Where to Get the Best Hot Ham and Rolls in Milwaukee

Bizarre tradition or delicious ritual?

Some think it’s a bizarre Wisconsin tradition to sit down to a meal of hot ham and rolls after church on Sunday. Bizarre? No! Delicious? Yes! The genius hack of wrapping the thinly sliced, baked or boiled deli ham in foil-lined packaging keeps it warm on the way home. The sandwich bread is, conventionally, a crusty “hard” roll – the German Kaiser roll, oftentimes. (Some folks like them with mayo or mustard.) Three ham-and-roll must-stops:

Canfora Bakery

1100 E. Oklahoma Ave.

Wisconsin-made Badger ham is the attraction here. The deal is one you’ll often see: Buy a pound of meat and get six gratis rolls. Sun. 7 a.m.-1 p.m.


1011 E. Brady St.

With a pound of boiled ham from the deli, they give you six free crisp-light Italian rolls made by nearby Peter Sciortino Bakery. Sun. 8 a.m.-5 p.m.

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21 Ways to Eat Like a Wisconsinite


Iron Grate BBQ

4125 S. Howell Ave.

Not your average deli ham sandwich here. Chef/owner Aaron Patin hickory-smokes his ham and offers it by the pound along with Texas toast. Sun. 8-11 a.m.

‘Eat Like a Wisconsinite’ appears in the March 2018 issue of Milwaukee Magazine.

Buy a copy at milwaukeemag.com/shop.



Ann Christenson has covered dining for Milwaukee Magazine since 1997. She was raised on a diet of casseroles that started with a pound of ground beef and a can of Campbell's soup. Feel free to share any casserole recipes with her.