Who needs Panera when you can make this fabulous Turkey Avocado Sandwich at home? Boasting bold black pepper aioli, tangy sourdough, creamy avocado, flavorful turkey, sharp cheddar, and plenty of veggies, my avocado turkey sandwich is as tasty as your favorite deli sandwich but made for a fraction of the cost.
Whether you’re a work-from-home warrior or an in-office sort, one thing remains the same — lunch break is often the best part of the workday! 😂 But, rather than spending your hard-earned cheddar on an expensive sandwich or wrap from a fast-casual chain, why not make your own gourmet stunner AND save $$$ in the process?
This quick and simple turkey sandwich on sourdough is at least as delicious as what you’d get eating out, plus you get full control over all the particulars.
Don’t like sprouts? Leave ‘em off! Tomatoes looking sad? Swap in some pickled red onions for acidity instead. Like it spicy? Add extra black pepper, swap in pepperjack cheese, and/or add some pickled peppers to the mix. Then wrap it all up in parchment before slicing so it looks and feels like a sandwich shop treat, just without the hefty price tag. ✨ 🥪
⭐ Why You’ll Love This Turkey Avocado Sandwich Recipe
Still on the fence? Aside from being loaded to the brim with pure deliciousness and being totally customizable, these turkey avocado sandwiches are also:
- Quick & Easy - Honestly, the hardest part about making this sandwich is finding enough room on the countertop for all the fabulous fixin’s.
- Made With Only 10 Simple Ingredients - Plus, you can totally customize it based on whatever you have on hand! Add some burrata to the mix for some extra creamy goodness.
- Portable, Packable, & Utterly Perfect - This tasty avocado and turkey sandwich is ideal for picnics, packed lunches, road trips, or anytime you need a satisfying, savory meal on the go.
As promised, you only need a few easy-to-find ingredients to make a better-than-Panera turkey avocado sandwich. Here’s what to grab:
- Black Pepper Aioli - “Aioli” sounds fancy, but don’t fret. You’ll just be doctoring up your favorite store-bought mayo with ground peppercorns and fresh lemon juice. YUM!
- Sourdough Bread Slices - Whether you opt for traditional sourdough, parmesan herb sourdough, or rustic sourdough, this sandwich is sure to satisfy.
- Turkey Slices - This recipe works with leftover holiday turkey or your choice of deli turkey. Of course, you’re also welcome to use any other meat you may have on hand instead.
- Avocado - You can’t have a turkey avocado sandwich without creamy avocado! I prefer using slices, but you can also use avocado mash if you prefer.
- Tomato - Make sure you’re opting for a fresh, fragrant, in-season tomato here. If you can’t find any good ones, omit it or swap in another acidic ingredient like pickled veggies instead.
- Greens - Arugula, mixed greens, butter lettuce, or microgreens are all great choices. You can also mix and match if you like!
- Alfalfa Sprouts - I’m a Californian, so liking sprouts is in my blood. 😆Feel free to swap in another form of sprouts, use microgreens, or omit them if you prefer.
- Sharp Cheddar Cheese - A bit of creamy tanginess really helps to tie everything together. Plus, if you go the grilling route and make a turkey avocado panini, the meltiness is very welcome.
⏲️ Substitutions & Variations
When you make your own deli-style turkey sandwiches at home, you’re the boss. Here are a few easy ideas for customizing your lunch:
- Cheese Variations: Instead of the traditional cheddar or swiss cheese, try using melted havarti cheese or gouda! These cheeses offer a different taste and texture, making your sandwich creamier and more indulgent. For an even richer flavor, melt the cheese on one side of each slice of bread on medium heat for a toasted touch.
- Sauce Swaps: Elevate the creamy texture with a twist on traditional condiments; replace regular mayo with Japanese kewpie mayo or chipotle mayo for a unique flavor kick. If you prefer a tangier option, combine whole grain mustard with a dash of maple syrup, creating a balance between sweetness and sharpness!
- Bread Options: Opt for slices of whole grains bread to up the daily values of fiber and essential nutrients in your favorite sandwich. Sourdough is divine, but you’re also welcome to swap in fluffy, herbaceous focaccia, savory swirled babka, or even everything pretzel bread if you prefer!
- Protein Variations: While turkey breast is a lean protein, you can enhance the turkey flavor by using turkey bacon, cooked in a bit of butter until crispy. Alternatively, for those wanting to steer clear of artificial ingredients like sodium phosphate found in some deli meats, consider using homemade turkey cold cuts or other natural, low-sodium options.
📖 Step-by-Step Instructions
Making this turkey and avocado sandwich is a snap. Here’s how it’s done:
Step 1: Make Black Pepper Aioli. In a small bowl, combine the ground peppercorns, mayonnaise, and lemon juice. Mix well until the black pepper is evenly distributed throughout the mayonnaise and set the aioli aside.
Step 2: Prep Veggies. Cut the avocado in half, *carefully* remove the pit, and slice the avocado into thin, even slices. Slice the tomato into thin rounds and lightly salt before setting them aside on a plate.
Step 3: Slather Your Bread with the prepared black pepper aioli. On the aioli-covered side of one bread slice, add the turkey slices, followed by the sliced avocado, tomato, mixed greens or lettuce, and a handful of alfalfa sprouts.
Step 4: Assemble. Add a layer of sharp cheddar cheese on top of the sprouts. Then, cover with the other slice of sourdough, carefully cut the sandwich in half and enjoy!
👩🏻🍳 Expert Tips/Expert baking tips
- If you are making your turkey avo sandwich for the future (e.g. more than an hour or two in advance), I suggest leaving the avocado off until right before you’re ready to serve to prevent oxidization.
- If you’re making a turkey avocado panini, don’t griddle it until you’re ready to eat. Otherwise, the bread ends up tasting almost stale!
- To help you keep all the goodies on the inside (not on your lap), wrap the completed avo turkey sandwich in parchment paper before slicing in half and packing. Need a visual aid? The good people at Serious Eats have you covered.
💭 Recipe FAQs
Taste is totally subjective, but I think my doctored-up lemon and black pepper mayo is an absolute delight. You can also experiment with other condiments like sriracha mayo, spicy mustard, or even hummus if you prefer.
Again, this is going to change depending on your personal tastebuds. For this avocado turkey recipe, I think sharp cheddar is the winner, but that’s just me! You’re also welcome to try any other cheese you like including mild colby, fiery pepper jack, herbed havarti, or anything else that tickles your tongue.
Ah, the eternal struggle of slippery avocado! I suggest a triple-pronged approach: use thin slices of avocado, mash them slightly onto the bread using the tines of a fork, and then deli-wrap the sandwich before slicing in half and eating.
To prevent the avocado from oxidizing and the bread from getting soggy, I recommend not assembling the sandwich until an hour or two before eating. If you leave the avocado out (to be added at serving time), you can prep the sandwiches about 24 hours in advance.
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Turkey Avocado Sandwich
- 2 Tablespoons Cracked peppercorn aioli, 1 tablespoon peppercorns ground + ½ cup mayonnaise + 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- 2 slices Tomato, sliced & salted
- ½ Avocado, sliced
- 2 Sourdough Bread Slices
- 5 slices Turkey
- ¼ cup Greens, mixed greens, butter lettuce or microgreens
- ¼ cup Alfalfa Sprouts
- 3 slices Sharp Cheddar Cheese
- In a small bowl, combine the ground peppercorns, mayonnaise, and lemon juice. Mix well until the black pepper is evenly distributed throughout the mayonnaise and set the aioli aside.2 Tablespoons Cracked peppercorn aioli
- Cut the avocado in half, remove the pit, and slice the avocado into thin, even slices. Slice the tomato into thin rounds and lightly salt before setting them aside on a plate.2 slices Tomato, ½ Avocado
- Lay out the sourdough bread slices on your work surface. On one side of each bread slice, spread the prepared black pepper aioli.2 Sourdough Bread Slices
- On the aioli-covered side of one bread slice, add the turkey slices, followed by the sliced avocado, tomato, mixed greens or lettuce, and a handful of alfalfa sprouts. Add a layer of sharp cheddar cheese on top of the sprouts.5 slices Turkey, ¼ cup Greens, ¼ cup Alfalfa Sprouts, 3 slices Sharp Cheddar Cheese
- Place the other bread slice, aioli side down, on top of the layered fillings to complete the sandwich. Then, using a sharp knife, carefully cut the sandwich in half and enjoy!
- Swap Your Bread - Sourdough is divine, but you’re also welcome to swap in fluffy, herbaceous focaccia, savory swirled babka, or even everything pretzel bread if you prefer!
- Add Bacon - Take a page from the Panera turkey avocado BLT playbook and add some salty, crispy bacon for added flavor and heft. Bacon turkey avocado sandwich FTW!
- Get Toasty - Turn your sandwich into a turkey avocado melt by using a panini press or cast-iron skillet and a weight.