Never just a simple sandwich, the best patty melt is this all-American classic. Juicy, well-seasoned beef patties, melty cheddar and provolone cheese, sweet caramelized onions, all sandwiched between two well-buttered and flavorful slices of rye bread. Slather on your favorite spread, serve with crispy, homemade fries, and you’ve got a true diner classic.
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It’s funny how things that were always around you never seem appetizing until they end up on TV. Amiright?
Patty melts never appealed to me before this one episode of The Kitchen on the Food Network.
This lady who guest-starred on an episode of The Kitchen sold me on the patty melt as a comfort food: caramelized onions, thick slices of bread, many slices of gooey cheese, and a burger patty that is encased in it all.
Oh, and butter. Butter that’s spread from crust to crust on each slice of bread.
Crust to crust is, apparently, a must.
So I tried it back in…2015, I believe. And it became one of my favorite sandwiches ever. I’ve never really been a sandwich person, but between crispy chicken sandwiches, the french dips, and these patty melts, I’m sure sandwiches are growing on me. I’m becoming a real sandwich fan.
In my previous photos, you couldn’t even see the burger patty.
How sad! Cute picture, but where’s the good stuff?
Now check out Patty Melt 2.0.
Ooey, gooey cheese? Check.
Thick, juicy burger? Oh, yeah.
Gorgeously marbled, tangy rye bread? Uh huh.
And put through my brand new panini press? Yas, honey!
Come through, onions! Come through, beef!
I suggest making caramelized onions in advance (hello, meal preppers and planners!) because they do take a long time to brown up and become sweet and delicious. Otherwise, making, searing, and cooking the patties on a griddle or grill pan, then taking the patty melt to the panini press (or just smush it on the grill pan with a skillet on top. That works, too.) takes but about 15 minutes to get dinner on the table.
Oh, and don’t forget to serve with crispy homemade fries and dipping sauce. I love garlic aioli (which I used as a spread in my patty melt) which is so easy and so good, but any spread and dipping sauce you want, like Thousand Island Dressing or just simple mayo, can be used.
Check out more tasty homecooked restaurant copycats:
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- 1 lb ground beef chuck, 80/20 lean to fat ratio
- Kosher Salt
- Freshly cracked black pepper
- Granulated Garlic and Onion
- 1 cup caramelized onions
- 4 slices Cheddar Cheese
- 4 slices Swiss or Provolone Cheese
- 3-4 tbsp garlic aioli or favorite spread, optional
- 8 slices seeded rye bread
- 2 tsp butter, softened
- Divide beef into four equal sized patties, creating a well in the center with your thumb. Season both sides of each patty with salt, pepper, granulated garlic and onion.
- Heat a griddle or grill pan to medium high heat. Sear the patties for 5-6 minutes on one side. Flip and cook for another 3 minutes, or until done to your preference. Take patties out to rest on a plate.
- While patties are cooking, smear your aioli onto the slices of rye, and smear butter on the other side of the bread. Top the aioli-side of with cheese slices and caramelized onions.
- Using your panini press (or wipe off your griddle/grill pan with a paper towel and using a cast iron skillet on top of the sandwich to press) on a medium-high heat, toast the bread butter-side out, for 2-3 minutes. If using the skillet-method, flip the sandwich with a spatula and press with the cast iron for another 1-2 minutes, or until cheese is melted and bread is browned and toasted.
- Slice in half and serve immediately.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 734
Eden Westbrook is the recipe developer, writer, and photographer behind Sweet Tea and Thyme. A classically trained chef, Eden has inspired home cooks into the kitchen with cultural comfort foods, easy family-friendly eats and sweets, and glorious spreads for date night and entertaining since 2015.