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Pressed Italian Picnic Sandwiches are packed full of flavor and perfect for brunches, parties, baby showers, bridal showers, picnics, and more. Your guests will be impressed!

Pressed Italian Sandwich made of sliced chicken breast, sliced salami, sundried tomatoes, olives, pepperocinis, red bell peppers, and fresh mozzarella with a pesto sauce wrapped in wax paper.

Picnics are a family favorite of ours. Spring, Summer, Fall, we like picnicking during them all! Pressed sandwiches are a perfect picnic item. They are also great for serving at luncheons, and baby/bridal showers. They are easy to put together and require making ahead so it is the perfect party and picnic food. This particular sandwich is bursting with flavor. I used a walnut pesto spread because I enjoy the flavor and slight crunch of the walnuts as opposed to the more traditional pine nuts. Sun-dried tomatoes provide an air of sophistication while pepperocinis provide a little zing.

Can I change up the toppings?

Absolutely! Feel free to adjust the toppings according to your own personal taste preferences, and leave out the items you may not like. As written, this recipe provides a lot of strong and powerful flavors combined together.

How do I press a sandwich?

Your sandwich(es) need to be placed between two flat items and then weighted on top. To achieve this, we recommend simply using two baking sheets and stacking heavy objects like books on top.

A stack of three Pressed Italian Sandwichs made of sliced chicken breast, sliced salami, sundried tomatoes, olives, pepperocinis, red bell peppers, and fresh mozzarella with a pesto sauce\.

What kind of bread should I use?

This recipe uses focaccia. We find that focaccia has the perfect texture for creating a pressed sandwich. If you are unable to find focaccia for purchase you can make it yourself using our recipe, or you can use a similar bread like ciabatta.

If you like this recipe, you may be interested in these other delicious picnic recipe ideas:

Pressed Italian Picnic Sandwiches are the perfect upscale sandwich for picnics, brunches, and baby showers. It's a fancy sandwich that packs a flavorful punch!

Watch the video below where Rachel will walk you through every step of this recipe. Sometimes it helps to have a visual, and we’ve always got you covered with our cooking show. You can find the complete collection of recipes on YouTubeFacebook Watch, or our Facebook Page, or right here on our website with their corresponding recipes.

A stack of three Pressed Italian Sandwichs made of sliced chicken breast, sliced salami, sundried tomatoes, olives, pepperocinis, red bell peppers, and fresh mozzarella with a pesto sauce.
Pressed Italian Picnic Sandwiches are packed full of flavor and perfect for brunches, parties, baby showers, bridal showers, picnics, and more. Your guests will be impressed!
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 12 hours
Total Time 12 hours 15 minutes
Ingredients

Pesto

  • 2 cups fresh basil leaves loosely packed
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts

Sandwiches

  • 1 large or 2 small loaves focaccia
  • 1 pound deli sliced chicken breast
  • 1/2 pound deli sliced salami
  • 1/4 cup sun-dried tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup sliced olives
  • 1/4 cup pepperoncinis
  • 2 roasted red bell peppers roughly chopped
  • 16 oz. fresh mozzarella sliced
Instructions
  • Make the pesto by combining basil, garlic, parmsean, olive oil, and walnuts in a food processor or bender. Blend until fairly smooth.
  • Cut the focaccia loves in half carefully. Spread the pesto on the top halves and set aside.
  • On the bottom halves layer sliced chicken breast, and salami.
  • Mix sun-dried tomatoes, olives, pepperoncinis, and roasted red bell peppers in a small bowl. Sprinkle over meat layer.
  • Top with slices of fresh mozzarella to cover the entire sandwich.
  • Place pesto covered top half of the focaccia onto the sandwich. Wrap tightly in plastic wrap.
  • Place the wrapped sandwiches onto a baking sheet. Place another baking sheet on top of the sandwiches. Place 2 heavy books or weights on the top baking sheet to squish the sandwiches. Place in the fridge, books and all, for 12 hours.
  • Once 12 hours have passed, unwrap the sandwiches and slice into square for serving. Wrap in wax paper and cooking twine for a cutesy presentation.
Notes
Course: Lunch
Cuisine: American, Italian
Keyword: Picnic Sandwiches
A stack of three Pressed Italian Sandwichs made of sliced chicken breast, sliced salami, sundried tomatoes, olives, pepperocinis, red bell peppers, and fresh mozzarella with a pesto sauce.
Pressed Italian Picnic Sandwiches are packed full of flavor and perfect for brunches, parties, baby showers, bridal showers, picnics, and more. Your guests will be impressed!
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 12 hours
Total Time 12 hours 15 minutes
Ingredients

Pesto

  • 2 cups fresh basil leaves loosely packed
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts

Sandwiches

  • 1 large or 2 small loaves focaccia
  • 1 pound deli sliced chicken breast
  • 1/2 pound deli sliced salami
  • 1/4 cup sun-dried tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup sliced olives
  • 1/4 cup pepperoncinis
  • 2 roasted red bell peppers roughly chopped
  • 16 oz. fresh mozzarella sliced
Instructions
  • Make the pesto by combining basil, garlic, parmsean, olive oil, and walnuts in a food processor or bender. Blend until fairly smooth.
  • Cut the focaccia loves in half carefully. Spread the pesto on the top halves and set aside.
  • On the bottom halves layer sliced chicken breast, and salami.
  • Mix sun-dried tomatoes, olives, pepperoncinis, and roasted red bell peppers in a small bowl. Sprinkle over meat layer.
  • Top with slices of fresh mozzarella to cover the entire sandwich.
  • Place pesto covered top half of the focaccia onto the sandwich. Wrap tightly in plastic wrap.
  • Place the wrapped sandwiches onto a baking sheet. Place another baking sheet on top of the sandwiches. Place 2 heavy books or weights on the top baking sheet to squish the sandwiches. Place in the fridge, books and all, for 12 hours.
  • Once 12 hours have passed, unwrap the sandwiches and slice into square for serving. Wrap in wax paper and cooking twine for a cutesy presentation.
Notes
Course: Lunch
Cuisine: American, Italian
Keyword: Picnic Sandwiches

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Mifeng86

5 stars
Made two of these awesome sandwiches; My lunch is covered for the 2 weeks 🙂

Deana

Thank you for the recipe. It looks very good and I hope try it soon. The tutorial was good. one suggestion though, the use of the word fricken turned a very professional tutorial into some thing amateur. I usually have a child looking over my shoulder. I didn’t think that I wouldn’t have to check for language first. Like I said, it really was a good tutorial.

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