Winning Recipes For Grilled Cheese Contest

Here are the four winning recipes for the WCCO Heavy Table Best Grilled Cheese Sandwich Recipe Contest James Norton’s notes included.


Tomato Jam:

6 large ripe tomatoes – peeled, seeded and coarsely chopped (use Roma tomatoes if it’s not tomato season)
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
2 1/2 tablespoons sugar – little less if in tomato season
Salt – pinch

Cooking Directions:

To make the jam: Place all the ingredients in saucepan over medium-low heat. The mixture should bubble very lightly but not actually boil. Cook for about 1 hour, or until the jam has thickened and the majority of the liquid has evaporated. Let it cool. (You can make this up to 1 week in advance. Store in the refrigerator).

Sandwich Prep:

12 ounces Wisconsin Cheddar Cheese (white or yellow)
4 tablespoons butter, at room temperature
8 sandwich-size slices sourdough
6 tablespoons Tomato Jam

Butter bread on the outside, put 2/3 slices of cheese and the jam, put in pannini press or saucepan, flip when sides are browned.

NOTES: Tomato jam actually easy to make, just takes a bit of time. Sandwich tastes like an inside-out grilled cheese dipped in tomato soup, where the sweet tang of the tomato is actually contained within the bread. Very nice!


Take bakery or store bought apple chunk bread (currently in season-available)
Place sliced Gjetoste cheese (a Norwegian cheese with a caramel-like flavor) in the center
Create an egg batter with 2 eggs, 1/8 t vanilla, dash of cinnamon
Dip sandwich in egg batter and fry in butter until golden.
Serve with a fan of thin sliced apples on top.

Rebecca Bell

NOTES: Between the fruit in the bread (I used cinnamon raisin bread), the egg-batter, the caramel-like gjetost, and the apples on top, this is really a stuffed French toast recipe, as opposed to grilled cheese! But it’s excellent – everything balances very well.


Ground up SPAM (yes I said SPAM) any flavor works although I love the Hickory smoked
Any type whole wheat bread
=BD tsp chopped chives
=BC tsp garlic
=BD tsp onions
1 cup finely shredded Colby Jack cheese
Mix this all together
Spread on non buttered side of bread
Place other slice of bread on top of filled bread- butter side up
Grill until lightly golden brown

Nona Wood
Brooklyn Center, MN

NOTES: I liked the smokey note of the SPAM and the bite of the chives and onion. Also very easy to make – you can batch up a lot of filling and make any number of sandwiches, or refrigerate the filling for later. Probably my #1 choice, but we can talk about that.

Chunky garlic bread (we use Costco brand)
Sliced onions
Mozzarella cheese slices
Butter one side of 2 slices garlic bread. Place one slice, buttered side do=
wn, in fry pan. Place slice of onion on bread, cheese and top with second s=
lice of bread. Grill over medium heat until bread is browned and cheese beg=
ins to melt. Turn sandwich and brown second slice of bread.

Sue Erickson
Burnsville, Mn

NOTES: I appreciated how the onion cut back against the richness of the butter and cheese, and although it’s simple, it’s a really pleasing variant on the cheddar cheese norm. Good stuff.

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