Crunchy Grilled Cheese with Sweet & Savory Caramelized Onions

I’m pretty excited to be in the kitchen with California Grown to bring you a brand new Magic Elixir and Grilled Cheese sandwich! Some of you may not know, but I am quite the professional sandwich maker. I’m going to give you some tips and tricks to perfecting your grilled cheese. And you’ll never believe that the secret ingredient to our Sweet Savory Caramelized Onions is California Prunes!

cut grilled cheese with a knife

Let me just say, Prunes have certainly taken their name back. They are sweet, delicious, and packed with antioxidants that make you feel your best. And do you know that California produces 97% of prunes? The farmers handle the produce with such care and integrity, so that’s why I always eat CA Grown. And if you love prunes as much as I do, I think you’ll love my Prune Pork Roast and Gluten-free Chocolate Chip Prune Cardamom Cookies!

grilled cheese sandwiches on a cutting board

Here, I’m using prunes in these delicious caramelized onions. And truly, this is one of my favorite new Magic Elixirs. They would be delicious on top of my Everyday Roast Chicken Breasts or a Baked Potato, and nothing beats a grilled cheese!

Grilled Cheese

The secret to a good grilled cheese is patience. You have to cook it low and slow to give the cheese the time it needs to melt. I also learned that a combination of light olive oil and butter creates the perfect golden crust on the bread.

grilled cheese in a pan

Sweet & Savory Caramelized Onions

For the sweet & savory caramelized onions, make sure you stand by your pan. You need to babysit these onions! You want to be stirring continually and monitor the heat to avoid burning your onions. Once you add the prunes, keep stirring to make sure they fully break down. It’s going to make the best Magic Elixir for your grilled cheese.

If you try the grilled cheese, be sure to rate and review it below. And if you want to follow along, head to Instagram and Pinterest for more inspiration!

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Crunchy Grilled Cheese with Sweet & Savory Caramelized Onions

  • Author: Teri Turner
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 40 minutes
  • Total Time: 50 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings


This grilled cheese sandwich is so delicious, and it’s the perfect comfort food for lunch or dinner!


For the Sweet & Savory Caramelized Onion Magic Elixir

6 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil 

6 cups thinly sliced in half-moons, Spanish onions (about 2 large onions)

1 teaspoon kosher salt 

½ cup California Prunes (about 10 to 12 prunes), soaked in hot water for ten minutes, then chopped super fine 


For Crunchy Grilled Cheese 

Cheese of choice, we used white sharp cheddar and Fontina and Gruyere

Bread of choice, sliced into ¾ inch slices (we used sourdough)

Sweet & Savory Caramelized Onion Magic Elixir 

1 tablespoon light olive oil

2 tablespoons unsalted butter


Make the Sweet & Savory Caramelized Onion Elixir

In a large sauté pan over medium heat, add the olive oil to the pan to warm. Reduce to medium-low and add the onions to the pan. Stirring continuously and watching carefully to not scorch the onions, cook until lightly golden and starting to brown around the edges, about 15 minutes.


Avoiding any clumping, add the prunes to the pan and stirring continuously, cook until the prunes are mostly broken down and well incorporated with the onions, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.


Make the Crunchy Grilled Cheese

Place your desired amount of cheese on one slice of bread and evenly spread 2 tablespoons of the Sweet & Savory Caramelized Onion Magic Elixir on another slice. Combine the two together to make a sandwich. Set aside.


In a large sauté pan over low to medium-low heat, add the light olive oil and butter, stirring to combine. When well combined and warm, place the sandwich in the pan and cook until golden brown, about 6-8 minutes. Flip and cook the other side until golden brown, about 6-8 minutes. Serve and Enjoy!


Make sure to watch the onions very carefully so they do not burn. After 5-10 minutes, you may need to turn down the heat.

The onions need to be stirred continually before and after adding the prunes.

Cook time really depends on your pan. Typically, when using a non-stick pan, the onions take less time to cook.

30 thoughts on “Crunchy Grilled Cheese with Sweet & Savory Caramelized Onions

  1. I would love the pearl or rainbow Ted bowl! I’m making this grilled cheese this weekend for sure!

    1. Wonderful… Be sure to head out to the last Instagram post and then enter

  2. I would love the Pearl bowl!!

    1. Fantastic make sure to head to the Instagram post and enter

  3. Your IG reels making this was sandwich had me craving this & I just had a grilled cheese for lunch! What do prunes taste like… I thought they were Kalamata olives in your video! Yes i entered.?

    1. They are so delicious and sweet and wonderful it’s an absolute must do

  4. Teri, I have always loved grilled cheese on a great bread BUT this takes it over the top, carmelized onions, prunes and several kinds of cheese. Count me in! Maureen

    1. You’re gonna love this Maureen… And be sure to go to the last Instagram post to enter the giveaway

  5. This looks truly phenomenal, Teri!!

    1. Thank you so much Heidi up

  6. Looks yummy ? Do you think dates soaked in hot water n diced will work?

    1. no .. Get prunes

  7. I’m making this right now, but I only have yellow onions and dates instead of prunes. I’ll let you know how it turns out!

    1. it’s just not the same. Dates do not have what prunes do in terms of depth of flavor and the way they break down. If you like dates I have a perfectly lovely dressing with dates but for this dish you absolutely need prunes

  8. Teri what is your favorite bread for the grilled cheese.I love prunes and they are so good for us.

    1. So many good choices. If u like crunchy get a good sourdough. I’m gluten free so i would find a good one for that

  9. Gooey greatness. I just made this with Brie. Yes, Brie. I also added a few In soaked chopped prunes inside the goo after I grilled. Flava-fab!

    1. sounds great ! u can use lots of different cheeses but the prunes are essential

  10. Ooooohhhh this is so tantalizing!!

  11. Carmalized onions yes but prunes? No I’d leave out for sure don’t mix with onion s in my stomach or head???to each his own!

    1. well I wouldn’t knock it until you’ve tried it… Think of it as sweet and salty. A lovely caramelized onion and then spectacular Juicy bit of loveliness. That’s chopped small sautéed in and it all becomes something like a wonderful jam… People are making them and absolutely loving them

  12. I can not wait to make this sandwich for the family. On the menu for next week! I LOVE the idea of adding the prunes to the onions. I’m certain this new magic elixir takes it over the top! And, the cheese combo. Yum! I may even serve this with a side of creamy tomato soup.

    1. it’s so good and perfect with tomato soup

  13. Just phenomenal. I didn’t think there was anything to add to a perfect grilled cheese, and you proved me wrong!

    1. This is what we love to hear… Thank you so much

  14. We made this recipe and it was absolutely delicious!

    1. thanks love

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