This Lightened Up Croque Monsieur Grilled Cheese is rich and creamy but has 60% less calories than the traditional sandwich. You’ll be surprised by the secret ingredient.
A number of years ago when I was in my French food phase, I made Croque Monsieur for the first time. It’s a fancy grilled cheese that’s filled with gruyere cheese and ham, then topped with a creamy bechamel sauce – talk about decadent. It was definitely over the top both in richness and calories.
My kids even thought it was too rich. So, recently, when I was playing around with cauliflower as a creamy substitute in my Skinny New England Clam Chowder, I decided to try using the same cauliflower cream sauce idea in place of the traditional bechamel sauce.
To further shave calories off, I served this skinny downed Croque Monsieur Grilled Cheese open face, with just one slice of bread. The traditional Croque Monsieur sandwich clocks in at over 800 calories. This skinnied down version has 340 calories and it’s got the added nutrition from cauliflower in the cream sauce.
This was a big hit with my kids and they had no idea there was cauliflower in this sandwich.
I love it when I figure out a way to sneak in more vegetables without anyone noticing ;).
Today, I’m participating in Food Network’s Comfort Food Feast where Melted Cheese Sandwiches are being featured. Please be sure to check out what my fellow foodie friends made:
Weelicious: Grilled Cheese and Pickle Panini
Devour: Kelsey’s Decadent Grilled Cheese
Elephants and the Coconut Trees: Inside Out Grilled Strawberry and Cheese Sandwiches
Daily*Dishin: Grilled Pimento Cheese with Instant Pickles
Napa Farmhouse 1885: Pork Stew in Port Wine Sauce with Grilled Cheese Croutons
Red or Green: Grilled Cheese Sandwiches with Three Pepper Cheese, Grilled Onions and Pickled Jalapenos
Dishing With Divya: Egg and Mushroom Cheese Sandwich
Domesticate Me: Barbecue Chicken Grilled Cheese
Taste With The Eyes: Bulgogi Panino with Kimchi, Cheddar and Ssamjang Mayo
Virtually Homemade: Creamy Roasted Tomato and Basil Grilled Cheese with Bacon
The Sensitive Epicure: Grilled Cheddar Cheese Sandwich with Apple, Walnuts and Thyme (Gluten-Free)
FN Dish: 10 Grown-Up Grilled Cheeses
Skinny Croque Monsieur Grilled Cheese
Cauliflower Croque Monsieur Sauce
- 2 1/2 cups cauliflower cooked until tender
- 1/2 cup low-fat milk
- a few sprinkles of fresh ground nutmeg
- salt to taste
- 1 cup shredded raw milk rBST-free gruyere cheese
- 5 slices Ezekiel whole grain bread or gluten-free whole grain bread
- 5 slices uncured organic ham
- 1/2 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
Place cauliflower and milk in blender and blend until smooth. Season with nutmeg and salt. Pour into saucepan and heat; whisk in gruyere cheese and cook until melted.
Lightly toast bread; place a slice of ham on each piece of toast. Spoon cauliflower sauce on top. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Broil until browned on top.