Fried Bologna & Other Southern Sandwiches

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Southern Plate is more than just me typing and chatting away. In fact, YOU are the most important part of With that in mind, I hope you’ll take time to leave a comment and share your favorite sandwich from your childhood. See bottom of this post for more details! Gratefully, Christy 🙂 bologna 003

When my mama was a girl they had a tradition of going out riding through the countryside on Sunday afternoons. They’d stop off at a little store to have thick slices of bologna cut off and made into bologna and cheese sandwiches. Pair that with a bottled drink and they were living high on the hog! “There just wasn’t anything like getting to ride in that car and look out the window while you ate a bologna sandwich!”.

This treat was passed down to my generation when we often sat down for lunch with a big loaf of bread and a stack of cheese slices in the middle of the table while Mama fried up bologna in a skillet. We’d each make our own sandwich and I’d make mine just like my brother did: Fried bologna, cheese, and potato chips settled in between two pieces of “loaf bread”.

Bologna sandwiches, sometimes referred to as “the poor man’s steak”, are such a part of our culture, they’re even used to gauge a person’s character. On the day we got married, my husband’s best man, Jim, had driven in a ways and was planning on staying overnight before heading back. He stayed with my Grandmother, who lived across the road from what was to be our new home. It had been quite a day with the wedding and reception and that evening Grandmama and Jim went out on her porch to relax and look out over the river.

For supper, Grandmama made the two of them bologna sandwiches.

To Grandmama, Jim and my husband represented a new generation, with a huge divide between folks her age and them. Grandmama had grown up dirt poor and picking cotton all of her life and here was this young man newly graduated from college with an engineering degree whose experience with her world had been nothing more than glancing at the cotton as the car went by. Its sometimes a little intimidating for folks who come from such humble backgrounds in situations like this, but when Jim accepted that bologna sandwich, it spoke volumes to Grandmama about the type of person he was at heart. Even now whenever he is mentioned she always chimes, in,

“That Jim is just a real good boy, he sat out there on the porch and ate a bologna sandwich with me”.

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To make the sandwich from my childhood you’ll need: Bread, cheese, mayo…

bologna 007and potato chips 🙂

My brother taught me the wonders of a potato chip sandwich over thirty years ago.

I think it almost made up for him cutting the entire side of my hair off a few years later.

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Now we have to fry out bologna. I always cut a slit halfway through to keep it from curling up into a bowl as it fries.

I prefer Zeigler bologna because it is made in Alabama. I try to buy as close to home as I can because last thing we want is to end up relying on a company halfway across the country for our food supplies. I think it’s best to support local suppliers to ensure that you have local suppliers. Zeigler’s has been around for over seventy five years. Their main plant is in Tuscaloosa and our own highly respected Coach Paul “Bear” Bryant was once an owner of the company as well.

Reminder to all: I am not into football but Alabamians take their football very seriously.

So whatever team you are for, GO THEM!

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You don’t need to spray your pan or anything, just put your bologna in it and cook it on medium, turning after it browns on one side. Some folks like there is just barely heated but I actually like a wee bit of black on mine 🙂

Note to myself: You use the word “actually” too much, stop it. Now. Seriously.


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Oh lawd, that’s some good eatin’!

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I always smoosh it a bit to crunch the chips down some 🙂

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Grandmama, I’m a real good girl because I still eat bologna sandwiches!

A few posts back we got into a comment discussion on strange sandwich combinations we grew up on. It was a fascinating comment section and we all really got a hoot out of reading it. I’d like to devote this comment section to those sandwiches. What did you grow up on? What brands do you insist on and why?

Mayonaise sandwich? Mustard sandwich? PB and banana? Tell us all about it! Also, why do you think Southerners eat such strange sandwich combinations-ketchup sandwich, anyone?

I think it is due to lack of food. When food was scarce, you could put something between two slices of bread, call it a sandwich and then it suddenly seemed like a meal. What do you think?

If there is anything else you wanna talk about in the comments section, feel free to do that, too.

See someone else’s comment you wanna reply to? Go right ahead!

I consider this to be my big old porch and we’re all just a standing around visiting with each other.

Y’all keep the conversation going and I’ll keep the tea glasses filled!

We’re all family here anyways. 🙂

“The happiest of people don’t necessarily have the best of everything; they just make the most of everything that comes along their way.”

Submitted by Rebecca Hall. To submit your quote or read more, please click here.

I just love getting new positive quotes so thank you in advance!

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  1. Has someone else already mentioned peanut butter and cheese? My vegetarian parents picked up this recipe out of necessity when they were hitchhiking in the Netherlands. Get some peanut butter and sharp cheddar or Gouda, make a sandwich out of it, and done. It’s really good.

  2. Fried bologna sandwiches are so good! I love these too:

    ham salad sandwich
    coleslaw, butter, and cheese sandwich
    spaghetti sandwich on garlic toast
    tomato and mayo sandwich, raw or broiled tomato
    biscuits with tomato gravy (that gravy has to be made with bacon grease)

  3. Peanut butter and Mayo or if ya wanna get all fancy..Peanut Butter,Mayo and Pickles..or or just Peanut Butter and Pickles..No I am not pregnant,I,am a However I did learn about these Sandwiches when I was a kid and the neighbor lady who was pregnant..Ate these like there was no tomorrow.
    This next one I don’t remember how or why I started eating this…but I know I was about 5 or 6 when it started…Blueberry jam and Yellow Mustard Here again if ya wanna class it up a bit..Sub Dijon Mustard for the Yellow…but that’s a little high brow for my taste.

  4. Y’all…I am SALIVATING! I rarely comment on things like this, but y’all are MY PEOPLE! haha!
    I love love LOVE when my grandma used to make fried bologna with grape jelly and plain Lay’s tater chips on toasted white bread!! Now that I am an adult living in NYC, I still make these at least once a year! A new fave of mine is fried bologna, cream cheese and diced pickled jalapenos on toasted white bread, YUM! Sometimes I’ll even let the cream cheese come to room temp, mix in the diced jalapenos and dice up some fried bologna and mix it all together like a grilled cheese! Sidenote, the cream cheese/bologna/jalapenos mix is also DELISH on a hot dog with crushed up lays and some french fried onions sprinkled on top! Thank yall for the excellent comments, LOVE it!!

  5. When I was young my momma made fried potato sandwiches. Simple as can be, just fried potatoes, mayonnaise and white bread. I remember wating them in front of the the black and white TV in the basement. There was usually a baseball game on and there was a red liquid filled-glass-pendulum-drinking-bird-thingy on top. Oh, and my Marvo the Mustang in the corner.
    What a great memory.

  6. Fried potatoes sandwiches on white bread with miracle whip. Simple and delicious. For school, I always had tuna and crunchy Cheetos sandwiches. Once again, the tuna was with miracle whip. Momma would not eat mayo.

  7. #1: Smooth peanut butter, sliced banana, and (Hellman’s) MAYO on white bread. NEVER fried. My Mom used to make a big dinner (served at lunchtime) for us children every Sunday, so for our ‘supper’ we’d have these sandwiches as we watched Bonanza on TV. Trust me – this is a winning combo, mayo & all!
    Pimento cheese on toasted white bread.
    Fried bologna with melted Cheddar cheese on white bread with mustard.
    Yum, yum, yum.
    Thanks for the trip down memory lane.

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