Grilled Chicken Club Sandwich

This grilled chicken sandwich is big enough to fill the hungriest eaters at dinnertime, but a half sandwich with a side salad makes a hearty lunch too. The buttermilk marinade and herby spread add a creamy flavor that takes this chicken club sandwich with bacon and Swiss over the top.

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A grilled chicken club sandwich cut in half on a black plate with potato chips.

Sandwiches for Lunch or Dinner

Maybe it’s because I always had a sandwich in my lunch as a kid, or maybe it’s because it truly is the perfect vessel for any number of delicious ingredients, but I love a good sandwich. I crave good sandwiches. Sometimes, all I want to make is a sandwich and there’s no reason to keep that relegated to lunchtime. This grilled chicken club sandwich is BIG. If I’m enjoying it for lunch, half a sandwich is enough for me. If you’re having sandwich night for dinner, you might be able to indulge in a whole one if you’re really hungry. 

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Ingredients on a cutting board - chicken breast, bacon, tomato, cheese, mayonnaise, mustard, buttermilk, herbs, and bread.

What makes a club sandwich a club sandwich?

There are a few stories out there on what makes a club sandwich a “club sandwich”. Some people think a club sandwich needs to have three pieces of bread, but I think that just makes a sandwich difficult to eat and the original club sandwich did not (according to the Good Housekeeping Cookbook). Others feel a club sandwich needs to have bacon, lettuce and tomato, but to me that is really the definition of a BLT sandwich. For the definition of a club sandwich I side with James Beard, who said that a club sandwich always includes chicken, bacon, tomato, lettuce, mayonnaise and toasted bread (except I’ve decided to leave out the lettuce). So, you can call this sandwich a club or not. I just call it delicious.

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Chicken breasts marinating in a buttermilk marinade in a baking dish with a pair of tongs.

Marinating Chicken for a Club Sandwich

The chicken is key to this grilled chicken club sandwich, so I wanted to make sure it was moist and delicious. In this recipe, the chicken is marinated in a buttermilk and herb marinade. That helps tenderize the chicken, adds moisture and gives the chicken great browning ability.

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Chicken breast grilling on an electric grill.

Cooking chicken for a club sandwich

When it comes time to grill the chicken breast, don’t let all the marinade drip away from the meat. That buttermilk marinade will brown so nicely, giving you great grill marks and the herbs add a lot of flavor to the chicken. If you don’t have the ability to grill the chicken, you can cook it on a griddle or in a sauté pan or skillet. 

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Looking down into a bowl with ingredients in it - mayonnaise, buttermilk, herbs, mustard - and a spatula.

Sandwich spread

Mayonnaise is the base for this club sandwich’s spread. The spread mimics the marinade for the chicken with the same herbs and a little buttermilk, along with some Dijon mustard for a little zest. You won’t have any leftovers (or not much), but if you did, adding a little more buttermilk turns this spread into a tasty salad dressing. 

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9 photographs showing how to assemble a grilled chicken club sandwich.

How to Make a Chicken Club Sandwich

Building the club is easy. It’s a simple layering act, but do remember to butter the outside of the bread slices and make sure that you have cheese next to both slices of bread in the sandwich. The melted cheese acts as the glue between the bread and the other ingredients. 

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Two chicken club sandwiches on an electric grill pan weighed down with mini bacon presses.

Pressing a Grilled Club Sandwich

When you have your sandwiches built, it will be very obvious to you that fitting a sandwich this big into your mouth would be a challenge. That’s why it’s important to press the sandwiches as they cook. I use these mini chef’s presses which work perfectly. If you don’t have a bacon press of some kind, you can place a baking sheet on top and weigh it down with some heavy cans. Alternately, you can press down on the sandwich with a flat spatula, but you’ll be standing there pressing while the sandwiches toast. The mini presses are a great investment.

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Two chicken club sandwiches on an electric griddle.

Bread for a Club Sandwich

The bread is always an important part of any sandwich. My choice for this sandwich is some artisan sourdough. You don’t have to make it yourself, but… you could. If not sourdough, then I suggest a wheat or white bread, but do make sure the bread is hearty enough to grill (or griddle) nicely. It needs to be strong enough to carry the ingredients and hold its own.

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Two chicken club sandwiches on a cutting board, one cut in half, with a plate of chips and pickle behind.

What to Serve with a Chicken Club

Some say that a club sandwich is only a club sandwich if it is served with potato chips, and that does seem to be the obvious choice, but you can also serve a club sandwich with a green side salad, potato salad, coleslaw and of course, some bread and butter pickles

 

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Grilled Chicken Club Sandwich

  • Prep Time: 10 m
  • Cook Time: 20 m
  • Total Time: 30 m
  • Servings:
    2
    to 4 people

Ingredients

  • 2 boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • ½ cup buttermilk
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh chives
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 slices artisan sourdough bread
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter softened
  • 4 ounces sliced Swiss cheese
  • 4 slices tomato
  • 4 slices bacon
Herbed Sandwich Spread:
  • ¼ cup mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon buttermilk
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh chives
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Instructions

  1. Slice the chicken breasts in half lengthwise and horizontally, making two thinner fillets out of each breast. You can do this by placing your hand flat on top of the chicken breast, holding a sharp knife parallel to your cutting board, and slicing the chicken in half. If necessary, pound the chicken lightly with the flat side of a meat mallet until they are flat and even in thickness.
  2. Combine the buttermilk, parsley, chives, salt and freshly ground black pepper. Marinate the chicken in the buttermilk mixture for at least 4 hours to overnight.
  3. To make the herbed sandwich spread, whisk together the mayonnaise, buttermilk, Dijon mustard, chopped parsley and chives in a small bowl. Season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Chill until ready to use.
  4. Heat a grill/griddle or large skillet over medium-high heat. Cook the bacon until crispy and remove it from the griddle or pan. Drain away most of the bacon grease.
  5. Remove the chicken breasts from the marinade and place them directly onto the hot grill/griddle or pan without letting the marinade drip off the chicken. Discard the remaining marinade. Cook the chicken breast for about 4 to 5 minutes on each side until browned and cooked through. Cooking time will vary depending on how thick your chicken slices are. Transfer the chicken to a plate and cover with foil. Wipe down the griddle or pan.
  6. Build the sandwiches by spreading butter on one side of each slice of bread. Flip the slices over and spread the herbed sandwich spread on the other side of all four slices. Layer a slice of Swiss cheese, the chicken breast, 2 tomato slices, 2 slices cooked bacon and another slice of Swiss cheese on top of 2 slices of bread. Top with the remaining two slices of bread, leaving the buttered side up.
  7. Pre-heat the grill/griddle or skillet to medium heat. Place the sandwich on the heated cooking surface and grill for about 5 to 7 minutes, weighing the sandwich down with a bacon press or heavy spatula. Flip the sandwich over and cook for another 5 minutes until the bread is golden brown and the cheese has melted.
  8. Transfer to a cutting board, slice in half and serve immediately.
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Comments (3)Post a Reply

  1. 5 stars
    Excellent dinner sandwich. Sadly no homemade sour dough bread, so I used a Tuscan loaf I found in the grocery bakery and used provolone cheese rather than Swiss since that was what I had on hand. The whole thing came together quickly and tasted delicious. My husband said the recipe is definitely a keeper! Thanks Meredith!

  2. 5 stars
    Wonderful sandwich. I made it just as instructed even though I don’t usually choose Swiss cheese. It tasted great and the recipe is definitely a keeper! Thanks so much!

  3. 5 stars
    This is a really wonderful sandwich. Even though I am not really a big fan of Swiss cheese, I followed your recipe as written and am so glad I did. All the flavors really worked together to make a delicious sandwich. Definitely a keeper recipe and the bonus – hardly any effort to make! Thanks so much.

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