Skip to main content

Pan Bagnat Sandwich

Prep Time: 30 mins
Cook Time:
Total Time:3 hour(s)30 mins

Pan Bagnat, or "bathed bread," is a layered tuna fish sandwich that takes the elements of a salad Niçoise—olives, crisp vegetables, a lemony vinaigrette—and stuffs them between two slices of crusty bread. The sandwich is then pressed, marrying the tuna with all of components and bathing the bread in savory, salty, umami-rich flavor. Because pan bagnat actually improves with time, this is the perfect sandwich to bring to a picnic or day at the beach without losing flavor or texture by the time lunch time rolls around. 

This is when you want to break out the good stuff: your favorite extra virgin olive oil, olive oil-packed tuna (we love Ortiz Bonito del Norte here) and good bread, like a rustic loaf or ciabatta. 

Serves 6


  • 1 - 8.8-ounce tin Conservas Ortiz Bonito del Norte, lightly drained reserving a small amount of the oil
  • 1/2 cup mixed herbs, such as parsley, fennel fronds, basil or green onions, chopped
  • 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil, such as Merula
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 cup olives, such as Nocellara or Kalamata, pitted and roughly chopped
  • Juice of one lemon
  • 1/2 bulb fennel or 2-3 radishes, thinly sliced
  • 1 Persian cucumber, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 small red bell pepper or about 5 Piquillo Peppers, thinly sliced
  • 2 medium tomatoes, sliced
  • 2 hard boiled eggs, sliced
  • 1 rustic loaf of bread or ciabatta


In a small bowl, gently flake tuna and mix with herbs and set aside.

In another bowl, whisk lemon juice, mustard, olives, salt and pepper. Slowly drizzle in olive oil until emulsified. Set aside.

To assemble sandwich, cut bread lengthwise and hollow out loaf of bread (save the insides for breadcrumbs). If using ciabatta, skip this step. Drizzle a good amount of extra virgin olive oil across the interior crumb so that it soaks into the bread. Place fennel or radish in an even layer over the bottom of the bread and then top with cucumbers, red bell pepper and tomatoes. Spread with tuna mixture and then continue to layer eggs, olives and anchovies. Drizzle reserved lemon dressing evenly over sandwich and season with salt and pepper. Cover with top of bread and wrap the sandwich in a couple layers of plastic wrap or tin foil.

Place in between two baking sheets, weighing down the top sheet with something heavy, such as a cast iron skillet, a brick or large cans of tomatoes. Refrigerate for 3 hours to 8 hours. Remove from refrigerator, unwrap and slice into wedges. Serve cold or at room temperature.