Panini Sandwiches

28 February 2024

Remember that panini press that you just had to have a few years back? Well, dust it off for some fancy sandwiches for lunch or dinner. Add a salad, cup of soup, or potato chips and you are set.

Don’t have one? Don’t worry. Just start with a heavy skillet and then something to hold down the sandwich like a heavy pot or casserole dish. You can even put a couple of cans in the top for extra weight. Flip the sandwiches at the appropriate time so that both sides get toasty. Another option is a Foreman grill.

If you feel like firing up the outdoor grill, assemble the sandwiches and wrap them completely in foil and then place on the grill over medium heat for maybe 3 minutes per side, carefully pressing down with a spatula on occasion or placing a brick on each sammie. Why the foil? Because a panini is filled with more “stuff” than just a regular grilled cheese. That makes it a larger, thicker sandwich. Wrapped in foil, everything stays where it is supposed to be, nicely pressed, and ready for consumption.



  • 1 teaspoon mayonnaise, or more to taste
  • 2 slices Italian or sourdough bread, each 1-inch thick
  • 3 slices ham, turkey, salami, or prosciutto
  • 2 slices provolone, mozzarella, cheddar, or gruyere
  • roasted red bell peppers


  • Spread mayonnaise on one side of each slice of bread. Layer meat, cheese, peppers and top with second slice of bread, mayonnaise side toward the filling. Stick in the panini press.




  • ¼ cup mayonnaise
  • 1 clove garlic, pressed or grated
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • salt and pepper to taste


  • 1 loaf French bread
  • 4 ounces chicken or turkey slices
  • 4 slices of cheese, your choice
  • 1 tomato, optional
  • butter


  • To prepare aioli, mix all ingredients in a small bowl and set aside.
  • Slice bread into four even sections and then cut each section lengthwise in half
  • Spread aioli on both sides of bread and assemble sandwiches with meat, cheese, and tomato.
  • Butter the tops of the bread for pressing into the panini maker or into the skillet or grill. Do not butter if you are using the foil method.

Chicken Pesto


  • 4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 2 boneless, skinless pieces of chicken
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • ¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 cibatta rolls
  • ¼ cup pesto, home made or purchased
  • 1 tomato, sliced
  • 4 ounces mozzarella, sliced


  • Season chicken with oregano, red pepper flakes, and salt and pepper. Cook in olive oil until golden and thoroughly cooked.
  • Slice ciabatta rolls in half and spread about ½ of the pesto on the bottom half of each roll. Top with tomato, chicken, and mozzarella. Spread remaining pesto on the other half of the roll and place on top.
  • Grill sandwiches.

Garlic Tilapia


  • 4 tilapia fillets
  • 1 cup seasoned bread crumbs or finely crushed crackers
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 jalapeno, finely diced, optional
  • 1 clove garlic, minced or pressed
  • 1 ½ tablespoons flour
  • 1 cup broth
  • ¼ cup sour cream
  • 8 slices hearty, Italian country bread
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil or 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 roma tomatoes, sliced
  • 8 slices provalone



  • Dip fillets into beaten egg and then coat with cracker or bread crumbs
  • Fry in oil until breading is golden brown and fish is cooked.
  • Remove and place in oven to keep warm.


  • Melt butter over low heat. Add jalapeno and garlic. Saute until soft but avoid burning garlic.
  • Add flour and stir.
  • Add broth and stir until thickened. Add sour cream.
  • Set aside until ready to assemble sandwiches


  • Brush one side of each slice of bread with butter or olive oil
  • With buttered side of bread to the outside, assemble sandwiches. Start with provolone, tomatoes, tilapia, cream sauce, and final slice of bread.
  • Grill
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