Frugal Gourmet: Grilled Cheese Four Ways

Anyone can make a grilled cheese sandwich, and this beloved classic won't break your budget. If you want to jazz up your sandwiches just a little more than the standard American cheese on Wonder Bread, try these recipes to spark your creativity.

Asparagus Pesto Grilled Cheese

On top of a picnic blanket sits a black plate with a sandwich cut in half, garnished with basil and asparagus spears.
credit: Rachel Whetstone

Ingredients:

2 slices bread

2 tbsp butter

4 asparagus spears

1 tbsp pesto

2 oz whole milk mozzarella, sliced

Directions: Melt 1 tbsp butter in a skillet on medium heat. Cook asparagus in skillet until slightly tender and lightly brown, about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Spread pesto on the inside of each slice of bread, and assemble sandwich with cheese and asparagus. Butter the outside of each piece of bread, and cook the sandwich over medium heat, about 5 minutes per side. Slice and serve hot.

Chocolate Berry Brie Grilled Cheese

A white plate with a sandwich, and chocolate and blackberries on the side.
credit: Rachel Whetstone

Ingredients:

2 slices bread

1 tbsp butter

¼ cup mixed berries

1 oz chocolate bar

2 oz brie, sliced

Directions: Assemble sandwich with cheese, chocolate, and berries inside. Butter the outside of each piece of bread, and cook the sandwich in a skillet over medium heat, about 5 minutes per side. Slice and serve hot.

Pizza Grilled Cheese

A white plate against a black background, with a grilled cheese and pepperoni sandwich cut in half.
credit: Rachel Whetstone

Ingredients:

2 slices bread

1 tbsp butter

1 tbsp marinara sauce

6 slices pepperoni

2 oz whole milk mozzarella, sliced

Directions: Assemble sandwich with cheese and pepperoni. Spread the marinara on the inside of one of the bread slices. Butter the outside of each piece of bread, and cook the sandwich in a skillet over medium heat, about 5 minutes per side. Slice and serve hot.

Brunch Grilled Cheese

Close up of a sandwich with bacon, egg, and cheese peeking out, and a whole egg and slice of bacon on the side.
credit: Rachel Whetstone

Ingredients:

2 slices bread

2 tbsp butter

1 egg

1 slice cooked bacon, broken into pieces

2 sandwich slices cheddar cheese

Directions: Melt 1 tbsp butter in a skillet over medium heat, and scramble the egg, adding in the bacon pieces as the egg cooks. Assemble sandwich with egg and bacon, and a slice of cheese on each side. Butter the outside of each piece of bread, and cook the sandwich in a skillet over medium heat, about 5 minutes per side. Slice and serve hot.

Apple Cinnamon Grilled Cheese

A white plate with a sandwich cut in half, filled with apples and cheddar cheese oozing down onto the plate.
credit: Rachel Whetstone

Ingredients:

2 slices bread

1 tbsp butter

1 tsp cinnamon

4 thin slices granny smith apple

2 sandwich slices cheddar cheese

Directions: Assemble sandwich with apples and cheese, with a slice of cheese on each side. Butter the outside of each piece of bread, and sprinkle with cinnamon. Cook the sandwich in a skillet over medium heat, about 5 minutes per side. Slice and serve hot.