Red, White, and Green Grilled Cheese

Looking for some simple comfort food after all the holiday feasting? Try this unique grilled cheese sandwich. It will become your new favorite way to eat a grilled cheese sandwich. And don’t worry, not only is the taste fabulous, it’s healthy. Tastes so good, your children might not even notice the “green stuff.”


1 tsp garlic, minced (about ½ clove)

1 small onion, minced (about ½ cup)

2 C frozen cut spinach, thawed and drained (or substitute 2 bags (10 oz each) fresh leaf spinach, rinsed)

¼ tsp ground black pepper

8 slices whole-wheat bread

1 medium tomato, rinsed, cut into 4 slices

1 C shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese

Nonstick cooking spray


1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Place a large baking sheet in the oven to preheat for about 10 minutes.

2. Heat garlic with cooking spray in a medium sauté pan over medium heat. Cook until soft but not browned. Add onions, and continue to cook until the onions are soft but not browned.

3. Add spinach, and toss gently. Cook until the spinach is heated throughout. Season with pepper, and set aside to cool.

4. When the spinach and onions are cool, assemble each sandwich with one slice of bread on the bottom, one tomato slice, ½ cup of spinach mixture, ¼ cup of cheese, and a second slice of bread on the top. (For picky eaters, start with less spinach inside the sandwich. Serve the rest on the side.)

5. Spray the preheated nonstick baking sheet with cooking spray. Place the sandwiches on the baking sheet. Bake for 10 minutes, or until the bottom of each sandwich is browned.

6. Carefully flip sandwiches, and bake for an additional 5 minutes, or until both sides are browned. Serve immediately.


Prep time: 15 minutes

Cook time: 15 minutes


Yield: 4 servings

Serving size: 1 sandwich

Each serving provides:

Calories 254
Total Fat 8 g
Saturated fat 4 g
Cholesterol 18 mg
Sodium 468 mg
Total fiber 6 g
Protein 17 g
Carbohydrates 29 g
Potassium 364 mg
Vitamin A 130%
Vitamin C 6%
Calcium 35%
Iron 15%

Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

To get more recipes that you can make with your children, download Keep the Beat Recipes: Deliciously Healthy Family Meals .

Reprinted with permission from Keep the Beat Recipes: Deliciously Healthy Family Meals. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. National Heart Lung and Blood Institute. NIH Publication No. 10-7531. Page 33. December 2010.