Upside-Down Grilled Cheese


The way to make a grilled cheese sandwich better is, arguably, with more cheese. Beg to differ? Bite into this cheesy, pan-toasted glory and you’ll reconsider.

Inspired by NY-based food blog Smitten Kitchen, the traditional grilled cheese sandwich is turned up a notch (or twenty) by melting cheese not only on the inside of the sandwich, but coating both sides in grated cheddar. The resulting crispy cheese bits are termed ”frico,” an Italian-originated food specialty. It’s a simple kitchen maneuver really, but its effects are ungodly. Marry it all between two slices of your favorite bread—a soft Italian loaf, classic sourdough or old fashioned white—and the world of grilled cheese that you once knew will be turned upside-down. So brace yourself.

This recipe is fairly easy; the only trick may be timing your cheese-grilling to the tee so that the outsides are crisp but the insides are gooey. Then again, grilled cheese is a dish that rarely goes so wrong so be a chef and take grilling liberties. Oh, and serving with a side of sweet pickles is highly suggested.

Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 6-8 minutes
Total time: 11-13 minutes

Servings: 1

Photo by Alexandra Wee

2 slices of bread
Sliced cheese (sharp white cheddar works well)
1/4 cup of sharp grated cheddar, plus more if desired
Butter for greasing the pan

1. Melt 1/2 tablespoon of butter in a pan over low to medium heat. Lay down two slices of bread and let both slices brown slightly.

Photo by Alexandra Wee

2. Place sliced cheese on one slice of bread and cover with the other slice, toasted side facing out.

Photo by Alexandra Wee

3. Sprinkle a handful of the grated cheddar on top of the sandwich and let melt slightly.

Photo by Alexandra Wee

4. Flip the sandwich over with tongs or a spatula. Sprinkle more grated cheddar on the top of the sandwich and let melt slightly.

5. Once the outsides of the sandwich are coated in melted cheese crisps and the inside cheese is melted to desired gooeyness, remove from the pan using a spatula or tongs and serve with a few slices of bread-and-butter pickles. Enjoy while warm and crispy.

Photo by Alexandra Wee

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