The secret to the perfect grilled cheese sandwich isn’t fancy artisan cheeses or ancient grain breads. The secret turns out to be stunningly simple: three ingredients and slow frying. And, according to Chef John of the video recipe site Food Wishes, a little extra cheese on the outside.
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In what he calls “the ultimate grilled cheese sandwich,” Chef John uses three basic ingredients: butter, white bread and extra-sharp cheddar cheese. The tour de force is sprinkling some grated cheese on the outside and frying it into the bread for a crispy, caramelized sensation that’s everything you dreamed of in a grilled sandwich. As Chef John attests, “This thing is cheesier than karaoke night on Jersey Shore.”

Don’t be stingy with the butter. This is no time for calorie counting. Your goal is the perfect grilled cheese sandwich, not a thinner waistline. And as J. Kenzi Lopez-Alt of Serious Eats says, “Low and slow is the way to go.” Keep your heat on medium-low, and take your time cooking, three to four minutes per side. If the heat is higher, you risk burning the bread before the cheese inside melts.

Watch Chef John in video below as he demonstrates this simple technique, and then plan to make extra. This is the kind of sandwich that makes you always want just one more bite.