A savory, melt-in-your-mouth restaurant style braised short rib grilled cheese made with sharp cheddar and caramelized onions.Jump to Recipe
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On a recent trip, we had lunch at an Irish pub and I got to enjoy one of the best gourmet grilled cheese sandwiches I’ve ever eaten. A juicy, tender, braised short rib grilled cheese made with Vermont cheddar and caramelized onions. Mmm… my mouth still waters thinking about it!
This sandwich made such an impression on me that I made it my mission to recreate it at home. Which meant learning how to braise short ribs, then learning how to braise short ribs well, then crafting the ultimate short rib grilled cheese with the best ingredients I could find.
This sandwich is savory, a little sweet, and oh-so gooey. There’s just something about the way the combination of cheese, beef, and onions melts in your mouth with every bite. It’s the perfect recreation of a decadent pub style grilled cheese.
Braised Short Rib Grilled Cheese Sandwich Ingredients
While it does require two ingredients that need to be prepped ahead of time, you can make our braised short rib grilled cheese recipe with just bread, butter, cheese, short ribs, and caramelized onions.
Here’s a list of exactly what you’ll need for this gourmet grilled cheese recipe:
- Sourdough bread
- Sliced sharp cheddar cheese
- Beer braised short ribs
- Caramelized onions
To make the best grilled cheese, you need high-quality bread. That’s why we recommend picking up a freshly baked sourdough boule from the bakery for this recipe. But if you can’t find one, sliced sourdough from the bread aisle will work, too.
You’ll want to already have a batch of our beer braised short ribs on hand for this grilled cheese. They take a few hours to make, so we recommend preparing them on the weekend when you have some time, then storing them in the fridge for use throughout the week.
Likewise, we recommend already having caramelized onions prepared and ready to go before making our short rib grilled cheese. Since they take about 45 minutes, we like to make a big batch at once and keep them in the fridge until we need them for a recipe.
A little bit of meal prep makes it so much easier to enjoy restaurant style recipes like this one on busy weekdays!
How To Make A Short Rib Grilled Cheese Sandwich
As Alex always says, making a sandwich is an art form. The order of ingredients matters! Here’s how to make a perfectly handcrafted short rib grilled cheese:
- First, make the caramelized onions and beer braised short ribs, unless you’ve already prepared them ahead of time (which we highly recommend).
- Next, spread butter on the outsides of the sliced sourdough bread.
- Then, assemble the grilled cheese sandwich on a cast iron griddle or frying pan. Put one slice of bread butter side down on the pan, then top with two slices of cheese. Add a layer of short ribs, then a layer of caramelized onions, and top with another slice of cheese. Close the sandwich with the second slice of bread, butter side up.
- Cook over medium-low heat until crispy and golden-brown on the bottom. Then, carefully flip the grilled cheese, and cook again until the bottom is crisped and golden-brown.
- Slice in half and serve hot.
Sandwiching the short ribs and caramelized onions between layers of cheese helps to seal these ingredients in. Each layer of cheese will melt down and around the meat and onions, encapsulating them in irresistible cheesy goodness. That way, when you slice the sandwich in half and bite down into it, all the short ribs don’t come falling out.
Note that when it comes to making the perfect ooey-gooey grilled cheese, you need to have a little patience. Cook it low and slow, so the cheese has plenty of time to melt before the outside of the bread crisps. For more tips, check out our post on how to make the perfect grilled cheese here.
For an all-out restaurant style meal, you can serve this braised short rib grilled cheese with a side of french fries, tater tots, onion rings, or chips. Or, opt for a fresh side salad with carrots, tomatoes, and scallions.
You also don’t need a side to go with this decadent grilled cheese sandwich – it totally stands out on its own! We love making these for an extra special lunch when there are short ribs in the fridge, and it’s plenty of food to leave us satisfied.
Try our braised short rib grilled cheese recipe and let us know what you think by leaving a rating and comment below. If you love this recipe, check out more of our tasty sandwich recipes here!
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Braised Short Rib Grilled Cheese
- 4 slices sourdough bread
- 4 teaspoons butter
- 6 slices sharp cheddar cheese
- 5 ounces beer braised short ribs sliced
- ¼ cup caramelized onions
- First, butter the outsides of each slice of bread.
- Next, assemble the grilled cheese sandwiches. Set two slices of bread butter side down on a cast iron griddle or frying pan. Top each with 2 slices of cheese, then a layer of short ribs, then a layer of caramelized onions. Top each sandwich with one more slice of cheese, then close with the other piece of bread, butter side up.
- Cook the grilled cheese sandwiches over medium-low heat until the bottoms are golden brown and crispy, about 8 to 10 minutes. Carefully flip, and cook until bottoms are golden brown and crispy again, about 2 to 3 more minutes.
- Slice in half and serve immediately.