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The best thing about a grilled cheese sandwich is probably the delicious outer crust that melts in the mouth like heaven. However, getting that perfect crust is easier said than done. Many people tell us that they often end up with the bottom side sticking to the pan, damaging the crust.
Some of our blog readers have told us that the bread often sticks so much to their cast iron skillet that they destroy the bread while trying to flip it over, no matter what type of bread or cheese they use. It damage the sandwich to the point that cheese starts leaking out from the center of the sandwich and onto the grill.
In our post today, we have decided to address this issue and try to provide a solution to keep your grilled cheese sandwiches from sticking to your pan. Read on to find out more.
To get to the solution, we need to first investigate the matter and look into the reasons that cause grilled cheese to stick to the pan.
#. Achieving the right temperatures
To get the perfect outer crust on your grilled cheese sandwich, you need to ensure that you use the right temperature, as any less or more will yield an undesirable result. To test the temperature, put a little bit of margarine on the skillet. If it melts and bubbles, that’s the perfect temperature.
Always remember to put the heat on low-medium and also pre-heat the pan before you put the sandwich on it to prevent any burning or sticking. Many people tend to increase the temperature to make the bread brown faster, but that’s a practice that often leads to your sandwich burning on one side.
Keeping the temperature too low may also prevent the bread from browning at all. Make sure to maintain a constant and consistent temperature throughout to get the best results.
#. Try butter instead of margarine
If your grilled cheese still sticks to the pan, consider switching to high quality butter instead of margarine. Butter also has an important role to play in making a grilled cheese, as it helps in achieving a good crust and providing a bit of extra flavor. Make sure to use high quality butter instead of the margarine when you can.
Apply butter generously to one side of the bread and place it butter side down over the cast iron skillet or pan over medium heat. Next, add the cheese and put another piece of bread over it. Let it cook until the bottom side achieves a nice golden brown color.
Now, flip the sandwich carefully to the other side. Turn off the pan after some time and let the heat finish browning the other side of the bread. Using butter can bring about a lot of difference.
#. Re-seasoning the pan
If you are doing everything right but your grilled cheese is still sticking to the bottom of the pan then it may need re-seasoning. Allow me to explain what exactly that means.
Most cast iron pans come seasoned but they lose their seasoning after constant use and may need to be seasoned again. To do this, you need to heat the pan on a high temperature and add a tablespoon of olive oil. Swirl around the oil and continue heating until it reaches smoking point.
Take a dry towel and wipe the pan lightly to remove excess oil. This is called re-seasoning the pan. You should now be able to continue making grilled cheese sandwiches without them sticking.
#. Don’t use soap and water to clean
The primary cause of cast iron skillets losing their seasoning too soon is cleaning these utensils with soap and water. If you have the habit of doing this, then beware, as using soap can rob your pan of the residual oil that creates the layer of seasoning on the pan.
Always make sure to use only water to clean your pan after you are done to prevent the cast iron skillet from losing its seasoning. This will keep your product looking good and working well for longer.
#. Using a non-stick spray
Whether you like it or not, and whether or not you consider it a good practice, I thought it was worth mentioning non-stick oil spray (see Amazon). Many people swear by the magic of this quick fix. You just need to spray a little non-stick spray on the pan and cook your grilled cheese sandwich as usual.
However, if your non-stick pan has lost its Teflon polish, you may want to consider investing in a new one for better results.
#. Cover with a lid
Some grilled cheese lovers recommend this very interesting trick that I would like to share with you. For this, you will need to butter one side of the sandwich on the outside. Now, put a little butter on the pan and grill it with the butter side up.
Cover the sandwich with a lid that completely fits the whole sandwich to make the cheese melt. Before the cheese melts completely, flip it and let the second side also brown to perfection.
#. Use good quality bread
Sometimes the quality of the bread you use for making a grilled cheese also matters a lot. Cheap quality bread usually contains a lot of sugar or corn syrup that results in your sandwich sticking to the pan. To prevent this, always use good quality bread and wipe the bottom of the pan with some oil on a paper towel.
I hope that the above tips and tricks will help you make a better grilled cheese sandwich that does not stick to the bottom or sides of your pan, and comes out with that perfect crust you love.