While we’re all familiar with perfect grilled cheese sandwiches, how often have we grilled cheese on its own?
The Mediterranean grilling cheeses make amazing grilled cheese sandwiches, but they can also be grilled on their own!
Try grilling these cheeses directly on the grill until they are brown on the outside, but soft and gooey on the inside, by cutting them into thick slices.
However, what are the best Mediterranean grilling cheeses? The best Mediterranean grilling cheeses include the popular halloumi, provolone, Greek kefalotyri, kasseri, and Yanni. They are all cheeses that are able to withstand grilling, and they taste even better after grilling!
Find out what the best options for Mediterranean grilling cheeses are and how to best enjoy them if you want to explore all things Mediterranean grilling cheeses!
The Best Mediterranean Grilling Cheeses
There is no shortage of cheese options when it comes to Mediterranean cuisine.
When it comes to grilling, however, there are only a few options since each Mediterranean cheese has its own properties and purpose.
Grilling cheeses from the Mediterranean region should be able to withstand the grilling process as well as make delicious grilled sandwiches as well.
Discover your next Mediterranean grilling cheese by reading all of the below!
There’s no denying that halloumi is the king of grilling cheeses, and that everyone should include it in their grilling repertoire when talking about the best Mediterranean grilling cheeses!
This semi-hard cheese originates from Cyprus and has a salty taste. It is typically made from goat’s or sheep’s milk.
Due to its high melting point, it is an ideal cheese for grilling, since it does not turn into a gloopy mess when heated.
Halloumi should not be eaten raw – it needs to be heated, grilled or pan-fried before eating. Raw halloumi is hard and dense, and is often sold in slabs.
The outside of halloumi will be brown and crispy, while the inside will remain soft and chewy but not melted.
Moreover, halloumi is wonderfully versatile. It can be added to a salad, skewers, or pita, as well as to a grilled cheese sandwich.
The inside is squeaky, chewy, and soft, and the outside should be crisp and golden-brown after grilling.
As a cheese, provolone can be enjoyed as is, or it can be grilled or incorporated into a grilled cheese sandwich and be absolutely delicious!
As a cheese made from cow’s milk, provolone is relatively mild in flavor and creamy when melted.
It is important to use a hard, high-quality provolone that will not melt too quickly when grilling with provolone.
Melting provolone is inevitable, but it can withstand a bit of heat before becoming difficult to grill.
A piece should be placed on the grill, allowed to soften and brown for a few seconds, then flipped over and removed. Left too long, it might stick.
After removing it from the grill, Provolone will continue to melt, so it’s a good idea to serve it on some bread with olive oil and herbs.
It melts to the perfect consistency when used for making grilled cheese sandwiches. Provolone is cheesy and creamy, and it melts to the perfect consistency!
The taste of Provolone cheese is sharp, buttery, and slightly nutty. It is a complex cheese, with some of the varieties being stronger in flavor than others.
A Greek cheese called kefalotyri is made from sheep’s milk or goat’s milk and has a similar texture and flavor to halloumi.
Kefalotyri, like halloumi, is a hard cheese that’s salty – however, it has a less tangy flavor.
Despite being less tangy than halloumi, kefalotyri is saltier, making pairing it with salty foods challenging.
Due to its high melting point, Kefalotyri can be grilled or fried without melting or forming a melted mess.
Kefalotyri browns and develops a crisp exterior while becoming soft and chewy on the inside when grilled or fried.
In addition to being creamier and softer than halloumi, grilled kefalotyri remains slightly chewy and squeaky – it is still easy to slice and eat.
Grilled kefalotyri with black pepper and lemon juice is the best way to serve it.
You can add it to grilled cheese sandwiches, but keep in mind how salty it is when you add other ingredients.
The Greek cheese Kasseri is made from sheep’s milk, but it has a similar texture to provolone with a salty, tangy flavor.
Kasseri does not have a high melting point like halloumi, but it can still be grilled with some caution, served as a grilled cheese on its own, or used as a sandwich filling.
In order to prevent the kasseri from melting too fast, you will have to flip it over immediately after placing it on the grill.
Enjoy the salty, tangy, creamy flavors of kasseri on a slice of fresh bread or as a dip after you remove it from the grill.
Additionally, it melts down creamy and beautiful between two slices of bread when used in a Mediterranean grilled cheese sandwich!
Although it might not grill as well as halloumi or kefalotyri, it can be grilled, and the flavor it offers when grilled is definitely worth trying.
There is another Greek semi-firm cheese called Yanni, and it is similar to halloumi, but with a few differences. This cheese was designed for grilling, and it does so well.
Yanni can be placed on the grill, and left to brown and crisp on the outside, while soft and creamy inside, but not gooey.
Yanni is a semi-firm Mediterranean grilling cheese that is mildly salty, but creamier and more buttery than halloumi. It also has a richer, creamier flavor and texture than halloumi.
As yanni has a high melting point and is so creamy, it can also be baked, microwaved, and pan-fried.
A grilled cheese sandwich, a salad, or a burger can be topped with it. It can be served as an appetizer on its own, as an entrée in a grilled cheese sandwich, as a garnish for a salad, or as a burger topping.
When eaten raw or directly from the package, Yanni will not be as enjoyable as when it is grilled, heated, or cooked.
6. Bonus: Non-Mediterranean Grilling Cheese
You could also use a basic grilling cheese from Central and South America, like Coalho or Queso Panela, if you can’t find any suitable Mediterranean cheese!
Despite looking similar to halloumi, these cheeses are softer and smoother than halloumi and usually made from cow’s milk.
Although this affects their grilling properties, they can still be grilled successfully without losing their shape.
Since they tend to have a milder flavor, you will have to add your own seasoning when making an appetizer or making grilled cheese.
The best way to enjoy non-Mediterranean grilling cheeses is to use them in tacos!
Now that you’ve learned all about the best Mediterranean grilling cheeses, along with some of the best non-Mediterranean grilling cheeses, here are some additional questions we thought you might have.
Is gouda good to use to make a grilled cheese sandwich?
As gouda has a good acidity level, it melts in grilled cheese sandwiches beautifully and offers great flavor.
When planning your next grilled cheese experiment, consider whether the gouda is aged to determine how it will melt.
Which cheese melts best?
It is essential to choose cheeses that melt well. The best melting cheeses include Colby, Havarti, Swiss cheese, Monterey Jack, fontina, provolone, gouda, and muenster.
So these are all great for cheese sauces and grilled cheese sandwiches!