As much as I love a gooey grilled delight just dripping with cheese, they can quickly become exceedingly heavy and high calorie. Sometimes this is fine and exactly what I want, and other times I wish for a slightly lighter experience with the same delicious profile.
Inspired by a veggie sandwich from a local restaurant, this grilled cheese is for the days when you’re looking for a lighter fair. Creamy herbed Boursin cheese (and optionally, a little cheddar) gives you plenty of melty goodness while roasted veggies keep it well-balanced and flavorful. Roasted is my preferred method of cooking most vegetables, and while it’s a little more time-consuming it really deepens the flavor here.
I chose the Garlic & Fine Herbs flavor, but any of them would be delicious (or a homemade version if you prefer.) Boursin is very creamy but feels lighter than actual cream cheese, which pairs nicely with the vegetables. I added a little bit of cheddar to one of my iterations and I liked the additional flavor, but it’s certainly not necessary if you want to leave it out.
Choose a bread you really like here as it’s a very prominent flavor, relatively unmasked by the usual gobs of cheese and toppings. I went with a local Norwegian Farm Loaf, which is a fairly mild but delightful wheat bread. Sourdough or ciabatta would be other excellent options if you want a more neutral flavor.
This is easily customized to whatever vegetables are in season; pictured is red bell pepper, zucchini, and yellow squash which makes a lovely array of colors, but almost anything would be great. Just make sure it’s thinly sliced (ideally to roughly the same length as your bread) and you cook things like carrots and broccoli longer than squashes. Feel free to add as many veggies as you like, but keep in mind without the excess of cheese to glue everything together it is most easy to eat if there’s only one layer of vegetables. Mix it up by adding extra spices during the roasting process; some red pepper flakes would be great.
Next time you’re looking for a cozy meal with a few less calories, give this a shot and let me know what you think.
(PS – it would also be great with a small cup of soup on a chilly day!)
Boursin Veggie Grilled Cheese
Makes 1 sandwich
Veggies, in long slices (I used zucchini, bell pepper, and yellow squash)
salt and pepper, to taste
1-1.5 oz Boursin cheese (about 1/4 of a “block”)
1 oz cheddar, thinly sliced (optional)
2 slices bread
butter or oil
- Heat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit and line a baking sheet with aluminum foil.
- Toss veggies with just enough olive oil to coat, then spread in a single layer on prepared pan.
- Roast 15-20 minutes, to desired doneness.
- When veggies are almost done, heat a little butter or oil over medium-low in a medium pan (big enough to fit both slices side by side).
- Spread half of Boursin cheese on each slice of bread. Top one side with cheddar, if using.
- Place a lid (or a plate, or whatever you have around) over the pan and continue to cook low and slow until the cheeses are melty and warmed through.
- When the veggies are done, place in a single layer on one slice of bread. Gently top with the other side of bread and cook an additional 30-60 seconds so the flavors meld.
- Remove from pan, slice in half, and enjoy immediately.
1 I like this method of grilled cheese preparation because it doesn’t require flipping the whole sandwich, and I think the cheese melts faster, but feel free to use your own preferred method!