Main Dishes

August 17, 2021

Savory Chicken Caprese Grilled Cheese Melt

Every tomato soup needs grilled cheese, so make these Chicken Caprese Grilled Cheese Melts! All you need is shredded chicken, tomatoes, mozzarella cheese with sourdough bread and homemade pesto. Each sandwich has over 50g of protein!

I'll be honest here: growing up, there were very few foods I actually despised. Some of those were beets, shellfish, oranges (yes, the fruit!), and grilled cheese sandwiches. I just hated them!

I think one of the reasons I absolutely hated grilled cheese sandwiches is because they were always made with white bread and slimy cheddar cheese squares. I just didn't sit well with me.

Now, that's probably not the best introduction to an entire blog post about a grilled cheese recipe, but with that preface, let me tell you how much I LOVE today's Caprese Grilled Cheese Melt!

This is nothing like your traditional grilled cheese. This Caprese Grilled Cheese is made with fresh produce, crusty bread, and packs over 50g of protein per sandwich. Incredible!

Caprese grilled cheese melts with extra tomatoes and pesto

Ingredients you'll need

  • Sourdough bread: great for your gut and absolutely delicious, sourdough bread is two steps up from your normal loaf of bread! It really brings out the flavors of the pesto and fresh tomatoes. If you need to use gluten-free bread, try to find a loaf that is short and wide!
  • Homemade pesto: this recipe is much better than any store-bought pesto you'll find. It's packed with protein and doesn't require any oil! If you don't have the time or energy to make it homemade, feel free to use any pesto you like.
  • Shredded mozzarella cheese: not as fancy as sliced mozzarella, but for the sake of convenience, small budgets, and a lower-fat option, I chose to use low-fat shredded mozzarella. You're more likely to have it on hand already!
  • Shredded chicken: either store-bought rotisserie chicken or freshly shredded chicken will work here. Just toss it with some balsamic vinegar and you're set!
  • Fresh tomatoes: I prefer roma tomatoes because they are less watery, but vine tomatoes, heirloom tomatoes, or fresh garden tomatoes will taste just as great.
  • Fresh basil: optional but recommended. It really brings out the pesto and finishes the caprese grilled cheese beautifully. You can also swap it out for spinach for a boost of calcium and protein!

Ingredients for Chicken Caprese Grilled Cheese sandwiches

Why this grilled cheese recipe works

It's easy to make: just a few simple (but elevated) ingredients that come together in just a few minutes. Even my husband could make it! You don't even need a panini press, just a skillet! You can also use this kitchen hack to cut down the cook time even more!

It's diet-friendly: this caprese grilled cheese is easily gluten-free and dairy-free! Just use your favorite gluten-free sourdough bread or your favorite non-dairy mozzarella substitute.

It's macro-friendly: this means the ratio between carbs, proteins, and fats is balanced and you're getting some of everything! In fact, ONE caprese grilled cheese has over 50g of protein. It's not just empty carbs with melted cheese!

It's full of flavor: I'm much better than white bread and cheddar cheese squares. This grilled cheese recipe is the perfect mix of sweet and savory, and let me tell you, the sourdough bread really brings all the delicious flavors together.

It's ready in 30 minutes: even with some extra ingredients, everything comes together really easy for a simple lunch or a quick side dish to your favorite soup. Just make sure to prep the pesto and chicken beforehand!

It's meal-prep friendly: since no one buys 2 slices of bread, 4 oz. of shredded chicken, or makes just 2 tablespoons of pesto, I wanted this caprese grilled cheese recipe to be easily doubled, tripled, etc.

It's super meal prep friendly because you can make one recipe of homemade pesto, a giant bag of balsamic shredded chicken, and finish an entire loaf of sourdough bread if you want to.

Just have all the ingredients prepped so the assembly takes 5 minutes each time you want a sandwich!

Half of a caprese grilled cheese sandwich with a tomato on top

More easy recipes you need to try

Low-Carb BLT Egg Sandwich

5 Minute Mediterranean Pizza

Raspberry Almond Arugula Salad with Lemon Pepper Chicken

Easy 5 Minute Buffalo Chicken Wrap

Veggie Packed Vegan Pesto Pasta

Easy Skillet Mac and Cheese

A stack of chicken caprese grilled cheese melts

OMG I can't wait for you to bite into this Savory Caprese Grilled Cheese Melt! Like I said, I grew up hating grilled cheese sandwiches but this grilled cheese recipe is out-of-this-world delicious. Tyler and I enjoyed this recipe for lunch for three or four days after I tested it!

Be sure to leave a star rating and review below if you try this recipe so other readers know how you liked it! I also love seeing what you love about my recipes so I know what content to make in the future. Happy eating!

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Savory Chicken Caprese Grilled Cheese Melt

Every tomato soup needs grilled cheese, so make these Chicken Caprese Grilled Cheese Melts! All you need is shredded chicken, tomatoes, mozzarella cheese with sourdough bread and homemade pesto. Each sandwich has over 50g of protein!

Author:

Brooke Harmer

Prep:

10

min

cook:

10

min

total:

20

min

servings:

1

Ingredients

  • 2 slices sourdough bread
  • 2 Tbsp homemade Basil Pesto
  • ½ C low-fat shredded mozzarella cheese
  • ½ C cooked shredded chicken
  • ½ tomato, sliced
  • 1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • ½ tsp Stevia

Instructions

  1. Whisk together the balsamic vinegar and the Stevia, then toss with the shredded chicken.
  2. Spread one tablespoon of pesto on each slice of sourdough bread. Then, spread ¼ cup of mozzarella on one slice of pesto bread (press gently to adhere to the pesto), spread all of the shredded chicken on top of the cheese, and the place tomato slices on top of the chicken. Finish by spreading the remaining ¼ cup of mozzarella on the tomatoes and pressing the remaining slice of pesto sourdough bread on top. (The order should be pesto bread, cheese, chicken, tomatoes, cheese, pesto bread. The "outside" of the grilled cheese should not have pesto, just the "inside.")
  3. Heat a skillet or panini grill to medium heat and spray with cooking spray. Press the grilled cheese onto the heated skillet and cook for about 3-5 minutes until the bread is as crispy as you like it, then spray the other side of the grilled cheese, gently flip, and press firmly onto the skillet. Cook an additional 2-4 minutes until the cheese has melted. It's ok if it's a little bit messy!
  4. Remove from the heat. Cut your grilled cheese in half and enjoy as a yummy lunch or a side dish to your favorite soup. Enjoy!

Notes

Nutrition facts are a calculated estimate of one grilled cheese using this pesto recipe.

Nutrition

Serving: 1 sandwich / Calories: 604 / Fat: 18.9g / Saturated Fat: 8.3g / Carbohydrates: 62g / Fiber: 3g / Sugar: 0.5g / Protein: 51.5g