How to Make a Great Grilled Cheese for Kids

Grilled cheese sandwich
Dan Goldberg/Photolibrary/Getty Images
Total Time: 11 min
Prep Time: 5 min
Cook Time: 6 min
Servings: 1 sandwich

Nutrition Highlights (per serving)

262 calories
12g fat
25g carbs
13g protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 1 sandwich
Amount per serving  
Calories 262
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 12g 15%
Saturated Fat 7g 35%
Cholesterol 33mg 11%
Sodium 433mg 19%
Total Carbohydrate 25g 9%
Dietary Fiber 3g 11%
Total Sugars 3g  
Includes 2g Added Sugars 4%
Protein 13g  
Vitamin D 0mcg 0%
Calcium 235mg 18%
Iron 2mg 11%
Potassium 165mg 4%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calorie a day is used for general nutrition advice.

Who doesn't love a grilled cheese sandwich? It's super quick and easy to make and, above all, absolutely delicious, making it the go-to meal for busy parents who need to whip something up in a pinch. When made with whole wheat or whole grain bread and real cheese, it delivers essential nutrients for growing kids like high fiber carbohydrates, calcium, protein and fat. Plus, you can easily add vegetables to the actual sandwich or simply serve on the side for even more of a nutritional boost.

This simple recipe is a great way to get kids involved in the kitchen at a young age. Whether it is helping with the actual cooking such as carefully helping you flip the sandwiches or simply assembling the sandwiches with you, they can easily lend a helping hand!

Ingredients

Preparation

  1. Heat a grill pan, cast iron, or non-stick skillet to medium heat. Meanwhile, spread an even layer of butter on one side of one piece of bread.

  2. When the pan is hot, place a slice of bread, buttered side down, into the skillet and then place the cheese on the bread. Top with the other slice of bread.

  3. Use a flat lid from a small pot (slightly larger than the sandwich but smaller than your pan) to act as a weight and place on top of the sandwich as it is cooking.

  4. After about 3 minutes, use a spatula to see if buttered side has turned golden brown. If so, lift up the sandwich with the spatula, add the second pat of butter to the pan, and flip the sandwich back into the pan. (Now the non-buttered side is cooking in the melted butter.) Press with pot lid again and cook for another 3 minutes or so until cheese is melted and bread is golden brown on both sides.

  5. Let cool for 2 minutes before cutting in half or into bite-sized pieces.

Variations and Substitutions

  • Add vegetables such as thinly sliced tomato, baby spinach, red onion, or sautéed mushrooms. Place vegetables between slices of cheese so that the cheese acts as a barrier and melts around the vegetables.
  • Boost protein by adding 1-2 slices roasted turkey breast (no salt added is ideal to keep sodium in check) between the slices of cheese.
  • Make it dairy-free by using a non-dairy melting cheese.
  • Make it gluten free with gluten free sliced bread.
  • Increase healthy fats by serving with sliced avocado.

Tips

  • Room temperature butter will be easier to spread than cold butter so take the butter out of the fridge at least 30 minutes before using.
  • Lower heat as necessary to prevent bread from browning too fast before cheese melts.
  • If you add vegetables of protein, be cautious to not overstuff the sandwiches since they will easily fall apart.

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Article Sources
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  1. Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. EatRight. Nutrition for growing bodies. Updated September 2018.