Grilled Cheese For A Crowd Calculator

Grilled Cheese For A Crowd Calculator

Whether you are making grilled cheese for several guests, serving a large crowd, or hosting a grilled cheese bar, this calculator will help you estimate quantities based on the number of guests and servings.

There are also a lot of tips below, so read more or skip straight to the calculator below.

Making A Lot Of Grilled Cheese Sandwiches At Once

When you’re making grill cheese for a crowd, you’ll need a few tricks up your sleeve so that you can churn out a lot of sandwiches and serve them before they get soft and the cheese sets.

“Make And Bake” Grilled Cheese Sandwiches

If you’re in a hurry and you need to get out a lot of sandwiches at once, you can try the oven method.  We haven’t tried this method.

  1. Pre-heat 2 large baking sheets or sheet pans at 450 degrees.
  2. Pre-butter one side of 20 slices of bread.
  3. Remove one pre-heated baking sheet from the oven and place 10 slices of buttered bread (buttered-side down) on the tray.
  4. Add your cheeses to the bread slices on the baking sheet and cover with the remaining 10 slices of bread (buttered-side up).
  5. Cover the top of the assembled sandwiches with the second pre-heated baking sheet and place it all back in the oven.
  6. The baking sheets will brown both sides of bread and the cheese should be melted within 10 minutes (flip the pans 1/2 way through baking).

High Street’s “World’s Greatest Grilled Cheese” Method

Using the restaurant High Street‘s method will also let you turn out a large batch of grilled cheese sandwiches at once.  The nice thing about this method is that you won’t have to fuss with large baking sheets, or have to check how done the bread is.

Grilled Cheese

  1. Use thick slices of bread.  High Street uses 1 1/4″ thick potato bread slices.  The thickness keeps the bread’s texture crispy on the outside and pillowy on the inside.
  2. Butter both sides of the bread with softened salted butter and brown both sides of the bread over medium-low heat.  They use a cast iron skillet.
  3. Place a slice of cheese (and any other toppings) on each slice of toasted bread.
  4. Place the open-faced slices in the oven at 400 degrees until the cheese begins melting.
  5. Join the bread slices together (cheese-side in the middle, naturally), and you’re done.

How to keep grilled cheese gooey, warm and crispy without getting soggy

The greatest part of a grilled cheese sandwich is the crispiness of the outside of the bread and the gooey goodness of the cheese.  But about 10 minutes after cooking, the cheese begins setting up and loosing it’s “gooiness”.  The bread will start to dry out a bit on the top slice, and it will begin to get soggy on the bottom slice.  If you cover the sandwich to keep it warm, then both slices of the bread will get soggy.  Now what?

The restaurant The Melt invented a Smart Box so that their grilled cheese sandwiches would stay at the perfect condition moisture level, temperature and crispness for up to 20 minutes when out for delivery.  Their box uses a fan to ventilate moisture, and a heater to keep the temperature at 190-200 degrees. Their sandwiches rest on ridges so that the bread is never laying flat during deliveries.

How To Keep Grilled Cheese Warm For A Party

Since you won’t have access to a Smart Box like the restaurant The Melt uses, here are some other options for making grilled cheese ahead of a party so that they’re still crispy on the outside and gooey on the inside when it’s time to serve them.

Make Your Own Smart Box Using A Crock Pot

You can incorporate some of The Melt’s ideas by using a crock pot to keep your grilled cheese sandwiches warm and crispy.

  • Set your crock pot on low.
  • Place a ridged barrier in the bottom of the crock pot, stand the sandwiches upright on the barrier, and keep the sandwiches apart from one each other using another a ridged barrier. Do not stack the sandwiches on top of one another.
  • Instead of using the crockpot’s lid (which would trap moisture inside), cut a piece of cardstock to fit the top opening of the crock pot.
  • Add a lot of 1/2 holes to the cardstock for ventilation.

So, what is this special ridged barrier?  It’s just a piece of cardstock paper that is covered in aluminum foil, and folded like a fan (half inch folds).  The fan shape allows heat and air to circulate, prevents the sandwiches from sitting directly on the heat, reduces moisture buildup and keeps the sandwiches warm.

You can cut the aluminum-covered cardstock fan to fit the bottom of the crock pot.  And then cut up enough 4″ x 3″ sections to place between the grilled cheese sandwiches.

For most crock pots, the low setting is usually around 200 degrees.  But you might just want to check your’s to confirm.

The bonus is that if you use High Street’s cooking technique from earlier, you can prepare and store all your bread slices in the crock pot long before you need to assemble the sandwiches.

The downside to using a crock pot is that you are limited on space.  The solution?……

Make Your Own Smart Box Using Your Oven

This method is almost identical to the crock pot method, just set your oven to 190 degrees and use large stock pots instead.  Plus you can place round cookie drying racks (dollar store) in the bottom instead of needing to make a cardstock fan.  You’ll still need to keep the sandwiches upright, and prevent them from touching each other.  Cover the stock pot with aluminum foil and punch a bunch of holes in it to allow excess moisture to escape.

How Many Servings Of Grilled Cheese Per Person

The USDA considers one grilled cheese sandwich a serving.  This is for two slices of bread and two 1 oz slices of cheese.

How Many Individual Servings (in general)

The USDA recommendation is probably fine if you are offering guests a variety of sides and other dishes or soups in addition to grilled cheese.  At most, you would want allow for 1 1/4 servings for adults to cover anyone coming back for seconds.

Allow for 2 slices of bread and two slices of cheese per sandwich X 1.25 servings.

How many loaves of bread you’ll need can be determined by dividing the number of slices you need into the number of slices in the loaf of bread (minus the two heals) you’ll be buying.

How Many Individual Servings For A Grilled Cheese Bar

If you are offering a grilled cheese bar with a variety of cheeses and other fillers, one serving will definitely be enough because most guests will probably add more than just the 2 slices of cheese to their sandwich.  Grilled cheese bars also tend to offer a variety of artisan breads as well as other fillers such as deli meat slices, veggies and condiments.  Allow for 2 slices of bread and 2 1/2 slices of cheese per person.  For deli meats, allow for 2 ounces per person.  For veggie fillers (sauteed mushrooms, caramelized onions, grilled peppers, etc), allow for 1 ounce per person.

What else can you put in a grilled cheese sandwich?

Baby spinach
Caramelized onions
Sauteed mushrooms
Tomato slices
Fried egg
Jalapeno slices
Sweet basil leaves
Crushed pineapple

What side dishes go well with grilled cheese sandwiches?

French fries
Tomato soup
Potato chips
Sweet potato fries
Cole slaw
Macaroni salad
Tomato cucumber salad
Cheddar broccoli salad



Number of Guests
Categories: Party Planning