1. Lose the American cheese (it's not really real cheese anyway!). Opt for a more flavorful cheese like feta or mozzarella or even sharp cheddar. Feta cheese has a reasonable amount of calories and protein. One ounce of feta has only 74 calories and 4 grams of protein. One ounce of mozzarella has only 71 calories and a whopping 7 grams of protein. These items can be purchased in fat free or reduced fat (Caution: with less fat typically comes more sodium!).
2. Toss the white bread and switch it out for a high fiber whole wheat bread. You body has no idea what the heck to do with white bread. It treats it like a big piece of cake and stores it right in our fatty areas. To get a good serving of fiber one slice of bread should be >3 grams. So, you should at least have 6 grams of fiber in this sandwich. And whole wheat bread makes the grilled cheese a little more sophisticated!
3. Focus on the fat. Its true fat renders good taste and also makes the bread very crispy. But, we can look at other ways to achieve great taste and texture without so much fat. First, switch the butter for oil. Canola oil is great for cooking and a little more heart healthy. To lower the calories even more use a spray and lightly spray the pan before grilling. Experiment with herbs and other seasonings to yield good tastes. And as for the crispy crust try using a Panini press. Don't have one? You can thank Alton Brown for the next tip. Place your sandwich in an iron skillet on the stove top and place another skillet on top of the sandwich and allow cooking. You have just sandwiched the sandwich! When you remove the top skillet your sandwich should be nice and crispy.
4. Lastly, Pile on the veggies. I always say it “Look for the nutrition in all of your meals!” You do not have to go crazy just compliment the type of cheese. Add chopped spinach and zucchini to the feta grilled cheese or add sliced tomatoes to the mozzarella for an Italian delight grilled cheese!
Check out this awesome grilled cheese recipe from Eatingwell.com.
Continue reading as I continue my mission: Healthy Huggins!