Those Cuban Sandwiches from the “Chef” Movie!

Cubanos from the Chef movie
There’s a memorable scene in Chef — if you saw the movie this summer, you know the one — where John Leguizamo sways to Cuban music, massaging mojo marinade into a pork shoulder in a manner that probably deserves some privacy. When it’s falling-off-the-bone roasted, Jon Favreau, like a surgeon, shaves off a few test pieces…and determines it’s pretty perfect.

It can’t be possible to watch that movie without desperately wanting to get into that roast pork and the Cubanos they assemble from it (well, unless you don’t eat pork). So I was excited to see that chef Roy Choi, who was a consultant and producer for the movie, shared his recipe on the People magazine website…and I pretty much made it immediately.

It’s not just that the food looks craveworthy on the screen in Chef, but the characters pour their hearts into making it. That’s the kind of food I most like to cook and eat. You can taste it when someone cares about the food they’re making and the people they’re making it for.


Mmmmojo marinated pork…making the Cuban sandwiches from Chef!

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The only thing that would have made these sandwiches better would be real Cuban bread. I don’t think I’ve ever seen it sold in bakeries where I’ve lived, and to bake your own authentically you need lard (which I also haven’t yet tracked down in my new town!). A soft French baguette, which is what I used, comes close.

Get Roy Choi’s recipe for these incredible Mojo Pork Cubanos on the PEOPLE website.


KathyPanini Happy, online since 2008, is more than just a sandwich blog. Here, you'll find hundreds of my original panini recipes, my guide to choosing a panini press and a whole lot of other creative uses for the panini press.
~ Kathy Strahs
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  1. Angela wrote:

    I had no idea he shared the recipe!! I also want to try his brisket version!

    Posted 10.14.14 Reply
  2. Mike from Class wrote:

    Love the movie, love the sandwiches and love the Chef

    Posted 10.16.14 Reply
    • Kathy Strahs wrote:

      Awwww… 😉

      Posted 10.16.14 Reply
  3. I loved the movie chef and was totally drooling over this sandwich in the movie when I saw it. You definitely have inspired me to recreate the recipe – this cuban sandiwch looks absolutely delicious!

    Posted 10.16.14 Reply
  4. Jessica wrote:

    That looks amazingly good. I still need to watch that movie. I saw the ads in the metro in Paris recently. Still. Out of sight, out of mind.

    Posted 11.1.14 Reply
  5. Maria wrote:

    Lard can be found in the baking section or where you would find shortenings like Crisco.

    Posted 1.15.15 Reply
    • Kathy Strahs wrote:

      I will look there, Maria — thanks! ~Kathy

      Posted 1.15.15 Reply
  6. Joel wrote:

    Kathy, I usually get my lard from the cooking oil section of the grocery store. Armour sells “manteca” packaged like blocks of butter, or sometimes in pails. If your local supermarket doesn’t carry it, any Latin grocery store in your area is sure to.

    Posted 1.21.15 Reply