Air Fryer Grilled Cheese

Written by Monti - Budget Bytes

If you’ve never made an Air Fryer Grilled Cheese, get ready for the crispiest and gooiest results ever! My secret is to mix softened butter with Italian seasoning and parmesan cheese and then spread it on the outside of the sandwich. This one step creates an unforgettable thunderous crunch that gives way to the dreamiest pillow of molten cheese.

Air fryer grilled cheese being pulled apart on a white plate.

Tips for making grilled cheese in an air fryer:

  • Use sliced cheese instead of shredded. The air circulation in an air fryer is very strong, and shredded cheese won’t stay on your bread as well as heavy slices.
  • Butter the outside of your bread slices from crust to crust. Full coverage is the only way!
  • Don’t press down on the sandwich when flipping it, which will destroy the airiness of your bread.
  • Try not to rush the process. Make sure to get five minutes on each side for the most unctuously melted cheese and crispy bread combo.

What type of cheese is best for grilled cheese?

Classically, you make grilled cheese with a few slices of American. But feel free to choose your own adventure. Any good melting cheese will work just fine. For the best results, use room temperature cheese, which melts faster and doesn’t separate into greasy clumps. My top 5 in no particular order:

  • Mild or Sharp Cheddar
  • Swiss
  • Provolone
  • Brie
  • Muenster

Please note that extra-sharp cheddar did not make the cut. Though it’s a delight, extra-sharp cheddar has a low water content because it’s aged, and the older cheese gets, the dryer it becomes.

Is there a type of bread that’s best for a grilled cheese?

Undoubtedly (because cheese can be heavy) you need sturdy slices of bread with a tight crumb. Just make sure they aren’t more than a half-inch thick because the cheese will take forever to melt. Bread with an open crumb (a lacy pattern of irregularly sized holes) can be challenging to work with because the cheese escapes through the craters. Especially great choices include:

  • Brioche
  • Rye
  • Ciabatta
  • Country Bread
  • Sourdough

Can you reheat a grilled cheese in an air fryer?

An air fryer is the PERFECT tool for reheating grilled cheese. It generates warm air that circulates all around your sandwich, crisping up even the doughiest bread and re-melting your cheese with ease. Cook for two minutes per side, and insert a butter knife into the cheese. If the knife blade is hot to the touch when you remove it, you are good to go!

What to serve with grilled cheese?

While Tomato Soup is a classic side, it isn’t the only thing that tastes great with an air fryer grilled cheese. If you’re looking for some fantastic dishes to pair with your sandwich, try an Herby Potato Salad, Simple Sauteed Vegetables, Summer Sweet Corn Salad, or Jerk Seasoned Collard Greens.

Air fryer grilled cheese being pulled apart by two hands.

Air Fryer Grilled Cheese

The secret to the crunchiest, gooiest, air-fryer grilled cheese EVER is first mixing softened butter with Italian seasoning and Parmesan cheese and then spreading it on the outside of your bread. You can't get results like these from a pan!
Author: Kelly – Team Budget Bytes
Prep Time: 5 mins
Cook Time: 10 mins
Total Time: 15 mins
Servings: 1

Ingredients

  • 1 Tbsp butter, room temperature ($0.11)
  • 2 tsp grated Parmesan ($0.18)
  • 1/4 tsp Italian seasoning ($0.03)
  • 2 slices sourdough bread* ($0.67)
  • 4 slices cheese ($1.25)

Instructions

  • First, combine the room temperature butter, grated Parmesan, and Italian seasoning in a bowl. Then, spread the butter mixture over one side of each piece of bread, from edge to edge.
  • Place the sliced cheese between the two pieces of bread, buttered sides facing out.
  • Preheat the air fryer (if yours does not have a preheat setting, let it run for about four minutes at 400ºF).
  • Finally, place the sandwich in the air fryer basket. Cook at 350ºF for five minutes, then flip and cook for 5 minutes on the other side, or until golden brown and crispy and the cheese is melted through. Slice and serve.

Notes

*If you do not have sourdough bread, any hearty bread will do. Softer bread may require less time in the air fryer.
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Nutrition

Serving: 1 sandwichCalories: 639 kcalCarbohydrates: 30 gProtein: 29 gFat: 45 gSodium: 1077 mgFiber: 2 g
Nutritional values are estimates only. See our full nutrition disclaimer here.

Equipment

The equipment section above contains affiliate links to products we use and love. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.
Air Fryer grilled cheese stacked on white plate.

How to Make Air Fryer Grilled Cheese – Step by Step Photos

Parmesan butter mix in ramekin.

Combine the room temperature butter, grated Parmesan, and Italian seasoning in a bowl.

Knife spreading parmesan butter on bread.

Spread the butter mixture over one side of each piece of bread, from edge to edge.

Cheese slices for air fryer grilled cheese on top of one slice of bread with a second slice of bread next to it, on a cutting board.

Place the sliced cheese between the two pieces of bread, buttered sides facing out.

Grilled cheese sandwich in an air fryer basket.

Preheat the air fryer. If yours does not have a preheat setting, let it run for about four minutes at 400ºF. Once preheated, place the sandwich in the air fryer basket.

Air fryer grilled cheese in air fryer basket.

Cook at 350ºF for five minutes.

Air fryer grilled cheese on a spatula over an air fryer basket.

Once the sandwich has cooked for 5 minutes, flip it on the other side, and cook for five minutes more, or until both sides are golden brown and crispy, and the cheese is melted through. Slice and serve.

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