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chive goat cheese and roasted red pepper sandwiches

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There is a bit of a debate in our house about what constitutes a “grilled cheese.” I’m a purist. I say that a sandwich can only be called a grilled cheese when it’s just cheese on bread (with some butter, of course). If you ask 100 people what was on a grilled cheese, I’d say 99 of them would side with me. Babyface, on the other hand, says that any sandwich that has melted cheese is a grilled cheese. In his world, a sandwich with bacon, cheese, tomatoes and onions is a grilled cheese.

I know, crazy right?

This causes issues, because El Babyfaceo is the King Supreme grilled cheese maker. It was only a few years ago that I even learned to make one without burning it and even now, his skills are much, much better than mine. Because he’s the master of our collective grilled sandwich destiny, this is usually how the exchange goes:

Me: Mmm! Do you want to have grilled cheese with dinner? That sounds good!

*I picture buttery, toasty bread with loads of gooey cheese*

Him: Sure!

*10 minutes later, he puts sandwich in front of me*

Me: Mmm! That looks delicious! But I thought we were having grilled cheese?

Him: That is a grilled cheese!

Me: It has bacon, tomatoes, yogurt, seven different kinds of cheese, soy milk, chocolate bars, jelly beans and a beer bottle on it, that’s not a grilled cheese.

Him: But it’s grilled. And has cheese on it. Grilled cheese!

Me: Thanks for the sandwich, Baby.

After being together for almost six years, I’m finally learning that if I want a real grilled cheese, I need to make it myself and leave the fancy grilled cheesin’ to the hot Canadian with the tattoos. But that’s totally fine, because Babyface does come up with some awesome ideas while he’s making his not-really grilled cheese sandwiches. And this was one of them.

He’s been on a creamy, gooey goat cheese kick and I ran with it and it turned it into this deliciousness. It’s an amazing sandwich, but it is not, and will never be, a grilled cheese.


Chive Goat Cheese and Roasted Red Pepper Sandwiches

Chive Goat Cheese and Roasted Red Pepper Sandwiches

Yield: 2 sandwiches
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes

You won't want to miss these chive goat cheese and roasted red pepper sandwiches.


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 red bell pepper, seeded and sliced thin
  • 1 medium red onion, peeled and sliced thin
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 4 ounces soft goat cheese, softened
  • 2 tablespoons thinly-chopped fresh chives
  • 4 slices thick-cut sourdough bread
  • 2 tablespoons butter, softened


  1. In a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium-low heat. Add in peppers, onions, salt and pepper and cook until softened and browned, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat.
  2. While peppers and onions cook, mix goat cheese and chives together in a small bowl. Spread goat cheese mixture on one side of each of the slices of bread, distributing it evenly. Spread the other side of each bread slice with butter.
  3. Remove peppers and onions from skillet and set aside. Reheat skilled over low heat and add two slices of bread, butter side down to the skillet. Layer peppers and onions over each slice and then top with remaining bread-slices, butter-side up. Cook for 4-5 minutes or until toast is browned and goat cheese is warmed. Carefully flip and cook for another 4-5 minutes.
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 2 sandwiches Serving Size: 1 sandwich
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 697Total Fat: 34gSaturated Fat: 17gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 14gCholesterol: 57mgSodium: 1273mgCarbohydrates: 75gFiber: 4gSugar: 11gProtein: 26g

At Wholefully, we believe that good nutrition is about much more than just the numbers on the nutrition facts panel. Please use the above information as only a small part of what helps you decide what foods are nourishing for you.

Alright, who’s right? Me or Babyface?

Cassie is the founder and CEO of Wholefully. She's a home cook and wellness junkie with a love of all things healthy living. She lives on a small hobby farm in Southern Indiana with her husband, daughter, two dogs, two cats, and 15 chickens.

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28 Responses
  1. Dixie

    It’s not a classic grilled cheese unless there is a creamy bowl of tomato soup along side of it 🙂 but grilled cheese, I agree with you is just that….grilled cheese nothing else. Now you can do gourmet grilled cheese, lol, which sounds like what I would consider Babyface of doing. Lately I’ve been craving my old fav grilled cheese with bacon and tomato, mmm, but his his tasty too.

  2. Athena

    Sorry but I have to side with Babyface on this one. I love adding different stuff to my grilled cheese sandwiches. This sandwich looks amazing.

  3. I’m in the grilled cheese pursit camp too. A grilled cheese is buttered bread and cheese.

    Anything else is either a “grilled cheese with…” or a “panini.” I’ll even go as far as to allow it to be called a “gourmet grilled cheese,” but it is not a grilled cheese.

  4. Ali

    I’m with you…what he’s making is more of a panini?

    This reminds me of a story, though. A friend of mine was traveling by train though Mongolia (jealous!!), and they stopped at a pretty touristy joint that had all kinds of American fare on the menu. The people behind her, having eaten Mongolian food for a few weeks, were crazy excited about the menu and ordered milkshakes. What was delivered was just a plain glass of milk. They replied “This is not a milkshake!”, to which the server replied, “but Milk, Shake!”. She had literally just shaken the carton of milk and poured a glass. They tried to explain that that was not a milkshake, and the server kept saying “but milk, shake!”. Fair enough.

    So technically he made something that contained cheese and was grilled, but that’s not what you meant! 🙂

  5. It all depends on the intent!

    If you planned on making a grilled cheese and decided to add some tomato and bacon, it’s a grilled cheese with tomato and bacon.

    If you planned on making a grilled sandwich with cheese, tomato and bacon on it, it probably has a special name of it’s own on the recipe you’d followed, because come on, no one goes into the kitchen to make a “grilled cheese, tomato and bacon” sandwich.

    My ultimate issue is that until George Foreman decided to slap his name on a counter top grill, 99.9% of the friggin’ things were fried, which completely negates the entire name to begin with!

  6. Tori

    Cassie, I so side with you on this grilled cheese debate!

    Oh, and it HAS to be American Cheese. Mmm nothin’ beats a crusty italian bread grilled to perfection with American Cheese.

    1. Cassie

      Okay, now that’s taking it TOO far. 🙂 I love a good grilled cheese with sharp cheddar. YUM. Although, admittedly, American Cheese melts so well!

  7. I’m with you…a grilled cheese is bread, butter and cheese…preferably dunked in tomato soup!
    But his sandwich looked yummy. Never had goat cheese before…

  8. Sorry, another vote for Babyface. It’s still grilled cheese. Of course I grew up in a family where every soda was referred to as coke.
    “You want a coke?”
    “What kind?”

    So, naybe you shouldn’t count my vote…

  9. Jenny

    yeah, sorry, but i’m gonna have to side with your man on this one 😉 my favorite grilled cheese sandwich also has bacon, tomatoes, and spicy mustard on it. my #2 is a brie, basil, chocolate concoction. fancy grilled cheeses are where its at!

  10. Yuuuum! This sandwich is making me want a second lunch right now.
    As far as the grilled cheese debate goes, I say there are two kinds of grilled cheese sandwich. There’s plain ol’ grilled cheese and there griled cheese and… They are two branches of one sandwich family tree. Most importantly, they must be grilled (as in using a skillet or griddle) and there must be cheese!

    1. Cassie

      Hahahaha! I like the tree analogy. And I really want to make a sandwich family tree and print it out and hang it up in my kitchen.

  11. KT

    First, YUM-O!
    Second, I’d have to side with Babyface re the grilled cheese debate. You love and adore the *classic* (me too) and he likes to go all five star.

    “Him: But it’s grilled. And has cheese on it. Grilled cheese!” *GIGGLES* He does have a point.

    It’s a win/win.

Meet Cassie
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Hello. My name is Cassie, and I’m a healthy home cooking expert.

I'm a Certified Holistic Nutritionist, and I've been developing healthy recipes professionally for over 15 years. Food is my love language, and my kitchen tips and nourishing recipes are my love letter to you!

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