Quick, easy, and delicious, this Monte Cristo recipe uses a waffle maker to put a fun spin on this classic ham sandwich. Perfect lunch for the whole family!
Pair this delicious warm sandwich with a light, nutritious quinoa salad for a balanced meal!
What is a Monte Cristo Sandwich?
If you haven’t been to Disneyland, this may be the first question in your brain. Monte Cristo sandwiches are a somewhat close relative of the French croque-monsier. It became well known, though, first in California cafes, then in Disneyland.
There are many different variations of a Monte Cristo, but the basis of all the recipes include these three ingredients: bread, ham, and cheese. In addition, the sandwich is always prepared warm, like a panini, and usually is accompanied by something sweet, like powdered sugar, syrup, or a jam.
This Monte Cristo recipe is classic and simple. However, there is a fun twist. Instead of grilling your sandwich on a pan, use your waffle maker!
Not only does it add delicious crunch to your bread and fun design, but it’s also an easy and fun meal to do with the kids! Using a waffle maker for this sandwich achieves that delicious crisp and heats your sandwich evenly, similar to a panini press.
Ham — Reach for organic lunchmeat. It’s a great way to have meat on hand for an easy lunch; just make sure to read the ingredients.
Need to use up ham? You can easily add lunchmeat to an egg casserole.
Cheese — I love ham & Swiss so that’s what I reach for. Any strong cheese will do here – I like to use a strong cheese so the flavor doesn’t get lost in the layers.
Bread — A thinner sandwich bread is best here. Keep in mind that size matters – you want to ensure it will fit in your waffle maker, both in area and thickness.
How to Make a Monte Cristo
- Butter a slice of bread well and set on the preheated waffle iron.
- Carefully layer meat and cheese on the slice of bread.
- Add a second slice of buttered bread, butter side up.
- Carefully close the waffle maker and heat until golden brown.
Switch it up!
One of my favorite things about this waffle maker sandwich is that you can switch it up as much as you like. I love swiss cheese, so that’s what’s we put on our sandwiches. However, you can get as creative as you want: muenster, gruyere, provolone, etc.
Another way to make this Monte Cristo recipe is to do it french toast style! Although it may be a little more to clean up, it’s adds so much texture and richness to your sandwiches!
Simply beat two eggs, 1/4 cup of milk, and a pinch of salt and pepper. Use this mixture to dip your bread into before putting it on the waffle maker. Just don’t forget to butter the waffle maker first, so it doesn’t stick!
What if I don’t have a waffle maker?
You can make this in a panini press, waffle maker, or indoor grill. If you don’t have those, then feel free to make this as on a griddle or in a pan as you would a grilled cheese sandwich. I highly recommend purchasing a waffle maker though, because these Buttermilk Waffles aren’t to be missed.
Can I change the ingredients?
Select any lunchmeat and cheese you prefer to get the essence of the original. Make a few different varieties and cut into squares for sharing! As far as toppings go, we love putting syrup on ours. However, you can eat it with fresh fruits, powdered sugar, jams or syrup! (Almost) anything goes!
- 4 slices bread, basic sandwich bread works best
- 2 slice deli Swiss cheese
- 2 slice deli ham
- butter, softened
- fresh berries if desired
1. Turn on you waffle maker.
2. Butter both slices of bread on one side. Place buttered side down on waffle maker.
3. Top with Swiss cheese, ham, and another piece of bread, buttered side up.
4. Cook sandwich in waffle maker until bread is crispy and cheese is melted.
5. Carefully remove from waffle maker. Top with syrup. Serve hot. Enjoy!
Want to make it french toast style? Simply beat two eggs, 1/4 cup of milk, and a pinch of salt and pepper. Use this mixture to dip your bread into before putting it on the waffle maker. Don't forget to butter the waffle maker first, so it doesn't stick!
Nutrition Information:Yield: 2 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 540Total Fat: 18gSaturated Fat: 9gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 7gCholesterol: 51mgSodium: 813mgCarbohydrates: 77gFiber: 5gSugar: 26gProtein: 19g
Originally published November 2020; this post has been updated.