How to Make a Mozzarella, Tomato and Basil Panini Like a Pro

Meet your new favorite summer sandwich: the mozzarella tomato basil panini. Buon appetito!

The only thing better than a gooey grilled cheese? How about a gooey grilled cheese made with creamy mozzarella, slices of juicy tomato and fragrant basil! In other words, your favorite caprese salad in sandwich form. To create this Italian-inspired sandwich, follow our step-by-step guide for making the best-ever mozzarella tomato basil panini.

Choose Fresh Ingredients

Before you get started, make sure you have fresh ingredients. Whether it’s basil from your herb garden, tomatoes from the farmers market or fresh mozzarella, better quality ingredients will give your sandwich the best flavor.

How to Make a Mozzarella, Tomato and Basil Panini

The original recipe (you can find it here) comes from Kathryn Hudson in Pennsylvania.

Ingredients

  • 8 ounces fresh mozzarella cheese, sliced
  • 1/4 cup minced fresh basil
  • 2 medium tomatoes, sliced
  • 8 slices sourdough bread
  • 2 tablespoons butter, softened
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

Step 1: Set up your base

Set out four slices of sourdough bread. Then layer the cheese, basil and tomatoes on top of each slice. (If you want to make your own sourdough bread, try this tasty recipe!)

Step 2: Top off the sandwiches

Sprinkle the tomatoes with salt and pepper. Top each stack with the four remaining slices of bread.

Step 3: Add butter

Spread the outsides of the sandwiches with butter. This will prevent them from sticking to the pan as well as add flavor.

Editor’s Tip: To soften butter quickly (aka if you forgot to take it out of the fridge beforehand), roll it out between two sheets of wax paper with a rolling pin or cream it in a stand mixer.

Step 4: Heat it up

Cook the sandwiches in a preheated panini maker like this or indoor electric grill until the bread is browned and cheese is melted. Yum!

How to Upgrade Your Panini

There are plenty of ways to level up your sandwich. For instance, you can mix up your filling by adding sliced avocado for more healthy fats or mixed greens for a punch of veggies. You could even coat the outside of the sandwiches with a tangy balsamic glaze rather than butter.

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Amanda Tarlton
As both a freelance lifestyle writer and editor for a national teen magazine, Amanda spends most of her time creating #content. In those (rare) moments when she's not at her desk typing furiously, she's likely teaching a hot yoga class, reading the latest chick-lit or baking a batch of her famous scones.