How Your Favorite Sandwiches Were Conceived

While Arby’s may have one of the most famous Reubens now, its actual origin is one of the most widely disputed in sandwich history. Along with the world famous Reuben, check out where some of your other favorite sandwiches are said to have been conceived.

1. The Sandwich That’s An Idol

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Although there are many conflicting accounts of how the Reuben Sandwich was first brought to life, there are two theories that are especially popular. One involves Reuben’s delicatessen in Manhattan, where it is said the Reuben was first created to feed Annette Seelos, Charlie Chaplin’s hungry leading lady. The second theory involves a grocer in Omaha named Reuben Kulakofsky. Some say Kulakofsky created the now famous Reuben sandwich to feed players in one of his late-night poker games at Omaha’s Blackstone Hotel. It wound up being such a hit that the hotel owner put it on the menu in his honor. In 2005, the Reuben got its biggest break yet with its introduction to the Arby’s menu.

2. It’s Hoagie Time

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Although it is certain the Hoagie comes from Philadelphia, there are still several versions of how the sandwich first came to be. One famous theory is that the term “Hoagie” refers to the men who worked on Hog Island. Hog Island was famous for shipbuilding and the shipbuilders liked their sandwiches big, so the local shopkeepers decided to create a custom sandwich that would be able to satisfy their appetites.

3. Au Jus Ready To Chow Down?

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The “French Dip Sandwich” was invented in Los Angeles by Philippe Mathieu, the owner of a sandwich shop called “Philippe the Original.” It is the specialty of the house and is made with either roast beef, roast pork, leg of lamb, turkey or ham served on a light French roll dipped into au jus sauce.

4. A Weapon AND A Good Time

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There are multiple versions of how the original Club Sandwich came to be. The most popular dates back to 1894, and was created in the kitchen of the Saratoga Club-House in Saratoga Springs, NY. The other theory is a bit more simplistic. It is rumored that the club was simply the creation of a hungry man who came home late and decided to make a sandwich out of the ingredients he had in his fridge.

5. Meat Lover’s Paradise

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Research suggests that the Sloppy Joe began in a Sioux City, Iowa, cafe. Legend has it that the sandwich was created during the depression because ground meat lasted a long time, so the Sloppy Joe was an effective way of making tasty food without the cost.

6. The Fresh Prince Of Sandwiches

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This is one sandwich that has a well documented legend. The story is that the original Philly Cheese Steak was made by a hot dog vendor (Pat Olivieri) who got tired of having hot dogs for lunch. One of his regulars smelled the steak and onions and asked if he could have some, too.

7. This One’s Got A Book Named After It

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Originally served in 1910 in a Paris cafe, the Monte Cristo sandwich is still a popular snack throughout France and Switzerland. The basic Monte Cristo sandwich is made of two slices of white bread with ham, turkey, or chicken, and a slice of cheese. It is then dipped in beaten egg, fried in butter and served with a side of dipping jelly.

8. The Big Luxurious Trio

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BLT sandwiches are believed to have descended from Victorian era tea sandwiches. The BLT gained popularity after World War II due to the rapid expansion of supermarkets.

9. The Po’est Boy You Know

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The Po’ Boy or Poor Boy is native to New Orleans. The fillings vary, ranging from fried oysters, shrimp, fish, soft-shelled crabs, crawfish, roast beef and gravy, roast pork, meatballs, smoked sausage and more.

10. The Eiffel Tower Of Sandwiches

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This sandwich was named after the popular comic strip character of the 1930’s, Dagwood Bumstead, who was only able to pile leftovers between bread. So the next time you’re digging through the fridge in search of sandwich toppings, go ahead and call it a Dagwood. But just remember to pile it high enough so it’s nearly impossible to eat.

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