posted in Dinner at 6

Mushroom Grilled Cheese with Balsamic- Caramelized Onions (giveaway)

We love grilled cheese in our house.  I mean, we REALLY LOVE GRILLED CHEESE.  We eat it often, and sometimes we try to jazz things up.  Here’s my gourmet recipe for grilled cheese:  Mushroom Grilled Cheese with Balsamic- Caramelized Onions.  I made it in honor of the Great Midwest “I Love Grilled Cheese” recipe contest! (for details, read on!)  And they’re giving one lucky RecipeGirl reader a whole bunch of cheese too.  Giveaway details below!

Mushroom Grilled Cheese with Balsamic Caramelized Onions 1

I like ordinary grilled cheese, but this is no ordinary grilled cheese.  This one incorporates caramelized onions flavored with balsamic vinegar and mushrooms that have been sauteed in white wine.  The cheese:  Great Midwest Morel & Leek Jack Cheese.  And the bread is brushed and toasted with a Parmesan-Rosemary Butter.  Yeah, I went all out for this one.

Mushroom Grilled Cheese with Balsamic Caramelized Onions 2

There’s the butter.  A couple of spoonfuls of shredded Parmesan and freshly chopped rosemary added in too.  This was a very good idea.  It turns ordinary bread into something special.

Mushroom Grilled Cheese with Balsamic Caramelized Onions 3

Step one:  spread that delicious butter on one side of the bread and place it butter-side-down into a skillet.

Mushroom Grilled Cheese with Balsamic Caramelized Onions 4

Great Midwest Cheeses has this delicious flavor available (and a zillion other flavors too).  If you’re a mushroom lover, you’re going to love this one for sure.  This is what I used in this sandwich, and it had great melting ability for grilled cheese!  Note: Great Midwest cheeses are available at retailers across the USA and they are at Sam’s Club too.

Mushroom Grilled Cheese with Balsamic Caramelized Onions 5
Step 2:  Add a generous layer of cheese.

Mushroom Grilled Cheese with Balsamic Caramelized Onions 6

Step 3:  Add the balsamic caramelized onions (I explain how to make them in the recipe below, but you’re basically going to slow saute sliced onions in a little oil for about 30 minutes, then swoosh in some balsamic vinegar for even more flavor.  You’ll want to eat them with a spoon (be strong).

Mushroom Grilled Cheese with Balsamic Caramelized Onions 7

Step 4:  Add your sauteed mushrooms (again, explained in the recipe below.  These are simply sauteed with oil, salt, pepper and a swoosh of white wine).

Mushroom Grilled Cheese with Balsamic Caramelized Onions 8

Step 5:  Add another generous layer of cheese.  Why two layers of cheese?  You want the cheese to act as the glue on both sides to hold the goodies together.  Plus, you can’t really use too much cheese in grilled cheese, can you??

Mushroom Grilled Cheese with Balsamic Caramelized Onions 9
Step 6:  Slather another slice of bread with that good butter and place it butter-side-up.

Mushroom Grilled Cheese with Balsamic Caramelized Onions 10

Let the sandwich sizzle away.  It’s best if you do this one in a nonstick skillet since you don’t want the cheese to stick to the pan.  I used a stainless steel skillet and it was a little tricky, but it all worked out in the end.  A lid placed on top helps the cheese melt.

Mushroom Grilled Cheese with Balsamic Caramelized Onions 11

Flip it and watch that fabulous melty cheese do its thing!

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When it’s all nice and toasty on both sides, move it to a cutting board, let it rest for a couple of minutes, then slice in half.

Mushroom Grilled Cheese with Balsamic Caramelized Onions 13

Serve it up!

Mushroom Grilled Cheese with Balsamic Caramelized Onions 15
My husband got this for lunch over the weekend, and here’s how our conversation went:
Me:  do you like it?
H:  Mmmm Hmmm
Me:  Is there anything you would change?
H:  No
Me:  I need some more feedback, please.
H:  It’s SO good.  If I were at a restaurant, I’d go back and order this again.
Me:  My job is done then 🙂

Yield: 2 sandwiches

Prep Time: 1 hour + cooling and chill times

Cook Time: 45 min

Mushroom Grilled Cheese with Balsamic- Caramelized Onions


1 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium onion, sliced thinly
pinch of kosher salt
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

1 tablespoon olive oil
One 8-ounce package sliced mushrooms
generous sprinkle of kosher salt
freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup white wine

1/4 cup (1/2 stick) salted butter, softened
2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
2 teaspoons chopped fresh rosemary

2 slices bread

Morel-Leek flavored Midwest Cheese, sliced


1. Prepare the onions: Heat a nonstick skillet to medium; add oil, onions and salt. Saute the onions over medium to medium-low heat for about 30 minutes, stirring often, until the onions become soft and browned. Add the vinegar and swirl into the onions. Saute until the liquid is absorbed/evaporated. Let cool.

2. Prepare the mushrooms: Heat a nonstick skillet to medium; add oil, mushrooms, salt and pepper. Saute the mushrooms over medium heat for about 10 minutes, stirring often, until they are softened. Add the wine and saute until the liquid is absorbed/evaporated. Let cool.

3. Prepare the butter: Mix butter ingredients in a small dish.

4. Assemble and grill the sandwich: (these are instructions for one, then repeat to make another): Spread butter on 2 slices of bread. Place the bread, butter-side-down, on a nonstick skillet. Top with a layer of cheese, then 1/2 of the onions, then 1/2 of the mushrooms. Add a second layer of cheese on top of the mushrooms. Add the 2nd slice of bread, butter-side-up, and set the pan over medium heat. Place a lid on top. Watch it closely. You want it just toasted and cheese beginning to melt before you flip it. Use a spatula to peek underneath, and adjust heat as needed. Flip and toast the other side. When properly toasted on both sides, remove to a plate, slice and eat. Repeat to make a second sandwich.


Great Midwest  “I Love Grilled Cheese” recipe contest details! >You have a chance to win one of eight prizes including a vacation, Panini presses and cookbooks.  They’re asking home chefs to contribute their very best, most creative grilled cheese sandwich recipe using one or more of Great Midwest’s cheeses. They make a ton of different flavors.  I sampled all 12 of them!  Check out this link for Where To Buy Midwest Cheeses near you.

Great Midwest Cheeses

Key judging areas are #1 the use of Great Midwest cheeses, #2 taste and #3 creativity/originality of the recipe (creativity is a big component in the scores so really off-the-wall ideas are invited!) Anyone who posts anything on the Great Midwest Facebook page – whether it be a photo of your sandwich, your recipe, you in the kitchen cooking, etc. – will get bonus points on their contest entry.  Enter the contest here > I Love Grilled Cheese Recipe Contest

Great Midwest Fruit Cheeses

They even have fruit-infused flavors!  I’m thinking you could come up with some really interesting grilled cheese with one of these!  All of their cheeses are perfect for grilled cheese – they’re great melters – but they’re also incredibly versatile.  Hot casseroles, mac & cheese, cubed for snacking, shredded over salads, added to omelets…the possibilities are endless.

AND NOW FOR THE GIVEAWAY!  All of these cheeses- 12 varieties!!

Great Midwest Cheese Taste Testing
Like I mentioned before, I sampled ALL of these flavors.  My top 3 favorite are the Morel & Leek Jack, Horseradish Cheddar, and Naturally Smoked Cheddar.  There are certainly enough unique options to satisfy everyone – flavors range from sweet, to savory, to spicy.  Some of them are REALLY spicy, indeed!


One RecipeGirl reader will win all of of these Great Midwest Cheeses (ALL 12 varieties)


Open to those with a USA mailing address only.
Contest ends Monday, August 12, 2013 at the end of the day.
Winner will be chosen by Random.Org


Disclosure:  I’m working with Great Midwest Cheeses to help promote their grilled cheese contest, and I’m happy to share their variety of cheeses with my readers.  I only choose to write about products that I already enjoy in my own kitchen.  All opinions shared about this product are my own.

287 Responses to “Mushroom Grilled Cheese with Balsamic- Caramelized Onions (giveaway)”

  1. postedAug 5, 2013 3:36 AM

    I once tried a rosemary and olive oil parmesan from Trader Joe’s and I loved it!

  2. postedAug 5, 2013 4:28 AM
    jan n

    When I was in Europe I had Cheese with Salami in it AND it was delicious.

  3. postedAug 5, 2013 4:50 AM

    Yum! That sandwich looks absolutely delicious!

  4. postedAug 5, 2013 4:52 AM

    This looks awesome!! The best cheese I’ve ever had was on a trip in Paris, France…it was called Tomme de Berry…unreal!

  5. postedAug 5, 2013 5:07 AM

    Truffle infused cheese from Whole Foods…. strong but so delicious!

  6. postedAug 5, 2013 5:12 AM

    I love a good gruyere! or fontina, lol

  7. postedAug 5, 2013 5:12 AM

    Fabulous Grilled Cheese Sandwich recipe, Lori! Love the convo between you and hubby. Taste buds never lie. Never. 😉 Pinning everywhere! xo

  8. postedAug 5, 2013 5:12 AM

    I love cranberry stilton

  9. postedAug 5, 2013 5:18 AM
    Melissa B

    Cranberry Stilton on a grilled cheese sandwich made with a batard bread is awesome!

  10. postedAug 5, 2013 5:20 AM

    Best cheese I have ever tasted was Kangaroo Cheddar, but I never met a cheese I didn’t like!!

  11. postedAug 5, 2013 5:20 AM
    Elizabeth Fitzmaurice

    I love smoked cheddar!

  12. postedAug 5, 2013 5:22 AM
    Leslie Moore

    I love Cougar Gold Cheese from WSU! I could eat it ALL DAY!

  13. postedAug 5, 2013 5:26 AM
    Sue Cobb

    I would love the jalapeno jack! Yummy!!

  14. postedAug 5, 2013 5:27 AM
    Susan H.

    I love a good pepper jack cheese. Thanks.

  15. postedAug 5, 2013 5:28 AM

    The cheeses all sound amazing! I’m most intrigued by the apple cinnamon cheddar.

  16. postedAug 5, 2013 5:39 AM
    barbara n

    I love the flavor of Cheddar Cheese with Cranberries

  17. postedAug 5, 2013 5:45 AM

    Smoked Cheddar is one of my favorites.

  18. postedAug 5, 2013 5:46 AM

    I had an agred provolone that was melt in your mouth DEVINE!

  19. postedAug 5, 2013 5:49 AM

    I would love to try the Morel and Leek variety especially with some of the morels we fried and then froze this past spring! Mmmmm…

  20. postedAug 5, 2013 5:51 AM

    I just love Pepper Jack backed up with Extra sharp Cheddar on toasted bread.

  21. postedAug 5, 2013 5:55 AM

    I remember the first time I had dill havarti at a friend’s party – yum!

  22. postedAug 5, 2013 5:55 AM

    Mushroom and caramelized onion sounds like the perfect combo for a grilled cheese.

  23. postedAug 5, 2013 6:07 AM

    I LOVE cheese – and free cheese delivered to my door? I would LOVE this. Probably the best prize ever.
    My favorite cheese is Epoisses – it’s very similar to brie but SUPER stinky!

  24. postedAug 5, 2013 6:18 AM
    Amanda P.

    I really like a grilled cheese with ham and cranberry mustard sauce. Its the best!

  25. postedAug 5, 2013 6:20 AM

    Yummy recipe… I was for sure that we probably couldn’t get these cheeses here in Texas. Thank you for sharing the link because they actually sell these cheeses at my local Kroger and Super Target. Can’t wait to check them out – especially the cranberry cheddar

  26. postedAug 5, 2013 6:25 AM

    I abosolutely love Cheddar cheese. I’ve tried all others, but it’s the best in flavor. I add it to almost everything! I always have some in my fridge.

  27. postedAug 5, 2013 6:25 AM
    Juli V

    Just a plain and simple grilled cheese with mozzarella is perfect to me.

  28. postedAug 5, 2013 6:35 AM

    I had a truffle cheese once that was pretty incredible

  29. postedAug 5, 2013 6:39 AM

    What an amazing grilled cheese! I love the all the mushrooms and obviously all that melty, gooey cheese!

  30. postedAug 5, 2013 6:40 AM
    ellen casper

    Bluberry stilton – yummy!

  31. postedAug 5, 2013 6:45 AM

    We love grilled cheese! Our kids request it so often! The best cheese I have ever taste was Merlot cheese. Goes great with chocolate! 🙂

  32. postedAug 5, 2013 6:54 AM
    Sarah G

    Habanero Havarti and Roasted Garlic Havarti!

  33. postedAug 5, 2013 6:58 AM

    Creamy Toscano Cheese Soaked in Syrah from Traders!

  34. postedAug 5, 2013 7:00 AM

    I recently tried blueberry goat cheese and it was delicious!

  35. postedAug 5, 2013 7:07 AM

    I love cheese! These varieties sound amazing! Would love to try them 🙂

  36. postedAug 5, 2013 7:08 AM
    Christy K.

    I have never really tried any cheeses other than the normal ones in the cheese section at the store but I really love asiago and colby cheese. There are so many in that photo above that I have never heard of but they sound so interesting!

  37. postedAug 5, 2013 7:09 AM

    Oh my goodness, that looks so delicious!

  38. postedAug 5, 2013 7:09 AM

    wow. I mean…just wow. A sandwich as gorgeous as this needs only one word.

  39. postedAug 5, 2013 7:10 AM
    Deb V

    Fresh cream cheese

  40. postedAug 5, 2013 7:11 AM

    My favorite cheese ever is the every so simple hoop cheese!

  41. postedAug 5, 2013 7:12 AM
    Margie Mahoney

    I love a cheese I got from Costco with apricots in it. I think they carry it during the holidays.

  42. postedAug 5, 2013 7:12 AM
    Angela W.

    Don’t judge me, but brie is my favorite. Mild? Yes. But delicious with everything!!!

  43. postedAug 5, 2013 7:12 AM
    Leanna H

    I had some great brie in France.

  44. postedAug 5, 2013 7:13 AM

    I really think I will move from the Netherlands to the USA so I will be able to participate in these wonderfull giveaways! 😉 These cheeses look great and I am sure I will be able to find something similar here so that I can make that beautifull sandwich!

  45. postedAug 5, 2013 7:13 AM

    Every now and then I buy a few random small wedges of cheese just to try, and my favorite one I’ve come across is the Lechester Cheddar Applewood Smoked Wheel – I love the creamy smokiness of it!

  46. postedAug 5, 2013 7:14 AM

    oh my gosh, this look divine!!! Can’t wait to make it!

  47. postedAug 5, 2013 7:15 AM
    Lisa Thomas

    I’m a huge fan of a melty brie.

  48. postedAug 5, 2013 7:15 AM

    Just had a tasty chipotle goat cheese this weekend!

  49. postedAug 5, 2013 7:15 AM

    These cheeses sound amazing!! But the most adventurous cheese I have tasted was something that a friend brought over with peach preserves in it.

  50. postedAug 5, 2013 7:16 AM

    dill havarti

  51. postedAug 5, 2013 7:18 AM

    I absolutely love pepper jack cheese!

  52. postedAug 5, 2013 7:18 AM
    Joanna H.

    An amazing pepper jack cheese…..spicy!

  53. postedAug 5, 2013 7:19 AM
    Heather K

    Smoked Cheddar

  54. postedAug 5, 2013 7:20 AM

    I love sharp cheddar! Thanks for the amazing recipes & giveaway!!

  55. postedAug 5, 2013 7:21 AM

    Love love love grilled cheese!

  56. postedAug 5, 2013 7:21 AM
    Dawna Gum

    Oh pick me, I love cheese!!! <3

  57. postedAug 5, 2013 7:22 AM

    Best cheese I ever tasted was a real cheddar. Cheddar cheese that we know here in the USA is NOTHING like a true cheddar :o)

  58. postedAug 5, 2013 7:22 AM

    Seriously, I’ve never had a cheese that I didn’t like but all forms of bleu are my favorite, along with goat, and cheddar – it’s just too hard to pick!

  59. postedAug 5, 2013 7:22 AM

    I am a sucker for any cheese with a spicy kick, I had a habanero cheese that was so yummy

  60. postedAug 5, 2013 7:22 AM
    Everyday Gourmet

    Love me some cheese~

  61. postedAug 5, 2013 7:23 AM
    Barbie Smith

    That sandwich looks so yummy! We love to have a fruit and cheese tray Sunday evening after an early dinner. These cheese would be a fun way to change things up.

  62. postedAug 5, 2013 7:25 AM
    Kathy Lyons-Urbanek

    Cannot wait to try this- have been buying the Morel & Leeks cheese for years but can’t wait to try it with the balsamic caramelized onions – YUM!!!

  63. postedAug 5, 2013 7:26 AM
    Michele E

    My favorite is Bacon Cheese. It’s a great cheddar with real bacon. THE BEST EVER!

  64. postedAug 5, 2013 7:26 AM

    Rosemary manchego

  65. postedAug 5, 2013 7:27 AM
    Suzanne H

    The best cheese I ever had was a rosemary asiago….yum!

  66. postedAug 5, 2013 7:28 AM
    Jan B.

    The best flavor of cheese I have tasted was Cougar gold.

  67. postedAug 5, 2013 7:31 AM

    I am drooling! Here I am drinking my morning coffee and craving this grilled cheese. Mmmmmm.

  68. postedAug 5, 2013 7:33 AM
    Haley @Cupcakes and Sunshine

    I had an amazing brie sandwich at a French restaurant one time. Since then, I have become a brie-liever!

  69. postedAug 5, 2013 7:36 AM

    I had a morel cheese once. So good.

  70. postedAug 5, 2013 7:37 AM

    Have I ever mentioned how much I love cheese? I think I could live on it. Your sandwich looks phenomenal Lori!

  71. postedAug 5, 2013 7:38 AM

    My favorite cheese so far is a simple blue cheese or a good smoked provolone. I am kind of all over the map. I love cheese. <3

  72. postedAug 5, 2013 7:39 AM

    Cheese makes just about anything better! Salsa Jack in one of my favorites.

  73. postedAug 5, 2013 7:39 AM
    Jennifer Lohrke

    I love grilled cheese..this is a great prize!!

  74. postedAug 5, 2013 7:40 AM
    Teri Roberts

    Irish Coolea is a fabulous cheese but then what cheese isn’t, I ask? Your sandwich looks so good. I will be making it this week for sure!!

  75. postedAug 5, 2013 7:40 AM

    They all look so delicious. I want your grilled cheese sandwich for lunch!

  76. postedAug 5, 2013 7:41 AM

    The best flavor cheese I’ve ever had was garlic cheddar.

  77. postedAug 5, 2013 7:41 AM

    Cheese, glorious cheese, I lived off of extra sharp pinconning in College, it’s still melt in your mouth

  78. postedAug 5, 2013 7:43 AM

    They all look so interesting! I’d love to try every one.

  79. postedAug 5, 2013 7:43 AM

    I am a cheese ADDICT!!!! All of the different flavors sound fabulous! Talk about making a grown up grilled cheese sandwich or mac and cheese! YUM!

  80. postedAug 5, 2013 7:43 AM

    We <3 grilled cheese over here too! I love all the mushrooms in this one – so yummy!!! I think the best cheese I've ever tasted was in Italy, but it's hard to choose just one flavor!

  81. postedAug 5, 2013 7:43 AM
    Tina Knezevic

    I absolutely love cheese and my favorite is the olive oil parmesan! So healthy and tasty!

  82. postedAug 5, 2013 7:44 AM

    Twelve kinds of cheese? Sounds like the best prize ever!

  83. postedAug 5, 2013 7:47 AM
    Lisa Corrigan

    Cheese is a staple in our house…love them all! I personally love goat cheese the best!

  84. postedAug 5, 2013 7:48 AM
    Rikki-Dee Flora

    I had an apricot cheese that was amazing.

  85. postedAug 5, 2013 7:50 AM
    Natalie J Vandenberghe

    I feel so inexperienced…I haven’t tried many exotic flavors of cheeses. Maybe that’s because when I find a cheese I like, I just keep eating it! I love sharp and smoky cheddar. I’m sure my husband would enjoy all 12 varieties of cheese described here–he eats cheese every single day. Thanks for the giveaway!

  86. postedAug 5, 2013 7:50 AM

    Love this giveaway! We love all kinds of cheese, but Havartti is our favorite. Thanks for this awesome contest and btw, I LOVE your cookbook!

  87. postedAug 5, 2013 7:52 AM

    Love grilled cheese … swiss on rye with fresh tomatoes and mustard on the bread .. . sigh … no way to make at work and not great carb wise but SIGH!

  88. postedAug 5, 2013 7:53 AM

    White cheddar, although recently I tried manchego and really enjoyed it!

  89. postedAug 5, 2013 7:53 AM

    The best cheese I’ve ever tried was a Smoked Gruyere at a farmer’s market in England.

  90. postedAug 5, 2013 7:53 AM

    I LOVEEEEEEEE CHEESE I make grilled cheeses with rye bread and mushrooms and Im from the midwest and am familiar with cheese from Wisc. especially right from the factory cheese curds. OMG Ill be checking out Sams Club to see what they have. Now Im hungry and its only 8 am lol lol


  91. postedAug 5, 2013 7:54 AM

    I love simple smoked cheddars!

  92. postedAug 5, 2013 7:54 AM

    Pepperoni cheddar in Innercourse Pa. Yes, that’s the town name.

  93. postedAug 5, 2013 7:55 AM

    Jalapeño raspberry cheddar

  94. postedAug 5, 2013 7:58 AM
    Shelley Winstead

    Horseradish Bacon cheese

  95. postedAug 5, 2013 7:59 AM
    Kim McM

    I would love to try these! My son lives in Wisconsin, and my stepson went to visit him this summer and told his daughter, “It’s a cheese state.” Yes, it is!

  96. postedAug 5, 2013 7:59 AM
    Donna Lynady

    OMG that looks fantastic!

  97. postedAug 5, 2013 7:59 AM
    Susan Broughton

    I haven’t eaten that many cheeses but not from wanting to…….I love cheese but the best I have eaten has been Smoked Gouda

  98. postedAug 5, 2013 8:00 AM

    Sharp white cheddar with peppadew is one of my favorite cheeses.

  99. postedAug 5, 2013 8:00 AM
    Melissa H

    Balsamic Parmesean is my favorite!

  100. postedAug 5, 2013 8:01 AM

    If my career involved cheese, I’d be a much happier person.

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