Our Top Five Po-Boys

The iconic New Orleans sandwich – call it “po-boy” or “poor boy” (and that depends on who’s asked) – has more than one origin story, but well-accepted is the legend of the 1929 New Orleans streetcar strike, when the Martin brothers, owners of a small coffee stand and restaurant, fed the strikers free French-bread sandwiches. Today it’s served citywide on the same New Orleans style French bread, with all sorts of fillings from sliced ham to fried seafood, sausage, French fries, or roast beef. And when they ask if you want it “dressed,” most locals agree that if you say “yes,” your sandwich is likely to receive generous portions of the four essentials: shredded lettuce, sliced tomato, mayonnaise and sliced pickle. Innovative new po-boy recipes are created every day across New Orleans, but here are five that have become New Orleans po-boy classics:

New Orleans Style Roast Beef Debris Po-Boy


Debris (pronounced day-bree) is all of the tiny, tasty bits of beef that fall off a roast while it’s cooking, smothered in rich beef gravy.

Fried Shrimp Po-Boy

Fried Shrimp Poboy Sandwich

Plump, fresh Gulf shrimp, fried crispy and golden, make this sandwich a local favorite. It’s found on just about every po-boy shop menu in town, but it’s easy to make at home, too.

Vietnamese Spicy Cilantro Pork Po-Boy (Banh Mi)


This delicious fusion of New Orleans and Vietnamese cuisines features marinated roast pork, creamy mayonnaise and a garnish of fresh cucumber, cilantro and sweet-tart pickled vegetables – all loaded onto airy French bread.

Meatball & Onion Gravy Po-Boy

Bring on the napkins, because they’ll be needed for this messy po-boy. Use toasted, thick-sliced bread or a French loaf and enjoy the knockout flavor combination of beefy meatballs, bread, mayonnaise, gravy and onions.

New Orleans Crawfish Bread

Homemade Crawfish Bread

This popular take on the famous New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival Crawfish Bread features Louisiana crawfish tails tossed in a generously seasoned, cheesy cream sauce, all piled on French bread and baked in the oven.