This sandwich was created in 1926 in Louisville Kentucky by Fred Schmidt of the Brown hotel as an alternative to ham and egg sandwiches for late night diners. It became their second signature sandwich. I’ve only ever heard it called as a Kentucky Hot Brown, but I have read that it is also known as a Louisville Hot Brown.

Traditionally this is served hot and open faced on a thick white bread toast and has turkey breast, bacon and creamy mornay sauce and a sprinkling of Parmesan cheese. Originally it was not served with the bacon, but added soon after. Variations can include ham, pimientos and tomatoes. It is then broiled a few minutes until the toast is crisp and sauce is bubbly and browning.

The Kentucky Hot Brown became a favorite choice of 95% of the Brown Hotel’s restaurant customers. It became a Louisville area specialty favorite sandwich and is popular throughout Kentucky as a whole long after the hotel shut its doors in 1971. The hotel reopened in 1985.

This sandwich was featured on a 2013 episode of Throwdown with Bobby Flay where he actually lost, but barely. 😀 Bobby competed against Joe and John Castro, brother chefs at the Brown Hotel.

There are also a few “oddball” variations out there. For a while there was a “cold brown” that was either sliced chicken or turkey with hard boiled egg, lettuce and tomato served open face on rye bread covered in thousand island dressing.

There are 2 other versions one being the Prosperity sandwich with origins in St. Louis at the Mayfair hotel also in the 1920’s and still served in the area today as well as the Turkey Devonshire served in the Pittsburg Pennsylvania area in the 1930’s.

I started making Kentucky Hot Brown sandwiches about 20 years ago, but had no idea of the extensive history at that time. Now fast forward to a magazine I found recently trying to update this to a slider version using King’s Hawaiian rolls. I have to admit I wasn’t sure about this recipe, but decided to try it anyway.

The recipe I found was okay, but I have to agree to disagree on these being a version of the original Hot Brown because the recipe used the sweet brown sugar, Worcestershire sauce and butter topping that just didn’t taste anywhere close to what this sandwich is about.

I have renamed this recipe AND adjusted the ingredients to try and keep them more traditional, ut yet an actual sandwich. The author used a “slice of cheese” to replace the Mornay sauce and there just isn’t any comparison to me.

1 tray King’s Hawaiian sweet rolls
2-3 tablespoons mayonnaise
6-8 slices thick sliced deli turkey
8 slices bacon, cooked crisp
2 heirloom tomatoes, sliced
6-8 slices Gruyere or Baby Swiss cheese, optional
1/4 cup FINELY grated Parmesan cheese

  • Preheat oven to broil.
  • Slice entire package of rolls in half horizontally. Do not individually slice rolls.
  • Arrange bottom half in a baking dish LIGHTY sprayed with non-stick cooking spray.
  • Spread mayonnaise on roll bottoms.
  • Arrange turkey on top evenly.
  • Arrange bacon slices on top of the turkey evenly.
  • Arrange a single layer of thick cut tomatoes on top of the bacon.
  • Arrange cheese slices next OR a layer of Mornay sauce.
  • Broil 2-3 minutes until toasted and cheese is bubbly.
  • Top if desired with sweet roll tops and eat as a messy sandwich or eat as intended with a knife and fork.

3 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons all purpose flour
1 ½ cups WHOLE milk
pinch FRESH ground nutmeg
FRESH ground salt and black pepper, to taste
2 ounces of a hard cheese, grated (Gruyère, Swiss, Cheddar, Parmesan)

  • Heat a medium sized saucepan over medium-high heat.
  • Melt butter.
  • Whisk in flour until golden.
  • Slowly add the milk while constantly whisking.
  • Bring the sauce to a SLOW boil and immediately reduce the heat to a simmer and continue cooking for 3 to 4 minutes, being careful not to let the sauce burn by whisking frequently.
  • Remove the pan from the heat and add the nutmeg, salt and pepper, stirring well. At this point you have a Bechamel sauce. Once you add the cheese it becomes your Mornay sauce.
  • Still off heat, add the grated cheese, whisking until all the cheese melts into the sauce making it thick and smooth.
  • Adjust seasoning to taste.

After all of this my favorite version is the casserole version I adapted from Damaris Phillips a few years ago.


4 cups rotisserie chicken pieces
1 cup chopped celery
1 LARGE sweet Vidalia onion
1/3 cup Duke’s mayonnaise
1/4 cup Frank’s Original Hot Sauce, +/- to taste
8 slices sourdough bread, cut into small cubes
3 cups WHOLE milk
4 LARGE eggs
1 can Campbell’s cream of chicken soup
3 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
Chopped parsley, for garnish

  • Spray bottom of large baking dish with non-stick cooking spray.
  • In a large bowl, combine chicken pieces, celery pieces, onions, mayonnaise and hot sauce.
  • Fold in bread cubes.
  • Layer evenly into baking dish.
  • Whisk together the milk, eggs and soup.
  • Pour egg mixture over bread and chicken mixture.
  • Cover and chill 2-3 hours minimum.
  • Uncover casserole and bring to room temperature for 20-30 minutes.
  • Preheat oven to 350°.
  • Bake 1 hour.
  • Top with cheese and bake 5-10 minutes until cheese is melted.
  • Garnish and serve.

NOTE: This recipe can be baked in individual ramekins for personal servings.


I originally found this recipe in an old Taste Of Home magazine and it’s now a family favorite. It’s perfect for a crowd or a church potluck. You’ll get lots of requests for the recipe 😀

I altered it a bit to accommodate my mustard allergy, but it’s absolutely delicious!


3-4 pound boneless pork shoulder butt roast
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper
2 cups homemade chicken stock
1 cup creamy JIF peanut butter
3/4 cup SMUCKERS apricot pineapple preserves
1/4 cup PACKED brown sugar
1/4 cup finely choppedVidalia sweet onion
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
3 tablespoons Bragg’s liquid aminos
8 ounce can crushed pineapple with juice

1-2 garlic cloves, FINELY minced
2 tablespoons butter, melted
6 ciabatta rolls, split
Coleslaw, optional

  • Generously sprinkle roast with FRESH ground salt and pepper.
  • Transfer to a 5 quart slow cooker.
  • In a large bowl, whisk together the broth, peanut butter, preserves, brown sugar, onion, vinegar, liquid aminos, pineapple and garlic.
  • Pour over meat.
  • Cook, covered, on low 6 hours or until meat is tender.
  • Preheat broiler.
  • Remove roast; cool slightly.
  • Shred pork with 2 forks.
  • Return pork to slow cooker; heat through.
  • Brush butter over cut sides of rolls.
  • Place rolls, buttered side up, on an ungreased baking sheet.
  • Broil 3-4 inches from broiler for 30-60 seconds or until golden brown.
  • Using a slotted spoon, spoon pork mixture onto roll bottoms, top with coleslaw if desired and replace tops.


Hidden in a stack of my magazine tear outs, I found this delectable recipe for a chicken recipe that is as sweet as it is spicy and is an eye catching appetizing dish. I made just a very few changes to appeal to my liking.

4 chicken leg quarters
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup Frank’s Original hot sauce
2 + 2 + 2 tablespoons butter
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper
1 teaspoon cumin
1 tablespoon avocado oil
Zest and Juice of 2 limes, separated (see notes)
2 green onions, sliced thin

  • Preheat oven 425°.
  • Stir together cumin, salt and pepper to make a dry rub.
  • Pat chicken pieces dry.
  • Rub chicken all over with the dry rub.
  • Melt 2 tablespoons butter and avocado oil together in a large skillet over medium-high heat.
  • Add chicken, skin side down and sear 4-5 minutes per side until golden on both sides.
  • Transfer chicken to baking sheet or baking dish, skin side up.
  • Wipe skillet clean.
  • Add 2 tablespoons of butter.
  • When melted add honey, hot sauce and garlic, cooking a few minutes until well blended.
  • Pour honey mixture evenly over chicken.
  • Place baking dish in pre-heated oven for 20 minutes, or until chicken pieces register 175°.
  • Turn off oven and let chicken rest 5 minutes
  • Transfer chicken to platter and keep warm.
  • Add 2 tablespoons of butter to skillet to melt.
  • Whisk lime juice into drippings and transfer back to skillet with butter, cooking until slightly thickened.
  • Spoon sauce over chicken and garnish with scallions and lime zest.

NOTES: Oranges or lemons work just as well as limes and have a subtle change in the flavor profile.


This is one of those recipes that I cut out, but have NO idea from where 😀  It was really good and I made very few changes to the original recipe.

I did make it with a caramelized Cabbage that I think next time I will place under the chicken before baking to make it a one-pan dish and add extra flavor to the cabbage.

4-6 6 ounce boneless, skinless chicken breasts
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper

15 ounce jar marinated artichoke hearts, drained WELL and chopped
10 ounce package frozen chopped spinach, thawed, drained and squeezed dry
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper, to taste
3/4 cup mayonnaise (NOT low-fat)
3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

  • Preheat oven to 375°.
  • Line baking dish with foil or spray with non-stick spray.
  • Generously season chicken breasts with FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper.
  • Arrange chicken in bottom of baking dish.
  • Stir together the remaining ingredients and spread over chicken pieces,
  • Bake 40-45 minutes until chicken is cooked through.

NOTE:  I start draining the artichoke hearts about an hour before I begin cooking.


I found a recipe for Natchitoches Meat Pies, a savory dish that sounded really interesting.  I did a little research and found that Natchitoches Meat Pies are an official state food and that Natchitoches is a city in northern Louisiana.  I didn’t like that it was fried though and converted it to a baked version.  For lack of a better definition this is a Cajun empanada 😀


4 slices bacon, diced
3/4 pound ground beef
3/4 pound ground pork
2 tablespoons WONDRA flour
1 LARGE onion, FINELY chopped
1 LARGE bunch green onions, FINELY diced
1 cup red, yellow and orange mini peppers, FINELY chopped
2-3 tablespoons chopped FRESH flat leaf parsley
3 garlic cloves, minced
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper, to taste
1/2 teaspoon cayenne
1 cup chicken broth

  • Brown ground beef and pork until cooked through. Drain.
  • In the same pan brown bacon over medium heat until crisp.
  • Remove bacon to drain on paper toweling.
  • Whisk in flour to bacon grease making a roux.
  • Whisk in chicken broth, seasonings, garlic, onions, parsley and peppers.
  • Add beef and pork in. Simmer 5-10 minutes to meld flavors.
  • Refrigerate the meat mixture for an hour while you are making the dough and before assembling pies.

4 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons salt
8 tablespoons crisco
2 eggs, beaten
1 cup chicken broth

  • Whisk together the flour, salt and baking powder together in food processor.
  • Add shortening and pulse to a cornmeal texture.
  • Add eggs and broth JUST until dough comes together.
  • Transfer dough to a floured counter and knead 30 seconds until creates a smooth ball.
  • Divide dough into equal pieces, about 8-16 depending on how large you want your pies.
  • Roll out each piece to a thin circle.
  • Fill each about half full.
  • Fold over and crimp edges with fork tines to seal.
  • Place on a silicone lined baking sheet.
  • Bake at 425° for 30-45 minutes, turning baking dish as needed to avoid burning the edges.
    Serve with Salsa, sour cream, chopped olives and chopped green onions.


  • I sometimes make them “Mexican” by adding a Taco Bell original spice packet to the mix.
  • I also like to add a sprinkly of shredded cheese to the inside and garnish.


I originally found a recipe, 7-UP CHILIBURGERS, in a loose bound cookbook from 1977.  It was one of those compilation style books written for fundraisers for schools or churches.  I’ve modified it over time, but we love it.

1 tablespoon butter
1 pound lean ground beef
1 small onion, chopped small
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper
1 tablespoon WONDRA flour
7.5 ounce can 7UP or Sprite
3/4 cup Jalapeno ketchup
1 tablespoon Worcestershire Sauce
3/4 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1 tablespoon Franks, original hot sauce
Havarti slices

  • Melt butter in cast iron large skillet.
  • Add beef and chopped onion, browning until crumbly.
  • Drain off excess fat.
  • Return meat to pan and sprinkle with flour, stirring to absorb.
  • Whisk together the ketchup, Worcestershire, 7UP, hot sauce, chili powder and garlic powder.
  • Add to meat mixture and bring to a simmer.
  • Adjust salt and pepper to taste.
  • Cover and cook 10 minutes.
  • Split ciabatta buns in half.
  • Lay a slice of cheese on top of bread.
  • Spoon loose meat over cheese and enjoy!  They are also GREAT, but MESSY as whole sandwiches.

NOTE:  This is a good recipe to make double of and freeze half for a quick weeknight meal.


3 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon onion powder
2 teaspoons FRESH chopped thyme
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper
6 boneless chicken things
2 tablespoons QUALITY honey
Juice of 1 LARGE lemon

  • Melt butter in skillet over medium heat.
  • Add garlic powder. onion powder, thyme, salt and pepper, cooking until fragrant.
  • Add chicken pieces to skillet, turning to coat.
  • Sear one side, 4-5 minutes.
  • Turn to other side, reduce heat to low, cover and cook 10-15 minutes until cooked through.
  • Remove chicken to plate.
  • Skim off fat and return chicken to skillet.
  • Whisk together the lemon juice and honey.
  • Drizzle over chicken and cook 3-5 minutes.
  • Serve over rice.


3-4 pounds chicken wings
1/3 cup all purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon FRESH ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon FRESH ground sea salt

  • Preheat oven to 425°.
  • Line baking pan with foil and lightly spray with non-stick oil.
  • Toss flour, baking powder, pepper, salt and garlic powder in a large Ziploc bag.
  • Place chicken pieces in the bag, tossing to coat.
  • Shake off excess and place on baking pan in a single layer.
  • Bake 20 minutes.
  • Dip each wing in the sauce and return to pan on its opposite side.
  • Bake another 25 minutes until cooked through.
  • Dip in sauce a second time as you plate them.

2/3 cup PURE maple syrup
2 teaspoons FRESH ground black pepper
2 teaspoons Bragg’s liquid aminos
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 green onion, minced (optional) for garnish

  • Combine all ingredients in a small saucepan.
  • Bring to a boil over a medium heat,
  • Reduce heat and simmer, stirring frequently, 5-7 minutes until thickened.
  • Garnish if desired and serve.


This was an actual “scrap” of a recipe torn from a typed book – maybe a church cookbook or some such type. It had such a unique name, 7-UP CHILIBURGERS, that I had to set it aside to try sometime. Fast forward many years and I ran across it again, this time vowing to make it soon. Fast forward a couple more years and here we are. All I can say is that I am truly sorry we didn’t try this sooner!!!! These were wonderful!

1 tablespoon butter
1 pound lean ground beef
1 SMALL onion, chopped (3/4 cup)
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon WONDRA flour
7 ounces 7UP
3/4 cup Jalapeno ketchup
1/2 teaspoon chili powder

  • Melt butter in skillet over medium heat.
  • Add onion and beef. Brown until beef is crumbled into small pieces and onion is cooked through and translucent.
  • Sift together the flour, salt and chili powder.
  • Slowly add the 7UP, stirring until smooth.
  • Add ketchup, Worcestershire and 7UP mixture to the skillet, stirring to blend well.
  • Cover and simmer 10 minutes.
  • Serve on buns.