You know how you go strolling along through life willy nilly without thinking a thing about how you pronounce the word triathalon, only to discover one day, that it’s actually pronounced triathlon? With no second a?

That’s how I felt the day I discovered I’d been making sandwiches wrong my entire life.

I’ve always been pretty confident in the kitchen.  I mean I have an apron, and a chef’s knife and I know how to separate an egg in my fingers so I’m pretty much a chef.  Now that I think of it, one of my aprons actually has the word CHEF right on it so that pretty much cements it.  I’m a chef.

Who doesn’t know how to make a sandwich.

Here’s what I do wrong.

When I make a sandwich I only butter the bottom piece of bread.  Not the top.  So only one slice of bread gets butter.


I’ve been told it is very definitely weird..  I shudder to think of the number of people I’ve stood before in my kitchen lovingly preparing them a stacked concoction of lettuce, cheese and meat and bread …. with only one piece of the bread buttered.

I thought you put your “starter” piece of bread on the counter, buttered it, then started stacking the rest of the ingredients.  So, bottom slice of bread, a little bit of butter, pastrami, mustard, salt, pepper, cheese, marshmallows, lettuce, top piece of bread with no butter.  Orrrrr buttered piece of bread, chicken salad, salt, pepper, top piece of bread with no butter.

My whole life I’ve thought you only butter the bottom slice of the bread.  I don’t know for sure but I’d bet I can blame my mother.  It’s because of her that I like to cook chicken breast until it’s the perfect degree of doneness and then cook it an hour and a half more.  (I’m actually learning to get over that)


I’ve had my sandwich making faux pas pointed out to me a few times in the past several years but I’m hoping maybe this is a thing.  That there’s an entire group of us in the world that only butter the bottom piece of bread.  We’re likely an elite crowd of sandwich makers who will be rounded up when the time is right,  save the world one bologna sandwich at at time.  Because a bologna sandwich can make any situation better.  Everybody knows that.  We’re going to save the world we single bread butterers, just you wait and see.


A toasted poppyseed bagel with sprouts and swiss is pretty good too but it can’t save the future of all mankind like the single bread buttering coalition’s bologna sandwiches could.

O.K.  Lay it on me.

Does ANYONE else out there only butter one piece of the bread?

Who among you is also going to save the world when called upon by the Templar of Toast!

Tell me.  Do you butter both pieces of bread in a sandwich.

Have  a good weekend!








  1. Andrea says:

    What’s weird is putting butter on a sand which you crazy Canadian. I do however only put MAYO AND MUSTARD on one side of the sandwich.

    • Lori says:

      Ha ha – ditto! First thing I thought was “Butter??” And I’m from the Great Lakes (so very very close to Canada). Mayo or mustard on the bottom. However, I’ve always put cheese or lettuce next to the top slice (everything is better with cheese) to keep the bread from getting soggy.

      Laughed at cooking the chicken (or veggies, or anything) an hour and a half past doneness. Thanks Mom! Didn’t discover asparagus wasn’t supposed to look limp and lifeless until I moved away from home. (This was before the internet.)

    • KimS says:

      Agreed! Butter? No way!

    • ally says:

      Nope, I use NO butter and I’m Canadian. Very Canadian (if there’s such a thing). Mayo is suitable to the innards of the sandwich. Maybe mustard. Never butter, or any facsimile thereof.

    • Katrina says:


      Nope, I put mayo on one piece of the bread. I dislike lots of gobby mayo on bread. Even when I go to a sandwich shop and order and sandwich, I ask for light mayo on one slice of bread.

      The mayo has to be Best Foods… I hate that sweet mayo some use in sandwich shops. lol

      But, Butter?

    • Kay says:

      I am with you, Andrea! BUTTER on a sandwich that isn’t toasted cheese!? Are we missing something here!? I too, put the condiments on the bottom slice then lettuce then meat, THEN the cheese to keep both pieces of bread from getting soggy! But, are you and I missing out on something with the butter!

    • Lifesart says:

      Ditto here too! I never put butter on the bread for a sandwich. Mayo or mustard or horseradish or….. but not butter. That said, whatever I use, I put on both sides. But you’re not weird, Karen, you’re Karen!

    • Debbie says:

      Exactly! The only time butter goes on a sandwich is when the sandwich is about to become grilled cheese. My stomach did flip flops when thinking about butter on a sandwich!

  2. stephanie says:

    Butter on the bottom, mayo/mustard,etc on the top is. How they do it at culinaryschool

  3. Debbie D says:

    Butter? No butter. I am a mustard girl and yes, I do both pieces of bread. On very rare occasion, I use mayo, but mostly use mustard. Oh yea, it can’t be a wimpy regular mustard (none of the yellow bottle stuff), I want a good spicy deli mustard or horseradish mustard. Love mustard!

  4. Jamieson says:

    I totally agree with you! Yes, you are a weirdo.

  5. Haydée Skeet says:

    There should be NO BUTTER on sliced Bologna sandwiches. Ewww brings me back to camp lunches. Butter, mustard & slimy bologna, blech! That is probably what turned me against butter on most sandwiches. Nope never.

  6. Janice Nassar says:

    I was shocked! Not that you buttered only one side of a sandwich, but that you use butter instead of mayonnaise! You butter toast, not sandwiches! I, of course do apply mayo to BOTH pieces of bread! Lots of mayo! Most sandwiches bought in deli’s seem to have no butter or mayo at all in which case, I have to ask for mayo. Lots of mayo. I am trying to imagine a sandwich with butter but no, I can’t. Sorry. I enjoy your blog though!

    • Janet says:

      I’m with Janice! It’s got to be MAYO and LOTS of it.

    • Karen says:

      So let me get this straight. If you were making a piece of bread with jam, you’d slather it with mayo first? ~ karen!

      • Shel says:

        That’s toast. A sandwich is not a true sandwich without meat, cheese and some vegetables. And mayo. As the formula above suggests:

        toast + butter (and possibly jam) = taste bud happiness
        sandwich + mayo (and optional mustard) on both slices = eternal bliss

        • Karen says:

          But what if the jam sandwich has a top on it? Surely it’s a true sandwich then. ~ karen!

          • Slice of bread, slathered in jam, whack another slice of bread on top. Jam sandwich. No butter. At all. Simple.

            I never use butter (or marg) in sandwiches, regardless of the filling. I just don’t feel the need for it. If it’s cheese or seitan, for example (I’m vegan… and yes, I do make vegan butter – and cheese – and yes, they are delicious!), it’s bread, salad, cheese or seitan, more salad or something like tomato or cucumber, then the other slice of bread. The veggies make sure the sarnie isn’t dry. I may have vegan mayo if I’m feeling particularly daring, or some of my own salad dressing. But mostly it’s not needed.

            In fact, the only bready things I have butter on are crumpets, or toast if there is to be Marmite on top… because it’s actually against all of the laws of the universe to have toast and Marmite with no butter. I don’t want to be responsible for the sky falling in.

      • Lifesart says:

        I like my toast, or my jelly sandwiches, without butter. The butter just makes the toast soggy, and the sandwiches usually have a different kind of butter – soy, or peanut or cashew.

    • Janice, where do you live? Here they always slather on the mayo, and I have to scrape some off unless I remember to ask for “light” mayo, in which case they put a normal amount, not gobs! Not that I don’t like mayo. Just not more than what else is in the sandwich…lol

      Now I want butter on a sandwich. Or just a sandwich. Now. Thanks, Karen!

  7. Jaclyn says:

    I only butter one side of the bread. And if I’m using more than one condiment, I split them between slices – butter on the bottom slice, mustard on top. Sandwich making is an art – you’re just using your artistic flair in making those sandwiches! (and if you are interested in the art of sandwich making, you must read the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy series by Douglas Adams. There are many delicious sandwiches).

    • ktr says:

      I whole heartedly agree; you must put one condiment on the bottom piece and another on the top piece of bread. Otherwise you risk having too much on one piece and then it leaks out.
      I thought my grandma was the only one who put butter on a sandwich. Maybe you are secretly a 75 year old Polish woman.

  8. Leal says:

    Yep, butter on one slice, other condiments on second slice. Not sure about the marshmallows though, maybe on the side?

  9. Ronda says:

    definitely butter on top and bottom slices … and from edge to edge to edge! THEN the Miracle Whip. Mayo doesn’t cut it!

    • Barbara H. says:

      Yes, Ronda, Miracle Whip all the way! And button on top and bottom from edge to edge to edge.

    • Debbie says:

      I grew up with Miracle Whip as my brother was/is allergic to eggs. Now I won’t go near it. Kind of like toothpaste. Grew up with Crest, left home and bought Colgate. I use Tom’s and others, but still won’t use Crest.

      I did spoil myself once by making homemade mayo – it was phenomenal. I’ll have to try it again even though I’m not a huge mayo fan.

  10. Shortbreadhen says:

    Butter both sides….and if it is a sandwich that needs mayo/mustard that goes on both sides on top of the butter.
    Just like my mom makes it.

    Now I need to go make a sandwich…

  11. MissChris SA says:

    Well, in this neck of the woods, we butter both sides.

    You would think to be living below the breadline if you only buttered one slice 🙂

    Have a grand weekend!

  12. Kathleen says:

    Don’t like butter on my sandwich. Any other condiment, yes, on both sides, but butter? No! When I make sandwiches for the family, I butter both slices, although my family are left examining the sarmie under a microscope to find the butter! 🙂

  13. No butter.

    And mayonnaise is not meant to be eaten. Ever. In any form. By anyone.


    • Ann says:

      Many of us consider home made mayo to be better than ice cream. I can eat it by the spoonsful right out of the jar

    • Katie says:

      I’m with you Cynthia! No mayo… Ever… Ew.

      I do however, loooooooove mustard or guac on sandwiches and I only put it on one piece of bread.

    • MindyK says:

      Condiments and their placement are clearly a matter of preference and training. I like spicy mustard (on one side only) or oil&vinegar, depending on the sandwich, but never at the same time.

  14. Tracy says:

    Butter on the bottom slice, cream cheese on the top slice.
    It’s all about the layers.

  15. martina says:

    I’m learning that a lot of weirdos read your blog! I think there are plenty of ways to go with condiments depending on the sandwich and the way it will be employed. If I’m packing it to go the butter is like moisture block so it goes on both side, for instance.

    • Kim says:

      YES! This is it! Butter is s moisture block! That’s why you need it. So if cheese is on the very top and you are going to eat it right away it is not as necessary.

  16. Carolyn says:

    Ick to butter on sandwiches. Mustard on the bottom piece, then meat, possibly cheese, then lettuce, then mayo on the top piece. Always mustard on the meat side and mayo on the lettuce side. I am always shocked to find this convention not always honored. Took me ten years to get my husband to go along with the plan. He would sometimes make them upside down!

    • Beckie says:

      This is my way. Mustard next to the meat, mayo next to the lettuce.

      I will butter a peanut butter & jelly sandwich or a peanut butter & banana sandwich, but will never butter any sort of meat sandwich ever 😛 *ick*.

    • Darla says:

      I agree Carolyn and restaurants just look at me weird when I ask for this on my burgers. The only time I use butter is on a grilled cheese sandwich. Then it’s toasted in the pan.

  17. Nicole says:

    Butter, mayo, mustard on the top and bottom slice exactly which depends on the filling and the flavours. I also say triathalon as difficult as it might be for my autocorrect to accept.

  18. Fritzy Dean says:

    What Haydee said! No butter on bologna sandwiches….or any other sandwiches. We Texans consider butter too sissified to put on a sandwich. We like hot spicy brown mustard in these here parts.

  19. Jeanette says:

    Butter? Seriously?

  20. shirley says:

    I have always believed (like many of the false beliefs I have acquired over the years) that the butter ‘sealed’ the bread like a layer of Petroleum Jelly. Butter would stop the sandwich filling and condiments ‘leaking’ into the bread and making it soggy.
    So I always meticulously butter both sides of the bread right to the corners and in fact I get quite distressed if a person making a sandwich for me, neglects to do this.
    Worst case scenario is the person who doesn’t use butter at all – mayo just will not do!
    Sorry Karen – I think you are weird – but love your blog!

    • karen says:

      exactly! it doesn’t matter what you use, but something has to glue the bejeezus out of the content. condiment/sauce to the very edge on the inside…unless cheese is included if paninied (is that a word?). e.g, the grilled cheese sammich. butter on the outside only.

      are you tallying up? looks like you’re still the only single-side-buttered sandwich girl.

  21. Rick says:

    If no other condiment is to be applied then butter. Naked bread should never touch the sandwich ingredients.

  22. Marie says:

    One side is for butter. The other for Mayo. Or Pesto …now that I’m a growed up.

  23. Pam says:

    The only sandwich I regularly butter is grilled cheese, otherwise it’s mayo & mustard on both slices. Maybe butter on a sandwich is more suited to meat, of which I do not partake. Nor do I partake of triathalons or triathlons.

    • Phyllis Kraemer says:

      Next time you are making a grilled cheese, try using a very thin layer of mayo instead of butter…you will be astonished at the results…completely even, perfect browning of the bread right to the edges, with a wee bit of a crunch…honestly…delish!!

      • Karol says:

        When my best friend and I started sharing our first apartment together, we were both aghast that the other made grilled cheese differently. I grew up with the bread buttered, she grew up with mayo instead. Neither of us had ever heard of it being prepared any way but ours. I tried it with a little mayo, and you are right Phyllis, there is no real taste difference, and it has a wee bit of crunch when it is grilled. I still use butter but in a pinch, will use mayo if I am out of butter. I also like peanut butter and butter sandwiches… toasted, for breakfast.

        • Jenny says:

          My husband and I have been together for 12 years and I just now noticed that when he makes a grilled cheese sandwich, he not only butters the bread but also melts some butter in the pan. I made the most absolutely perfect grilled cheese the other night with this method. I grew up just buttering both sides and plopping it into a nonstick pan, which works just fine but doesn’t yield the same golden crispiness. World = changed.

  24. Sue says:

    I only just discovered how much better a layer of butter under the other condiments tastes. I always wondered why my sandwiches were just OK; enough to stave off hunger with a few chips and a dill pickle on the side.
    So, now I put an extra thin layer of butter on both sides and feel my sandwiches rival – or at least hold their own – beside most others.

    • Julie says:

      I think you’re right Sue…I don’t eat them that way now, but grew up eating them that way, and I think they ARE better!

  25. Alisa says:

    Mayo. On both sides. A nice, thick, slathery layer of mayo. Now THAT’S how you make a sandwich.

  26. Gillian says:

    Butter on one piece, Mayo (or ranch) on the other.

    I also don’t butter if I’m using peanut butter.

    I also only butter if I’m actually toasting the bread….even then though I won’t butter both slices.

    Both pieces (only if they’re toasted) will get some kind of spread but, usually only one spread: butter and honey; peanut butter and jam; butter, lettuce, tomato, sprouts, cucumber, pastrami, salt, pepper, cheese ranch/Mayo.

    You are not strange. Butter and peanut butter and jam and butter is strange and makes me think of arteries clogging….. LoL.

  27. Kathy says:

    I can’t go with the butter. Is this room temp to spread easy? I really like a lettuce wrap, no bread, butter, or other condiments just lettuce, thin sliced meat and cheese rolled up. Now I use romaine and the canoe shape is good for holding the filling. But in the old days of bread, it was bread, lettuce, meat, tomato with a squirt or blob of condiment, lettuce again and bread. I like the crunch of lettuce and at some point it came to me that bread was my least favorite in a sandwich and poof it went away.

  28. Lynda says:

    You don’t pronounce the second “a”?!?

  29. Valerie says:

    No butter on either piece of bread if the filling is mixed with mayo and I intend to eat it right away.
    Butter both outsides for grilled cheese but to make sure the sandwich is perfect, after grilling I place on the plate and microwave for 10 seconds for perfectly drippy cheese. This also helps to lock in the onion slices if I have added them on top of the cheese prior to grilling.
    Butter both pieces if I am going to wrap in waxed paper and take away for later to prevent sogginess.
    Always butter both sides after I toast a bagel.

  30. Sarah says:

    It’s never occurred to me to put butter on my sandwich, but it sounds amazing! We’re a mostly mayo household. We will usually melt cheese on one side and then slather a little mayo on the other. Depending on the other ingredients, we might make a special sandwich sauce consisting of mayo, sriracha, and a dab ranch dressing. Don’t knock it ’til you try it!

  31. maggie aikens says:

    Oh my… There’s a special hell for us isn’t there.?.? I can feel the heat…

  32. Sandi says:

    Butter? On a non-panini?!

  33. Helen Whaley says:

    Butter, on both sides of the sandwich, seems to be a British thing. Most Americans use other condiments like mayo or mustard.
    Seems as though Miss Canada has decided to meet both Nations half way.

  34. Hazel says:

    I’m British and I don’t butter my sandwiches. And I definitely don’t like margarine/spread on them. But I am willing to admit that I may not be a typical Brit in that respect.
    I would use mayo or chutney or both, in which case I’m with Carolyn- mayo on the salad side, chutney on the protein side. If I was eating cucumber sandwiches I may make an exception and butter the bread, but it would have to be real butter.
    Peanut butter (or lemon curd) = no butter.
    Jam = butter because that’s not a sandwich, that’s bread and jam and bread.

  35. Madeline Hendrickson says:

    So–butter on both slices for sure, it keeps the bread from sticking and getting gluey. Interesting note: our camp used to have a food booth at a local summer fair.For the sandwiches, one slice of bread was white, the other was brown. We turned the pre-made sandwich to whichever bread the customer asked for. No waste!

  36. Dominic says:

    No butter. Mayo or mustard or both if you prefer, but no butter unless it’s a grilled sammich.

  37. Margaret K. says:

    Thin layer of butter to edges of both slices of bread – only on 1 side of each, the inner side unless it is a grilled cheese sandwich. I don’t like mayonnaise on my sandwiches unless it’s tuna fish of egg salad, and then the bread doesn’t need any spread – it’s all mixed in the tuna/egg. But my husband is a mayo on both pieces person, even if he is also using mustard.
    However, if it’s an uncooked cheese sandwich and I am eating it immediately, then no butter.

  38. Sherry in Alaska says:

    So, obviously, there are lots of ways to make a sandwich. However you do it, just make yourself happy. But there’s only one correct way to spell triathlon, I had NO idea there’s only one a! I don’t know how I got to be this old not knowing THAT!! Never too old to learn something new. Thanks Karen.

  39. Nancy Blue Moon says:

    Oh course I butter both slices you nut-bag….and she’s trying to blame it on Betty…this is just sad…

  40. Wendy says:

    When I was much younger and didn’t have to even think about what I ate it was butter on both pieces of bread..lots of it and spread to the very edges. Now that I’m older and much wiser I only use mustard and maybe a touch of light mayo..in fact I rarely eat bread!

  41. Danee says:

    Butter on your sandwich must be a Canadian/British thing? My dad used to butter peanut butter sandwiches! Wha??????? I don’t even butter toast! (I do use cream cheese on toast or homemade bagels) for me butter on bread is always mixed with garlic and then baked into garlic bread. Spain’s breakfast toast is toasted bread with a clove of garlic rubbed on the toasted side, fresh tomato squished into it, a drizzle of olive oil and loads of black pepper and salt (to my taste anyway) and then if I’m really splurging some jamon serrano slices on top! Aside from American fast food places, condiments are never on the sandwich, they are served on the side, which for me, who has a fear of ketchup and and I’m not crazy about mayo either, is just fine. Mustard which I do like, particularly grainy mustard only goes on one side of the bread, the top one.

    • Penny says:

      Ooo-er, my tummy just rumbled as if I’d swallowed a small angry bear as I read your ‘breakfast toast’ description! It’s not a sandwich, admittedly, but it sounds as if it would cause a foodgasm.

  42. Jeannette says:

    I haven’t had a bologna sandwich in years; now I really want one–on toast, with mayo, mustard, lettuce, and tomatoes, no butter!

    • Julie says:

      But if it was a fried balogna sandwich, and the bread was buttered, and there was a cheese slice on it, it would be all melty and delicious…..I thought these were so delicious, back in the day!

  43. Jen says:

    Hey Karen – I had always buttered both sides of my bread until “I” was told I was weird for doing both!! I thought that was so strange – just thought my 2 sides was something I was taught by my mum too. She was a Brit – she also ate (and so did we and man was it good) chip buttys – which is one slice of bread, lathered in butter with fries inside (it was folded over). Ask the Beatles it’s a Liverpool thing. Anyway, I now only butter one side (if at all) since I keep growing older and trying not to be fatter. I had many people say to me – OMG – it’s insane that you would butter both top & bottom bread. Butter makes bread better – if you feel like butter – do both but if you just did a 5k run, just do the one lol!

  44. Lynn says:

    One slice only, no butter (even for jam…then it’s just jam). Other condiments may include but are not limited to mayo, mustard, hummus, cranberry sauce (or cranberry-mayo combo), wasabi mayo, etc. But again, one slice only and usually the top slice, not the bottom.

  45. Julia (mumo3kids) says:

    As far as I’m concerned, the main reason to have a sandwich is as an excuse to eat butter, so I’m definitely a two sides girl…

  46. Lin N says:

    Have always made my sandwiches with putting butter on the bottom slice of bread or toast. I believe everyone else is doing it incorrectly!

  47. Noreen says:

    You’ve awoken everyone’s inner sandwich professor!
    I’ve never seen this many responders! There’s no right or wrong way to make a sandwich – you make it how you like it.

  48. Maggie Andrew says:

    Definitely butter both sides( not margarine yuk) and here in Great Britain if you want to be really posh those in the know mix chopped watercress with butter when making cucumber sandwiches! X

  49. mia pratt says:

    Yes butter on both sides now, but I used to do just the bottom, too. I learned about buttering both sides, and another neat factoid, from a Canadian friend of mine, chef Greg Couillard. He used to hang out at my house in Mexico sometimes and when we made sandwiches one day he said that with sandwich contents, put the lettuce and tomato on the side with the ketchup and mayo (think thousand island dressing on salad) and then, put the mustard side with the onion and pickle. Then you have two separate flavor sets enhancing the meat and cheese. Especially for burger assembly…he always butters and grills both sides of the interior buns, and then applies his same rule for the assembling the rest of the contents. Now I do it his way every time<:}

  50. Diane says:

    Butter… for meat sandwiches?? What? Why? Butter is for grilled cheese sandwiches. If I put jam in my sandwich, it gets PEANUT butter. Meat sandwiches get mayo or miracle whip. Usually on both pieces of bread. Tuna sandwiches don’t get extra mayo or miracle whip because they have enough in the mix (tuna, white goo, relish, often some dill and celery).

  51. JGL says:

    The weird part is that you put butter on a sandwich at all. That’s unnecessary and gross…..unless it’s grilled cheese.

  52. Lindy says:

    Morning Karen; well that cheap trick worked. You opened up a can o’ worms and everyone had to pile in and comment. Hmm, a can o’ worms on bread? I’m a strictly mustard on both sides person. Never butter. Never mayo (got e.coli 157 food poisoning from a salad made of mayo and random ‘bits’ in Moscow 22 years ago and have never looked at mayo with a kindly eye since). Maybe you butter on one side only as you know, deep down, that it’s too much. What if someone spread too thickly and you bit down into a layer of buttery goo? Tooth coating, palate clagging goo. A thin layer of hot mustard will give the kick your sandwich needs. Now, sermond over, back to my toast.

  53. Auntiepatch says:

    Grilled cheese with butter. All other sandwiches mayo on insides of top and bottom bread slices with meat, etc. inside. Although, my twin sister ate jelly and butter on all her sandwiches; bacon, jelly and butter, meatloaf, jelly and butter, roast beef, jelly and butter. I don’t know if she still does that. I’ll have to ask her!

  54. Judith says:

    Oh Karen. I love you but I can’t condone such an irresponsible lack of respect for that poor top piece of bread. Sitting there all dry and abandoned, having to face the disappointment and doubtless multiple curse words hurled at it by the person whose mouth now contains a parched, dry hunk of bread with no apparent link to the rest of the sandwich. Repent, woman, repent!!!

  55. catt says:

    Oh gosh. I am not a mayo person. I am a mustard person (both sides) or sometimes nothing…just sandwich filling. I think butter makes everything taste better so I can see putting butter on a sandwich. I don’t like the calories so rarely use it but I do love the stuff.

    I don’t think you are weird….the question is: Do you like the way your one-buttered-side sandwiches taste? If yes, carry on. Don’t let the pressure get to you, don’t be bullied. Butter one side and be proud.

  56. Bridgett Junkin says:

    But it won’t be equal if you don’t do both sides! Butter is a new concept for me. I’m going to try that. I usually do mayo- both sides. Maybe a squirt of brown mustard and/or horseradish sauce.

  57. Nicole says:

    OBVIOUSLY- mustard on the side of the bread touching the meat and mayonaise, salt and pepper on the side touching the tomato.

    Also- how do you know for sure about that whole triathalon thing???

  58. dannie says:

    But of course butter… especially on pb&j! I usually butter only one side…if I take it to go, both sides get buttered. It’s not a nice sandwich without butter! You’re not weird!

  59. Bwright says:

    Mustard, miracle whip, pickle relish maybe horseradish if I am feeling adventurous… no butter unless I am grilling my sandwich. Then it is the outside of both pieces.

  60. Renee McNiffe says:

    I’ve never buttered a sandwich in my whole life. I will use mayo, mustard, or ketchup if I’m making a fried egg sandwich. I put whatever spread I am using on both slices of bread.

    • Pam says:

      Hey, I just finished eating an egg sandwich with mayo & mustard (both slices) and a drizzle of ketchup! I always do the egg scrambled not fried. Delish!

  61. Miriam Mc Nally says:

    Butter on both pieces of bread; I didn’t know you could even make a sandwich with only 1 piece buttered!
    If I’m using mayo, I’d still butter both pieces of bread, but then I looove butter!

  62. Cat says:

    Butter being necessary to a sandwich is in the soul of every Canadian, Only one side is the Canadian version of healthy. My mother would butter the bread if she made a BLT or Tuna Salad. When we were little, she would make butter sandwiches with sprinkled sugar. You are not weird. Californians are weird – no butter ever.

    • Susan says:

      Hey! I remember those sandwiches! Thanks, that’s a childhood memory that had been forgotten. I think our butter is just better and that’s why we like it.

    • Karin Sorensen says:

      holy cow !!! the sugar sammich was part of my childhood too. that was the only treat/sweet i remember getting when i was real small.

  63. Andrea says:

    Okay Karen….I belong to your Templar of Toasts….however my Dad told me I make sandwiches wrong. I think him pretty much a sandwich expert as he was a teacher and took sandwiches pretty much his entire teaching career for lunch. We may be chefs…but he is my judge at the end of that creation who eats it. Anyways he said butter on both sides stops the bread from drying out and protects the bread from the soggy mess of a juicey tomato or greasy bacon piece. So even though I used to butter one side and mayo…mustard on the other side I now butter both. Even on a peanut butter sandwich! Try that combo…its delicious!

    • Penny says:

      I think your dad was absolutely right. I always butter both slices, using room temperature butter spread as thinly as possible RIGHT TO THE EDGE, to prevent soggy sarnies. My mum used to say ‘don’t SPREAD it, just scrape it on and scrape it off’. This way, there’s no unpleasant ‘claggy’ feeling to the bite.
      By the way, did you know there’s now a special sandwich tomato variety, called Intense I think, which has loads of flavour but very little juice? Until I can find or grow some, my cold sandwiches will be ‘properly’ buttered.
      I have to say, though, that I wouldn’t butter a bacon sandwich, unless it was my (in)famous smoked bacon, banana and peanut butter special . . .

  64. Leslie says:

    The ONLY time butter belongs on both slices of bread is a grilled cheese sandwich

  65. Kim says:

    I butter on one side but hubby likes butter on both (he doesn’t need to watch his weight). Balogna sandwiches are to die for! I am from down east (New Brunswick) and we eat it for breakfast too…fried with eggs! Yummm!
    You were right Karen!!!!!

  66. Kirsten says:

    Always butter on peanut butter and jam but both sides and spread very thick. Meat sandwiches I leave the butter off and go with mayo AND mustard!! I spread these two directly on meat though…not on bread.

  67. Thera says:

    Depends on the sandwich, but always both sides; either butter (for stuff that already has mayo ie egg salad), mayo, peanut butter etc

  68. whitequeen96 says:

    Here in California, my favorite things to use is “green butter,” also known as mashed avocado. Now THAT make a good sandwich!

  69. Rose says:

    Butter on one side only. In Germany I had a pretzel with 1/4 inch thick layer of butter and chives-yummy! Subaru is another word like triathlon, hard to spell.

  70. Chris White says:

    Butter on both sides because butter is the greatest thing since sliced bread… So it naturally should be the first thing on your sliced bread.

  71. Robyn says:

    I always used to butter both slices but the last 3 or so years I decided to cut back to only buttering one in the hopes of being healthy… less fat… yup.

  72. Sia says:

    Oh my… You can get us talking about ANYTHING!
    You’re good.

    • Karen says:

      LOL. It’s these stupid little things in life that we all have in common that get us talking. WHO doesn’t make sandwiches? I had no idea there were so many ideas about it and opinions though! ~ karen

  73. Lise Cameron says:

    I never butter my bread .Depending on whether I am using ham and processed meat then it is mustard on both pieces of bread. For tomato, tuna, salmon ,chicken and turkey then mayo on both sides and all the trimming that goes with it…The only time that I butter my bread is to make a grilled cheese sandwich. I put that orange shiny stuff on both pieces of bread and then slices tomato and put it in between the cheese with a little pepper and herbs…Delicious…So never, never butter on my bread as I feel that I would not taste it and that it makes holes in the bread…Have a great weekend..

  74. Lise Cameron says:

    Me again…I forgot to mention that I often use avocado instead of mayo..yummy and so good for you.

  75. danni says:

    wow, what a shitstorm you have unleashed!
    No butter in sandwiches, and then only one slice gets the mayo/mustard/crushed pepper spread.
    Butter for toast, and it must go under anything else on the toast, jam, honey, cinnamon sugar…
    When I was a kid we would put a thick layer of butter on Wonder Bread, a layer of sugar on that, fold it, smash it, and inhale it like we were headed to the electric chair. Oy! So politically incorrect now!!

    • Eileen says:

      My father used to devour those, butter and sugar sandwiches, I mean. He also developed diabetes so it’s off my list.

      • danni says:

        I’m pushing 60 (oh my god I don’t think I’ve ever put it that way before now!!! Gaaaah!)
        ummm… where was I… oh, yes, so many things from half a century ago are politically incorrect or unhealthy, unhealthy THESE days I mean. We only had 5 channels and 1 TV ruled by Dad, so spent all free time outside playing. Food was less tainted then, and Mom cooked all meals at home.
        One of the reasons I grow as much of my own food as possible.

    • audreys says:

      My grandma used to make us the white bread, butter, sugar crack bread!! Before bed! What the hell!?!? Great times!

  76. holly says:


    • Penny says:

      Have you seen the figure on that Canadian? Let her put butter on her sammidges, one side or even both, it doesn’t look to be doing her any harm.
      And if you want to see the best way to make grilled cheese sandwiches, watch how Johnny Depp makes ’em in Benny and Joon.
      Actually, if Mr Depp wants to come and make me a grilled cheese sandwich, he could spread it with hand cream and use old socks for bread.

  77. calliek says:

    Karen, I’m with you. Butter on one piece only. And who are these weirdos that use both mustard and mayo on the same sandwich? One or the other but both is just ew.

  78. mbaker says:

    It’s funny because to a lot of Americans this is such a Canadian thing. The fact is that this buttered meat sandwich business was the “thing to do” in the 50’s when my mom was growing up. She got used to it and tried to do it to me. As a result I associated ham with being slimy. So you only buttering one slice of bread are making a solid choice to limit both added fat and make a more pleasing texture.

  79. Eileen says:

    Mustard on ham, ranch dressing on turkey, either on both sides, onions on all. My father used to consume butter by the pound. I don’t use it on my sandwiches. I like the mustard or dressings. BTW, try arugula on turkey or anything. It’s to die for!!

  80. Susan says:

    A few things: Peanut butter is NOT butter, it’s just squished peanuts and oil. Real butter, especially PEI butter, has a taste that makes everything better, including peanut butter. I always pronounced triathlon correctly but when I read the first part of this blog, thought I was spelling it incorrectly. It will never be an automatic spelling any more; I’ll always have to think about it. Thanks, Karen.
    My mother was a butter person and my father preferred margarine. My mother buttered both sides and my father did the margarine side and the condiment side. But they were happily married almost 60 years so it wasn’t a deal breaker. Either would make sandwiches the way the other liked them.
    Having lost the joys of good bread or anything else with gluten, I’ve discovered a G/F baguette that becomes the ultimate sandwich bun when it’s broiled with olive oil. Brushed on both sides of course. I get my butter fix on toast. With peanut butter haha.

  81. Mike says:

    I enjoy slathering my bottom (slice) with butter’s thrice-removed cousin: peanut butter. Then comes the honey. The bare-naked top slice completes the sandwich.

    Boring or faulty sandwich architecture? I think not.

    The one-slice-coverage strategy is faster. Cleaner (e.g., grabbing bare bread). And, assuming a responsible amount of peanut butter is used, there are fewer calories.

    The latter makes me happy, as I can enjoy the calories missing from my sandwich in my beer. Which doesn’t require a discussion such as this.


  82. Karin says:

    Ok, that triathlon pronunciation got stuck in my gizzard so I had to look it up. Turns out according to Merriam Webster both pronunciations are acceptable. So tri-a-thu-lon away my friends!

  83. Suzanne R says:

    This is hilarious. How can there POSSIBLY be so many ways to make a sandwich.

  84. Suzanne Gregory says:

    I was taught that you use butter on both top and bottom when making sandwiches for consumption at some future point to keep the bread from getting soggy.

    Here is how I do mine, mayo on the bottom, then your tomato, lettuce, then cheese then meat, mustard on the top piece against the meat.

    Basically mustard always goes against the meat and mayo against the salad part of the sandwich.

  85. Betty says:

    I have ALWAYS buttered both sides.

    • Karen says:

      OMG!!!!! It’s BETTY!!! AFTER 6 YEARS MY MOTHER HAS LEFT HER FIRST COMMENT! And to defend her sandwich making abilities (which I’m pretty sure she’s lying about). ~ karen!

  86. Kelly says:

    I’m just happy you’re using butter and not margarine, Karen! Butter is THE best!

  87. Connie says:

    When I lived in Maryland I learned they ate sandwiches with butter on them and I was shocked! Being from the Midwest of the United States, I never heard of butter on sandwiches except on grilled cheese.

    In my house we never ate a sandwich without Miracle Whip, ever. Mayo…no way. Never use it, don’t trust it.

  88. audreys says:

    Butter on sandwiches? Ick. Mustard is totally acceptable, as is hummus. Mayo is questionable as hell.

    I also had a saboteur of a mother! Who knew pork chops could be so divine (when cooked properly)!!

  89. Cheryl says:

    I’m sorry to have to say this. I think anyone who puts butter on their sandwich bread is weird. I live in NE Illinois. I guess it’s a Midwest thing to never do this.

  90. Denise says:

    What’s with the butter haters. Butter on toast before the jam. Butter on a toasted tomato before the mayo. Butter on a sandwich. Always. Both sides. Eat ALL the butter. Ok so maybe because I grew up with gross soy margarine except when grandma came I now have it on as much as I can. She knew the good stuff.

  91. Teddee Grace says:

    I thought you buttered the bread to keep the bread from getting soggy, so it makes sense to butter the sides of both pieces of bread that might come in contact with the ingredients…think tea sandwiches.

  92. Cindy says:

    So Karen, as I was reading your post my mind was picturing the act of buttering as a general description one would perform with, well, butter but also jam, mayo, mustard, and cement. “Spread” could have been used…you just chose butter is what I thought. But as I read some replys I quickly realized…you meant actual butter. On a meat sammie no less. Not something we do where I live in beef lovin’ Oklahoma. But I’ll give it a try.
    Let me throw this into the ring….your sammie will taste different depending on how you stack your layers. My parents owned a sub and pizza restaurant for years in New Mexico and were very serious about how the subs were layered. They must have had the rigbt combo because their little restaurant would gross $400k+ in a town of 30k population. He did the same thing when he owned Sonic Drive-In franchises. I wish I could tell you the secret but I was always too busy stuffing my face to ask.

    • Karen says:

      Well that’s no help at all to me then is it??! ~ karen

      • Cindy says:

        No…no it’s not. Ha! My parents are both gone now so I doubt I’ll find my way back to Hobbs, New Mexico to see if the new owners paid attention and didn’t jack with a sure bet. As an experiment with your next sammie make it your usual way, take a bite or two, then turn it upside down and take a bite or two.

  93. Leisa says:

    I’m with you – butter on one side only!

  94. JebberJay says:

    If butter … one side.
    If mayo … one side.
    If mustard … no sides. blech.
    If bologna … fried.
    Triathlon … Yah!
    And “supposedly” is not pronounced “Supposebly”.

  95. Ruth says:

    I don’t use butter or margarine, but I could see how it would be necessary if you’re travelling with a sandwich to prevent the tomato, etc. from making the bread soggy.

    Back in the day, when I used butter, it was never in a sandwich situation… butter one slice, eat one slice, butter one slice, eat one slice… (I’m sure you get the idea) I do the same with most spreads.

    (‘Weirdo’ that I am, I eat my crackers as ‘singles’ with every spread imaginable too)

  96. Wendy says:

    Okay. I don’t usually make my own sandwiches, but I make them for my kids’ lunches all the time. I put Mayo on one slice, honey mustard on the other slice. I think I put the Mayo slice on top. There is always meat of some sort, cheese on Thing 2’s Sandwich, and lettuce on both sandwiches, if I have lettuce. I think I always have the meat touching the mustard.
    I make myself open faced sandwiches: toast, nut butter, apple butter. Less loaded.
    Have a good weekend. W.

  97. carla gruszecki says:

    I just thought all Canadain kids, who grew up in the 60’s and 70’s ALWAYS buttered both sides of the bread with Margerine (or “Marg” if your my mother and MargerEEN if you are my mother in law)
    If you buttered your bread with butter you were a) rich or b) one of those hippies who wore denim jumpers and hugged trees.

  98. Marta says:

    Nice beeswax wrap! Bet you made that yo’self.

  99. Catherine Vosper says:

    Butter both sides, lots of butter!

  100. Elizabeth says:

    I’ll do you one better – I don’t butter either slice. I didn’t even know this was a thing.

  101. Anna Starner says:

    I guess I just like to complicate things. I use butter (just a little) on both sides on some sandwiches and mayo on BLT one side, butter on the other. Dry bread for any of the ham, egg, tuna salad type sandwiches. Butter for grilled cheese and after it is all warm and melted I pull it apart and add mustard(do not grill with mustard on). Yuck! No butter on PB&J unless it is on toast, MUST have butter on toast. I prefer mine toasted. I also love peanut butter and sliced banana on a wrap. When you say sugar on toast or bread do you mean cinnamon and sugar? Love toast with butter, cinnamon and sugar. What a smorgasbord of ways to make a little old sandwich. To think we just spent all this time thinking about how to instead of just going and making one.

    Hope everyone has a great sandwich for lunch made your favorite way!

  102. Laurie says:

    No butter. No condiments whatsoever. Now that’s weird and I know it.

  103. Karen says:

    Butter?! What? I have NEVER heard of such a thing. Unless, of course, you are making a grilled cheese. Then butter galore!

  104. Sharon Whiting says:

    You butter both pieces of bread in order to keep your sandwich from getting soggy in your packed lunch. Nothing worse than opening your lunch to find that the bread is soggy from the tomato slice, lettuce, or wet condiments like mustard or mayo.
    If your sandwich is for immediate consumption you don’t need butter at all.
    At least that’s the way it works in my house.

  105. Ruth says:

    I know many people who do NOT butter their sandwiches. I am not one of them. I butter both top and bottom slices lightly to prevent soggy bread. Mayo is one of the culprits that make it soggy btw

  106. Allison says:

    We don’t use butter on any sandwiches unless we are making a grilled cheese. In that case, we melt the butter in the pan to keep from tearing up the bread.

    A PB&J has only PB&J on it, PB on one side and J on the other.

    Any other sandwich with condiments like mayo, mustard, or bbq sauce (yes, I’m Texan) usually just has the condiment on one piece of bread. If multiple condiments are used, then one goes on one slice and the other goes on another.

    Best sandwich ever: Grilled cheese with bacon and candied jalapenos.
    2nd best sandwich ever: Turkey, brie and raspberry or strawberry jam.

  107. Robin says:

    No butter for me! Mustard, all varieties are acceptable. Rarely Mayo, but if I do, it has to be Hellman’s. None of that Miracle Whip s***! My mother always buttered our sandwiches until I was old enough to say “hey, stop putting butter on my sandwiches, it’s gross!” I have always been a mustard girl even going to the extreme, for a short period of time in my adolescent years, of mustard only on my bread. Sounds horrible to me now, but I liked it then. I have even converted my man to being a “mustard guy.” His parents did not even have mustard in their condiment selection until I started asking for it on “hamburger night” ….that’s when I converted him! 33 years now he has enjoyed butter-less, mustard enhanced sandwiches (and burgers). Butter does though belong on a toasted bagel, homemade biscuit or fresh out the oven bread! YUM!!!

  108. Rebecca says:

    I don’t put butter on my sandwiches but I do only put whatever condiment (mayo, hummus, mustard, etc.) I use on one piece of bread.

  109. Cynna says:

    Freshly cured ham, butter on one side, Dijon mustard on the other, between warm French bread. Heaven….

  110. Gretchen Sexton says:

    Prepare yourself: I don’t butter bread on sandwiches. Ever. Never have. I have used spreads, hummus, mustard, and pesto. But no butter. No one in my house does either. And my mom didn’t. Don’t get me wrong–I’ve had sandwiches with butter and I like them fine. It’s just not what I do. I guess that makes us weird. But I’m OK with that. BTW–your sandwiches look delectable.

  111. Allie says:

    I lightly butter the top, but make the sandwich upside down and flip it over when I’m done. Ie: bread, butter, cheese, tomato, lettuce, meat, bread, flip.
    I also eat bologna sandwiches with ketchup, so I’m pretty sure mum went wrong with me somewhere.

  112. Sonja says:

    I’m totally with the “BUTTER????!!!????” crowd.

  113. Eileen says:

    um…only one slice of bread for open-face sandwiches, problem solved! The condiment(s) depends on the “content.”

  114. Ronda says:

    I, too, only butter the bottom side just below the mustard. Then pile on the meat, and cheese. The veggies go on top of that, just below the “mayoed” (made that word up, but YOU know what I mean) top piece of bread with NO butter. I don’t know where you got your information, Karen, but I truly believe YOU have been doing it CORRECTLY your entire life. ‘Cause I KNOW I HAVE! LOL! But then, I’m form the states. BTW, I absolutely LOVE your blog!!! The only one I follow.

  115. Patty says:

    Yes, butter on only the bottom as that is the starting point, and then you build up the layers. And I thought it may be butter on everything because my dad grew up on a dairy farm so butter was readily available always. He was Irish and even put butter on corned beef sandwiches. Mustard was only used as an ingredient in say potato salad or deviled egg filling or to glaze a ham with brown sugar. And mayo was only to be used in tuna salad or egg salad. Funny. I didn’t know there was a “right” way to make a sandwich. Love your blog! Great minds think alike. 🙂

  116. Other Karen says:

    Yep .. I have ALWAYS made sandwiches this way, and have always thought it was weird that not everyone did it! Butter bottom, butter top, and then start layering in the fillings, condiments, etc. Butter makes EVERYTHING better! (And yes, I’m a Canadian who grew up in the 60’s!)

  117. Barb says:

    The only time I butter the bread is when making grilled cheese…and then the buttered sides go on the “outside”! Each to their own but I might just try making a sandwich your way. You made me curious!

  118. Shannon says:

    Dad always buttered the jam side of his pb&j. My sister and I just knew he was crazy even at a young age. But as a barrier! Now that is sensible. I’ve never considered it. Also, no second “a” in triathlon? I’ve learned two things before my first cup of coffee. Thanks for helping me avoid dripping jam disaster while holding a misspelled sign cheering on crazy people.

  119. Kris says:

    I am now going to have to try buttering my sandwiches. I’m from Louisiana, and the only condiments I’ve ever added to a savory sandwich is mustard, mayonnaise or “salad dressing” (I don’t know why it’s called that, it looks exactly like mayo, and I would never put it on a salad,) and ketchup (for hot dogs in a sandwich, when I’ve forgotten to buy hot dog buns.)

    I mean, I used to butter grilled cheese sandwiches in order to grill them, until I got wise and started using croissants – which helps me skip the butter step since they are naturally very buttery.

  120. Michelle H says:

    Married a Brit and discovered that they don’t do the mayo thing like Americans. They start with buttering both slices and put a small amount of meat/cheese. Their sandwiches are very small compared to our dagwood ones. Visiting family over the pond, discovered how delicious a sandwich with both slices buttered and only some good sharp grated cheese in it, yum!

  121. Agnes says:

    Karen, I grew up eating “sandwiches” made from un-toasted white hotdog buns with only honey and butter inside. Now how weird is that?

    Now that I’m a grown-up sandwich-maker I will go the Hellman’s Mayo route, and yes, I slather up both pieces of bread.

    My weird sandwich days are behind me.

  122. Sondra says:

    What a chuckle to read….differences, or tastes, that make the world go round! Toast or sandwich who cares what is supposed to go on it! Slather on whatever you like and munch down! I happen to like Chipotle Mayo with most everything, except with my jam of course, but will butter slices of bread for a turkey sandwich with lettuce/sprouts and lots of salt/pepper and a big glass of buttermilk. Now that’s yummy!

  123. Mary W says:

    Born and raised in Wisconsin the dairy state. BUTTER on both sides. Butter on my hot dog, not mustard. Butter on my hamburger not all that gloopy mayo, katsup, mustar. Butter on my fresh baked bread or store bought toasted. It just tastes so good. Found out Shoney’s makes a butterburger which is wonderful. Butter in my oatmeal. Butter on toasted pound cake. Butter makes anything better. Everyone asks what I want on my hot dog but can’t supply butter since fast food places don’t have any on hand! BOTH sides? YES, always! But I probably weigh double Karen, also.

  124. Ellen says:

    Canadian here. Buttering depends on the kind of sandwich, taste preferences, and if it has to be taken with you & eaten later. A peanut butter & anything sandwich does not need butter. A jam sandwich must have it on both slices. A cheese sandwich needs lots of butter, on both slices. Anything you are eating right away can be buttered or not on as many sides as you like. All a matter of taste. Anything taken with you needs butter.
    You are different Karen, but that’s part of our proud Canadian mosaic.

    Mayo is ok on some sandwiches, like summer tomato ones.
    Try 2 buttered slices of bread with fresh pepper slices, or cukes, or radishes, and S&P of course. Not mayo. It’s Americans who are weird, not us good ole Canucks!

  125. Jenny Brandon says:

    Sweetheart, buttering a sandwich on the inside is weird. You butter the outside when you grill it, otherwise no butter – mayo, mustard yes. butter no


  126. I wonder if how we make our sandwiches comes more from how our mom’s did it than it does where we live? I live in northern MN and my mom always buttered both slices of bread. I think she must have been a dairy farmer in a past life since she throws sticks of butter into everything she cooks.
    I, on the other hand, use it very sparingly. PB&J…no butter. Any sandwich that will have mayo or mustard or another kind of condiment…no butter and usually just the top slice of bread will have it. Unless it is a salami or Bologna sandwich…then each slice of bread gets butter and usually nothing else. For me it is a matter of “wasted calories” if you are going to have something on your sandwich that will overtake the taste of the butter!
    Speaking of butter, do you leave yours out or do you always refrigerate it? I always leave mine out (1 stick in a covered butter dish) because my mom always left her’s out!

  127. Suzanne says:

    Only one side is plenty butter! The other side is mustard and mayo. My only rule is that any green ( lettuce, watercress, arugula etc is on the side of the mustard mayo)

  128. jainegayer says:

    Butter??? Mayo or mustard, or Miracle Whip- both sides.

  129. Jennie Lee says:

    I hate to sound dictatorial, but…I never butter a sandwich. Even with grilled cheese, the butter goes in the pan, not inside the sandwich. I don’t like mayo. People ask if my sandwich isn’t too dry without mayo. No. That’s what tomato is for. Mustard should be so spicy it gives you that funny sensation in your nose. Pickles must be crunchy garlic dills. And the triathlon thing; it’s just like athlete or athletic. It’s not athalete or athaletic. As for the dictionary accepting triathalon; it’s just another example of them dumbing down the language. (This is NOT meant as an insult.) I’ll be 63 on Monday, and bit by bit, through my life, I’ve seen the authorities on the English language give ground over and over to those who just refuse to follow the rules. It’s like, once a certain percentage of the population misspells or mispronounces or misuses a word, they throw up their hands, and say, “Oh, all right then! Have it your way!” I feel like the changes usually make our language less rich; less beautiful. It makes me sad.

    • Dana DeLarme says:

      Oh how scandalized the responses to buttered bread sandwiches! Butter is a creamy rich barrier that protects the bread from becoming soggy. Although I didn’t grow up with buttered bread sandwiches, I have read about it in a peripheral way. Characters in books gathering for English tea with cucumber and butter sandwiches, crust cut away for a more canape-like, high-brow offering.
      This in no way indicates that I partook in such rituals; having been raised on Velveeta and Miracle Whip or Brunswick liver “pate” and Miracle Whip sandwiches. So I’m not flaunting a discerning palate, just a precedent for the buttered bread mavericks. Unsurprisingly, I enjoy odd sandwiches now; grilled cheese with a slather of strawberry preserves, tuna buttwiches, (chewy French loaf ends hollowed out and filled with tuna or chicken salad), cold spaghetti mixed with vinaigrette on bread…, you get the picture.
      Although I’ve cut most ties with my modest Miracle Whip upbringing, I still like a teaspoon in mayonnaise based salads to cut the monotony of the mayo.

    • Dana DeLarme says:

      But natheles, 20 whyl I have tyme and space, 35
      Er that I ferther in this tale pace, 21
      Me thinketh it acordaunt to resoun,
      To telle yew al the condicioun 22
      Of ech of hem, so as it semed me,
      And whiche 23 they weren, and of what degree; 40
      And eek in what array that they were inne:

      Language is a fluid, dynamic, and slippery thing. I understand clinging to iron-clad rules that were drilled into us by teachers and English texts. But language is intended as a communication tool that is, of course, a construct of myriad cultures, societal tastes, technological advances, and every young generational groups’ desire to roll new phrases off their tongues to confound their parents and elders.
      So stop feeling sad. Language has never been an immutable, pristine law. Word:)

  130. Linda says:

    Butter both sides, of course. Never margarine.

  131. I used to butter and only one side but I’m of the mayo and mustard elite now, both sides, however, I could switch hit if the world needed saving.

  132. tracij says:

    Chiming in to say I only put butter on a grilled sandwich. I am terribly un-American (or so I’m told) because I do not like peanut butter. When I was a kid, I did eat butter and jam sandwiches because my mom thought there was something wrong with only jam on bread as a sandwich. I haven’t eaten those since I was little though. I also don’t like mayo. I use mustard, preferably something fancy like spicy brown or dijon. I also love a good horseradish sauce. I always squirt the mustard or horseradish sauce on one side of the bread in a spiral pattern then pat the two slices of bread together so that it’s even on both sides. Then I take them apart and add the toppings. Maybe I’m the weird one…

  133. Cristine says:

    Hoo boy. I have never used butter. But, I know people
    who do and have seen butter on both sides and
    single sides. imho. All are good!

  134. Patty says:

    Life is too short…butter both sides! Yum! Butter! I grew up with butter on both sides. Yea, California!

  135. nancy says:

    Never have I buttered bread for a sandwich. Weird. My MIL always buttered both sides. But she’s a Betty Crocker aficionado so I always blamed it on that. You know, white bread and plastic cheese. My family was a homemade whole wheat, home ground peanut butter, cheddar with red wax on it type. You have no idea how strange this was in the Deep South in the early 60s. Oh, how I suffered. My most secret and delicious treat as a kid was a piece of that soft white store bought bread spread thickly with margarine and sprinkled heavily with white sugar. If you could get away with it, you would let it sit for an hour and the sugar would melt sortof into the margarine and get a little crust. De-Vine!

  136. Jody says:

    I’m gob-smacked at the variety of responses but mostly surprised people don’t put butter on a sandwich at all. I butter both top and bottom and if extras like mustard or mayo are needed they go in the middle squished between the other layers of the sandwich.

  137. Cathy says:

    Another TAODS fan in the no-butter camp. Catsup for meatloaf, mustard/mayo for most everything else .

  138. Cred says:

    Yes, butter both sides is how I learned to do it; and others I’ve see make sandwiches since I’ve never seen anyone butter just one. And I assumed that those who don’t butter are watching calories. Didn’t know there was a Canadian style and an American style.

  139. Cred says:

    Funny the things you never think about but now start questioning. Did a quick google search, and while I’m not sure how reliable popsugar is for historical research, the topic of buttering sandwich is discussed here
    It suggests that it was an early American/British thing perhaps useful to hold the bread of the day together, as it was far more crumbly. The taste for butter on sammies likely remained after bread improved. Makes me wonder if the popularity of margarine (bleeech) is the reason that buttering sandwiches went out of fashion.

  140. Teresa Jennings Richardson says:

    I only butter the bread if I’m making a grill cheese sandwich in my cast iron skillet. I butter the bottom of the bottom piece of bread so that the butter side goes into the hot skillet, put on the cheese, then the top slice of bread and butter the outside top of it while the bottom slice is toasting and melting the cheese. I flip the sandwich once the bottom is perfectly browned and let the top toast. Serve with a dill pickle spear or bowl of tomato soup or homemade beef and veggie soup. Sounds so good I might do this for supper tonight.

  141. Tara says:

    Regular smear of butter or mayo on the bottom bread and then a very light smear of butter or mayo on the top piece here.

  142. cindy says:

    I’m laughing at all the replies. No butter here unless on a Peanut Butter sandwich, one side only. Otherwise, it’s mayo or mustard on one slice. Grew up on US side of Lake Erie.

  143. Lesley says:

    In UK I’m pretty darned sure we butter both sides (unless on a diet). If we want mayo, that goes on top of the butter. Both sides with the butter, top side with the mayo .

  144. Heather says:

    I’m beginning to think I’m weird for buttering both pieces of bread, but then I’m English so I’m probably regarded as weird anyway, even though we invented them. Well, Lord Sandwich did. Actually I’m northern English, so we don’t call them sandwiches, we called them butties. You can’t technically have a buttie without butter. Am I rambling? I’m rambling aren’t I?

  145. Joe says:

    I can’t believe how much time I am spending reading this discussion on butter on a sandwich. lol

    I was taught to butter both sides. I figured it was to keep the sandwich symmetrical (even though what was in between was not).

    Everything has changed now. I have to go re-think my life…

  146. Rhonda "Smartypants" Davis says:

    Wow. Halfway through the comments, I considered tallying the “yays” and “nays” and then decided to do something more valuable with my time. Which is really saying a lot since I’m recovering from very recent knee surgery and restricted to supervised movement only.

    You know that I love ya, Karen, even though you post some ‘off the wall’ topics. Also, I seldom comment negatively because I’m freakin’ in awe of you. So, I’m using my Mother as a scapegoat — ha!

    Mom will unhesitatingly correct anyone about anything because, well, she’s ALWAYS right – she’s also 95 years old and every additional year past her 90th has made her a ‘confirmed’ authority on anything. Who confirmed her? She did, of course! What a silly question!

    So, here’s the truth on your question: butter on both pieces of ‘finger’ or ‘tea’ sandwiches, because they are made ahead and refrigerated for hours and they cannot dry out before the event; butter very thinly spread on both inner slices of PB&J’s; butter is allowed on sammiches to be grilled, but no butter on any other types. She claimed her Grilled PB, Bacon & Sliced Red Onion the Best

    May God bless her pointy little heart! Love ya, Karen

    • Debbe Van Ness says:

      Buttered PB and J? Grilled? So is the outside of the bread grilled? Never heard of either. Not knocking it, sounds yummy, if the butter is on the outside and it’s grilled. As a kid I had a friend whose mom made grilled jelly sandwiches, it was a slice of heaven.

  147. Ev Wilcox says:

    You may be rounded up by an elite bunch of sandwich makers, but it won’t be the happy event you think it will! Not buttering both slices is like a crime in the making! I would have trouble with how I viewed their supposed “chef” skills. A sandwich must be treated with due respect, not just the bottom bread, but BOTH breads! Harrumpf! Well I never, etc.! You can still be a chef if you really must be. It’s OK….

  148. Jane C. says:

    I’m Canadian and I put butter on both slices of bread. Then mayo or mustard, depending on the sandwich.

  149. tiffany says:

    Being a Brit I have always buttered both sides of any sarnie, but still add mustard (or chutney) to the meat, salt and pepper to the tomato and mayo (whatever you call it, Miracle Whip is a brand name) on the salad part. I had never met any one who didn’t until I watched my husband make his sandwich with butter on only the bottom slice. What a crazy world we live in, and how different we are, but we all have one thing in common…we love Karen, who can make us laugh and cry in the same post.

  150. Becky says:

    No butter
    Butter is for toast.

    Mayo only for me. Mayo and mustard for the hubby.

  151. Laura Bee says:

    Butter on both sides. Be it ham & cheese with an inch of crunchy lettuce, peanut butter with or without sliced banana or …well, those are my two favourites so we’ll leave it at that.
    Unless I am trying to be ‘healthy’, then I’ll not put mayo or Miracle Whip & butter together – just one on each slice. But usually I double up. And I usually use marg. Butter is for popcorn.

  152. Terri says:

    Hi! So I’m fairly new to your site, and not usually a commenter, but I felt the need to weigh in here. Butter, always. Both sides. Any bread or bread like substance (except wrap sandwiches because there’s really no little crevices to sink the butter in to). Butter is the base that brings all of the fillings and condiments of a sandwich together. Fresh baked bread with melty butter. Soda crackers with butter around a slice of cheddar. Triscuits scraped across the block to make a little creamy golden curl. Cold butter on warm bran muffins. Grilled cheese gets butter on both insides and then spread on the outsides before going into a medium hot pan for a long slow warming until evenly golden. Tuna salad (with mayo, celery, onion, s&p and a little lemon) between buttered toast slices. Butter on toast to give the jam/Nutella/tomato/cheese/cinnamon/roasted garlic/ some subtly salty love. Hot buttered toast dipped in hot chocolate. Oh, and as for bologna sandwiches, it’s a thick slice of fresh baked bread, buttered, then bologna, havarti cheese slice, tomato slices with lots of salt and fresh ground pepper, nice thick slices of bite-you-back garlicky dill pickles, then mayo and butter on the top slice (mayo and pickles must touch). *sigh* hhmmmmmmm… 🙂

  153. Debbe Van Ness says:

    Whoa! I never butter either side of my sandwich, ever. I butter bagels, toast, waffles, pancakes, never a sandwich. This must be a UK thing. I use mayonnaise, mustard, etc. I had a boss once from Scotland who made white bread, butter and french fry sandwiches and I think she buttered both sides of her bread, but I was so incredulous about that whole sandwich I never paid attention. BTW, I’m from the west coast of the US, does that have anything to do with it?

  154. Robert says:

    Karen, How come you didn’t ask this around the time you where told about the true pays?
    I personally never use butter on bread unless it has just been toasted or is still hot enough to melt the butter by itself, if its a ham and cheese sandwich absolutely no condiments and unheated, chicken or fried fish with a slight layer of mayo on both sides and nothing else, beef in any form only in tacos (soft and warm tortillas as it can only be) and boiled pork shoulder only with yellow mustard and a little bit of salt.
    And then there are all the other sandwiches with sweet fillings which also don’t have butter on them but I’m not gonna get into details in here, although I do feel the need o say that I only consider it a sandwich if it’s made with 2 or more slices of bread without crust on the two biggest surfaces of each slice, so a Panini is not really a sandwich, a Sub is not a sandwich, a Wrap is not a sandwich and a Burger it’s also not a sandwich since all of them call for a specific kind of bread although all of them can obviously become a sandwich if made with sliced bread.

  155. Dana says:

    I’m a Midwesterner. No butter. Growing up we had an elderly neighbor lady that would butter her sammiches, as she called them. She would also drink coffee with pizza and hamburgers and eat smashed canned pea sammiches on buttered bread.

  156. Kimberly says:

    I don’t have an issue with using butter – but am I the only one that noticed her use of marshmallows in the sandwich? Karen – that is one heck of a flavor combination! LOL

  157. Maria says:

    Karen and ‘only-bottom-piece-of-bread-butterers’. Ye-gads folks! What if, just what if that sandwich gets flipped upside down (mild earthquake, playful kitty) and now the bottom piece of bread has NO BUTTER! Your sandwich is ruined I tell you! For me, mayo and mustard, both pieces so in the event of a mild ‘cat’astropic event, the perfect sandwich will still be a perfect culinary delight.

  158. Tim Hallewell says:

    My uncle Frank used to say. Great bloody lashings of cold butter so thick it would come out the other side…..then add some marmite.

  159. Marilynn says:

    Whoa! Who would have thought this topic would generate so much conversation! I don’t typically use butter on a sandwich unless it’s ham. Butter, mustard and ham on some kind of crusty roll. All other meat sandwiches require mayo and/or mustard. Good mayo and mustard! I also agree with the writer who states mayo on the lettuce and tomato side and mustard on the meat side. If it’s just one condiment then both sides get a spread. I think putting butter on sandwiches may be a northern North America thing. My cousins in Michigan put butter on sandwiches and they also like bologna…..with ketchup.?

  160. Benjamin says:

    Here’s a weird one I learned from my mom. Butter first both pieces of bread then mayo on top of the butter all the stuff inside and of course sandwich it together. I always thought that was extra crazy but she says the butter before the mayo keeps the bread from getting soggy… lol. That’s how she still does it to this day. I on the other hand like the mayo to sink into the bread some, so only may for me no butter. And yes I mayo both sides.

  161. Evalyn says:

    I butter both slices. I credit my mother, she from whom all cookery wisdom flows. She was a depression era child from a large family and loves to tell the story of how their school box lunch was often only bread, spread with lard. So, my belief is that when she finally got to use butter, she used it with delight. Fresh butter, right off the cow, probably churned by her or one of her seven sisters. You can see how it could happen.

  162. Dana says:

    Hubby of 21 years and I still argue over what a grilled cheese is– I say it’s 2 slices of bread with cheese in the middle, fryed in butter. He says it’s a slice of bread with mayo and cheese ( no top slice of bread), and melt the cheese under the broiler. I call that ” melted cheese on toast!”

  163. Connie says:

    Talking about bologna sandwiches made me think of another childhood favorite that I wouldn’t touch now that I know better. Klik – anyone else eat that as a child? We used to make Klik sandwiches on white bread with mayo and fresh leaf lettuce from the garden. A summer staple when I was a child. Also Klik mashed up with green relish, spread on a half of a big crusty roll, sprinkled with grated cheddar, and put under the broiler until the cheese melted. I can’t even stand to open a can of the stuff now. (Klik is sort of like Spam)
    Btw all of the above mentioned sandwiches had butter – on both sides!
    Klik was also often served fried like bologna.

  164. Leslie Zuroski says:

    Wow, lots of opinions! I like to mix it up, sometimes butter on one side, sometimes on two, sometimes on one side with mustard or Miracle Whip or low fat mayo on the other. Those are some beautiful sandwich photos but the way, inspirational for next week’s lunches!

  165. Sheri says:

    I like condiments on both pieces of bread (butter with ham – yum) but in the interest of saving calories, I only do one side most of the time.

  166. Denise says:

    My fav sandwiches are pb and jam, or cream cheese and green olives on rye bread, no butter on either one. The only thing that gets buttered is garlic bread or freshly baked bread , still hot!

    Karen, you have been out buttered!

  167. Daphne says:

    I butter one side. My boyfriend butters both and takes that very serious. If he makes me a sandwich he very obviously butters both sides too. We like stuff like hagelslag (it’s like chocolate sprinkles) on our sandwich. You don’t want to combine chocolate with mustard or mayo. How about the famous peanut butter and jelly sandwiches? That’s a sandwich too right? And if you don’t use butter the peanut butter will stick to every corner of you mouth.

  168. Elen G says:

    The only sandwich I put butter on is a grilled sandwich or a tomato sandwich on toast. Other than that, I’m pretty much a Dijon girl or a Dijon/mayo combo girl. And it only goes on one slice of the bread. Yeah. That’s pretty much my sandwich-making wizardry. And I like my bologna (on the rare occasions I have it) on crackers…. like my mama taught me. 😀

  169. Jennifer says:

    So, I think we need to get down to the reason some people think butter is totally acceptable while others seem to think it’s just plain crazy. I know that my aunt, who was raised by a woman born in the mid-West in 1910 thinks butter is fine. And I’m told my great grandmother, also born in the early part of the last century and essentially in the middle of the US, put butter on her sandwiches. I think it was a generational/locale thing and got carried on by some families. Not sure why it continued through generations with certain families or even family members and not others, but I bet there is a reason or reasons that could be explained.

  170. kari says:

    No butter needed unless it’s a grilled cheese. Here in the southern U.S., Duke’s mayonnaise is the preferred southern condiment….. try to use another brand and someone will cut you. No joke. People do not mess about regarding THE mayo of the south! It would be sacrilege!

  171. Paula says:

    Growing up in North Dakota, nearly Canada really, we always buttered both pieces of bread. One of my best food memories was the buttered turkey sandwiches at the VFW on Memorial Day. They were the best. I married an Alabama boy and he had never eaten a buttered sandwich and didn’t intend to start so I switched to mayo. Now after 46 years together we are retired and he makes most of his own sandwiches so he used only mayo. If I’m packing lunch for a road trip or picnic I butter both because it seals the filing a bit. I don’t use butter much at home unless it’s a grilled sandwich because I sure don’t need all those butter calories.

  172. Dana DeLarme says:

    Oh how scandalized the responses to buttered bread sandwiches! Butter is a creamy rich barrier that protects the bread from becoming soggy. Although I didn’t grow up with buttered bread sandwiches, I have read about it in a peripheral way. Characters in books gathering for English tea with cucumber and butter sandwiches, crust cut away for a more canape-like, high-brow offering.
    This in no way indicates that I partook in such rituals; having been raised on Velveeta and Miracle Whip or Brunswick liver “pate” and Miracle Whip sandwiches. So I’m not flaunting a discerning palate, just a precedent for the buttered bread mavericks. Unsurprisingly, I enjoy odd sandwiches now; grilled cheese with a slather of strawberry preserves, tuna buttwiches, (chewy French loaf ends hollowed out and filled with tuna or chicken salad), cold spaghetti mixed with vinaigrette on bread…, you get the picture.
    Although I’ve cut most ties with my modest Miracle Whip upbringing, I still like a teaspoon in mayonnaise based salads to cut the monotony of the mayo.

  173. Bonnie says:

    I just had this discussion with my Mom. She is the only person I know who puts butter on a sandwich! It must be a British thing (my mother’s mother’s side was British). I usually put mustard or horseradish sauce on sandwiches. No butter.

  174. I butter both sides but if it makes you feel any better I only put mayo on one side, the top usually 🙂

  175. Amanda says:

    I don’t butter bread for sandwiches…at all. I butter bread to toast it and eat as toast, or if I’m making a grilled cheese but no other sandwich requires butter. My favorite sandwich goes bread, mustard, spinach, turkey, cheese, honeycrisp apple, bread. No butter. Ew.

  176. Kristi S. says:

    I think you are totally overlooking the potential sandwich options by using butter. You have your regular sandwich fixings, like mayo and mustard, but don’t hesitate to try guacamole, pesto, humus, red pepper puree, cream cheese, etc. Anything spreadable and delicious should go on the bread in your sandwich, and yes, both slices are good options.

  177. Meg says:

    and commence the Butter Battle Book… I’m a US citizen and I don’t think I’ve buttered sandwiches much. This obviously means I have to go try it. I don’t think anyone is wrong. Especially if it means eating more butter.

    But TBH I’m more amazed at Triathlon. Feelin perty dumb down here.

  178. Roisin says:

    I just stuff the food between two pieces of bread and eat. No spreading of anything. At all.

  179. Nancy says:

    No butter! Mayo on the top slice, just scraped across the bread – I hate it blobby and oozing out the sides.

  180. Yes! Butter. Lots of butter. And only on one side! The mayo or mustard or jelly go on the other side. Always. LOL!

  181. Amy in KC says:

    Like many others, I only put butter on sandwiches if the bread is toasted (and not always then, either—depends on the sandwich). I used to only put condiments on the TOP piece of bread, but now I more often put it on both pieces so the sandwich doesn’t get dry. I’m usually both a mayo/mustard kind of gal, so I spread on the mayo, then squirt the mustard on top of that. The mustard gets spread out somewhat when the piece of bread gets pressed on the rest of the sandwich.

  182. Yes, I only butter one slice of bread, and that is because I only use one slice of bread. So that makes me stranger still. How can I even call it a sandwich?
    But I do.

  183. Carlene says:

    I’m laughing at all of us US-side-of-the-border Americans saying, “Butter? Really?” (I’m one of them, for the record). Love learning new food facts, especially ones with a Canadian flavor (or should I say, “flavour”) 🙂

  184. Janelle says:

    This calls for a blind taste test.

  185. janpartist says:

    Condiment on one slice, sandwich ingredients and a different condiment on the top slice. That would be for instance mayo and grainy mustard, grainy mustard and dijon mustard, the combinations are endless.

  186. Marla Swartz says:

    Never heard of butter on a sandwich. I can’t imagine it….. I had to read your article, who can pass up someone saying they make their sandwiches wrong and it starts out saying the put butter on it. Yes, you have been making your sandwiches totally wrong if you put butter on it. Yes. And I’m from Michigan and come from a Canadian family and NONE of us ever do that.

  187. Robin says:

    You are weird! The only reason not to butter both sides of the bread is to reduce fat and calories by one pat of butter. Butter on both slices. Miracle Whip not mayo (mayo is gross – nice aioli sauce base, but gross alone), and mustard on one slice, stack as you describe (good sounding sammiches!) and enjoy with crispy dill pickle or side of choice.

  188. Robin says:

    PS – I have never heard of or seen a sandwich without butter on it, unless we had no butter – like on the fourth day of camping or something. Murricans are odd. This is because they sent the BEEF ranchers out first and the settlers with dairy cows out decades later. All those poor cowboys eating dry, dusty, roast beef sandwiches dreaming of fresh churned butter on that lovely baked bread.

  189. Jess says:

    I rarely butter my sandwiches. I do, like many of you use mayo or mustard. Cream cheese, aioli or hummus is great too!!

  190. Tiffany G says:

    I didnt have time to read all the comments – but from what I saw – no one mentioned the merits of fried bologna sandwiches! You have to cut little slits in the bologna so the air can escape & it doesn’t curl up on you. Fry it – in butter – until its smokey & charred, then slap it between 2 pieces of toast with a healthy squirt of mustard. Bliss!

  191. Kathy says:

    I’m Canadian and never use butter unless it is grilled cheese! Mayo and mustard, one on each piece of bread, depending on the sandwich. That’s it!

  192. Sarah Jackson says:

    Butter ONLY IF the bread, bagel, English muffin is toasted & on both sides. Otherwise your preference of Hellmans mayonnaise, mustard, and/or catsup depending on the type of sandwich. The top and both slices of bread maybe adorned with any spread. I live in NW Florida and have always made sandwiches my way. So butter what you wish, it is your sandwich, and life is too short to let others worry you.

  193. Amy in StL says:

    I have never heard of buttering a sandwich. I can’t imagine what that adds. I put mayo on the bottom slice and mustard on the top slice. Butter is only for toast under jam, which I never put in a sandwich.

  194. klf says:

    What buttering a sandwich adds is: the taste of butter!

    I ALWAYS butter both sides. Even if it’s a peanut butter sandwich! Usually can skip the mayo that way, and am not a fan of mustard on anything, other than a hot dog or with a knackwurst.

    Alberta, Canada

  195. Jordin says:

    To start this off, I’m Canadian. Like middle of Alberta, Canadian.

    I personally prefer margarine, but that’s more because I grew up with it. I taste no difference in the two. Mayonnaise and Miracle Whip? I like them both and I really don’t taste a difference. And just so it’s out there, I absolutely HATE regular peanut butter. Always have, until I tried Honey Peanut Butter (the pre-made kind).

    Now, I personally put condiments on both slices of bread. Margarine ALWAYS, then mayo/miracle whip and mustard. And again, margarine always followed by honey-peanut butter and jam.

    My mom thinks it’s very weird that I put margarine on my PB&J (or even just my jam toast for that matter), so it’s something I picked up on my own.

    But now I have a question, I recently was messing around in the kitchen and I tried this, toast and then miracle whip. That’s it. Has anyone ever tried it? It’s a little weird but it isn’t bad.

  196. Dave says:

    Butter on a sandwich ??? Yuk. What’s wrong with you….

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Optionally add an image (JPEG only)

  • About Karen

  • About Karen

  • My Latest Videos

The Art of Doing Stuff