Delicious Alternatives: The 9 Best Substitutes For Cuban Bread

The 9 Best Cuban Bread Substitutes

If you’ve ever had the pleasure of tasting Cuban bread, you know how delicious and unique it is. However, finding authentic Cuban bread can be a challenge, and making it from scratch takes time and effort. So what can you use as a substitute for Cuban bread? In this article, we will explore nine excellent alternatives that you can easily find in stores or even make at home.

1. Baguette

Baguettes are an ideal substitute for Cuban bread. They have a thin, crisp crust and a soft, airy crumb, making them very similar in texture. Although baguettes are thinner than Cuban bread, you can cut them diagonally to increase the surface area for sandwiches. If you prefer a thicker baguette, you can find those as well.

2. White Sandwich Loaf

While white sandwich loaves may not have the same crust or shape as Cuban bread, their inner crumb is very similar. These loaves have a semi-dense, yet soft and airy texture. Although the crust is not as crisp as Cuban bread, it has a chewy consistency.

3. Anadama Bread

Anadama bread, with its New English origin, is another excellent substitute for Cuban bread. This bread is made with a combination of bread flour, rye flour, cornmeal and yeast. The addition of molasses gives it a unique sweet flavor that pairs well with the toppings of a Cuban sandwich. While the yeasty smell and taste may not be to everyone’s liking, its size and texture make it a suitable alternative.

4. Focaccia

Focaccia, the famous Italian flatbread, offers an even softer texture than baguettes. It has a tender and spongy consistency, similar to white bread. Although it lacks the crisp crust of Cuban bread, it has a chewy crust. Focaccia is traditionally seasoned with salt, pepper, olive oil, and herbs, but you can omit these toppings and use it as a substitute for Cuban bread.

5. Ciabatta

Ciabatta makes this list for two reasons. First, it has a soft texture and an open, airy crumb. Second, its large shape is perfect for making sandwiches. Although ciabatta’s crust is slightly thicker than that of Cuban bread, it still offers a delightful crispness. You can easily make ciabatta at home to ensure its freshness.

6. Pan Sobao

Pan Sobao, a Mexican bread specifically from Puerto Rico, may be a little harder to find, but it is available online and you can also make it yourself. This bread is made with regular ingredients like flour, sugar, salt, yeast, and lard, which are very similar to those used in Cuban bread. Pan sobao has a similar flavor and texture, although it tends to be crispier. You can add some water to soften it.

7. Challah

Challah is a Jewish bread traditionally used for ceremonies such as Passover or Shabbat. However, its incredible flavor and texture have made it a popular choice beyond religious observances. Challah has a soft texture and sweet flavor, and its crumb is neither hard nor crunchy. It can be a delicious substitute for Cuban bread in a variety of dishes.

8. Brioche

Brioche is often confused with challah, but they are different breads with different characteristics. Brioche is an enriched bread that contains high amounts of fat, especially butter. This gives it a rich, buttery and sweet flavor. Brioche has a super soft texture and a crust similar to white bread. If you prefer a crispy crust, you can lightly toast it to add a bit of crunch.

9. Bolillo

The bolillo is a South American bread that is popular in Central America. It resembles a baguette but is shorter, typically about 6 inches long. The bolillo has a conical shape that some people compare to a Coney Island roll. These long rolls have a delicate texture and a crisp crust. They can be an excellent substitute for Cuban bread, especially if you are looking for a similar shape and texture.


While authentic Cuban bread may be hard to come by, there are several fantastic substitutes. Baguettes, white sandwich loaves, anadama bread, focaccia, ciabatta, pan sobao, challah, brioche, and bolillo all offer different textures and flavors that can complement various dishes. Whether you are making a Cuban sandwich, enjoying an open-faced sandwich, or using bread as a breading for seafood, these substitutes can satisfy your cravings. Experiment with these alternatives and find the one that best suits your taste preferences and culinary needs. Enjoy exploring the world of bread substitutes and creating delicious meals with these options!


What are the best substitutes for Cuban bread?

Baguette, white sandwich loaf, anadama bread, focaccia, ciabatta, pan sobao, challah, brioche and bolillo are some of the best substitutes for Cuban bread.

Do these substitutes have a texture similar to Cuban bread?

Yes, many of these substitutes, such as baguette, white sandwich loaf, and ciabatta, have a similar texture with a soft and airy crumb.

Can I find these substitutes in stores?

Yes, most of these substitutes can be found in grocery stores or bakeries. However, some less common options such as pan sobao or bolillo may require searching specialty stores or ordering online.

Can I make these substitutes at home?

Absolutely! Homemade versions of substitutes like anadama bread, focaccia, ciabatta, and brioche can be made with the right ingredients and recipes, which are readily available online.

What is the best substitute for making Cuban sandwiches?

When it comes to making Cuban sandwiches, options like baguette, white sandwich loaf, or pan sobao can work particularly well due to their texture and shape.

Can these substitutes be used for dishes other than sandwiches?

Yes, these substitutes are versatile and can be used in a variety of dishes. They can be toasted with breakfast items, used as breading for seafood, or served with soups and stews.