Healthy, Hodgepodge Grilled Cheese Sandwich - The Rising Spoon

Monday, August 27, 2012

Healthy, Hodgepodge Grilled Cheese Sandwich

Healthy, Hodgepodge Grilled Cheese Sandwich |
Crunchy bread, runny egg yolk, gooey cheese, creamy avocado, juicy tomato: c'est parfait! 
It's the middle of the day, you're starving and you desire something both nutritious and comforting to chomp in to before you continue onward. You filter through a mental list of ingredients you have on hand and maybe crack open the fridge to peer inside. 

Let's assume you have basic ingredients like bread and sliced cheese. You think,  "Ah hagrilled cheese". 

Then you quickly realize a few slices of melted cheese in between buttered toast will taste scrumptious but won't really fill you up.

What's the best option?

Upgrade your favorite childhood sandwich to a healthier version. 

Choose two slices of fiber & protein dense bread, fill it with whatever healthy fats, proteins and veggies you have on hand and layer it with cheese. That's the centerpiece of the sandwich, after all.

Okay, so keeping in mind that you can literally stuff this sandwich with whatever (healthy or not so healthy) ingredients you have on hand, here's my upgraded, filled-with-a-hodgepodge-of-ingredients grilled cheese sandwich. 

And if you want to make it a more complete meal, add my quick heirloom tomatoes with cottage cheese on the side.

Healthy Hodgepodge Grilled Cheese Sandwich
A healthier, upgraded grilled cheese sandwich with crunchy bread, runny egg yolk, gooey cheese, creamy, heart-healthy avocado, and juicy tomato. Easy, quick and more filling than the original.
Serves: 1

2 slices of sprouted 100% whole grain bread, toasted
2-3 teaspoons of grass-fed butter or unrefined, virgin coconut oil 
4 teaspoons of goat cheese 
1 1/2 slices of swiss cheese 
2 1/2 thick slices of heirloom tomatoes, approximately 1/2 a tomato
salt & pepper, to taste (for use on tomatoes, egg & avocado)
1 pastured egg, cooked over-easy (click here to read why I only buy pastured eggs)
1/4 of a large avocado or 1/2 a medium avocado, pitted, skinned and sliced

Recommended Equipment
cast-iron skillet (I use mine almost every day)

Want more real food & gadget recommendations? Check out my shop page.
  1. Spread 2/3 of the butter or coconut oil on the outside of each bread slice. Spread the inside of each piece with 2 teaspoons of goat cheese, then layer with 3/4 a piece of swiss cheese, torn to fit evenly on bread (see picture below).
  2. Heat a small pan to medium heat. Place both bread slices into the pan with the cheese facing upward. Heat for 2-3 minutes or until the bottom side is toasted and golden and the cheese is starting to melt slightly. Be careful not to let the bottom burn. When they're done, remove from pan and turn off heat.
  3. Slice 1/2 a heirloom tomato into thick slices, about 2 1/2 pieces. Layer on bottom piece of bread, then sprinkle with sea salt and cracked black pepper.
  4. Heat broiler to high and let warm up for a few minutes.
  5. Meanwhile, re-heat the same pan to medium, add in the last 1/3 of the butter or coconut oil and fry one egg until over-easy. Flip egg halfway through, making sure not to break or overcook yolk. (You want it runny.) 
  6. Place each slice of bread onto the middle oven rack. The broiler will further melt the cheese and warm the tomato slices. Check after 2-3 minutes. When cheese is melted and just bubbling, remove from oven. 
  7. Place the over-easy egg on top of the tomato slices and salt & pepper the egg. Slice the avocado, layer it on top of the egg and salt it, as well (optional). Place the other piece of cheesy bread on top and set on a plate. Cut the sandwich in half and watch the warm yolk run out (yum)! Make sure to dip your sandwich in the yolk with each bite.
Healthy, Hodgepodge Grilled Cheese Sandwich |
I doubled the recipe here to make two sandwiches. I couldn't leave my BF hanging.

How This Sandwich is Healthier, While Still Remaining Tasty
  • I'm using sprouted 100% whole grain wheat, which has significantly more protein and a bit more fiber than regular white bread. It is denser and keeps you full longer and it's less processed so it's easier on your body.
  • Using only 1 1/2 slices of swiss cheese (as opposed to the 2-4 slices normally used for grilled cheese) saves a lot of fat and calories. I'm not afraid of fat, but I still try to keep my day's intake in check (for calorie purposes). Spreading a small amount of creamy, tangy and goat cheese on the bread helps maintain the cheesiness and intensifies the flavor.
  • Heirloom tomatoes are healthy and the perfect juicy addition to grilled cheeses. Enough said.
  • An over-easy pastured egg adds an additional 6g protein and the gooey, broken yolk lends a savory element to the sandwich.
  • Sliced avocado has heart-healthy fats. Plus, it tastes fabulous on almost anything.
Healthy, Hodgepodge Grilled Cheese Sandwich |
See those red grapes hiding in the background? They were cold (I refrigerate them) and paired wonderfully with this.

More Recipes From The Rising Spoon:

I'd like to hear from YOU!

What are some of your favorite additions to grilled cheese sandwiches?

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Elaina Newton is the creator, writer, and foodie behind the blog, The Rising Spoon. She's a self-taught cook and passionate about spreading basic cooking skills and information about real foods. She loves reading fiction, crafting, video games, dark roast coffee, cats, and rainy days. Connect with her on Pinterest, Facebook, Google +, and Twitter

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