The subs at the Publix Deli are a thing of foodie lore. They're made with fresh ingredients while you wait, and — for the most part — Publix Subs are comparable in price to Subway's menu. At Publix, one variety of sub goes on sale each week for up to 19% off the normal price. And the fresh chicken tenders they use on their famous Chicken Tender Subs mimic Chick-fil-A's as far as taste and texture go.
I've compiled a few tips for saving money on your next Pub Sub order, like why you should upgrade to a meal instead of ordering a la carte to save $1, how to keep track of the Publix Sub of the Week, and what to know about a secret menu hack that'll save you from having to buy Chick-fil-A sauce separately.
1. The Publix Sub of the Week is … the Publix Chicken Tender Sub.
We're not going to make you wait for it. We'll get into all the details of why Pub Sub worship is a thing, but we know many hungry shoppers just want to know about Publix's featured sub of the week. The Sub of the Week deal switches every Thursday morning (when the new Publix weekly ad comes out). And ordering the Publix Sub of the Week at the Publix Deli can save you around 8% - 19%!
This week, the Publix Sub of the Week is the Publix Deli Chicken Tender Sub. But this week's sale price also extends to these other varieties of the Publix Chicken Tender Sub:
Buffalo Chicken Tender Sub, $8.49 (reg. $10.49)
Chicken Parmesan Tender Sub, $8.49 (reg. $10.49)
Chicken Bacon Ranch Tender Sub, $8.49 (reg. $10.49)
Baked Chicken Tender Sub, $8.49 (reg. $10.49)
Sweet & Spicy Chicken Tender Sub, $8.49 (reg. $10.49)
2. Pub Subs normally cost $5.59 – $10.49 at Publix, which is pretty comparable in price to Subway's.
Publix Subs vary in cost depending on what you order — and where you live. For example, I go to Publix when I visit my family in the Southeast (since I don't have a local Publix where I live). On my Publix runs, the cheapest sub options (with Publix brand meat) are $5.59 for a half-sub and up to $7.49 for a whole one. For the more expensive varieties, I pay $7.09 for a half or $10.49 for a whole sub.
This isn't all that different from Subway prices, which range from about $5.99 to $9.29 on average (without Subway coupons). And IMHO, Publix is way better.
Go with the combo to save $1: Like Subway, Publix does give you the option to upgrade your sub into a whole meal with a drink and chips. Depending on which drink and chips you choose, you can expect ordering these items a la carte would cost you somewhere around an extra $3.25. But if you order it as a meal, you'll get $1 off, making it only an additional $2.25-ish on top of the cost of your sub.
3. But you'll save up to 19% if you order the Publix Sub of the Week — it resets every Thursday.
Check the Publix weekly ad to find the Sub of the Week every Thursday! If you're flexible with your order, opting for the Sub of the Week can save you up to 19% off regular sub prices.
The Pub Sub of the Week is almost almost listed at $7.99. Let's say the Sub of the Week is the Boar's Head Italian Sub. Normally, you'd pay $9.59 for a whole sub. But with the special $7.99 price, you're saving about 17%.
If you're going for the drool-worthy chicken tendie sub, you'll save an even higher percentage. That's because you'd usually have to pay more — $10.49 — for a whole sub. But when it's marked down to $8.49, you're saving 19%.
Related: We can teach you the basics of how to coupon at Publix.
4. The Pub Sub menu is huge and customizable, with over 57 options.
All in all, there are 57+ options on the Pub Sub menu at any given time. Within those 57+ items, you can completely customize your order with your own bread, condiments, cheese, add-ons, etc.
While the menu can vary a tiny bit depending on your location (and the time of year), here are some of the most popular Publix subs featuring the upgraded Boar's Head deli meat:
And then there's the most popular Pub Sub of all time…
5. The Publix Chicken Tender Sub is the one sub to rule them all.
The Public Chicken Tender Sub is so popular that there's an entire collection of Etsy products dedicated to its greatness. It's so good that when a Publix Deli runs out of chicken tenders, it inspires the tears of pregnant women when they cannot sate their cravings.
It's also the most expensive item on the menu. At my family's local Publix, a half Chicken Tender sub will run you $7.09, and a whole sub costs $10.49. Definitely not the most budget-friendly meal, but more than arguably worth it.
The menu can rotate and there are so many different iterations of this sandwich. But in my Publix experience, there are three versions that are the most popular. Remember that while the listed breads and toppings are standard, you are welcome to customize your order.
Option 1: Chicken Tender Publix Sub aka the Standard ($7.09 - $10.49)
Here's what comes on the standard Chicken Tender sub at Publix:
You can always add your own condiments (free) or any of the following (for a $1 upgrade fee). You'll cut the fee and the number of slices in half if you're ordering a half sub:
4 slices of bacon
4 slices of avocado
TIP: For your bread options, you can choose between white, Italian 5-grain, whole wheat, or flatbread for the Chicken Tender Sub. Your choice of bread doesn't affect the price for any Publix subs.
Option 2: Buffalo Chicken Tender Sub ($7.09 - $10.49)
Make your bread choice, and your Buffalo Chicken Tender sub will include these toppings by default:
Option 3: Chicken Bacon Ranch Tender Sub ($7.09 - $10.49)
Here's what is on the Chicken Bacon Ranch Tender sub:
6. Mark your calendar for the Publix Holiday Sub that comes out for a limited time.
Five-grain sub roll
Smoked gruyere cheese
The Publix Turkey Cranberry Holiday Sub has historically always made its first appearance in November. But this year it came out on Thursday, Oct. 13, 2023, marking the unofficial countdown to the Thanksgiving season at Publix.
And in 2023, it was the Sub of the Week for the sale week that ended on Thanksgiving.
7. You can make any Pub Sub into a salad for free.
If you're gluten-free or just trying to bring Atkins back, you can totally make any Pub Sub into a salad. And it doesn't change the price.
You have the option of picking either lettuce or spinach for your base, then all the other ingredients will just be added to your salad.
8. Ask them to make your own Chick-fil-A copycat sub at the Publix Deli.
There have been many a comparison drawn between Publix Deli's chicken tenders and Chick-Fil-A's. You could for sure order a copycat sandwich here. Publix sells Chick-fil-A sauce in the grocery aisles, so you could go fully authentic by purchasing the sauce, then just adding it to your sandwich. (You can also buy Chick-Fil-A Polynesian Sauce at Publix.)
Or — you could ask for the deli worker to mix honey mustard, BBQ sauce, and mayo when they make your sandwich so you don't have to spend any extra money on sauce. The workers don't always love making Chick-fil-A sauce, but they will do it if you ask.
TIP: Honestly, ordering at Chick-fil-A can be cheaper. The Chicken Tender Subs are the most expensive ones at Publix. But if you don't do Chick-fil-A, Pub Subs can be a really good workaround.
9. Order the local NFL Pub Subs for a special taste in each city.
During football season, you can order a sub customized for your local team if you live in an NFL-affiliated city. Here are a few examples (Atlanta goes the hardest with powdered sugar and sriracha!):
Atlanta Falcons Sub
Pepper Jack cheese
Jacksonville Jaguars Sub
Tamba Bay Bucs Sub
Spicy Gold sauce
10. Top your sub with a side of mac and cheese. Don't diss it till you try it!
If you've never had mac and cheese on a Chicken Tender Sub, you're in for a treat. This is a popular add-on, but it's actually not listed on the menu. You get it by ordering a side of mac and cheese (at the Publix I go to, it's $3.69/pound) and asking them to put it on your sub. Don't worry. They're not gonna look at you weird — this is an extremely common request.
Related: Here's everything to know about Publix Delivery — and the associated fees.