Sandwiches already have potential for deliciousness, but something special happens when you grill or toast them over heat. One of my husband’s all-time favorite meals is a grilled cheese sandwich (with tomato soup), so I challenged myself to jazz up grilled cheese sandwiches for an entire week.
I came up with five unique and craveable panini-style hot sandwiches that we loved! Any of these recipes can be made with either a panini press machine or simply flipping them over a hot buttered skillet on the stove.
We’re kicking it off with an easy turkey panini that substitutes premade spinach artichoke dip for mayo on the insides of the bread. The addition of tangy sundried tomatoes adds an acidic tang to the smooth cheesy goodness. It works beautifully and tastes fantastic!
TIP: I prefer to use the jarred sundried tomatoes in olive oil, drained before adding to the sandwiches. They sandwich needs the moisture!
TIP: Put your cheese slices next to the bread. This way, the heat penetrates easily and melts the cheese thoroughly. Nothing like ooey, gooey, melty cheese on your hot panini!
Turkey, Havarti, Sundried Tomatoes, and Spinach Artichoke Dip Paninis
Crusty bread (I recommend French or sourdough bread)
Roasted turkey, sliced
Havarti cheese, sliced
Sundried tomatoes (I prefer the kind in olive oil, drained)
Spinach Artichoke Dip
Butter, room temperature
Preheat your skillet (or panini press) over medium heat.
Spread butter on the outsides of each piece of bread. Flip the bread over and spread spinach artichoke dip on the insides of each piece of bread.
Build your sandwich on one side: sliced cheese, sliced turkey, and sundried tomatoes. Place the second piece of bread on top with the spinach artichoke dip on the inside and the butter on the outside.
If using a skillet:
Place the entire sandwich butter-side down in preheated skillet. Allow it to toast until the cheese is starting to get gooey and the bottom piece of bread is golden brown and crunchy. Carefully flip the sandwich over and toast the second piece of bread to golden brown, as well.
Once both sides are golden and crunchy and the cheese is melted, pull off the heat. Slice in half and serve immediately.
If using a panini press:
Once your panini press is fully preheated and ready, place the entire sandwich butter-side down and close the top. Allow it to toast until the cheese is starting to get gooey and both sides of bread are golden brown and crunchy. Watch it carefully to ensure it doesn’t burn.
Once it’s finished, remove the sandwich from the panini press. Slice in half and serve immediately.