The One Sandwich Subway Employees Wish You'd Never Order

Every restaurant seems to have at least one menu item that the employees hate making. For Starbucks employees, it's a bad day if someone orders a Frappuccino — or worse, a drink with a dozen customizations. After all, these are time-consuming and messy. For McDonald's employees, getting an order for unsalted fries is frustrating because it requires a new batch of fries. 

The truth, is most of us either forget or don't realize how much time and effort goes into making our restaurant orders. A milkshake might seem pretty simple, for example, but as The Kitchn notes, creating the creamy treat involves multiple steps and takes several minutes.

All of these orders make sense as sources of frustration. But a sandwich? And a Subway sandwich at that? How could a Subway sandwich possibly be a nightmare for employees to make? As it turns out, there are some very good reasons for Subway employees to hate making one particular menu item.

Subway's meatball sub is a monster

Although Subway employees have seen a lot of strange and demanding orders, most seem to be in agreement that the meatball sub is the worst. Not only is the meatball sub extremely messy, but it's also just a pain to keep together.

One self-identified Subway employee took to Reddit to let off steam. They commented, "The meatballs take up so much space on the subs, and they love to slide around on the wrap." Another said, "I did a flatbread meatball with all the veg and three sauces. It was an absolute mess." Yet another employee recounted a regular customer who would order a flatbread footlong sub with double meatballs and two sauces. The employee said, "It's a LOT on one sandwich," noting that it would take the customer over an hour to eat. 

Meatballs are good, but yikes. Maybe save your local Subway the effort and try a meatball sub copycat recipe.

Subway employees hate any kind of melt

After Subway introduced its new melt sandwiches in the spring of 2021, sandwich aficionados couldn't wait to get their hands on that ooey-gooey cheese. Three sandwiches joined the menu: the tuna melt, the ham and cheese melt, and the steak and cheese melt, per Thrillist. However, Subway employees didn't share fans' excitement, and well, we can't blame them.

Another thread on the Subway Reddit brought together a few dozen employees who absolutely hated making the melt sandwiches. One employee commented, "You can tell (the melt sandwich) was created by someone who never made a Subway sandwich in their life." Another employee said that of all the difficult jobs they've worked, making Subway melts was the worst one.

Lest you think they're just being dramatic, here's how another employee explained the process: "They're just a pain to make. You have to cut the bread completely in half, put on triple cheese, have veggies and sauce put on it, put the top back on (then cut it in half for a foot long), put it in a bag, pray that it doesn't burn to dust, and pull it out, praying you don't drop it."

Subway salads take too much time

No, a salad is not a sandwich, but that doesn't change the fact that Subway employees hate making them. This might seem kind of weird — isn't it pretty easy to just throw stuff in a bowl and call it salad? — but it makes a whole lot of sense when you realize just how much goes into making a chopped salad.

One self-identified Subway employee explained in another Reddit thread that chopped salads are extremely time-consuming to make and can really throw everyone out of whack during a rush. According to this employee, "We have to go into the back and grab a bowl and chopper, ask what you want, spend 30+ seconds chopping everything up, spend another 20+ seconds trying to get everything in your small plastic salad bowl without spilling or making a mess, and then we have to go in the back again to put our dirty bowl and chopper out of sight. Speaking of, you just made two more dishes for us to do when we do get some down time, including the stupid white bowl that now has to be washed, scrubbed, bleached, rinsed, sanitized and dried. Oh, and you probably took half a Cambro of lettuce which means we have to go prep more lettuce."

So if you're going to order a salad from Subway, maybe don't ask for it to be finely chopped. The employees will thank you.