Croque Monsieur Sandwich

The classic French croque monsieur is a toasted ham and gruyere cheese sandwich that's topped with a bechamel sauce. It's a real knife and fork sandwich that's a creamy delight!

Croque Monsieur
Elise Bauer

Years ago, a French friend of mine introduced me to croque-monsieur, the French version of a toasted ham and Swiss sandwich.

I remember it being loaded with butter and cheese, and absolutely the most delicious sandwich in the world. My friend was somewhat addicted to these sandwiches, and after having one myself I could see why!

Gruyère cheese and ham just belong together.

Croque Monsieur
Elise Bauer

The word croque comes from the verb croquer or "to crunch". So a Croque-Monsieur roughly translates to "Mister Crunchy".

The feminine version, a Croque Madame, includes a fried egg on top. This classic French bistro sandwich is a great way to use up leftover ham.

Croque Monsieur Sandwich

Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Total Time 25 mins
Servings 4 sandwiches

Adapted from several recipes, including one by Debra Weber of About.com and Ina Garten.

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter

  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

  • 1 1/2 cups milk

  • A pinch each of salt, freshly ground pepper, nutmeg, or more to taste

  • 1 1/2 cups Gruyère cheese, grated (about 1 1/2 cups grated)

  • 1/4 cup Grated parmesan cheese (packed)

  • 8 slices French or Italian loaf bread

  • 12 ounces ham, sliced

  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
  2. Make the béchamel sauce:

    Melt butter in a small saucepan on medium/low heat until it just starts to bubble. Add the flour and cook, stirring until smooth, about 2 minutes.

    Slowly add the milk, whisking continuously, cooking until thick. Remove from heat. Add the salt, pepper, and nutmeg.

    Stir in the Parmesan and 1/4 cup of the grated Gruyère. Set aside.

  3. Toast bread slices in oven:

    Lay out the bread slices on a baking sheet and toast them in the 400°F oven, a few minutes each side, until lightly toasted. For extra flavor you can spread some butter on the bread slices before you toast them if you want.

    (Alternatively, you can assemble the sandwiches as follows in step four and grill them on a skillet, finishing them in the broiler with the bechamel sauce.)

  4. Build the sandwiches:

    Lightly brush half of the toasted slices with mustard. Add the ham slices and about 1 cup of the remaining Gruyère cheese. Top with the other toasted bread slices.

  5. Add bechamel, more Gruyere:

    Spoon on the béchamel sauce to the tops of the sandwiches. Sprinkle with the remaining Gruyère cheese.

  6. Broil till bubbly:

    Place on a broiling pan. Bake in the oven for 5 minutes, then turn on the broiler and broil for an additional 3 to 5 minutes, until the cheese topping is bubbly and lightly browned.

    If you top this sandwich with a fried egg it becomes a Croque Madame.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)
582 Calories
27g Fat
40g Carbs
43g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
×
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4
Amount per serving
Calories 582
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 27g 35%
Saturated Fat 14g 68%
Cholesterol 124mg 41%
Sodium 1720mg 75%
Total Carbohydrate 40g 15%
Dietary Fiber 2g 7%
Total Sugars 9g
Protein 43g
Vitamin C 0mg 1%
Calcium 714mg 55%
Iron 3mg 18%
Potassium 555mg 12%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate. In cases where multiple ingredient alternatives are given, the first listed is calculated for nutrition. Garnishes and optional ingredients are not included.