I use olive oil, not butter, when making a grilled cheese sandwich. Am I alone?

This must be some US vs. British usage thing, because I am confused here. A lot of you seem to be describing some kind of fried sandwich. To me, if there’s actual contact between the food and the thing that cooks it, that’s not grilling. Grilling is when you suspend the food on, you know, a grille, close to some source of heat. No oil or butter is involved.

“Grilled cheese sandwich” is a set phrase that has nothing to do with parsing the individual words. We don’t call that kind of cooking “grilling” either, but it’s not a “pan-fried cheese sandwich.” It’s an accident of language. You could call it a “toasted cheese sandwich,” but that term is much less common.

The large, flat cooking surface at a diner is called a “grill” (or a griddle), and may be where the term came from. For the ultimate “grilled” cheese sandwich, though, make yourself a croque monsieur.

Also, in some parts of the country, it’s called a “melted cheese sandwich”.

I also use mayo. I find it adds a great flavor and caramelization to the bread.

Add a little pesto, some crispy bacon, and a thin slice of tomato if you are so inclined (not for me but my guest love it)…yum.

Add me to that list as well. Provides a tang and a crunchyness that I’ve not been able to duplicate with any other oil. Butter, margarine, OO, etc…

A little bit of a tangent, but my favorite way to get in my daily olive oil is mixed in my oatmeal in the morning. 1/2 cup dry old-fashioned oats. oats (but I’ve started going down to 1/3 for a little less calories), enough milk to cover (sweetened plain soy by preference, skim as second choice), banana, and 1 tsp olive oil. Yum. The olive oil doesn’t taste like olives - it tastes nutty/rich.


Same here, but with the Foreman grill. I don’t have time for a third ingredient.

I’m asking!

  1. Melt butter in skillet on medium heat
  2. Butter the bread by ‘wiping’ the skillet with slice of bread (If I’m doing multiples I stack the buttered sides together)
  3. Place bread slice 1 in skillet, add cheese, and top with bread slice 2
  4. Cover with a pot lid to trap the heat and melt the cheese.
  5. Flip when golden and brown and repeat step 4.

Feel free to eat with a pickle, or add a tomato slice to the inside of it prior to cooking!

It’s not my original; a friend of mine showed me this. Ready?

Big can of tomatoes. Heavy cream. Blender. Stove.

Herbs, spices, your own deal. I usually include a BIG handful of garlic cloves at the blender stage. Basil is good, rosemary is good. Or, 180 degrees, cumin and a little chili powder. Also a wad of garlic.

10 minute meal.

But Burger King differentiate their product from the competition by means of the phrase “flame grilled burger”, at least they do here. They emphasise that their burgers are grilled, not fried like those of their competitors.

Odd; all the BK ads I’ve ever seen say they’re flame broiled.

Maybe that’s some kind of regional difference?

I know this is way off the original question, but today I made grilled cheese a bit differently.

I used a couple of pieces of potato-rosemary bread that I got from the store, which is really quite good. I put butter on it, added some Swiss cheese and kalamata olives. Boy was it good. It might have been better with olive oil. That’s something to try tomorrow

Great suggestions all around.

Alton Brown made a grilled cheese sandwich using olive oil quite some time ago. I remember I was shocked at the very idea!

That sounds better than good. It sounds epic.

/loves me some kalamata olives

Yeah, it is a usage thing. Most US stoves/ovens/rangetops don’t have a grill as you know it in the UK. Our grilled cheese sandwiches are fried in skillets, usually with butter or margarine, but there are some people (as this thread shows) that use other things.

I guess that you would consider my toasted cheese bread to be grilled. I put some butter or olive oil on the top of a couple of slices of bread, and then put on some cheese. Now, sometimes I use cheddar, sometimes American, sometimes provolone, and sometimes parmesan or a mix of Italian cheeses. Sometimes I add seasoning (like garlic powder or parsley). I put the slices directly on the rack that’s in my toaster oven, and toast for a few minutes. This is quite good, but it’s not really a grilled cheese sandwich, because the bread hasn’t carmelized a bit on a skillet.

Grilled cheese sandwiches are sometimes served with soup. There is a debate as to whether tomato or chicken noodle soup is the appropriate one to serve with the sandwiches. Personally, I prefer potato soup.

My mom takes off from this for tomato soup that’s even easier: can of stewed tomatoes, sour cream. Heat the tomatoes, swirl in sour cream. Use the already fancied-up cans of stewed tomatoes if you like, add herbs if you like. Easy peasy.

I live an hour away from Kalamata.

We use olive oil for pretty much everything. It’s still early in the year so I’m still working my way through the oil I helped pick in November.

Add me to the mayo camp. The eggs in the mayo impart an almost French-toast quality to the GCS. Add a little black-forest ham, serve with potato chips…dee-lish!

Miracle Whiz (no, that’s not a typo), OTOH, is a culinary offense akin to putting pineapple on pizza.

To be honest, I have no idea why we refer to it as a “grilled” cheese sandwich. The usage isn’t that different in this term between the US and UK (at least for me, it isn’t.) Grilled should mean cooked on a grill, over direct heat. And I can’t think of anything else cooked in this manner that is described as “grilled.” Really, it should be fried cheese sandwiches or perhaps griddled cheeese sandwiches.