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August 08, 2018



Full-bodied Portuguese ground chourico with melted cheddar and American cheese in perfectly grilled slices of bread makes a simple but killer sandwich.

Ground Chourico Grilled Cheese Sandwich
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Once when my daughter was about 6 years old, she asked me to make a grilled cheese sandwich the way my mom made it after one of my parent's visits from Arizona. Until then, I never realized my grilled cheese was subpar. A revelation quickly came upon me. The reason why my daughter like Mom's version so much was because she grilled both sides of the bread so that it was crunchy throughout.

For the sake of saving time Do to laziness, I don't usually do what my mama does when it comes to making grilled cheese. I often grill only the outside of my sandwich. My daughter taught me a lesson then and there: even a child knows the difference between a regular and a superior grilled cheese sandwich!

I used Mom's old trick to make these scrumptious babies. The bread is buttery and crispy on both sides. The filling has a nice contrast between the meaty, salty ground chourico and the sweet onion. Everything is bound together with hot, melted, gooey cheddar and American Cheese.

Chourico (pronounced shoor-reese in my neck of the woods) is a full-bodied smoked Portuguese sausage that is garlicky and is liberally seasoned with paprika. It is available in mild as well as hot. Its counterpart, linguica, is a perfect substitute. They are interchangeable and equally delicious! The brand I use offers them in link and ground forms. If the regular links is all you have, they absolutely work too! Peel off the casing, cut into thin slices or small dices and you're good to go!

I realize not everybody has access to these sausages locally, so why not get them online? It's so easy and convenient. This is a grilled cheese sandwich you need to try!! Gaspar's is my favorite place for Portuguese sausages and they ship (I am not compensated by Gaspar's in any way). While you're at it, make it worth your while and order extra. They freeze beautifully! Try making these Cheesy Linguica and Potato bake with your excess ground chourico or linguica. It's a family favorite!

The filling is a simple mixture of onion, garlic, and chourico. Because the chourico and cheese have a good amount of salt, do not add any extra salt. Using lower sodium American cheese is highly recommended. It prevents the sandwich from being too salty, especially if you like to overstuff. If you are not able to obtain low sodium cheese, reduce the amount of filling and cheese to maintain a balance between the salty filling-cheese to bread ratio.

Try this version first, then switch it up with your own twist. I use American cheese for a smooth and creamy melt and cheddar for its sharpness. Swap out the cheese for your favorite kind. Banana peppers are going into my next batch!

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1 tablespoon olive oil
1 pound ground chourcio
1 1/2 cup chopped onion
1 large clove garlic
cold butter for grilling bread
10-12 slices of bread
10-12 slices lower sodium American cheese
2 1/2 to 3 cups freshly grated sharp cheddar cheese


Preheat a nonstick skillet on medium heat. Add olive oil, onion, and garlic. Sauté for 2 minutes. Add ground chourico, using a wooden spatula to break into crumbles. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes or until chourico is piping hot. Shut off heat.

Preheat a griddle (or skillet) on medium heat. Rub on a thin coating of butter. Grill two slices of bread until golden brown or until brown charred marks develop. Remove from the griddle. Face one slice, grilled side up, on a work surface. Cover with 1/4 cup cheddar cheese. Top with 1/2 cup of chourico filling. Break 2 pieces of American cheese into chunks and tuck into chourico mixture. Spread 1/4 cup cheddar over the top. Cover with the second slice of bread, grilled side down. 

Reapply butter to skillet, grill sandwich on medium to medium low heat. Loosely cover with aluminum foil to trap heat to melt the cheese. When when brown charred marks develop, reapply butter and grill the second side. Repeat until all sandwiches are made.
Serve immediately.

Makes 5-6 sandwiches depending on how much filling is used per sandwich.

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  1. Do you know what I have in my fridge this very minute? Gaspar's ground chorizo! This sandwich is calling my name. :) One question though, did you use sweet onion or yellow? And, yeah, kids know.

    1. Yay Annemarie!! We always have Gaspar's in one form or another in stock in the fridge. I use vidalia, my go-to onion. And you're so right about kids! :)

  2. Oh my gosh Thao, these sandwiches are making me hungry...they look soooooo good. Loving the recipe and the delicious flavours.
    Haha...according to our kids...grandma always makes the best food, even when it comes to a grilled cheese sandwich :)

    1. Thank you, Ashika!! And to what you said, I'll add that you can't outdo grandmas: you just try to mimic them as best as you could😀

  3. I started getting hungry as soon as I saw the photos! Delicious comfort food for sure! I love grilled cheese sandwiches (my childhood fav), but I've never tried it with sausage before. So good!

    1. Thanks Marie! When you have chourico and cheese, you can't go wrong :) I hope you'll give this or some similar version a try!!

  4. I love portugese sausage and what a great idea to use them in grilled cheese! I also did not know about grilling the bread on both sides LOL - mine have been subpar :-)

    1. Thanks Danielle! Even subpar grilled cheese sandwiches are pretty darn tasty! LOL!!

  5. i've been craving grilled cheese since i bought a jar of super crunchy pickles this past weekend, and this looks even better than the plain version i was dreaming of (:

    1. The pickles sound so good! Now you're making me hungry!! I think we both need to be making grilled cheese (with pickles) sandwiches, Heather! 😆

  6. This sandwich looks amazing. We just had lunch, but I would polish one of this in a moment. I have never heard of chuorico though, but if I ever find it this is first on the list. Or maybe this would work with fresh chorizo as well?

    1. I hope you can find it, but any version of chorizo or chourico would work wonderfully. I have to admit, the ground version is harder to find. And you could absolutely use fresh chorizo. It would be delicious!

  7. My husband would go nuts if I made him this grilled cheese! It looks so good, Thao! I can not get enough cheese :)

    1. I'm so glad to hear this is right up your husband's alley, Katherine! Gooey cheese is a magical thing isn't it? ;)