What Is Grilled Cheese
Grilled cheese can come in many variations, but it starts as cheese melted between two pieces of bread.
Your basic grilled cheese sandwich comprises two slices of white bread with American cheese. The sandwich is then cooked with butter in a pan until the bread becomes golden brown and the cheese begins to melt.
Upgraded grilled cheese sandwiches may use fancier bread, such as sourdough or ciabatta, and melt together unique types of cheeses like mozzarella or Monterey Jack.
The type of cheese and bread you select, the amount of butter or mayonnaise you use to crisp the bread, and which additional toppings you may choose all affect the nutrition and flavor of your grilled cheese sandwich.
Grilled cheese is a classic sandwich that can come in many varieties. Depending on the toppings, bread, and amount of cheese you use, the flavor profile and nutrition will vary.
Techniques For Making A Better Grilled Cheese
Are you looking for some easy cooking techniques and strategies for making a better grilled cheese sandwich? Here are some of our best tips.
- Toast the bread on a skillet. Forget about toasting your bread in a microwave or oven. Cook your bread in some butter or mayo in a skillet instead! This will help the bread develop a crispy, flavorful crust while remaining soft on the inside. It will give your grilled cheese a much better texture!
- Use a cast iron skillet. A cast iron skillet will heat up easily and maintain a high temperature without fail. That means that cast iron is perfect for getting a nice sear on your grilled cheese sandwich. The best part is that you do not have to worry about a cast iron skillet losing heat when it is full. That means that you can make multiple grilled cheese sandwiches at the same time!
- Toast both sides of the bread. Dont forget to toast both sides of your bread for a better grilled cheese. Toasting both sides of the bread makes your grilled cheese even tastier and it also helps the cheese inside of the bread melt faster.
- Butter the pan, not the bread. If you are using butter to toast your grilled cheese sandwich then you should make sure to put the butter on the pan rather than the bread. You should add the butter to the pan a minute or two before you add the bread to the pan so that it has time to cook and develop a richer flavor. Just make sure not to let it burn!
Greens Like Spinach Broccoli Rabe Or Arugula Can Add A Fresh Quality And Cut Through The Richness Of The Cheese
A grilled cheese made with rich, gooey cheese and heavy bread can easily become too rich. Adding leafy greens and other vegetables can cut through that richness and make your sandwich more balanced.
“Arugula and spinach will melt brilliantly,” Werlin said. “Almost any vegetable will lend itself to a grilled cheese sandwich, but if it’s a hard vegetable like a carrot or broccoli or cauliflower, but they have to be briefly cooked first.”
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Tips For The Best Grilled Cheese
- Low heat it takes a little patience to make the perfect grilled cheese. Keep your heat on low to give the cheese time to fully melt while the bread gets golden and crisp. If browning too fast, turn the heat down.
- Butter generously the amount of butter may seem like a lot, but it is important for a crispy exterior.
- Use thick-sliced bread we love using Texas toast because its sliced about twice as thick as normal sandwich bread. You want bread that is about 3/4 to 1 thick, but also avoid bread that is too thick or your cheese wont melt properly. Using bread that is too thin will produce a flimsy and sometimes soggy sandwich.
Pantry Staples Like Tomato Or Bacon Jams Are Delicious In Grilled Cheese
Many people might have jams floating around in their pantries without knowing how to utilize them. To add a ton of flavor to a simple grilled cheese, adding ingredients like chutney, pepper jelly, tomato jam, or bacon jam can totally change the flavor profile.
“Any jam, any chutney, even dijon mustard, almost any condiment will lend itself to a grilled cheese sandwich,” Werlin said.
“If you’ve got sweet or savory condiments like pepper jelly or onion relish sitting in the back of your fridge, those work great in a grilled cheese,” Gibson said.
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Make The Switch To A Healthier Fat
Slapping a hunk of butter in your pan or slathering your bread with mayo are common ways to prepare grilled cheese. Lots of butter and mayo adds extra calories and saturated fat.
To lower your saturated fat intake, try using avocado oil or olive oil in your pan instead of butter.
Grilled cheese can be made a little bit healthier. Start with fiber-rich whole grain bread, choose flavorful cheese, try some plant-based toppings, and use a healthy fat when cooking.
Secrets To Make Grilled Cheese Healthier
Grilled cheese seems like the perfect food. It’s easy to make, has few ingredients and sports a crispy crust and a warm, gooey, cheesy center. What’s not to love? How about the 410 calories and 18 grams of saturated fat per sandwich? I don’t love that. Grilled cheese can attribute its high fat and calories to the butter spread on the outside of the bread to make it crispy and the copious amounts of cheese in the middle. Pair that with a couple of slices of plain white bread and you have a nutritional disaster.
But do you really need all of that to make the perfect grilled cheese sandwich? No! Here are 5 secrets for how to make grilled cheese that saves calories and fat to boot.
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1. Pick the right cheese: When it comes to grilled cheese, not all cheese is created equal. Some people love American cheese. It has superior melting qualities, but it falls short on flavor . So skip mild-flavored cheeses and opt for ones with a stronger flavor-like sharp, or even extra-sharp, Cheddar. Like blue cheese? It’s also a great option. You’ll get more bang for your buck and because it’s big on flavor you won’t have to use as much, which helps cut fat and calories.
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See Step-by Step Photos: How to Make the Perfect Panini at Home
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Grilled Cheese Sandwich Recipe
Theres Grilled Cheese and theres GREAT Grilled Cheese. Learn how to make the best Grilled Cheese Sandwich with a crisp, buttery exterior and gooey cheese center.
Try this combination of cheeses and the process for buttering and cooking the toast and you will be known for your Grilled Cheese Sandwiches. All you need is a Creamy Tomato Soup to dunk your sandwich into.
This post may contain affiliate links. Read my disclosure policy.
We love hot sandwiches from our Crispy Chicken Sandwich to Philly Cheesesteak. This Grilled Cheese recipe is well-loved by the whole family. Who can resist that impressive cheese pull? Watch the video tutorial and see how easy it is. All you need is a skillet and a spatula.
Recipe: The Perfect Grilled Cheese
- 2 slices of good bread, ½¾ inch thick
- 3 oz cheese, grated or thinly sliced
- Mayonnaise, as needed
Optional: Before cooking, scatter 1 to 1½ tbsp grated parmesan or aged cheddar over the mayo side of each slice of bread. Cook according to directions above until pan-side cheese is crisp and browned.
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Be Choosy With Cheese
Choosing flavorful cheeses like Gruyère, sharp cheddar, Gouda, and havarti bring a richer, distinct flavor to your grilled cheese. You also may find yourself using less cheese, since their flavors are bolder than that of American cheese.
Using less cheese means fewer calories for your sandwich, but it doesnt mean you have to lose that cheesy goodness and flavor.
Use Your Electric Griddle For The Perfect Grilled Cheese
Most electric griddles characteristic a top rated of the line non-adhere cooking surface area, but to make the truly magical grilled cheese sandwich, the chef need to use butter or margarine to prepare dinner the bread. The butter or margarine need to be utilized to one aspect of each pieces of bread.
Talking of bread, which is the greatest type to use? Industry experts counsel utilizing wheat bread. Not only is it more healthy than your average loaf of white bread, but it is also harder and retains up greater when becoming cooked on the electrical griddle. By applying wheat bread you will cut down on the total of harm the sandwich ought to endure.
Now that youve bought your items of buttered bread, position one down on the non-stick floor of your electric powered griddle. Spot three items of cheese on best of the unbuttered side of the bread. At this level you can also elect to put an extra component on your sandwich. Crowd favorites contain bacon, ham or tomato. Position a topping on, adopted by your 2nd piece of bread with the buttered facet dealing with out to you. Now your ideal grilled cheese has been assembled and just requires some patience and like to be completed.
To improve the pleasure stage, the grilled cheese should really be served with a bowl of tomato soup and a tall glass of ginger ale . Acquire a seat, consider a bite, and enjoy the fruits of your labor: the best grilled cheese sandwich in the earth.
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A Toast To Grilled Cheese
A feel-good classic, the grilled cheese sandwich can be simple, elaborate, or totally offbeat. At its core are two slices of bread, sliced or grated cheese, and a little butter. The basic steps: Butter each slice of bread on one side, place in a nonstick pan butter side down, top with cheese, cover the pan, and cook over medium heat until the cheese starts to melt and bubble. Flip one slice of bread on top of the other, press them gently together, flip the sandwich over, and it’s done. Here are 19 ways to make this iconic comfort food even better.
Delicious Ways To Get Creative With Your Grilled Cheese Sandwich:
1. Switch out your boring bread and try something different such as pumpernickel, rye, French bread, sourdough, or any of the whole grain breads. Make sure its not too thick or hole-y. Note: You can use bread like ciabatta if you choose, but youll have to add some thing to it so the cheese doesnt ooze all over the pan.
2. Play around with different cheeses. Try Swiss, Gouda, brie, mozzarella, pepper jack, Havarti, sharp cheddar, etc. for a scrumptiously cheesy difference. Stay away from non cheese!
3. Add different condiments to your grilled cheese sandwich. Give your cheesy goodness some extra oomph. Try spreading jam on one slice of bread. It will add an extra layer of flavor to the cheese. Some suggestions: grape jelly, strawberry, apricot, tomato jam, red pepper jelly, honey mustard, chipotle mayonnaise, cranberry relish, pesto, buffalo wing sauce, and so forth. A little cream cheese never hurt anyone either!
4. Take an ordinary grilled cheese sandwich and add protein to it. Sky is the limit here: sausage, pepperoni, lunch-meat, thinly sliced steak, chicken, tuna, corned beef, etc. The list goes on and on
5. Whats a sandwich without veggies? Avocado slices, tomatoes, caramelized onions, spinach, arugula, mushrooms, zucchini, and peppers work well.
6. Fruit can also work well with a grilled cheesesuch as thin slices of apples, pears, strawberries, peaches, or kiwi. Even dried cranberries, raisins, and currants are great options.
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Put Some Cheese On The Outside
The second key to making a great grilled cheese is the toasty bread. Here, Chef John goes next level on us, with his patented “inside-out” method. That’s right. Cheese on the inside, cheese on the outside. The trick here is to toast it slowly over medium-low heat so the cheese is crispy and caramelized not burned. Watch the technique:
Get the recipe for Chef John’s Inside-Out Grilled Cheese Sandwich.
Ways To Make Grilled Cheese Sandwiches Even Better Using Things You Have In Your Kitchen
- Grilled cheese sandwiches only require a few ingredients and are the perfect comfort food.
- However, adding out-of-the-box kitchen staples like peanut butter can elevate your grilled cheese sandwiches into a gourmet dish.
- Avocado, pickles, and bacon also make delicious additions.
- Visit Insider’s homepage for more stories.
Grilled cheese sandwiches are easy-to-make and delicious, no matter what ingredients you have laying around.
However, if you really want to take your grilled cheeses to the next level, you shouldn’t be afraid to experiment by adding interesting ingredients like pickles, tomatoes, and even peanut butter.
“With grilled cheese sandwiches, the world is your oyster,” Laura Werlin, the author of “Grilled Cheese, Please” and “Great Grilled Cheese” told Insider. “You can put almost anything you like in between two slices of bread with cheese and grill it. However, it’s called a grilled cheese for a reason – you still want the cheese to be the star.”
“With grilled cheese sandwiches, it’s a canvas,” Heidi Gibson, the co-owner of American Grilled Cheese Kitchen in San Francisco, co-author of “Grilled Cheese Kitchen: Bread + Cheese + Everything in Between,” and winner of multiple grilled cheese competitions, told Insider. “There’s a lot of flexibility there. For me, that’s part of the fun. How can I make a grilled cheese sandwich into something extraordinary with these humble beginnings?”
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Meaty Grilled Cheese Sandwiches:
Prepare as directed, except place a thin layer thinly sliced cooked ham, roast beef, pepperoni, salami, or shredded cooked chicken or turkey on the cheese before topping with the remaining bread slices.
Per sandwich: 357 cal., 14 g pro., 28 g carb., 22 g total fat , 54 mg chol., 2 g fiber, 867 mg sodium
Why Wont The Cheese Melt In My Grilled Cheese
Slicing the cheese too thick.
When sliced too thick, the cheese simply wont cook all the way through, which means you wont get that oozy, melty goodness you have your heart set on. It melts more evenly and quickly than slices, and youre guaranteed to have just the right balance of toasted bread and melted cheese.
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How To Make The Best Grilled Cheese Sandwiches
We reveal the best cheeses for grilled cheese along with additional tips for creating the best grilled cheese sandwiches ever.
Admittedly, there’s as lot going on. So you may have missed the most important scientific discovery of our young century: Science has discovered the best cheeses for making grilled cheese. What are the best cheeses for grilled cheese? We reveal them here, and offer 4 additional tips for making the best grilled cheese sandwiches.
The Best Grilled Cheese Recipe Ever
We all love a good grilled cheese sandwich, right? But, have you ever made an epic grilled cheese on the stove at home? You know, the kind with a cheese pull for miles and crispy, perfectly golden brown edges of buttery brilliance. Sometimes you nail it, sometimes you burn it, or it comes out a little dry, or the cheese isnt fully melted. Well, were here to teach you how to make the best grilled cheese everno more disappointments! Just melted cheese sandwich perfection, for the rest of your grilled cheese-filled days.
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Pick A Healthier Bread
The traditional white bread used to craft grilled cheese sandwiches lacks fiber and can taste a little bland. For a healthier substitute, choose a whole grain bread.
Whole grain breads include the bran, endosperm, and germ, so you get extra nutrients from the wheat. Some multigrain bread also include seeds, such as sunflower seeds and flaxseeds.
The whole grains and seeds give a nuttier flavor and heartier texture but they also deliver added fiber.
Create A Crispy Cheesy Crust On Your Bread
This next tip is going to take your grilled cheese sandwich to the next level. If youve made our original tsoureki and feta grilled cheese , then you know that we love to spread mayonnaise on our bread, top it with grated parmesan, and cook that in melted butter. The result is so much better than simply frying your bread in butter. Parmesan flavour, crispy textureso perfect!
Give A French Spin To Your Grilled Cheese By Adding Ham
Ham pairs perfectly with easily melted cheeses like Swiss or Gorgonzola and adds a ton of flavor without any extra prep work. Simply add a slice or two or your favorite sandwich ham and you’re good to go.
“Ham is great, but it should be thinly sliced,” Werlin said. “You’re adding that smokey flavor.”