Wednesday, September 15, 2021

Air Fryer Grilled Cheese

Air fryer grilled cheese is so simple to make, you’ll never want to use a pan again! Enjoy one for a quick and easy meal that’s mess-free too.

With perfectly toasted bread and a gooey center, who could resist making grilled cheese in the air fryer?

If this recipe is too simple for your taste, check out my gourmet version that’s stuffed with bacon, tomatoes, and arugula.

Or, try a crispy Monte Cristo with raspberry jam - just like the kind you can get at Disneyland!

Air Fryer Grilled Cheese

If you're thinking that making grilled cheese on the stovetop is easy enough, let me tell you that making it in an air fryer is life changing! Less fat, the cheese melts better, and you end up with those perfectly crispy edges that make the best grilled cheese!!

 air fryer grilled cheese recipe halved with soup

Tips for Perfect Air Fried Grilled Cheese

  • Use plenty of cheese. This recipe calls for 3 slices per sandwich, so you can really taste the flavor. Adjust the amounts as needed, especially if you plan to use a bolder variety or a combination of both.
  • Assemble carefully. Be sure to keep the slices of American away from the edges of the bread. If any hangs over, it tends to get hard or spill down through the basket.
  • Toothpicks are your friend! Stick one through each sandwich to prevent any sliding or separation at first. You can remove it once they are ready to flip since the sandwiches will be melty enough to hold together.
  • Have leftovers? While these are best when freshly cooked, you can keep extras in a sealed container in the refrigerator for 3 to 5 days. Just pop one back in the basket to reheat.

air fried grilled cheese ingredients

Serving Suggestions

Pair your air fried grilled cheese sandwich with a bowl of creamy tomato basil soup. It’s a classic comfort food combo for a reason!

Too hot for soup? Make a batch of sweet potato chips or crispy fries. Even a simple salad or seasonal fruit would be delicious.

spreading mayo on bread

Kitchen Tools You Will Need

  • Air Fryer - Different brands and sizes may require different cooking times, so be familiar with your model and make adjustments as needed.
  • Heat-safe spatula for transferring your air fryer grilled cheese in and out of the basket.
  • Serrated Bread Knife - Creates clean slices without causing all that cheesy goodness to ooze out.

grilled cheese in air fryer

Air Fryer Grilled Cheese FAQ

Does grilled cheese in the air fryer come out soggy?

Not at all! In fact, using this countertop appliance is one way to guarantee perfectly crunchy bites.

Because of the circulation in the basket, each sandwich gets nice and crisp all around the outer layer.

Can I use butter instead of mayo?

Yes, feel free to use whichever you prefer. The flavor difference shouldn’t be too noticeable.

Mayonnaise and butter are the two most commonly used spreads for this type of sandwich, and either will create a crispy texture on the outside of the bread.

grilled cheese in air fryer finished

What’s the best bread and cheese combo for air fried grilled cheese?

This really comes down to preference, and there’s no right or wrong answer. Get creative with different combinations and try two different cheeses at once if you would like!

If you do use a thinner or less dense variety of bread, keep an eye on your sandwich towards the end of cooking. You may need to pull it early so it doesn’t become too dark or crispy.
  • Breads: Italian, whole wheat, honey wheat, ciabatta, rye
  • Cheeses: Velveeta, sharp cheddar, swiss, Havarti, fontina, gruyere, Monterey Jack

air fryer grilled cheese dipped in soup


With love from our simple kitchen to yours. 

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air fryer grilled cheese stacked

Yield: 2
Author: Donna Elick
Air Fryer Grilled Cheese

Air Fryer Grilled Cheese

Air fryer grilled cheese is so simple to make, you’ll never want to use a pan again! Enjoy one for a quick and easy meal that’s mess-free too.
Prep time: 5 MinCook time: 12 MinTotal time: 17 Min


  • 2 slices sourdough bread
  • 6 slices American cheese
  • 2 tablespoons mayonnaise, divided
  • Serve with dill pickle spear and tomato soup (optional)


  1. Preheat the air fryer at 350°F for 4 minutes.
  2. Spread 1/2 tablespoon of mayo on one side of a slice of sourdough bread. Place bread mayo-side down in the air fryer basket. Repeat for a second slice.
  3. Place 3 slices of American cheese on top of each of the bread slices, keeping the cheese away from the edges.
  4. Spread 1/2 tablespoon of mayo on a new slice of sourdough bread. Place the bread, mayo-side up on top of the cheese slices of the first sandwich. Repeat for the second sandwich. Secure the sandwich stack together with a toothpick.
  5. Cook at 350°F for 10 minutes, removing toothpicks and flipping halfway through.
  6. Flip one more time and cook an additional 1-2 minutes or until the top is golden brown.
  7. Remove promptly from the air fryer and cut in half. Serve with a dill pickle spear and a bowl of tomato soup. Enjoy!

air fryer grilled cheese closeup

Originally published September 2021

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