The Best Cheeses for Your Grilled Cheese Sandwich

The Best Cheeses for Your Grilled Cheese Sandwich

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The bread component of any sandwich is important but, where grilled cheese is concerned, you have to prioritize the namesake ingredient. Most recipes claim to have the best, most perfect combination of fats and dairy for the ultimate grilled cheese, but what if you’re more of a stretchy-cheese girl? Or, maybe a fully melted, liquid cheese puddle is more your vibe. The point of any comfort food is to make yourself happy, so here’s a quick guide to picking the right cheese for a sandwich thats best for the most important person in the room. (I’m talking about you.)

If you like stretch

Cheese is composed of protein, fat, water, and acid. (Read more about cheese elements here.) Depending on the ratio of those four pillars, you’ll get different reactions when heat is applied. If a quality cheese-pull is where the party’s at, then that stretchy protein percentage is important. For major elasticity, try something like mozzarella, gouda, havarti, and gruyere. Lean on younger cheeses, as those aged for over a year lack the moisture to melt and stretch quite as well as their younger counterparts.

If you like gooey

Not everyone wants strings of stretchy cheese all over their shirt. Sometimes less stretch and more of a softer, meltier layer of cheese is in order. The fat content will play a starring role in this case, allowing the protein clusters to move farther away from each other. Try Taleggio, cheddar, raclette, fontina, and the cheese we all hate to love, American. You have to admit, the stuff can melt.

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If you like liquid cheese magma

There is a stage past gooey. A place not many choose to go, but if you dare, you could make a grilled cheese that practically erupts with melted dairy. For a nearly liquid cheese sandwich, I recommend using very soft cheeses, and, well, let’s call them “cheese-type snacks.” Cheeses like Velveeta, Cheez Whiz, or dips like Tostitos Queso are barely solid substances as it is. Apply a little heat and they’ll reward you with yellow liquid sin. If you can’t bear to put a cheese-type snack on your sandwich bread, try triple cream brie without the rind, Gournay cheese (like Boursin), a creamy goat cheese, or good ol’ cream cheese.

Don’t fret, if you like a little bit of everything in your dream-date grilled cheese you should explore some combinations. If you enjoy a little stretch with your melt, layer in some gruyere with your fontina. Add in a secret smear of Cheez Whiz (we all know Philadelphia’s on to something with those cheesesteaks). Be brave. The grilled cheese of your dreams awaits.

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