The Ultimate Grilled Cheese Sandwich
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There are thousands of recipes out there for Grilled Cheese Sandwiches. However, after years and years of research, and thousands of sandwiches consumed, we can categorically announce that this recipe is indeed the Ultimate Grilled Cheese Sandwich Recipe! We’re prepared to share with you all how to make this phenomenal sandwich that we guarantee is the best sandwich you’ve ever tasted

How to make The Ultimate Grilled Cheese Sandwich

There are a few critical steps that are needed to make the Ultimate Grilled Cheese Sandwich. Each one of these steps must be taken to ensure the sandwich achieves the ultimate flavor and balance required. Too often a Grilled Cheese is overpowered by one ingredient (many times it’s the cheese) and you’re left with a one-note flavor

This recipe aims to produce the most balanced flavor. The sandwich consists of four primary elements which, when combined, create the best flavor and texture imaginable in a sandwich. Those elements are Cheese, Beef, Bread, and Onions. So, let’s talk about them!

A minimum of three cheese is needed, preferably four

You can get away with using just three cheeses in the Ultimate Grilled Cheese Sandwich, but you really do need four. The four cheeses we use are Mozzarella, American Cheese, Sharp Cheddar, and Gruyere. We’ll break down the role of all four of these cheeses for you

Mozzarella for the cheese pull

It isn’t a Grilled Cheese Sandwich unless you get that cheese pull. When the two halves of the Sandwich are pulled apart and the cheese stretches out as far as your wingspan allows! You know when this happens you’ve got a great sandwich in your hands

The stretchiness of Mozzarella is the perfect cheese choice to achieve the perfect Cheese Pull. It creates a lovely texture in the sandwich that is creamy and velvety, and is a critical requirement for any true cheese lovers sandwich

Ultimate Grilled Cheese Sandwich cheese pull
It’s not the Ultimate Grilled Cheese Sandwich unless you achieve an epic cheese pull. This one delivers!

American Cheese for flavor and gooeyness

Who doesn’t love American Cheese? Beautiful slices of processed cheese that is the cornerstone to deli sandwiches across the USA. American Cheese sometimes gets a bad rep, and we’ve got no idea why. It not only has its own rich flavor which adds depth to any sandwich, but when melted creates a beautiful gooeyness that spreads all over the inside of the Sandwich

We highly recommend any home kitchen always has a plentiful stock of American Cheese (or similar processed cheese slices) in the refrigerator. It’ll last forever in there, and when the time comes – it’s a fantastic addition to any cheesy recipes you’re making

Sharp Cheddar for flavor and tang

Cheddar packs a punch of flavor and tanginess that is critical in your Ultimate Grilled Cheese Sandwich. It has a nice melting quality too, but the real reason it’s in this sandwich is because of the flavor. When you’re eating this sandwich, you want to know you’re eating cheese. While Mozzarella and American Cheese are more there for texture, Cheddar is for taste. It’s undeniably cheesy and tastes great!

We prefer Sharp Cheddar over regular cheddar, so try to get the extra sharp or aged Cheddar. It gives a nice tanginess to the overall flavor

Finally, Gruyere for flavor and to add some sophistication

Gruyere is a fantastic Cheese that is very commonly used in melting cheese dishes. It’s the favored cheese in French Onion Soup as it has a great melting quality as well as a delicious, nutty flavor. The flavor is unique to most other cheese, so when you bite into your Ultimate Grilled Cheese Sandwich it will bring that uniqueness to the bite

It ‘technically’ can be an optional cheese if you can’t find it, and you can just scale up your Cheddar Cheese portions in the recipe. There are other suitable alternatives for Gruyere that we would recommend such as Comte, Havarti, or Provolone Cheese

Fill the Sandwich with not only cheese, but this ridiculously tasty Red Wine Braised Short Ribs

In our opinion, the Ultimate Grilled Cheese Sandwich isn’t complete without adding some meat in there. There are plenty of ways you can go with this option, but in our opinion the absolute ultimate flavor comes from slowly braised Beef Short Ribs

Our recipe takes the Short Ribs and braises them for 3 hours in a ridiculously decadent Red Wine and Beef Broth liquid. After 3 hours of cooking them over a low heat, the Short Ribs becomes so tender and will simply melt in your mouth

The braising liquid can be reduced even further to create a deep, rich, sauce that further flavors the sandwich. It’s the ultimate in decadence and luxury, which is why we’re adding it to this perfect sandwich

Short Ribs in the Ultimate Grilled Cheese Sandwich
In addition to cheese, this sandwich is filled with a delicious Red Wine Braised Short Rib and Pickled Onions

Pickled Onions are the final ingredient, and are critical to add some acid and crunch to the filling

With all the richness that is going into this Sandwich, it does require some acid to balance it all out. There is no better application of acid in this dish than our famous Pickled Onions. Thinly sliced Red Onions are salted and soaked in Lemon Juice for at least 3 hours (preferably for a couple of days) to pickle

The Onions are beautifully acidic, which cuts through the richness of the Beef and Cheese perfectly. It helps to create a perfectly balanced Sandwich, which means you can eat the whole thing with ease. The crunchiness of the Onions adds a beautiful texture to the filling of the Sandwich too. Paired with the crispiness of the bread, it makes for the perfect texture for this dish

Thick-cut Sourdough Toast is the best bread to use

There’s plenty of bread options, but in our opinion the top pick for the Ultimate Grilled Cheese Sandwich is thickly sliced Sourdough. Sourdough bread toasts unbelievably well, as it forms a beautiful, crispy outside yet light and fluffy inside

Sourdough will hold up to the heaviness of the ingredients, so the structure of the sandwich will remain intact from the first bite to the last. We recommend a generous application of butter on both sides of the bread so when it’s toasted in the frying pan will crisp up into a beautiful golden-brown color

If your bread is almost cooked but the Cheese hasn’t fully melted, you can place a lid on the frying pan. This will condense the heat within the pan which will help to melt the cheese

The Ultimate Grilled Cheese Sandwich melted cheese
for the best result, add four types of cheese into the Sandwich and use Thick cut bread

Always cut your Grilled Cheese on a 45-degree angle, and here’s why

We’re ending the debate on how you’re meant to cut your Sandwich right now. You always cut it on a 45-degree angle. The reason for this is simple: The angle you create from the cut will allow the sandwich to easily be dipped into a side of Tomato Soup

Yes, we understand that you don’t always need to eat a Grilled Cheese alongside Tomato Soup. However, this is the Ultimate Grilled Cheese Sandwich recipe we’re talking about here. It absolutely should be served alongside some beautiful Tomato Soup! It just so happens we’ve got you covered there too. Here’s a link to the Best Tomato Soup Recipe you’ll ever try. It’s perfect for this awesome sandwich

Even if you’re not eating your sandwich with Soup, cutting it at a 45-degree angle is a good habit to get into. Once it becomes routine then you’re Sandwich will always be prepared for some Soup dipping. You never know when a Soup may show up, so always have your sandwiches ready to go!

Sandwich being dipped in Tomato Soup
The grilled cheese is most at home being dipped into some wonderful homemade Tomato Soup

Recipe Details


4 people (will make 4 Sandwiches)

Prep time

3 hours (preferably overnight)

Cooking time

3 hours

Total time

6 hours

The Ultimate Grilled Cheese Recipe


  • 8 thick cut slices of Sourdough Bread
  • 1 cup Mozzarella Cheese, shredded
  • 1 cup Sharp Cheddar Cheese, shredded
  • 1 cup Gruyere Cheese, shredded
  • 4 slices of American Cheese
  • 1 tbsp. Butter

Braised Beef Short Rib Ingredients

  • 1 lb. Beef Short Ribs
  • 2 cups of Red Wine
  • 2 cups of Beef Broth (recipes here)
  • ½ Brown Onion, finely diced
  • 1 Carrot, finely diced
  • 4 Garlic Cloves, finely diced
  • 4 sprigs of Thyme
  • 2 tbsp. Vegetable Oil
  • 1 tbsp. Salt

Pickled Onions Ingredients

  • 1 Red Onion, finely sliced
  • Juice of 2 Lemons
  • 1 tbsp. Salt


Begin by making the Pickled Onions

  1. Place the sliced Onions in a sealable container. Add the Salt and Lemon Juice then cover the container and shake well. Refrigerate for a minimum of 3 hours, preferably overnight

Braising the Beef Short Ribs

  1. Generously season the Short Ribs with Salt. Add half the Vegetable Oil into a medium sized pot on medium high. Once hot, add the Short Ribs and sear on each side (about 1 – 2 minutes each) until browned
  2. Remove from pot then add the remaining Vegetable Oil, along with the Onions and Carrots. Cook for 5 minutes on medium, then add Garlic and cook for 1 further minute
  3. Add Beef Broth, Red Wine, Thyme, and 1 tsp. of Salt and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer then add your Short Ribs back into the Pot, ensuring they are mostly submerged in the liquid. Cover, and braise for 3 hours, turning the Short Ribs every hour or so
  4. After 3 hours, remove the Short Ribs and discard the bones. Turn the heat to high and reduce the liquid for 30 minutes to create a thick sauce. Once cooled, shred the Short Ribs, and pour about 2 tbsp. of the Sauce over the Short Ribs. Allow to cool before preparing the Sandwich

Making the Ultimate Grilled Cheese Sandwich

  1. Generously Butter both sides of your bread, ensuring the entire surface area is covered. Place one piece in the center of a frying pan over medium heat.
  2. Layer the ingredients on top of the bread in this order: American Cheese slices, Cheddar, Braised Short Ribs, Pickled Onions, Mozzarella, and Gruyere on top. Season with Salt, then place the other buttered slice of Bread on top. Be generous with your fillings and don’t mind it some fall out
  3. Carefully press the Sandwich down with the back of a large spatula. Do this 2 – 3 times throughout the cook to help the Cheese bind the ingredients together. Cook for about 4-5 minutes until it becomes a dark golden-brown color. Carefully flip the Sandwich and cook for a further 3-4 minutes
  4. Remove from the pan and cut the Sandwich on a 45-degree angle. Serve immediately either on its own, or with some delicious Tomato Soup

We’re certain you will agree that this recipe produces one of, if not the best Grilled Cheese Sandwiches you’ve ever eaten. If you’re a big sandwich fan you’ll love some of these recipes too:

Happy Cooking!

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