Jalapeno Kale Grilled Cheese with Caramelized Onions

Grilled cheese is the ultimate comfort food. Cheesy gooeyness smashed between some buttery bread, yum! I decided to take one of my favorite foods and add a spicy gourmet twist to it. Be warned, this recipe is not instant. If you’re looking for a quick meal, look elsewhere. But, if you’re looking for a myriad of flavors that just melt in your mouth, read on. Trust me, it’s worth the time spent.

This grilled cheese is a blend of sweet caramelized onions, savory sautéed kale that’s topped off with spicy jalapeno cheese. The result is unreal.

First, we need to shred some spicy cheese.


For this recipe I went with a jalapeno cheese, but feel free to use any spicy cheese you want! Habanero, pepper jack, the options are endless. I like this particular cheese because it’s also vegetarian friendly – it has vegetable rennet. A +.


Look how beautiful this baby looks. I’m such a cheese fiend. Oh mannn.

Shred up 2 cups of cheese.


Yeah, that’s the stuff. I could just eat that up alone. But, I’ll have some restraint.

Now, let’s take 1 onion.


Peel, half and thinly slice.

Melt 1 tablespoon of butter in a pan on medium low heat.


Once the butter is foamy, add the sliced onions.


Now this is where patience comes in. If you’ve ever caramelized onions, you know that the trick to getting them to come out with a rich caramel color and sweet flavor is time. Set your timer to 40 minutes and stir the onions every couple minutes. Make sure to stir frequently as you don’t want to burn them.

While the onions are cooking, let’s get that kale ready.


I use the Trader Joes Organic Tuscan Kale brand. Take 1 cup, de stem and roughly chop.


Let’s take a look at those onions and see how they’re looking.


Looking pretty good! Feel free to keep cooking them if you want a deeper color. The longer you cook them, the richer the flavor. I stop around the 40 min mark and that’s perfect for me.

Once the onions are done, throw in the kale and sauté for 7 minutes or until kale is wilted on medium low heat.


Time to assemble everything together!

Use remaining butter and spread over slices of sourdough bread.


Flip the bread over on a cutting board so the buttered side faces down. Spread 1/2 cup shredded cheese on one slice.


Top it off with half of caramelized onions/kale mixture.


Layer another half cup shredded cheese on top of the onion/kale mixture. Top with slice of bread, buttered side facing up.

Wipe pan from onions and kale clean. On medium heat, place the assembled bread in pan once hot. Cook until brown on each side, about 2-3 minutes per side and until cheese is melted.

Repeat bread assembly steps for the rest of the slices. And voila, you’re done! Go enjoy that spicy gooeyness.


Don’t mind the bite I took before taking a photo. It looked so yummy and then I realized, wait, I should photograph this. Ooops! Sorry, not sorry.

Also, this is amazing with some spicy tomato soup. Perfect on those cold winter days!

Jalapeno Kale Grilled Cheese with Caramelized Onions

  • Servings: 2
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print


  • 1 cup Kale
  • 2 cups Shredded Jalapeno Cheese
  • 1 Onion
  • 2 Tbls Butter
  • 4 Slices Sourdough bread


  • Shred Jalapeno cheese.
  • Peel, half and thinly slice onion.
  • On medium low heat, melt 1 tbls butter. When foamy, add sliced onions.
  • Caramelize onions for 40 minutes. Stir every couple minutes to avoid burning.
  • De stem kale and roughly chop.
  • Once onions are caramelized, add kale. Sauté for 7 minutes or until wilted. Remove pan from heat.
  • Spread remaining butter on slices of bread. Place buttered side face down on cutting board.
  •  Take 1 cup shredded cheese and divide between two slices of bread. Half onion/kale mixture and spread on top of cheese. Top with remaining 1 cup of cheese.
  • Top with two slices of bread, buttered side facing up.
  • Wipe pan from onions clean and reheat to medium. Once hot, take 1 assembled bread and place in pan. Cook each side for 2-3 minutes until brown and cheese is melted.
  • Repeat with remaining assembled bread.

2 thoughts on “Jalapeno Kale Grilled Cheese with Caramelized Onions”

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