Picnic Basket packed with Pressed Italian Sandwiches sliced into sandwiches.
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5 from 5 votes

Picnic Food: Pressed Italian Sandwiches

Yummy Picnic Food is easy with Pressed Italian Sandwiches that are both neat to eat, and easy to make ahead! This pressed sandwich recipe is bursting with flavor from the olives, pepperoncini, salami, deli meat, and more! 
Prep Time30 mins
Total Time2 hrs 14 mins
Course: Lunch & Picnic
Cuisine: American
Keyword: picnic ideas, picnic sandwiches, pressed sandwiches
Servings: 8
Calories: 588kcal
Author: Lisa Hatfield


  • 1/2 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar red is fine too
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 cup kalamata olives finely chopped (or use olive tapenade)
  • 1/4 cup capers drained and finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup pepperoncini's finely chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon cracked black pepper
  • 1 Italian Round Boulle Bread Loaf
  • 6-8 slices Colby cheese or cheese you like
  • 10-12 slices Italian dry salami
  • 8 slices turkey or chicken deli meat
  • 2 cups fresh organic baby spinach
  • Optional sandwich filling ideas: ham pepperoni, roasted red peppers, different cheeses, artichoke spread, and chopped olives-any kind.


  • Use a round boule bread loaf, and a small serrated knife and cut the boulle around the side evenly.
  • Rotate the loaf of bread, and cut the boule loaf in half removing the top from the bottom.
  • Use your fingers and scoop out the bread from the top and bottom of the boule.
  • Leave about a 1/2 inch shell to allow the filling to be pressed flat in the bread loaf.
  • In a small bowl, mix the olives (or olive tapenade), pepperoncinis, parsley, olive oil, vinegar, capers, and black pepper. Spread 1 cup of the olive mixture on the bread bottom.
  • Next, layer all the sandwich ingredients: cheese, deli meats, spinach, spreads or toppings you like. Add the rest of the olive mixture if you have any left.
  • Place the top of the boulle load on, and press gently down while you wrap tightly in plastic wrap. Use plastic wrap to tightly wrap the sandwich, wrap the sandwich a couple times, and cover completely.
  • Place the sandwich between two cookie sheets and something heavy like large cans or containers of juice to weight it down.
  • Keep in the refrigerator at least 2-3 hours, overnight is better as it has time to press and the flavors are better.
  • Use a serrated knife to cut the sandwich into 8 wedges.
  • Serve with side salads like easy pasta salad, macaroni salad and cut watermelon.


Picnic Packing Tips:

  • Use small paper takeout boxes ordered inexpensively online for salads, fruit, and sides.
  • Use frozen water bottles in your cooler, then you can drink them.
  • Use paper take out containers at your picnic to eat right from those containers, or pass and serve onto paper plates.
  • Make your pressed sandwiches, desserts, and sides the night before. Then just box them up in the cooler or picnic basket. Think of items that slice and are easily wrapped.


Calories: 588kcal | Carbohydrates: 39g | Protein: 15g | Fat: 41g | Saturated Fat: 20g | Cholesterol: 33mg | Sodium: 1081mg | Potassium: 320mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 22g | Vitamin A: 1280IU | Vitamin C: 10.6mg | Calcium: 165mg | Iron: 2.5mg