Smoked Salmon and Gruyere Grilled Cheese Sandwich

SandwichGrilled Cheese SandwichSmoked Salmon

Toasty grilled Gruyere Swiss cheese sandwich with smoked salmon and Meyer lemon.

Photography Credit: Elise Bauer

Many moons ago my friend Dennis Kercher shared with me his favorite grilled cheese sandwich — one with smoked salmon, Gruyere, and lemon confit made from preserved lemons.

I finally got around to making this fabulous sandwich, but instead of using preserved lemons (most people don’t have those sitting around), I boiled Meyer lemon slices down in salted water.

Our Favorite Videos

Very tasty! A great way to use up any smoked salmon left over from a weekend brunch.

smoked salmon grilled cheese sandwich

Smoked Salmon and Gruyere Grilled Cheese Sandwich Recipe

  • Cook time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: Makes 4 sandwiches


  • 1/2 Meyer lemon, thinly sliced, seeds removed
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 8 slices French bread
  • 4 ounces smoked salmon
  • 4 ounces Gruyere cheese, sliced or shredded
  • 1 Tbsp chopped chives
  • Butter


1 Cook lemon slices in salted water: In a small saucepan bring 1 cup of water to a boil. Add a half teaspoon of salt. When the salt has dissolved, add the slices of lemon to the pan, layering them down flat in the pan.

Let water boil away until it is almost all gone and there is just a thin syrup left in the pan. Do not stir while cooking. Remove from heat.

salmon-gruyere-sandwich-1.jpg salmon-gruyere-sandwich-2.jpg

2 Heat a large cast iron pan on medium high heat. While the pan is heating, arrange the sandwiches (next step).

3 Arrange the sandwiches, layering the smoked salmon, cheese, chives, and cooked lemon slices: Lay out 4 slices of bread. On top of them layer slices of smoked salmon, cheese, and chives. Use a fork to lift the lemon slices out of the pan and add one large lemon slice to each sandwich. Top with a second layer of bread.

4 Butter top of bread slices, put sandwiches in the pan, buttered side down: Butter the top bread slices generously with butter. Once the pan is hot, place the sandwiches in the pan, butter side down. Lower the heat to medium.

Let cook for a few minutes until the bottom of the sandwiches are well toasted.

salmon-gruyere-sandwich-3.jpg salmon-gruyere-sandwich-4.jpg

5 Butter the top of the sandwiches in the pan, flip sandwiches over: Butter the top side of the sandwiches in the pan. Use a metal spatula to flip the sandwiches over. Press down on the sandwiches with the metal spatula.

Let cook until the bottom of the sandwiches is nicely browned. If the cheese isn't melting, turn the heat to low, cover the pan and let cook for a few minutes more.

Hello! All photos and content are copyright protected. Please do not use our photos without prior written permission. Thank you!

This post may contain links to Amazon or other partners; your purchases via these links can benefit Simply Recipes. Read more about our affiliate linking policy.

Elise Bauer

Elise Bauer is the founder of Simply Recipes. Elise launched Simply Recipes in 2003 as a way to keep track of her family's recipes, and along the way grew it into one of the most popular cooking websites in the world. Elise is dedicated to helping home cooks be successful in the kitchen. Elise is a graduate of Stanford University, and lives in Sacramento, California.

More from Elise

11 Comments / Reviews

No ImageSmoked Salmon and Gruyere Grilled Cheese Sandwich

Did you make it? Rate it!

  1. Weiwen Ng

    I just did these with preserved lemons made from regular lemons. It was very, very good. However, I am going to get a bunch of Meyer lemons when they’re in season and preserve them.


  2. Lynda

    I have a thing for smoked salmon and cheese. I love these and the lemon is wonderful with it.

    One of my favorites is an open faced toasted bun topped with smoked salmon and OKA cheese slices…

    You melt them under the broiler and serve with thinly sliced avocado and fresh dill

  3. julie

    I live in NH–where does one find Meyer lemons? This recipe intrigues me.

    You might be able to find preserved lemons at a specialty market. Meyer lemons are grown where they grow other lemons, definitely not in New Hampshire. ;-) They come in season in the winter months. Whole Foods may carry them when they are in season. ~Elise

  4. Dana

    I’ve made this twice now for parties. Both were huge hits! And really easy to make.


  5. Dennis

    You forgot the chives!! Thanks for the call out.

    Best – Dennis

View More
smoked salmon grilled cheese sandwichSmoked Salmon and Gruyere Grilled Cheese Sandwich