DIY Thursday: Carmelized Onion and Gruyere Paninis

I think I mentioned here once that we've actually picked up a few recipe cards in our local grocery store which have been spectacularly successful meals. Our very favorite has to be the Carmelized Onion and Gruyère panini, and I'm very happy to share the recipe and my own instructions with you.

Prep time is about 45 minutes, and the cost is way below what you'd pay for a sandwich like this in a nice café. A block of gruyère is more expensive than swiss or cheddar, but so worth it, and you'll be able to get six to eight sandwiches out of a 1"x4" chunk, or use the remaining cheese for anything else you like.


-- 1 medium sweet yellow onion, very thinly sliced

-- several slices (about as much as you would use for a typical grilled cheese) of delicious Gruyère cheese

-- 2 ciabatta rolls from your grocery's bakery

-- 2 thin slices of ham or turkey (optional), according to your preference

-- about a teaspoon of olive oil

-- honey mustard or the dressing of your choice

-- a small cube (say about 1/2 teaspoon or so) of salted real butter

-- panini grill or similar appliance, preferably with flat griddle plates rather than ribbed grill ones

1. Slice your yellow onion very, very thinly.
2. Heat a small amount of olive oil (probably about a teaspoon, maybe less) in a skillet.
3. Put your onions in the skillet to cook. Carmelizing is a bit different than sautéeing; you'll turn the heat down to about medium, and want to let the onions cook slowly for about half an hour, stirring only every five or six minutes, until they're well browned. I usually add a small amount of salted butter to the skillet about five minutes before I remove the onions from heat, to add a lovely flavor.
4. While your onions are cooking, slice your block of gruyère in thin slices, so that they'll melt more quickly.
5. Slice your ciabatta rolls in half like a bun.

6. Spread a small amount of honey mustard or your preferred dressing on each side of both ciabatta rolls.
7. When your onions are finished carmelizing, remove them from heat.
8. Begin putting your paninis together by layering slices of cheese on the bottom half of each roll, on top of which goes your slice of meat, then a heaping scoop of onions. Pop on the top and place them on your panini grill. Then press the lid down to smush the paninis a little, and apply pressure for a couple of minutes.

9. Let paninis heat for about 10 minutes, until you can tell that the cheese is melty and everything inside is toasty warm.
10. Enjoy!
I'd love to hear what you guys think, and how you like them if you decide to try them. Also, if you come up with any ideas to improve or add to the recipe, please share!


  1. That looks delicious! If only I liked onions...

    Oh well, nice lookng post! :D


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