebuds could also participate in the conversation.