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Mac Attack Series | Mac Daddy Grilled Cheese

February 12, 2018 , In: Eat, Recipes , With: No Comments

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Last week I started my first ever recipe series with my Basic Mac N Cheese. Today I’m taking that basic mac and a little celebrity inspiration to create this week’s Mac Attack recipe: The Mac Daddy Grilled Cheese.

“I’m into grilled cheese. Grilled cheese makes me feel beautiful!”

-Emma Stone

I have it on good authority that Emma Stone loves cheese, “in any form”. So I’m pretty sure that by taking my Mac n Cheese and adding it to a grilled cheese sandwich, is the perfect way to meet her. Emma, if you’re reading this, come on over girl!

Once Upon a Time…

I guess I should explain that growing up, I actually hated grilled cheese. I just didn’t understand the fascination others had with bread and melted American cheese cooked in a pan until it was toasted and melty. (…Maybe I just didn’t like American cheese, who knows!)

And then… I was diagnosed with a milk allergy and started trying vegan cheeses. Now, all of a sudden, I love grilled cheese! And I’m constantly trying different additions to make the ultimate grilled cheese. I don’t know what that says about me as a kid… or what it says about American cheese or vegan cheese, but I know this recipe is the perfect pairing of two classic comfort foods in one!

Making the Mac Daddy of Them All

I developed this recipe after I’d made a batch of my Not-So-Basic Mac and had a bunch leftover. (This is back when I was living with my dad and would make a whole pound of Mac n cheese, giving me a week’s worth of meals…) Even I was beginning to grow tired of Mac n cheese!

That’s how this recipe came to be. So, make yourself a batch of my Mac n cheese and get ready to experience a comfort food mashup that will blow your mind!! How do I know? I had a friend who works on a food truck that focuses on Mac n cheese and sandwiches and he loved it! Halfway through I told him that it was vegan and he was SHOCKED. He thought he ate dairy-based Mac and bacon. Nope and nope! And considering how many other friends have had similar reactions, I’m calling this a culinary win! I add BBQ sauce to this sandwich to cut through all the cheese and carbs. I used this Sweet Baby Ray’s to develop this recipe. The hickory flavor suggests that there is some smokey bacon in the sandwich. Plus the sweet brown sugar is the perfect compliment to sweet caramelized onions!

Pro Tip: When flipping this sandwich, it can be difficult to keep all of the ingredients inside the bread. The easiest way I’ve found, without having everything completely EXPLODE… Use a wide spatula to remove the sandwich from the pan. Invert the pan on top of the sandwich, pressing sandwich up into the pan.

Next week be sure to come back for another Mac n Cheese. Next time, we’ll venture into the world of vegan cheeses with a Quick Mac that could rival the Not-So-Basic one!

Mac Attack | Mac Daddy Grilled Cheese

Mac Attack | Mac Daddy Grilled Cheese


  • For the Sandwich:
  • Leftover Mac N Cheese, about 1/4-1/2 cup per sandwich
  • Caramelized Onions, recipe below
  • 2 slices Daiya Cheddar Slices, per sandwich
  • 2 TBS Just Mayo garlic flavor, per sandwich
  • Your Favorite BBQ Sauce (I love a smokey hickory flavored one here)
  • 2-1/4"slices Sourdough Bread, per sandwich
  • For the Caramelized Onions:
  • 1- 1/8" thick slice of Onion, chopped
  • 1 TBS Earth Balance
  • Splash of Soy Sauce
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • Pepper


    For "Caramelized" Onions:
  1. In a skillet over medium-low heat, add onions and pepper.
  2. Add a splash of water and cook until water evaporates.
  3. Add in soy sauce and sugar, stir to combine.
  4. Melt in Earth Balance until bubbly.
  5. Transfer into a small bowl and set aside. (They will still have some texture to them. Trust me, it's even more delicious that way!)
    To Assemble the Sandwich:
  1. On one slice of bread spread caramelized onions, top the onions with one slice of cheese. On the other bread slice, top with the other piece of cheese and spread a single layer of Mac No Cheese on top.
  2. Close the sandwich and spread a tablespoon of garlic mayo on top (Pro Tip: Don't have garlic mayo? Mix some garlic granules into your mayo).
  3. Place, mayo side down, into a non-stick skillet on medium low heat. Spread remaining mayo onto top of bread.
  4. Flip pan, sandwich and spatula together and place back on heat. Press this sandwich while it's cooking to ensure fully melted cheese, that will melt throughout the mac no cheese too!
  5. Once golden crust is achieved, remove from pan and carefully open the sandwich. Drizzle the BBQ sauce over the contents of the sandwich (a little goes a long way here but add what you like). Close the sandwich and serve!
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Kaiti J

Welcome to Garnished with Gratitude! I'm so glad you're here. I'm Kaiti, a fan of healthy-ish ways, lists/plans, and I'm a total goofball. I'm here to create a space that provides resources to live your best life! From food and exercise to visualization and inspiration, this site is for you.

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