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Not Your Mother’s Grilled Cheese!

Not Your Mother's Grilled Cheese - CWLB

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Supreme Grilled Cheese


2 tablespoons butter
1 head cauliflower, cut in small pieces
Salt and pepper
1⁄2 cup flour
1⁄2 cup rice flour
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 cup cold seltzer water (club soda)
Vegetable oil for frying
2 yellow onions, thinly sliced
8 slices sourdough bread
4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
4 slices Pepper Jack cheese
4 slices Cheddar cheese


  1. Heat large sauté pan over high heat. Add butter and cauliflower; sauté on high until brown, stirring so cauliflower doesn’t burn. Season with salt and pepper; remove to plate lined with paper towels; drain.
  2. For batter: Whisk together flours, cornstarch, and a pinch of salt and pepper. Whisk in cold seltzer water until smooth. (Water MUST be cold for tempura-style batter.) Store batter in the refrigerator until ready to fry.
  3. Heat 3-4 inches vegetable oil to 350ºF in a fryer or deep pan. Dip onion slices into the batter to cover and fry until golden brown. Drain on paper-towel-lined plates and season with salt and pepper.
  4. Heat grill over medium. Drizzle 1 side of each slice of bread with 1⁄2 tablespoon olive oil; place 4 slices, oil-side down,
    on the grill (or use a panini press).
  5. Top each slice with Pepper Jack, cauliflower, fried onions, and a slice of Cheddar, in that order. Place remaining 4 bread slices on top of sandwiches, oil-side up. Grill, turning once until the bread is golden and the cheese is melted.

Buffalo Blue Grilled Cheese


4 boneless chicken breasts
Salt and pepper
1 cup buttermilk
1 cup flour
1 cup spicy “buffalo wing” sauce
Vegetable oil for frying
8 slices sourdough bread
6 tablespoons butter, at room temp.
4 slices Monterey Jack cheese
2⁄3 cup (4 ounces) Blue cheese, crumbled
2 cups iceberg lettuce, shredded
Pickled sweet peppers
Hot sport peppers, (like the ones at Steak n ShakeTM!) optional


  1. Season chicken breasts with salt and pepper and place in zip-style resealable bag. Pour buttermilk into bag and seal. Refrigerate at least 1 hour or overnight.
  2. Place flour on plate and season with salt and pepper. Pour wing sauce into a bowl.
  3. Heat large sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add vegetable oil to about 1-inch depth and heat to 350ºF.
  4. Remove chicken breasts from bag and roll in flour to coat.
  5. Fry in hot oil, 4-5 minutes per side, until golden and cooked through.
  6. Remove chicken breasts from skillet with tongs and turn them into the bowl of hot sauce to coat evenly. Reserve on a plate.
  7. Heat large skillet over medium heat. Butter 1 side of each bread slice.
  8. Place 4 slices, buttered-side down, in skillet and top each with 1 slice Monterey Jack, 1 chicken breast, 1 ounce Blue cheese crumbles, and 1⁄2 cup of shredded lettuce.
  9. Layer the sweet peppers on the lettuce, if using.
  10. Top each sandwich with another piece of the bread, butter-side up, and grill, turning once until bread is golden and cheese melts. Garnish with sport peppers, if desired.

B.E.L.T.A Grilled Cheese (Bacon, Egg, Lettuce, Tomato, Avocado)


4 tablespoons mayonnaise
1 clove garlic, minced
8 slices French-style country bread
4 slices Edam cheese (or gouda)
1 head Bibb lettuce
2 beefsteak tomatoes, sliced
2 ripe Hass avocados, sliced
8 slices bacon
4 eggs
4 slices Cheddar cheese
6 tablespoons butter, at room temp.


  1. Mix mayonnaise with garlic. Spread 1 tablespoon of the mixture on each of 4 slices of bread.
  2. Top each with 1 slice Edam, a few leaves of lettuce, a slice or 2 of the tomato, and 1⁄4 of the avocado slices. Set aside.
  3. Fry bacon in cast-iron or nonstick skillet until crisp; remove to plate lined with paper towels and drain and pat dry.
  4. Remove all but 1-2 tablespoons bacon fat from skillet.
  5. Crack eggs into skillet and fry until whites are just set; flip over and cook for 1 minute.
  6. Place 2 bacon slices on top of avocados on each of the prepared bread slices.
  7. Top bacon with an egg, a slice of Cheddar, and a slice of bread.
  8. Wipe the skillet out and return to heat. Add 1 tablespoon butter and, when melted, add sandwiches to skillet.
  9. Spread sandwich tops with butter.
  10. Grill sandwiches until bottom is lightly browned and cheese begins to melt.
  11. Flip sandwiches, adding more butter if necessary. Grill until browned and cheese melts.

Turkey Day Grilled Cheese


3 tablespoons cranberry sauce
3 tablespoons Dijon mustard
6-8 tablespoons butter, at room temp.
4-5 fresh sage leaves, chopped
8 slices honey wheat bread
16 slices Gouda cheese
8 ounces turkey breast, sliced (can use deli turkey too)
8 ounces fresh spinach leaves


  1. In small bowl, mix cranberry sauce and Dijon mustard. Set aside.
  2. Mix butter with sage until smooth.
  3. Heat large skillet or sauté pan over medium heat.
  4. Spread 1 side of each bread slice with sage-butter.
  5. Place 4 slices butter-side down in pan and spread each with 1 tablespoon cranberry-mustard.
  6. Top with 2 slices Gouda, 2 ounces turkey, and 2 ounces spinach.
  7. Top with 2 more slices Gouda and bread slice, butter-side up.
  8. Grill, turning sandwiches once until bread is golden and cheese is melted.
  9. Serve remaining cranberry-mustard on the side.

Cheesy Mushroom Grilled Cheese


1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
7 tablespoons butter, at room temperature, divided
1 yellow or Spanish onion, thinly sliced
1 teaspoon sugar
Salt and pepper
1 tablespoon water
6-8 ounces mushrooms such as cremini, button, or shiitake, sliced
1⁄8-inch thick 1 sprig fresh rosemary, chopped
1 sprig fresh thyme, chopped
8 slices whole-grain bread
4 slices Cheddar cheese
4 slices aged brick cheese


  1. For caramelized onions: Heat large sauté pan over high heat; add olive oil and 1 tablespoon butter; heat. Add sliced onions and sugar.
  2. Cook without stirring for 2 minutes. Stir in pinch of salt and pepper.
  3. Cook, stirring at intervals, for another 5-8 minutes to brown onions. Add water and stir for 1 minute. Remove to a bowl and set aside.
  4. Return pan to heat and add 1 tablespoon butter and melt; add mushrooms.
  5. Add a pinch of salt and pepper and cook on medium-high heat for 3-5 minutes. Add chopped herbs and cook for 2 minutes. Remove to bowl.
  6. Spread butter evenly on 1 side of the bread slices. Heat skillet or sauté pan over medium heat; place a bread slice, butter-side down, in skillet.
  7. Top with a slice of Cheddar; add about 1 tablespoon each of mushrooms and onions, then top with a slice of aged brick and another piece of bread, butter-side up.
  8. Grill for 2 minutes, then carefully flip over, cooking to a golden brown and melting the cheeses.
  9. Repeat with remaining ingredients (3 additional sandwiches).

Frisco Focaccia Grilled Cheese


 7 tablespoons butter at room temperature, divided
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
8 ounces shiitake mushroom caps, thinly sliced
Salt and pepper
4 focaccia-style rolls, split
4 fresh mozzarella ovaline-size balls, each cut into 8 slices
16 slices pepperoni
1⁄2 cup ripe black olive slices
6-8 pepperoncini halved
4 ounces marinated sun-dried tomatoes, dried and thinly sliced


  1. Mix 6 tablespoons butter with the garlic until light and smooth.
  2. Heat sauté pan over high heat; add olive oil, 1 tablespoon butter, and mushrooms.
  3. Season with a pinch of salt and pepper; sauté 5 minutes.
  4. Spread cut sides of rolls with garlic butter.
  5. Heat large skillet or sauté pan. Place roll bottoms in pan, butter-side down. Grill until golden brown.
  6. Flip roll bottoms. Layer on each bottom 4 slices Fresh Mozzarella, 4 slices pepperoni, some black olive slices, 3-4 pepperoncini halves, some sautéed mushrooms,
    1 ounce sun-dried tomatoes, and 4 more slices Fresh Mozzarella.
  7. Place roll tops over. Grill until cheese is melted and bread is crisp and golden, turning sandwiches over once during grilling.

Swiss Pickle Grilled Cheese


8 tablespoons yellow deli-style mustard
1 16-inch baguette, cut into 4 even pieces and sliced in half lengthwise
16 slices Swiss cheese
4 kosher dill pickles, thinly sliced
1 pound top-quality smoked ham, sliced
4 tablespoons butter, at room temp
stuffed green olives, optional
sport peppers, optional


  1. Spread 1 tablespoon mustard evenly over each cut side of baguette.
  2. On each bottom piece, place 2 slices Swiss, some pickle slices, and 1⁄4 pound of sliced ham.
  3. Top with additional pickle slices and 2 additional slices of Swiss.
  4. Place bread top on and spread 1 tablespoon butter over sandwich top.
  5. If using a panini press:
    1. Heat on medium-high and add 1 tablespoon of butter.
    2. Place sandwich on heating element as butter melts; lower top of panini press and press the sandwich together.
    3. Cook to a golden brown and until cheese melts.
  6. If you are not using a panini press:
    1. Heat skillet or sauté pan over medium-high heat, add 1 tablespoon butter and add sandwich when butter melts.
    2. Grill for 2 minutes, then carefully turn over and press down with a spatula and grill another 2 minutes.
  7. Repeat with remaining 3 sandwiches.

Pumpernickel Beet Grilled Cheese


bunch (5-6) fresh red beets
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper
8 slices bacon
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1-3 tablespoons honey
1⁄4 cup balsamic vinegar
4 tablespoons grape seed oil (can use extra virgin olive oil)
8 slices pumpernickel bread
Butter to coat bread
1 cup (6-8 ounces) Feta cheese, crumbled
8 ounces arugula
4 tablespoons pepitas (pumpkin seeds), toasted
1 red onion, sliced about 1⁄8-inch thick


  1. Preheat oven to 375ºF.
  2. Trim beet stems, leaving about 1 inch of stem attached. Wash beets in cold water.
  3. Place in baking dish; drizzle with extra virgin olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Add water to dish to depth of 1⁄4 inch.
  4. Cover and place in oven and roast for about 1 hour and 15 minutes, or until beets are easily pierced with knife or fork. Peel.
    (The beets will peel easily while still hot or warm.)
  5. Cool and slice thinly.
  6. Fry bacon, if using, in skillet until crispy and brown.
  7. Whisk together mustard, honey, balsamic vinegar, and grape seed oil.
  8. Heat skillet or sauté pan over medium heat and spread 1 side of pumpernickel slices with butter; place 4 slices in pan, butter-side down.
  9. Top each with 1⁄8 of the Feta, 1⁄4 of the beet slices, some arugula, 1⁄4 of the toasted pepitas, 2 bacon slices (or 1 ham slice), 1⁄4 of the onion slices, another 1⁄8 of the Feta, and a slice of the remaining pumpernickel, butter-side up.
  10. Grill on both sides, turning once, to brown bread. Serve with the honey-balsamic dressing on the side or drizzled over the top.

I truly hope you and your family enjoy these grilled cheese sandwiches.  Stay tuned for the next round of grilled cheese — Grown-up and Fancy Grilled Cheese!

Serve these yummy sandwiches with a delicious warm soup today!

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Lisa Bonner

Lisa Bonner

LisaB has been creating recipes since she learned to cook waaaaay back in the late 70s/early 80s and has written over 50 recipe books! Her fondest memories are hanging out in the kitchen with her Grampa Eddie, helping him to make his famous Jewish Apple Cake. You can find LisaB on Facebook by using #CheesecakeNation and #CookiesAreLife.

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