California Sandwich

Piled high with sprouts, avocado, and a creamy dressing, this Golden State vegetarian classic is easy to layer up at home.

  • Serves


  • Cook

    10 minutes


By Betsy Andrews

Updated on August 8, 2023

Our classic California sandwich recipe combines a trio of fresh Golden State produce, Monterey Jack cheese, and a creamy ranch-like dressing. A version of this late-century favorite can still be found on deli-counter and sandwich-shop menus throughout California—but the feel-good meal is just as easy to layer up at home.

This recipe first appeared in our April 2011 Sandwich Issue with the story, “Golden State of Sandwiches,” by Betsy Andrews.


  • ¼ cup buttermilk
  • ¼ cup mayonnaise
  • ¼ cup sour cream
  • 1 Tbsp. finely chopped chives
  • 1 Tbsp. finely chopped parsley
  • ½ tsp. garlic powder
  • ¼ tsp. onion powder
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 slices multigrain bread
  • 2 slices Monterey Jack cheese
  • ½ cup alfalfa sprouts
  • 1 avocado, peeled, pitted, and thinly sliced
  • 1 ripe tomato, cored and thinly sliced


Step 1

In a small bowl, whisk together the buttermilk, mayonnaise, sour cream, chives, parsley, garlic powder, and onion powder. Season to taste with salt and black pepper, then spread the mixture on one side of each of the bread slices. Place a slice of cheese on two of the bread slices, then divide the sprouts, avocado, and tomato atop the cheese. Season the vegetables lightly with salt and black pepper, top with the remaining bread slices, and serve the sandwiches cold or at room temperature.

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