Kentucky Hot Brown

[Photograph: J. Kenji Lopez-Alt]

About the author: J. Kenji Lopez-Alt is the Managing Editor of Serious Eats where he likes to explore the science of home cooking in his weekly column The Food Lab. You can follow him at @thefoodlab on Twitter, or at The Food Lab on Facebook.

Kentucky Hot Brown

About This Recipe

Yield:Makes 2 sandwiches
Active time:10 minutes
Total time:15 minutes
Special equipment:2 ovenproof single-serving gratin dishes or plates
This recipe appears in: Hangover Helper, Thanksgiving Leftovers Edition: Kentucky Hot Browns


  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 1 pint heavy cream
  • 3 ounces grated Pecorino Romano cheese
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 slices hearty toast
  • 8 to 12 ounces roasted sliced turkey
  • 4 slice thick cut bacon, cooked until crisp
  • 1 tablespoon minced parsley leaves
  • Dash paprika
  • 4 slices ripe tomato (optional, if in season)


  1. 1

    Preheat broiler or toaster oven to high. Melt butter in a small saucepan over medium-high heat. Add flour and whisk to combine. Continue to cook, whisking constantly until pale golden blond, about 1 minute. Slowly pour in heavy cream, whisking constantly. Bring to a simmer then remove from heat. Whisk in grated cheese, then season to taste with salt and pepper.

  2. 2

    Place 1 slice toast in the bottom of each gratin dish and top each with half of the roasted turkey. Pour half the sauce over each sandwich, completely coating it. Place under broiler until spotty brown and bubbly, 2 to 3 minutes. Place 2 slices of bacon in a cross on top of each dish and sprinkle with parsley and paprika. Add 2 slices tomato to each dish if using. Serve immediately.


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