Grilled Hatch Chile Pimento Cheese Sandwiches

by Shawnda on September 5, 2012

in Appetizers,Hatch chiles,Sandwich, Wraps, & Quesadillas,Vegetarian

Grilled Hatch Pimento Cheese Sandwiches

Grilled cheese night usually means two things: 1) I’m too lazy, or tired, or lazy, or really lazy to cook a “real” dinner and 2) rehashing of the now 8-year-old debate over which cheese makes a “real” grilled cheese sandwich.

One of us expects slices of school bus yellow-orange processed cheese food, which melts beautifully and oozes out of the sandwich in picture-perfect drips. The other expects pricey, in-store, hand-made fresh mozzarella, which melts beautifully and oozes out of the sandwich in picture-perfect drips.

You might be a little surprised, but I am the processed cheese food lover of the house.

Grilled Hatch Pimento Cheese Sandwiches

Whenever I mention grilled cheese, I get The Look. (And I’m betting you know the one.) It’s quickly followed up with an eyeroll, a sigh, and then a request: “Will you please buy real cheese this time?”

So I bought real cheese. Two real cheeses: horseradish white cheddar and Monterrey Jack. And then I proceeded to make a white pimento cheese using hatch chiles after not being able to think of anything else for like 3 days. I owe that to my friend Liz, who also is responsible for my new two-three-four-episodes-a-night Castle habit. Which, technically, would also mean that she’s the one to blame for the mountain of clean laundry on my bedroom floor bed. Yeah, let’s go with that.

But back to grilled cheese. Melty cheese and hatch chiles that ooze out of the sandwich in picture-perfect drips.

Hatch Chile Pimento Cheese

The Southern classic gets a summer makeover with hatch chiles. And then it's grilled between slices of crusty white bread for the ultimate grilled cheese sandwich.


  • For the pimento cheese:
  • 4 oz Monterrey Jack
  • 4 oz white cheddar (white horseradish cheddar will give it a nice kick)
  • Dash of Worcestershire
  • 1 clove garlic
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • 3 hatch chiles, roasted, seeded, and chopped (directions here)
  • 1/4-1/3 cup light mayo (I sub half with fat-free Greek yogurt)
  • For the sandwiches:
  • Butter
  • Sliced bread


  1. If using a food processor, use the blade to shred the cheese.
  2. Remove a handful of cheese from the bowl and set aside.
  3. Switch to the chopper blade and add the garlic clove, 1/4 cup of mayo, a dash of Worcestershire, and a pinch of salt and pepper and process 8-10 seconds.
  4. Return the shredded cheese to the bowl along with the hatch chiles, and pulse 3-4 times.
  5. Store in the fridge, will keep a week plus.
  6. If not using a food processor, grate the cheese and finely mince the garlic.
  7. Stir the minced garlic, Worcestershire, and mayo together with a pinch of salt and pepper.
  8. Finely dice the roasted red pepper and add it to the bowl along with the cheese.
  9. Stir until thoroughly combined and then take fork and mash the cheese until you reach desired consistency.
  10. For the sandwiches, heat a skillet or grill pan over medium-high.
  11. Assemble the sandwiches and butter the outsides of the bread.
  12. Cook 2-3 minutes on each side, until golden brown and the cheese is melting down the sandwich in picture-perfect drips.


Yields: ~1 1/2 cups

Source: Confections of a Foodie Bride

Estimated time: 20 minutes


{ 22 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar September 5, 2012 at 8:43 am

This looks absolutely awesome! YUM!


2 Jess @HungryHarps September 5, 2012 at 8:46 am

This looks wonderful and now I will be on the lookout for horseradish white cheddar! Sounds absolutely wonderful, thank you for sharing. :)


3 Kenneth Moore September 5, 2012 at 9:26 am

I don’t care what cheese is in my grilled cheese, as long as it’s melty, delicious, and ends up in my belly, I call that a successful sandwich!

This one, however. Whoa. I might just have to go gourmet next time I make grilled cheese!


4 Ari @ Ari's Menu September 5, 2012 at 9:49 am

Grilled cheese is totally real dinner! That looks soooo delicious!


5 Katherine @ Whitehall Shop September 5, 2012 at 9:51 am

Oooo, pimento cheese is a favorite, but I have never tried it grilled, or with chiles. Ah, how the bar has been raised! It looks delicious. Oozy cheese with picture perfect drips, indeed!


6 Kristy September 5, 2012 at 10:08 am

What kind of bread do you use for your grilled cheese sandwiches? It looks wonderful. And if you say you make your own, I will have to kill you.


7 foodiebride September 5, 2012 at 10:26 am

Haha. No killing required – I bought a round loaf of sourdough from the grocery store bakery for those sandwiches.


8 Julie @ Sugarfoot Eats September 5, 2012 at 1:49 pm

My stomach is now growling!!!


9 Ashley L September 5, 2012 at 2:19 pm

I was so happy to find some hatch chiles at a market in Oregon… now I just have to decide what one of your recipes to use them on. You’re not making the decision easy! :)


10 foodiebride September 5, 2012 at 2:37 pm

I think my favorite is still the pizza. It’s such a simple, yet different, combination. And, you know – it’s pizza :)


11 Dana September 5, 2012 at 4:14 pm

I’ve got to admit, I’m the processed cheese grilled cheese sandwich lover in my house too.

Pimento cheese is one of those crazy things: I live too far North to have it near me ever, but blogging affords me a view of it surprisingly often. Each and every time it is a “oooohhh….. that sounds yummy” but it seems to be too far out of my regular head space to remember.

I’m going to have to print this and post it to my fridge.


12 Kristi September 5, 2012 at 4:20 pm

Hi! I’m in Upstate NY and I just got some hatch chiles in my market – after reading your site the past few weeks, I HAD to try them out! What tips do you have for the roasting? Do you do them in your oven? Do you roast whole and then scrape the seeds out, or do you cut them up first, etc?

Any tips would be appreciated! :-)


13 foodiebride September 6, 2012 at 10:19 am

They’re pretty easy to roast in the oven using these directions:

You roast them whole, let them cool, rub/peel the skins off (using a paper towel to wipe away the skin works really well, too), and then cut them in half to scrape out the seeds. Once they’re seedless and stemless, I dice them up and freeze them in those little zipper snack baggies.


14 Jessica @ Sunny Side Up September 5, 2012 at 7:28 pm

You’re killing me with all of these hatch chile recipes! I doubt I’ll find hatch chiles in China! For now I’ll just have to bookmark and wait for the day when I return to the US and hatch chiles are in season again….


15 Joanne September 6, 2012 at 5:02 am

I’m definitely the real cheese lover in my relationship but I think even the Kraft lover would be super happy with this. Those cheese drips are just gorgeous!!


16 Brianna September 6, 2012 at 5:36 pm

From one unashamed processed cheese lover to another, this sandwich looks freaking awesome.


17 Ann P. September 7, 2012 at 12:39 am

My goodness that sandwich looks EPIC!! Must try!!


18 jaime @ sweet road September 7, 2012 at 1:10 pm

There is a lot to be said about grilled cheese sandwiches. They are amazing (I’m a slight cheese addict) for one, and they can be causal or dressed up to be super fancy. I think I need to make grilled cheese tonight. You inspired me!


19 Kevin (Closet Cooking) September 8, 2012 at 12:54 pm

That is one tasty looking grilled cheese sandwich! I am going to have to hunt down some hatch chiles!


20 Sarah September 12, 2012 at 11:26 pm

Oooh, I love the idea of Hatch pimento cheese!


21 thelmadrake August 27, 2014 at 10:14 am

where can I find hatch chiles or can I sub 4 something else


22 Shawnda August 28, 2014 at 7:47 am

They are in season now. If your store doesn’t carry them, go for Anaheim (the closest) or Poblano.


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