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Grilled Cheese with Spinach and Pancetta

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  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 47 min
  • Prep: 10 min
  • Inactive: 7 min
  • Cook: 30 min
  • Yield: 8 sandwiches
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Vegetable oil cooking spray

6 ounces pancetta, cut into 1/8-inch-thick slices

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature

2 cups (8 ounces) shredded Monterey Jack cheese

2 cups (8 ounces) shredded mild Cheddar

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1 tablespoon vegetable or canola oil, plus extra, as needed

2 packed cups coarsely chopped baby spinach

16 (1/3-inch-thick) slices country-style white bread


  1. Put an oven rack in the center of the oven. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. Spray 2 baking sheets with cooking spray. Lay the pancetta in a single layer on the prepared baking sheets and bake until crispy and brown, about 12 to 14 minutes. Drain on paper towels. Cool for 5 minutes and crumble. Set aside.
  3. In a food processor, combine the butter, cheeses, salt, and 1 tablespoon vegetable oil. Blend until smooth, adding extra oil, as needed, until the mixture is spreadable. Add the spinach and pulse until just combined.
  4. Preheat a panini maker. Spread the cheese mixture over 8 slices of bread. Top with the crumbled pancetta. Put the remaining bread slices on top. Grill the sandwiches, 2 at a time, until golden and crispy, about 3 to 4 minutes. Cool for 2 minutes, then cut each sandwich in half and arrange on a platter.
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