This ooey, gooey Chicken Pesto Grilled Cheese was a heavenly meal that got rave reviews from the pickiest husband around! Thanks to Gallo Family Vineyards for sponsoring this post. See details below.
Grilled Cheese = Comfort Food
Who doesn’t love a grilled cheese? It’s my go-to dinner when Bill is out of town, though hardly gourmet as it’s usually just a grainy bread and cheddar cheese. When we visited my high school friend in LA after Christmas, she pulled out her panini maker and treated us to a lunch of pesto, chicken and Gruyere sandwiches. The whole family gobbled them down. I knew it was a winning combination with my first bite.
A Couple of Tweaks
I wanted to recreate those marvelous upscale grilled cheese sandwiches we ate with such abandon. Plus I couldn’t resist giving them my own twist. I added some Monterey Jack to the Gruyere plus roasted bell pepper slices for a pop of color. Having no panini maker, I dug out my grill pan and impatiently waited for the cheeses to melt. Boy was the aroma intoxicating as the pesto warmed and the cheese oozed. The hubby asked for an encore, a sure sign of a home run.
Wine Pairings for National Grilled Cheese Month
Did you know April is National Grilled Cheese Month? Such a wonderful excuse to make loads of gooey, toasted, cheesy sandwiches. The options are endless and the Sunday Supper crew has some terrific recipes to share. You probably know how well wine pairs with cheeses, so extend that to include grilled cheese sandwiches.
I selected Gallo Family Vineyards Pinot Grigio to accompany my spectacular chicken pesto version. I adore the fruity undertones of this varietal, and Gallo’s Pinot Grigio has hints of citrus, tart apple and white peaches. Besides grilled cheese, this wine is lovely with salads, rich seafood, grilled poultry, and dishes featuring acidic ingredients like lemon and tomatoes.
For the red wine lovers in your house, Gallo’s Pinot Noir is another winner. I enjoy its berry nuances and subtle earthy flavors which pair well with roast chicken (it would also be perfectly delightful with my chicken grilled cheese), meaty fish and mushrooms. A medium bodied dry wine with a smooth finish, it’s a terrific red to have on hand for that unexpected company.
To find where to purchase Gallo’s wines near you, check out their handy dandy store locator.
20 Terrific Grilled Cheese Recipes from Gallo Family Vineyards
- Two slices hearty bread
- Butter, at room temperature
- About 1-2 teaspoons prepared or homemade pesto (more or less) depending on size of bread slices)
- ¼ cup shredded Gruyere cheese
- ¼ cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese
- Shredded or sliced cooked chicken (rotisserie chicken is a terrific shortcut)
- 1-2 slices of roasted red bell pepper, optional
- Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
- Butter one slice of bread and place it butter side down on a grill pan or saute pan. Spread pesto over other side, then layer with cheeses, chicken (sprinkled with salt and pepper to taste), and peppers, if using. Butter the second slice of bread and top the sandwich with the butter side up.
- Cook over medium heat till bottom slice of bread is browned and cheese is beginning to melt. Carefully flip and cook till the second side is browned and cheese is completely melted, adjusting burner temperature as needed.
- Slice in half and serve with your favorite Gallo wine.
More Grilled Cheese Recipes/Wine Pairings from My Sunday Supper Friends:
- Bacon Inverted Grilled Cheese by Brunch with Joy
- BBQ Pulled Pork and Smoked Gouda Grilled Cheese by Bobbi’s Kozy Kitchen
- Brie, Raspberry and Honey Grilled Cheese by The Girl In The Little Red Kitchen
- Chicken Pesto Grilled Cheese by That Skinny Chick Can Bake
- Egg Prosciutto Grilled Cheese by Magnolia Days
- French Onion Grilled Cheese by The Redhead Baker
- Garlicky Anaheim Pepper Grilled Cheese by Peanut Butter and Peppers
- Gluten Free Kale Grilled Cheese by Gluten Free Crumbley
- Grilled Cheese with Spinach and Roasted Red Peppers by Ruffles & Truffles
- Grilled Havarti with Onion Jam by Nosh My Way
- Grilled Gruyère on Rye with Crisped Sage and Pink Lady Slices by Culinary Adventures with Camilla
- Loaded Sharp Cheddar and Black Forest Ham Grilled Cheese Sandwich by Serena Bakes Simply From Scratch
- Longaniza Grilled Cheese Sandwich by Peaceful Cooking
- Philly Cheesesteak Grilled Cheese Sandwich by Family Foodie
- Pizza Grilled Cheese by Alida’s Kitchen
- Roasted Cauliflower, Ham and Brie Grilled Cheese by Cupcakes & Kale Chips
- Roasted Tomato Caprese Grilled Cheese by One Sweet Mess
- Spinach Artichoke Grilled Cheese by Life Tastes Good
- Tomato Bacon Jam Grilled Cheese by Feed Me, Seymour
- Tomato, Prosciutto and Gruyère Grilled Cheese by Casa de Crews
- Twenty Ways to Make Grilled Cheese plus Wine Pairings on the Sunday Supper Movement website
And you might like to take a gander at this Mediterranean Grilled Cheese that I whipped up for last year’s grilled cheese month!
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Disclosure: Compensation was provided by Gallo Family Vineyards via Sunday Supper, LLC. The opinions expressed herein are those of the author, and are not indicative of the opinions or positions of Gallo Family Vineyards.