If there’s one sandwich that is synonymous with Indiana, it’s the Breaded Pork Tenderloin. You’ll find it on the menu at places all across the state - diners, breweries, family restaurants, food trucks and more. Everyone has their own take on it. Some pound theirs to a fine thickness while others keep theirs a little thicker. Some use breadcrumbs while others use cracker crumbs. Some make theirs just the right size for the bun, but more often you’ll see it bulging out of its breaded container. A few make them as big as the plate with a bun that is merely decoration.

Breaded Pork Tenderloin from Nick's Kitchen


If you’ve wondered how this sandwich became so popular, legend has it that the first to serve up a BPT was Nick Freienstein in Huntington, Indiana. After a few years of running a cart outside of the Huntington County Courthouse, he got his own brick and mortar location - kind of. Nick’s Kitchen was really just an empty lot between two buildings. He convinced the owners to let him add a roof, a front and a back - and they agreed. Soon he was in businesses, opening up his doors in 1908 and serving up his specialties in his dining room with a dirt floor beneath them.

Nick's Kitchen in Huntington

The BPT is made the same as it has been since the beginning, its tender and juicy texture coming from the 24 hours that it marinates in buttermilk. It’s deep fried to a golden brown that provides a perfect crunch. It’s not too small, but not too big. Just right. Pair it up with some hand-cut fries or an order of crunchy onion rings and you’ll find yourself in deep fried heaven.

Mason Drabenstot, owner of Nick's Kitchen

I recommend also getting a creamy hand-dipped milkshake topped with whipped cream and a slice of pie - or a pie flight (which allows you try try three half-slices.) The sugar cream pie is one of the best that you’ll find!

Chocolate Milkshake from Nick's Kitchen