Grilled Cheese and Pickle Panini
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Grilled Cheese and Pickle Panini

Grilled Cheese Pickle Panini from



I take absolutely no credit for the creation of this recipe. I have never heard of anyone eating it before (or seen it on a menu, so please feel free to tell me if you have). The idea was all my kids'.

We often buy hearty whole grain sour dough bread and sharp cheddar cheese at the farmers' market with which we use to make, among other things, paninis. Sometimes we'll add a slice of heirloom tomato or avocado to jazz them up, but last weekend Kenya asked if we could just use pickles. Pickles. Not as a garnish to accompany the tomato and avocado, mind you, but as the sole co-star to the cheese. It sounded so silly that we all (even Kenya) started giggling, "grilled cheese and pickle?" But then Chloe started chanting for it too. Never one to ignore a culinary request, especially one from my kids, I thinly sliced a bunch of kosher dills and started assembling the sandwich.

Well, my munchkins are definitely on to something. Who knew you could up the ante on the classic grilled cheese -- a sandwich already bordering on perfection -- but three days in a row later, the Grilled Cheese and Pickle Panini has become a new lunchtime favorite in our house.

Grilled Cheese Pickle Panini from

Photos by Maren Caruso

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Grilled Cheese and Pickle Panini  (Serves 2)

  • Prep Time: 2 mins,
  • Cook Time: 3 mins,
  • Rating:
    Rate this recipe
I take absolutely no credit for the creation of this recipe. I have never heard of anyone eating it before (or seen it on a menu, so please feel free to tell me if you have). The idea was all my kids'. We often buy hearty whole grain sour dough bread...


  • 4 slices whole wheat bread (or your favorite sandwich bread)
  • 4 slices cheddar cheese
  • 2 pickles, thinly sliced lengthwise


  1. 1. Preheat panini maker (this can also be made in a saute pan).
  2. 2. Place a slice of cheese on one slice of bread and cover with a layer of sliced pickles.
  3. 3. Place another slice of cheese on top of the pickles and cover with a slice of bread.
  4. 4. Continue making the second panini.
  5. 5. Place sammies in the panini maker and cook for 2-3 minutes.
  6. 6. Slice panini in half or on a diagonal to make triangles and serve.
Grilled Cheese and Pickle Panini

Nutrition Information

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  1. Tommy H

    October 22, 2015 at 10:52 pm

    I really appreciate this recipe and for one think the pickles make an awesome and unique twist. I wonder if you have ever trying using another type of cheese, like brie? Classic cheddar cheese grilled cheese are amazing, but I find brie to be a fun change of pace.

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  9. Fred Rickson

    July 14, 2014 at 10:41 am

    Also special is peanut butter, dill pickle, and grilled cheese.

  10. Arthur

    April 1, 2014 at 11:04 am

    I introduced this dish to the food service staff of Tulane University in 1958. We used readily available stuff, Kraft cheese, dill pickle chips (for hamburgers)., butter for frying. Now, I use “sandwich stuffers” or “pickle planks”, precut, on Potato Bread, and EV Olive Oil instead of butter.. Cooked on one of the newer “green-pans”, it’s quick, easy, and cheap. To gild the lily, make one more layer, with fried uncured bacon strips.

    Hey, Hey, USA, where the so-called “junk food” is world class! Wonderful stuff, and right up there with the Reuben! FWIW: These make piquant “funeral sandwiches” too…. Heavenly sandwiches served with Deviled Eggs.

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  15. Kate

    September 9, 2013 at 7:06 am

    Is this the kind of thing you would pack in a lunch? And if so, how? With a cold pack? At room temp? Thanks!

    • catherine

      September 9, 2013 at 1:27 pm

      I have packed this in lunch many times! Make the sandwich and allow it to cool before packing it in lunch so it doesn’t get soggy! I always pack an ice pack with lunch to make sure everything stays at a safe temperature by lunch time! Lunch is not reheated, so it is served at room temp!

  16. Allison Champ

    June 24, 2013 at 10:26 am

    Sign me up!

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  19. Lindsey

    January 10, 2012 at 4:32 pm

    Ive been eating grilled cheese with pickles for years! My mother would make them when I was younger. Delicious!

  20. Gary

    November 17, 2011 at 1:30 am

    I remember when a college friend of mine suggested this. I thought he was crazy, but then…WOW.

    • Amine

      February 3, 2014 at 12:12 am

      I’ve got a salt tooth too. Caramel is only really alanppieg to me with a good kick of sea salt over the top. And I think these would be just the thing to perk up some scallops on a sweet corn puree. Nb, have just found your blog and have spent the best part of an hour swooning. Thank you for the escapism!

  21. Melanie

    November 8, 2011 at 1:48 am

    Wow – brings back memories and an intense urge to eat a sandwich I haven’t had since I was a kid. A little different – but my Mom used to make an opened faced toasted cheese with muenster cheese, mustard, and four dill pickle chips.

    So, so good.

  22. caryleer

    October 22, 2011 at 3:48 pm

    I’ve been eating these sandwiched for nearly 6 decades – sometimes I add tomato.

  23. Cheryl

    October 3, 2011 at 11:01 am

    My Daughter loves pickles and I cannot wait to try this for her. As another suggestion this Kentucky girl grew up putting slices of ripe tomato on my grilled cheese, it makes a great summer twist on this classic sandwich too!!!

  24. Elizabeth

    September 20, 2011 at 2:14 am

    I am already craving certain foods in early pregnancy and have a feeling that grilled cheese and pickles is going to be on the list! In fact, I think I already know what I’m making for lunch tomorrow :) And the bonus is that I’m sure my 2 year old will love it as well! Thank you!!

  25. hillary7511

    September 13, 2011 at 8:48 pm

    When I was younger we did cheese and pickle with tortillas instead of bread. Hadn’t had for years till I was pregnant with my son, and then it was one of my weekly/daily cravings.

  26. discountchica

    September 13, 2011 at 12:20 pm

    I am sitting at work, drooling over this.

  27. Susie

    September 12, 2011 at 9:05 pm

    I have never eaten a grilled cheese sandwich without pickles, and always dip it in tomato soup. I thought it was normal! Our cafeteria at school ALWAYS served pickles with grilled cheese when I was a kid :)

  28. Sam M

    September 12, 2011 at 3:14 pm

    We grew up on hamburger dills in our grilled cheese!

  29. blondie

    September 11, 2011 at 6:28 am

    We used to serve grilled cheese with pickles at my mom’s cafe…on fresh bread. One man, who was vegetarian, ordered it every time, with a bowl of broccoli and cheese soup! It was like a little bite of heaven…mmm

  30. Jane T

    September 10, 2011 at 4:01 pm

    When I make grilled cheese sandwiches, I MUST have a side dish of hamburger dills!!! I can’t even imagine a grilled cheese without the pickles. Yum, Yum!

  31. Raquel

    September 9, 2011 at 10:39 am

    I just made this on my little george foreman grill. worked great.

  32. Margaret

    September 8, 2011 at 11:45 pm

    I LOVE grilled cheese sandwiches! For the First Thursdays Art Walk here in town I even go to:
    One of my faves is grilled cheese with pickle AND tomato!

  33. Erika E.

    September 8, 2011 at 9:12 am

    Any suggestions on a particular brand of panini maker that’s small and does the job? We live in an apartment and don’t have much counter space for the nicer, large ones.

  34. Brenda

    September 7, 2011 at 11:26 pm

    How does your mind keep going with new stuff? Well at least your son came up with this one.

  35. Raquel

    September 7, 2011 at 10:29 pm

    I am going to try this right now with some fridge pickles I made; I cannot wait!

  36. shannon

    September 7, 2011 at 5:23 pm

    Do you use dill or sweet pickles? I cant wait to try this on my grandson:)

    • natalie

      September 7, 2011 at 6:16 pm

      :: shannon :: i use dill when i make mine.

  37. jamie

    September 7, 2011 at 5:22 pm

    holy moly! i thot my daughter was the only kid around who loves pickles!! just made this concoction for her recently – except she doesnt even need it grilled. just a slice of cheese (not necessarily cheddar – usually monterey jack by request), and pickles between two slices of plain old whole wheat bread!
    interesting what kids come up with when their imaginations aren’t restricted!

  38. Krissy

    September 7, 2011 at 2:03 pm

    These pickle and cheese masterpieces taste good with a little ham, or bacon inside as well. :) I too have been eating pickles and grilled cheeese sandwiches together since childhood and love the combo. You other ladies that enjoy this from the north at all?

    • Chuck

      November 5, 2011 at 5:04 pm

      Grade A stuff. I’m unquetosinalby in your debt.

      • Arwilaanag

        February 1, 2014 at 12:01 pm

        First of all, I was on your site maybe 5 minutes ago, wodnnrieg if you had written a new post. And now here it is! Thank goodness for Facebook, otherwise I probably wouldn’t have checked back for a few more days. I did see the post on Sprouted Kitchen and I’ve been anxious to make it ever since I came across it. I’ve been on a coconut milk kick recently and I just know that it would make for the most wonderful popsicle (or ice cream) base. And, from the look of these pictures, it was a huge success.

  39. Elesia

    September 7, 2011 at 1:48 pm

    oh yeah!!!! I used to always add relish to grilled cheese- I am sure pickles toasted inside would be yummy :)

  40. Jessica

    September 7, 2011 at 1:48 pm

    Mmmm, i’ve been eating grilled cheese and pickle sandwiches for years. Something about the combination of creamy cheese and the crunch of the pickle make it perfect!!

  41. Jenn

    September 7, 2011 at 1:24 pm

    When I was a kid my dad used to make grilled cheese with mustard and a sprinkle of oregano on them. YUMMY!

  42. Yvonne

    September 7, 2011 at 12:58 pm

    So funny my daughter asks for “pickle sandwiches” all the time!

  43. Mbrandle

    September 7, 2011 at 12:36 pm

    I too, have been eating these for decades! There’s nothing else quite like it! I can’t wait to show my husband! Maybe he’ll quit giving me funny looks when I make them, and try one for a change! Hahaha

  44. Alaina Willis

    September 7, 2011 at 12:35 pm

    I have always been a lover of grilled cheese and pickles. I also like grilled cheese and tomatoes. YUMMY! I might just have to make for the babies (I have a 2yr old and a 12 month old.)

  45. emily

    September 7, 2011 at 12:34 pm

    We always serve grilled cheese with pickles on the side at our house! Never thought to put them IN the sandwich! Can’t wait to try it out!

  46. Erika

    September 7, 2011 at 12:02 pm

    I’m so glad that I’m not the only one that actually have been eating this…I even made a special request grilled cheese with pickles at a local diner when I was pregnant..Now, when I do that, I only get the “weirdo” look from the waitress. Good thinking, Kenya!

  47. Andree

    September 7, 2011 at 11:58 am

    Branston pickle and cheddar sandwiches is a well-known delicacy in England. Next time you’re in NY, try the version at Tea & Sympathy. Delicious!

  48. janelle weems

    September 7, 2011 at 10:44 am

    Thats so funny! =) my niece has been eating these for a while and when i was pregnant she got me hooked! i haven’t had one since i had my daughter but i think it will have to make a comeback =) thanku!

  49. Monte

    September 7, 2011 at 10:43 am

    “MMMmmmMMM” said my 17mo with her mouth full of cheesy-pickly goodness.

  50. Kristina

    September 7, 2011 at 10:15 am

    Myself and my two and a half year old eat pickles and chees on whole wheat with brown mustard all of the time. Would not be so far featched to grill it. Sometimes we put it in the microwave to melt the cheese a little. you get melty cheese without having to use the butter to grill it. I have been eating this for years. My grand mom showed me when I was a little girl.

  51. natalie

    September 7, 2011 at 8:36 am

    :: i’ve been eating grilled cheese with pickle inside for almost 3 decades! yes. decades! as you know it’s pure deliciousness. thanks for your blog. i read every day. while i don’t have children of my own, i appreciate your nutritious approach to tasty uncomplicated foods. cheers!

    • catherine

      September 7, 2011 at 9:32 am

      Love that you’ve been eating this for years. It’s so darn good. Who knew?! I guess you :)

  52. Maureen

    September 7, 2011 at 8:08 am

    My 3 yr-old daughter is going to love this! Her two favorite foods are grilled cheese & pickles by themselves. I think she’ll love idea of merging them.

  53. Kati

    September 7, 2011 at 7:49 am

    I am not shy to say I’ll probably make this for myself… :) xo

    • Joann@womaninreallife

      September 7, 2011 at 12:55 pm

      I would too Kati!

      • Kasia

        September 7, 2011 at 9:05 pm

        I was’ even thinking about my kids when i saw that one.Yum

  54. HereticPrincess

    September 7, 2011 at 7:34 am

    Yum! I love pickles and cheese so this would be great!

  55. CC Davis

    September 7, 2011 at 5:40 am

    When my nieces were little this is the only way their mom could get them to eat something remotely healthy! Luckily my daughter isn’t as picky as they were but she loves pickles. Can’t wait to make it for her!