Grilled cheese is a home cook’s favorite sandwich because it combines simple ingredients, such as crusty bread, gooey cheese, and rich butter into one crowd pleasing sandwich.
Grilled cheese is such a delightful meal option and whoever discovered the yumminess of it has my greatest thanks.
In our home, the healthy sourdough grilled cheese is what we prefer, but there are so many grilled cheese options.
You can switch yours up with different breads, cheeses, or toppings!
What Makes A Good Grilled Cheese Sandwich?
Every grilled cheese is made up of toasted bread and slices of gooey cheese. What makes a grilled cheese sandwich truly delicious? Variety!
You have to have bread to make a grilled cheese sandwich, but you don’t necessarily have to use your everyday sandwich bread!
You need slices of cheese as well, but what type of cheese you use is entirely up to you.
A good grilled cheese sandwich is the one that has your individual stamp on it – your favorite type of bread, your yummiest choice of cheese.
Why Are Grilled Cheese Sandwiches The Perfect Sandwich For Families?
- It Uses Simple Ingredients! – Grilled cheese sandwiches are great for families with picky eaters, because even the pickiest eaters tend to like bread and cheese! While you can always add more ingredients to your sandwich, bread and cheese are comfortable and familiar foods for children. It’s always nice to have a suppertime without a protest!
- It’s Quick! – There’s no prep work involved! A great option for those busy nights.
- It’s Budget-Friendly! – Bread can be as cheap or expensive as your budget requires. Cheese is also available at a range of costs. But whether you make a basic grilled cheese or a more gourmet option, it always taste great.
How Does Bread Impact A Grilled Cheese Recipe?
When a recipe is essentially two main ingredients, each ingredient really shines.
Bread makes up the bulk of a grilled cheese sandwich, so the type of bread you choose makes a difference in the taste and texture!
Some breads have a looser crumb structure that holds on to more butter. This means your sandwich will have extra buttery flavor!
Other breads have a more uniform crumb and will toast more evenly. Fermented breads will have a sour, tangy flavor.
Yeasted sandwich breads have a more familiar taste, and some of them are just as healthful as sourdough.
Artisan breads will have holes from air pockets that will slightly char when toasted, which can be a nice taste!
Thin slices of any type of bread will cause your cheese to melt quicker, while thick slices take the sandwich from a yummy side dish to a hearty main.
A great way to take a classic combo, such as grilled cheese, and jazz it up is to change the type of bread you use!
Best Breads For The Perfect Grilled Cheese Sandwich
- English Muffins – Flip the muffin inside out, and place those nooks and crannies against the skillet. The crannies hold on to extra butter or mayo, making an extra flavorful sandwich.
- Sourdough Sandwich Bread – Tangy sourdough bread adds a slightly sour flavor to an otherwise basic sandwich. Whether you bake or buy, opt for a sourdough bread with a tighter crumb structure. Otherwise, you may find gooey melted cheese dripping through those large air pockets!
- Classic Sandwich Bread – Whether classic white bread or whole wheat, sandwich bread has an even surface that creates a consistent golden crust.
- Potato Bread – This soft bread is similar to typical sandwich bread, but has thicker slices and a slight potato flavor. It gives an earthy flavor to the sandwich.
- Cheesy Garlic Bread – Take your sandwich to a whole new level! After baking up some garlic bread, place the buttery side down on your large skillet and build up your sandwich.
- Artisan Bread – There are many options of homemade bread here! As long as it makes a loaf wide enough to lay cheese slices, it’s a good fit. Think loaves of italian or french bread!
Best Cheeses For Grilled Cheese Sandwiches
- American Cheese
- Monterey Jack
- Sharp Cheddar Cheese
- Young Gouda
- Mozzarella Cheese
Delicious Add Ins For Grilled Cheese Sandwiches
- Crispy Bacon
- Red Peppers
- Caramelized Onions
- Fresh Garlic
- Dried Parsley
- Homemade Garlic Butter
Steps For Cooking A Grilled Cheese
- Get your skillet or griddle heating up over medium high heat. You don’t want your sandwiches to burn, but you do want the butter to have a nice sizzle when you place it on the pan.
- While the pan is heating up, use a cutting board to cut off slices of your favorite kind of bread.
- Spread room temperature, unsalted butter on one side of both slices of bread. If you’re dealing with cold butter, you will find it hard to spread. You can soften butter in a pinch filling a liquid measuring cup with water, using the microwave to boil the water, dump the water out, and set the empty cup upside down over your stick of butter. The residual heat will soften the butter without melting it!
- Place one slice of bread, butter side down, on your hot skillet. Immediately layer on your slices of cheese. Two to three slices are best, and feel free to mix types of cheese! After you place your cheese, set on your second slice of bread, with the butter side up.
- After 2 to 3 minutes, lower your temperature to medium-low heat and flip your sandwich over so that the other piece of bread starts to toast. While the lower heat means that this second side will take a bit longer to toast, it also gives your cheese a little extra time to get nice and gooey.
- Once that second side is golden and the cheese melts, remove it from the skillet, cut into triangles (always into triangles, haha!), and serve!
Different Ways To Cook The Perfect Grilled Cheese
- Stovetop – This is the basic way to make this classic comfort food. Using a griddle or iron skillet on your stovetop creates an even toast. You’ll need to flip the sandwich after a few minutes to toast the second side.
- Oven – If you like crispy toast, try making your grilled cheese sandwich in the oven! Lay your sandwiches on a baking sheet and place them in a medium heat oven. The oven will toast not only the top and bottom side of each bread slice, but the entire sandwich as a whole. It makes it nice and crunchy!
- Grill – Because of the wire racks, you won’t get as even a toasting if you make your sandwich using a grill. But, you’ll get that slightly smokey flavor, which makes for an amazing grilled cheese sandwich!
Top Tip For The Best Grilled Cheese Sandwich
My best tip for a delicious and easy grilled cheese sandwich – swap out the butter for creamy mayo!
It may sound strange, but spread a thin layer of mayonnaise on the outside of the bread. Don’t worry – you won’t taste the typical mayo flavor. Instead, it will taste slightly tangy.
This is because mayonnaise is mostly egg yolks and oil. The oil will keep the bread from sticking, while the yolks will give it that delicious flavor. Try it!