Watch cheese genius Laura Werlin's excellent video for grilled cheese basics
  1. Tomato + white cheddar + thyme + black pepper
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    On crusty sourdough bread. Use thin slices of tomato and don't be overzealous (it can get too juicy). Use fresh thyme if possible. Red chili flakes optional.
  2. Tomato + pepper jack + bacon
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    Crusty sourdough. If skipping bacon, try sautéed mushrooms.
  3. Fresh fig + goat cheese
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    Hearty whole grain bread or sourdough. If figs are out of season, use a smear of fig jam.
  4. White cheddar + caramelized onions + crispy sage
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    Fry a few fresh sage leaves in a little better to crisp them. Drain on paper towels. Make this on crusty wheat or sourdough bread.
  5. Salami + ricotta + figs + peach
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    Crusty bread, thin slices of salami, thin slices of fig and peach. Black pepper. Apricots, plums, and nectarines would also be good.
  6. Grilled cheese croutons with tomato soup
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    Make regular grilled cheese with white or yellow cheddar, then cut into 1-inch squares and float in or serve alongside tomato soup.
  7. A note on gluten-free bread.
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    The gluten-free sandwich bread brands I've had the most luck with are Rudi's Original Gluten-Free and Udi's. If you're going to use gluten-free bread, you might as well take advantage of one of its biggest plusses, which is that it gets super crispy when toasted. Be generous with butter on its exterior and make sure it gets really golden-brown in the pan.