Last Updated on January 10, 2021 by smartkitchenpicks
This Strawberry Avocado Grilled Cheese is sweet, savory, and perfect for a quick summer meal! With fresh mozzarella, sweet strawberries, creamy avocado, basil, and balsamic vinegar, you won’t be able to get enough.
I used to hate grilled cheese. I know…sue me, judge me, say what you must.
But growing up, grilled cheese always meant two pieces of white bread sandwiching a thick slab of Velveeta, melted into a weird, pseudo-cheese thing. Barf.
And it wasn’t until I grew up and moved off to college that I:
1. learned to cook for myself and
2. learned that grilled cheese is pretty okay after all.
Maybe it’s a rite of passage into adulthood, but one does not simply go to college and not live off grilled cheese sandwiches for at least a month.
In this time of grilled cheese exploration, I discovered the fascinating world of non-boring grilled cheeses. Anything could make a grilled cheese sandwich!
Whatever I (or my roommates) happened to have in the refrigerator. Pesto/spinach/mozzarella, blueberry/balsamic, leftover mac n’ cheese…everything was game, I tell you.
Well thank the heavens I discovered that grilled cheese is not, in fact, the worst food known to man, because that discovery eventually led me to this Strawberry Avocado Grilled Cheese.
This grilled cheese sandwich has a lot of tasty components. Let’s talk about ‘em.
- Fresh Mozzarella: Today we’re using a fresh ball of mozzarella! We’ll cut it into thick slabs for beautiful melted cheesy perfection. But here’s the thing, you’ll want to strain it first, and I learned this the hard way. The first time I made this grilled cheese, I threw a few slabs of mozzarella on, squashed it in our panini press, and assumed I’d get a nice, perfect grilled cheese…wrong. Fresh mozzarella, while being the epitome of yum, is very very moist. And that moisture will make it’s way out of the cheese and into your bread if you don’t prepare it correctly, making for a sad, soggy sandwich. But there’s a simple fix! Cut your mozzarella into slabs and set them on a few layers of paper towels, then dab the mozzarella with more paper towels to get out the excess moisture. Let them sit for about 30 minutes to really get them dry, then prepare your grilled cheese as usual. The results are night and day!
- Avocados: Hop on the shaved avocado train or slice them really thin. These are going to add some major eye-candy + creaminess to this sandwich.
- Strawberries: You may be wondering if fruit on a savory grilled cheese could actually taste good. The answer: yes. These give a refreshing sweetness that we’ll balance out with balsamic vinegar and some seasoning.
- Balsamic Vinegar: Like I said, we need to balance out those sweet strawberries! The balsamic brings in a deep, tart flavor that ties everything together perfectly.
- Basil: Because basil is summer perfection, it screams to be included in this grilled cheese!
Because I live in the Netherlands where people adore mayonnaise, I was unsurprised when my boyfriend-tulip-man requested a mayo dipping sauce for this grilled cheese.
If you too have a mayonnaise/dipping sauce-lover at your table, you can whip up a quick dip by combining 1 teaspoon of balsamic vinegar with 1 tablespoon of mayonnaise.
But mayonnaise or not, this is a grilled cheese sandwich your family is sure to love this summer. Read on for the recipe and enjoy!
Strawberry Avocado Grilled Cheese
- 4 slices of bread
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- ½ avocado, thinly sliced
- 3 strawberries, thinly sliced
- 8 ¼ inch slices of fresh mozzarella cheese*
- 1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
- A few basil leaves
- Pinch each of salt and pepper
- Brush olive oil onto one side of each piece of bread.
- Onto two of your slices of bread, layer on mozzarella cheese, sliced strawberries, and sliced avocados, being sure to keep the olive oil-coated side facing outward.
- Drizzle with balsamic, add a few basil leaves, and a pinch each of salt and pepper.
- Top with the other slice of bread and cook on a skillet or in a panini press over medium/high heat for about 5 minutes, until brown on both sides and the cheese is melted.
*For the best possible sandwich, get the moisture out of your mozarella first. Cut the mozzarella into slices and place them on a few layers of paper towels, then dab each slice to remove excess moisture. Allow them to sit for about 30 minutes before you make your sandwich. This will help to prevent the water in the cheese from seeping into your bread, making for a soggy sandwich!
For a quick dipping sauce, combine 1 tsp of balsamic vinegar with 1 Tbsp mayonnaise. Cut your grilled cheese in half and dip away!
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