Grilled Cheese Sandwich Recipe

The very best method for making a classic grilled cheese sandwich.

Photographs: J. Kenji López-Alt. Video: Serious Eats

While it may be one of the first meals that most of us ever attempt to cook, there is a science to the perfect grilled cheese sandwich. Toast the bread on both sides, to add buttery flavor and promote even melting; cook the sandwich low and slow, for an even, deep brown crust; use plenty of American cheese; and don't forget to salt. The result is the crunchy, buttery, melty sandwich of your childhood dreams.

Recipe Facts

Active: 15 mins
Total: 15 mins
Makes: 1 sandwich

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  • 2 tablespoons (30g) butter, cut into 3 even pieces
  • 2 slices hearty white bread, such as Pepperidge Farm or Arnold
  • 2 slices American, cheddar, or Jack cheese
  • Kosher salt


  1. Melt 1 piece of butter in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat until foaming subsides. Add both bread slices and cook, swirling occasionally, until pale golden brown on bottom sides, about 2 minutes.

  2. Transfer bread to a cutting board, toasted side up. Place cheese slices on top of one slice, then close sandwich, with both toasted sides facing inward.

  3. Melt 1 piece of butter in skillet and reduce heat to medium-low. Add sandwich and cook, swirling occasionally, until deep, even golden brown, about 5 minutes. Remove sandwich using a flexible metal spatula. Add remaining butter. Return sandwich to skillet, cooked side up. Season with salt. Cook, swirling occasionally, until second side is deep, even golden brown and cheese is thoroughly melted, about 5 minutes. Serve immediately.


Special equipment

10-inch nonstick skillet