Farm To Table | Salads & Sandwiches

Spicy Grilled Cheese Sandwiches

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Spicy Grilled Cheese Sandwiches are a fun variation on the traditional that has a nice sweet and spicy kick and it’s so delicious.

Close up of melty cheese.Pin

This is a great use for my candied jalapeños. After canning the peppers there is some brining liquid left. Save it!

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It is so delicious to use for for a spicy aioli. As well as these Jalapeño Pork Chops, Jalapeño Roast Chicken, spicy ketchup, tartar sauce and more.

You can buy candied jalapeños everywhere. After the jar is used up, don’t discard juice. It is awesome!

What you need

  • Your favorite bread
  • cheese
  • mayonnaise
  • candied jalapenos
  • brine
Ingredients; bread, cheese, mayonnaise, brine, candied jalapenos.Pin

How to make them

  • Add brine to store bought or homemade mayonnaise to a small bowl.
  • Mix well.
  • Slather bread with the mayonnaise mixture on one side of each piece of bread.
  • Add cheese to the side of the bread that has no mayonnaise.
  • Layer cheeses. Top with a few slices of candied jalapeño on top of the cheese. Then top with the other slice of bread, with the mayonnaise facing out.
Step by step process photographs. See details in recipe below.Pin

You can cook the sandwiches in a pan on the stove or in the air fryer until bread is golden brown and cheese is nicely melted. See this recipe for air frying directions.

To grill in a pan – Assemble sandwiches. Heat heavy bottom cast iron or large nonstick skillet over medium-low heat. Carefully place sandwich in pan.

2 sandwiches topped with candied jalapenos.Pin

Types of cheeses to use

Many cheeses are delicious in grilled cheese sandwiches. Some great combinations are;

  • cheddar (use mild for melting and a little sharp cheddar cheese for flavor)
  • colby
  • muenster
  • Monterey jack
  • slices of pepper jack cheese
  • swiss
  • brie
  • gouda
  • fontina
  • blue cheese
  • American
  • mozzarella
  • provolone
Cut sandwich resting on whole sandwich.Pin

Types of bread to use

You can use your favorite bread to make these spicy grilled cheese sandwiches. White, wheat, rye, sourdough, whole grain, etc.

Variations of this grilled cheese

  • Add crispy bacon
  • Grilled ham and cheese
  • tuna melt
  • Add chopped green onion or chives
  • Add sliced fresh tomatoes or sliced apple
  • Try your favorite olives, sliced pimentos or pickles
  • Depending on your spice tolerance, if you like extra spicy foods, feel free to substitute habanero or ghost pepper. If you taste buds don’t like foods too hot, use a more mild pepper like poblano or bell, like red peppers, orange, yellow or green.
  • Sprinkle the outside pieces of bread that have the spicy mayonnaise on them with garlic powder or granulated garlic.
Two sandwiches garnished with jalapenos.Pin

Pro tips for your success

  • Use the best quality bread you can find.
  • For any of the hard cheeses, grate the cheese rather slicing it. It will melt more evenly.
  • Mix cheeses for more rounded flavor.
  • Mayonnaise makes a better, crispier crust than butter, but you can use butter if you’d prefer.
  • You can add a pat of butter to your pan for a more buttery flavor.
  • Chop jalapenos or use sliced ones right from the jar.
Two sandwiches garnished with jalapenos.Pin

These Spicy Grilled Cheese Sandwiches pack a little kick. They couldn’t be easier and it’s a great way to jazz up a boring grilled cheese sandwich.

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I hope you enjoyed the recipe today.

Enjoy. And have fun cooking!

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Spicy Grilled Cheese on paper with candied jalapenos.Pin

Spicy Grilled Cheese Sandwich

These are so easy and delicious! A great lunch, or serve with a bowl of soup and make it a meal!
See Step by Step Photos Above!Most of our recipes have step by step photos and videos! Also helpful tips so that you can make it perfectly the first time and every time! Scroll up to see them!
5 from 11 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Sandwich
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Servings: 4 sandwiches
Calories: 211kcal
Author: Beth Neels
Cost: $2


For Candied Jalapéno Aioli

For Sandwiches

  • 8 pieces bread
  • 1/4 pound cheese of your choice see article above for cheese suggestions
  • 6-8 slices candied jalapeno slices


  • Mix ingredients together for aioli.
    2 tablespoon mayonnaise, homemade or store bought, 2 teaspoon brine from jar of candied jalapenos
  • Spread one side of each slice of bread with a little aioli.
    8 pieces bread
  • Place in frying pan or griddle aioli side down. Then build sandwich with cheese, meat if you choose, and as many candied jalapénos as you like. Top with the second slice of bread basted with the aioli, (aioli side up).
    1/4 pound cheese of your choice, 6-8 slices candied jalapeno slices
  • Once the first side is golden brown, flip and brown the second side. Serve hot.
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Pan heat should be on medium, so that cheese has a chance to melt before toast gets too brown.
When you hear the sandwich start to slow down sizzling, you will know it is time to flip.
Best made fresh.
Serve with your favorite soup (tomato soup is delicious) and potato chips.


Calories: 211kcal | Carbohydrates: 9g | Protein: 8g | Fat: 16g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 31mg | Sodium: 2846mg | Potassium: 327mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 2941IU | Vitamin C: 16mg | Calcium: 239mg | Iron: 3mg
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  1. Candied jalapenos…that sounds amazing. Nice idea to pair with a grilled cheese sandwich. I can’t wait to try it!

  2. 5 stars
    Candied jalapenos are one of my favorite sandwich additions. Never thought to add them to grilled cheese. Delicious!!

  3. 5 stars
    I’ve never tried candied jalapenos before, but now I really want to, especially in a grilled cheese sandwich. I pretty much lived on those sandwiches when I was young! 🙂

  4. 5 stars
    I am Mexican so jalapeño is my thing! I always add jalapeño tu my grilled cheese so this is perfect bite for me! Double portion please =)

  5. 5 stars
    Um! I so need to come to your house so I can have some candied jalapenos!! Better yet, I love the thought of having the jalapenos on my grilled cheese! I didn’t know they put mayo on the outside of the bread instead of butter. Hmm. I wonder why! Anyway, I look forward to trying your recipe! Great job!

    1. You should come to my house anyway! Yes, they do. mayonnaise is cheaper and completes the purpose. Thanks so much, Elaine!

  6. Mmm! I love jalapenos but have never had them candied or on a grilled cheese! Sounds like the perfect way to add some heat. 😀

  7. 5 stars
    I am totally intrigued with the idea of Candied Jalapeños. That sounds like something my house *needs* asap! I’ll bet the juice really makes this grilled cheese something special, too!

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