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A cheesesteak is served in a basket.

Philadelphia Cheesesteak Trail

Date February 17, 2024

Philadelphia Cheesesteak Trail

A cheesesteak is served in a basket.

Philadelphia is known for a lot of impressive things, but one particular item is the City of Brotherly Love’s trademark sandwich: the cheesesteak.

If you’re coming to Philadelphia and looking to try this Philadelphia staple, here are some local spots to try.

What is a cheesesteak?

A cheesesteak is a delectable sandwich that has become an emblematic dish of Philadelphia. This iconic sandwich is made with thinly sliced pieces of beefsteak, typically ribeye or top round, cooked to perfection on a grill. The steak is then piled onto a soft, long Italian roll and is generously smothered with melted cheese. While the classic choice is Cheez Whiz, other popular cheese options include American or provolone. Additionally, you can add various toppings such as sautéed onions, peppers, and mushrooms to enhance the flavor further.

What are the origins of the cheesesteak?

The origin of the cheesesteak can be traced back to the vibrant streets of Philadelphia in the 1930s. Pat Olivieri, a hot dog vendor, and his brother Harry decided to experiment with thinly sliced beef as an alternative filling for their sandwiches. The sandwich was so popular that Olivieri decided to exclusively sell it instead of hot dogs.

After opening a few locations in Philadelphia, Olivieri soon started adding cheese to his creation. From there, the cheesesteak as we know it was born. The sandwich rapidly gained popularity, and by the 1940s, Pat’s King of Steaks became one of many establishments to serve this iconic dish. Since cheesesteaks can be found in every corner of Philadelphia, here’s where you can pick up some of the city’s favorite bites.

Visit our things to do page for more iconic Philadelphia experiences.