Confident home cooking
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Economical, Main Dishes, Stuffing Stuff, Vegetarian

Pumpkin Grilled Cheese

by Nick

It has been too long since I’ve continued my quest for the perfect grilled cheese sandwich, but the hunt is on again.

I focused on the filling for this sandwich. I knew I wanted something seasonal and pumpkin seemed like an appropriate choice.

Here’s the good news: It’s freakin’ delicious.

Here’s the bad news: You’ll have to roast  your own pumpkin. Sorry… no canned stuff for this recipe.

Yield
4 large sandwiches
Prep Time
Total Time

Just a moment please...

Print Recipe Pumpkin Grilled Cheese

Ingredients

  • 1 4 pound pumpkin, roasted (1/2 cup pumpkin per sandwich)
  • 8-12 ounces gruyere cheese, grated
  • 8 slices sourdough bread
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon paprika

Directions

1) Split pumpkin in half and scrape out seeds and guts. Save seeds for roasting if you want!

2) Roast pumpkin cut-side down in a 350 degree Fahrenheit oven for 30 minutes. Turn pumpkin cut side up and roast for another 30 minutes.

3) Let pumpkin cool slightly and then scoop out flesh from pumpkin. Mash roughly with a fork. You'll need about 1/2 cup of pumpkin mash for each sandwich.

4) Stir together brown sugar and spices in a small bowl.

5) Butter one side of each piece of bread. Add buttered side of one piece to a large skillet over medium heat.

6) Scoop on 1/2 cup of pumpkin and spread it evenly over the bread. Sprinkle generously with spice mixture. Top with grated cheese. Add top piece of bread, buttered side up.

7) Cook sandwich over medium heat for about 5 minutes per side until the bread is nicely browned and the cheese melted.

Cut and serve immediately!

The Pumpkin

The reason I think the canned pumpkin won’t work for this recipe is that it’s too runny. It’ll just be a complete mess on the inside of a sandwich.

On the other hand, roasted pumpkin is nice and thick and doesn’t have as much liquid so it works well as a filling.

You obviously don’t need a huge pumpkin for this. About a four pound pumpkin will give you enough baked flesh for 4-6 sandwiches.

While it does take some time to roast the pumpkin, it’s far from hard. Just slice it in half down the middle and then scoop out the seeds and guts. I recommend saving the seeds for roasting as a snack.

cleaned

Save the seeds!

Then just bake the pumpkin at 350 degrees F, cut side down, for about thirty minutes. Then flip the pumpkin so the cut side is up and bake it for another 30 minutes.

Finishing it cut side up will dry out the pumpkin which will help us later on!

baked

After about an hour.

Once the pumpkin has cooled a bit you can scoop out the flesh. I got about a cup and a half of flesh for each half of pumpkin.

Once it’s scooped out just mash it roughly in a bowl. Notice how thick it is compared to the canned stuff.

mashed

The pumpkin mash.

Sandwich Making

Once the pumpkin is roasted, the rest of the sandwich is pretty straightforward.

As always, I recommend using a nice sturdy bread (I used sourdough).

ingredients

Basics!

I mixed up a quick spice blend with brown sugar, paprika, chili powder, and salt that I used to season the sandwich. It totally made it in my opinion.

Build your sandwich by buttering some bread and setting it in a skillet over medium heat. Make sure the buttered side is down obviously. Then pile on a good amount of pumpkin filling and generously sprinkle the pumpkin with the spice blend.

seasoning

Action shot.

When I say generous, I mean generous.

This is how much spice blend I used for my two sandwiches.

spiced

Go heavy on it.

Then pile on your cheese! Grating the cheese helps it melt easily.

Gruyere

Gotta gruyere it.

Slap on the top piece of bread (buttered) and grill it over medium heat.

Temperature is key when you are cooking a grilled cheese. If you cook it too hot, the bread will burn before the cheese melts. It should take about five minutes per side to finish cooking the sandwiches.

grilling

Not too hot!

Once they come out of the skillet, just chop the sandwiches in half which makes them easier to eat.

chopped

Makes it easier to eat.

This is definitely one of my favorite grilled cheeses I’ve made.

Sure the roasting step is a bit annoying, but it’s totally worth it. If you have any extra roasted pumpkin, it will store very nicely in the fridge for a week or so or you could even freeze half of a pumpkin if you wanted.

If you’re in a sandwich rut, give this guy a shot!

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11 comments on “Pumpkin Grilled Cheese

  1. Oh man, i’m so happy you share this stuff. im in philly and were in the middle of a hurricane and all i’ve got is a baking pumpkin, bread and cheese. i can’t wait to get in on this before my power inevitablly goes out.

  2. so funny you just posted this recipe because a friend and I were just saying how amazing a squash/grilled cheese sandwich would be. Must make. Like 12.

  3. This sandwich is so happening tomorrow (maybe for breakfast?!).I have leftover homemade pumpkin purée in my fridge and precisely two slices of bread left. Perfect.

  4. I finally got a chance to make this, and it was a HUGE hit. The spices are perfect, and the pumpkin taste subtle. Bravo!

  5. It looks wonderful!!! I would love to sink my teeth into some of that sarnie. Canned pumpkin can be dewatered! You can cook it in a pan, on low-medium heat till it dries up somewhat and caramelises. I recently tried it for a pumpkin pie filling and it turned out beautifully.

  6. Great recipe! I made this with what I had on hand: pumpkin puree out of the can, coconut oil in place of butter, cheddar cheese, and skipped the paprika. Just smeared some pumpkin on one slice of each sandwich and it was fine. We ate it around an afternoon camp fire on a crisp fall day. Perfect.

  7. IF YA DON’T HAVE A PUMPKIN LAYING AROUND, YOU COULD JUST OVEN ROAST
    THE CANNED PUMPKIN WHICH WOULD EFFECTIVELY REDUCE THE LIQUID AND ENABLE IT TO BE USED FOR YOUR SANDWICH.

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