Healthier Grilled Cheese and Tomato Balsamic Soup

Healthier Grilled Cheese and Tomato Balsamic Soup


  • 2 slices whole wheat bread (preferably fresh)

  • Sliced Monterrey Jack , Muenster, Cheddar, or Mozzarella Cheese (enough to cover bread)

  • 2 tsp. J. Olive Co. EVOO

  • 1 Tbsp. J. Olive Co. EVOO

  • 1 yellow onion, diced

  • 3 cloves garlic, minced

  • 2 (28 oz.) cans whole tomatoes w/juice (or diced tomatoes to avoid blender)

  • 1/2 t kosher salt

  • 1/4 t black pepper

  • 1 bay leaf

  • 1 T brown sugar

  • 2 cups low sodium chicken broth

  • 3-4 Tbsp. J. Olive Co. Traditional Balsamic

  • Chives or cilantro for topping (optional)


  1. Preheat a small nonstick fry pan over medium low heat.

  2. Place cheese slices (enough to cover bread) between 2 slices of wheat bread.

  3. Once fry pan is warm drizzle with 1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil, slightly tilt pan back and forth to evenly spread oil.

  4. Place sandwich in oil, cover with a lid and cook until bottom is golden, about 2 minutes.

  5. Then lift sandwich with a spatula an add remaining 1 tsp olive oil to fry pan. Flip sandwich and cook opposite side until golden.

  6. Heat EVOO in large pot over medium high heat. Add diced onion and sauté until softened.

  7. Add minced garlic and cook for a minute. Add salt, pepper and 2 cans whole tomatoes.

  8. Use potato masher to mash tomatoes until they are broken up.

  9. Add in bay leaf, brown sugar and chicken broth and bring mixture to boil.

  10. Once soup is boiling, reduce heat to medium low and simmer for 10-15 minutes.

  11. Remove soup from heat and cool slightly.

  12. Pour half into a blender or food processor until smooth.

  13. Make sure lid is on securely before processing.

  14. Continue until all is processed. Return soup to pot and stir in balsamic.

  15. Bring soup to simmer and cook for several minutes.

  16. Serve in bowls–drizzle with balsamic on top and top with chives or cilantro, or grated cheese if desired.