grilled cheese/recipes/sandwiches/Vegetarian Recipes

Classic Grilled Cheese Recipe

Posted April 17, 2012 by Stephanie

I’ve made a lot of grilled cheeses in my life and over time I’ve discovered my perfect combination of bread and cheese. Even though I’ve eaten all sorts of fancy combinations of cheeses, fruits, vegetables, meats and breads, I keep coming back to the classic, which is and will always be: white bread and cheddar.

White bread and cheddar take me right back to my childhood, albeit back then the cheese was Kraft singles and the sandwiches were made in the toaster oven. Technically they weren’t exactly grilled cheese, but rather toasted cheese sandwiches. It was a revelation when I had my first real grilled cheese sandwich.

There is a huge difference between a toasted cheese and a grilled cheese. Buttered, grilled bread is far, far superior to plain toasted. Something magical happens when you put a cheese sandwich in a pan. The cheese gets extra gooey, the bread becomes a combination of soft and crisp and together the whole thing just brings me back to a simpler time. Sometimes it’s the simplest things that taste the best: bread, butter and cheese.

i am cheesy, i am grilled: i am grilled cheese!

Classic Grilled Cheese Recipe
makes 1 sandwich

  • 2 slices white bread
  • butter, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup shredded cheddar (I used a mix of sharp and white)

Heat up a pan on medium-low heat. Butter one slice of bread and place in the pan butter-side down. Top with the shredded cheese. Butter the other slice of bread and place on top of the cheese, butter-side facing out. Cook slowly on medium-low heat until golden brown and toasty. Most of your cheese should be melted when it’s time to flip. Carefully flip your sandwich and continue grilling. The second-side grills a bit faster, so turn the heat down to low and keep a close eye on it. When perfect, remove from the pan, slice into your desired shapes and enjoy hot!


  1. Mandy says:

    I recently read this article on Serious Eats that suggested buttering and grilling BOTH sides of the bread… I thought that sounded like a BRILLIANT idea! I’m going to give it a go for my next grilled cheese sandwich.

  2. Eileen says:

    Oh, grilled cheese…I almost wish I were eating one for breakfast right now! I do still eat a lot of toasted cheese sandwiches from the toaster oven, though! They’re just usually open-faced and stuffed with lots of vegetables under the cheese, so they don’t really compare.

  3. I NEVER eat white bread – EXCEPT if it’s for a grilled cheese. For some reason grilled cheeses taste better with white bread…sigh…

  4. Pure grilled cheese is just a classic food that can’t be beat. It’s amazing with sourdough though as well, I got to say, but that just could be because that’s how my Mommy always made it as I grew up!

  5. Sandi says:

    I enjoy a mixed cheese blend of cheddar, provolone & mozzarella on buttered whole wheat grilled golden brown in a pan. Delicious!

  6. Robbie D says:

    Hi Steph, big fan of the blog. I love the pictures, fonts, and your insatiable love for food! My ex girlfriend gave me a great tip for grilled cheese… Dust the outside with a little bit of Parmesan cheese after you’ve buttered it. It caramelises upon contact with the pan and you get an extra dimension of cheese… Crispy, salty browned goodness. Give it a shot!

    1. Joy says:

      I love grilled cheese and I think the parmesan dusting is a terrific idea!! Wow!

      1. Cory R Cruzan says:

        2/3 mozzarella, 1/3 Parmesan
        Go ahead and throw 15 slices of pepperoni in there….
        A little sauce…
        Makes a Lotta Magic…..

    2. Cory R Cruzan says:

      Sourdough bread all the way!

  7. Asfora says:

    looks very tasty nom nom, can’t go wrong with a classic! I made a cheese toastie bento

  8. Juliana says:

    I adore grilled cheese! One “secret” I learned years ago was to smear mayo on the ‘to-be-grilled’ exterior sides of the bread. Although I *hate* the taste of mayo, something magical happens when you use it to grill– it creates this crispy, golden, crunchy goodness on the outside, with the warm, melty, buttery gooey grilled cheese on the inside.

    Another tip– when you flip the bread to the second side, you can put a lid over the sauce pan to help melt the cheese without burning. I use a cast iron skillet, that once heated w/the melted butter, I turn down and finish cooking low and slow… yum.

    1. steph says:

      Ooh, I’ve heard the mayo trick too, but I haven’t tried it yet!

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