This roasted apple and chicken panini is full of flavor and makes the perfect lunch or dinner. It has tender, roasted apples, thinly sliced chicken, caramelized sweet onion, toasted pecans and melty Muenster cheese. All these delicious flavors are packed between two slices of perfectly toasted sourdough.
This grown up grilled cheese sandwich is perfectly toasted on the outside and full of gooey and delicious flavor on the inside. This is a great sandwich to serve with a bowl of soup or some crunchy potato chips.
Why You Will Love This
- The apples. The apples are cut into thin slices, tossed with maple syrup and chili powder and then roasted until they are tender and starting to caramelize. They add a great, unique flavor to the sandwich.
- The onions. A thinly sliced sweet onion is caramelized and then tossed with apricot preserves and dijon mustard. The saucy onions are sweet and savory and are so good with the other ingredients.
- The cheese. Both sides of the bread are topped with Muenster cheese which melts perfectly into the other ingredients and makes each bite so gooey and cheesy!
Here is a list and notes about some of the ingredients needed to make this roasted apple sandwich.
- Butter: You will use butter to roast the apples, caramelize the onions and on the bread before toasting.
- Apples: I prefer to use Honeycrisp apples for this. You will want to use any mildly sweet apple that is firm and crisp.
- Maple syrup: Pure maple syrup is going to be best for this. It will provide the perfect amount of sweetness without the overpowering maple flavor.
- Chili powder: You will mix a small amount with the apples before roasting them.
- Salt and pepper
- Onion: A sweet yellow onion will work best for this and will caramelize perfectly.
- Apricot preserves: This adds just a bit of sweetness to the onions after caramelizing them.
- Mustard: You will mix Dijon mustard with the apricot preserves and onions.
- Cheese: Thinly sliced Muenster cheese is part of what makes this sandwich so good. If needed, you could substitute Havarti, Provolone or Monterey Jack.
- Chicken: I like to buy thinly sliced rotisserie chicken from the deli. You could also buy a rotisserie chicken, remove the meat and shred it yourself.
- Bread: I like slices of sourdough bread for this, but you could also use any hearty white bread that will stand up well when grilled.
- Pecans: Toasted pecans add a delicious flavor to the sandwich. You could substitute toasted almonds or skp them altogether.
Step by Step Instructions
Here is how to make this delicious sandwich. You will need a panini press for this recipe. For the full ingredient list and instructions, see the recipe card below.
STEP 1: Preheat your oven to 450°F and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
STEP 2: Place apple slices, melted butter, maple syrup, chili powder, salt and pepper in a large bowl. Toss to coat the apples with the other ingredients.
STEP 3: Spread apples on the prepared baking sheet in an even layer. Bake in the preheated oven for 20-25 minutes or until soft and starting to brown.
STEP 4: Remove the apples from the oven and allow them to cool.
STEP 5: In a large frying pan, melt butter over medium-high heat. Add the onion and allow it to cook for about 20 minutes, without stirring. Continue to cook until onions are a deep golden color.
STEP 6: Add the apricot preserves and dijon to the pan with the onions and continue to cook for about 2 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and allow the onion mixture to cool slightly.
STEP 7: Butter one side of four slices of bread. Flip the bread over and on the unbuttered side, layer the ingredients in this order: cheese, apples, chicken, onions, pecans and cheese. Top with remaining slices of bread and butter the tops.
STEP 8: Prepare panini press by following manufacturer instructions. When ready, place sandwiches on the panini press and cook until the outside of the sandwiches are golden brown and toasted, about 3-4 minutes.
STEP 9: Remove sandwiches from the panini press and place on a cutting. Slice in half using a sharp knife and serve warm.
- Prepare all your ingredients and place them in the order you will be layering them on the sandwiches. This makes assembly as easy as can be!
- Prepare the apples, onions and toasted pecans in advance.
- If you wish, mix the apricot preserves and dijon together and spread it on the inside of the slices of bread instead of mixing it with the onions.
- Try using thinly sliced turkey or ham in place of the chicken. Leftover Thanksgiving turkey would also be great!
- Add spinach to the onions and allow it to wilt before adding the apricot preserves and dijon for some added nutrients!
You can toast the sandwiches in a frying pan or grill pan on the stove instead. Use a lid or another pan to press the sandwich down while it is cooking.
Absolutely. If panini sandwiches aren't your thing, prepare the sandwich in the same manner, but skip the second piece of bread. Then place under the broiler until the cheese is melted on top.
Yes. This would be a delicious sandwich even without the chicken in there. A flavorful meatless, cheesy sandwich!
Storing and Freezing
Store leftover sandwiches wrapped tightly in a sheet of aluminum foil or in a zip top bag in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Wrap in a paper towel and heat in the microwave, if desired, before serving.
Freezing is not recommended.
Other Recipes to Try
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Roasted Apple and Chicken Panini
- ½ cup butter
- 2 large apples, cored and sliced ¼-inch thick
- 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
- ½ teaspoon chili powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- 1 sweet onion, thinly sliced
- 4 teaspoons apricot preserves
- 4 teaspoons dijon mustard
- ¾ pound Muenster cheese, thinly sliced
- ½ pound thinly sliced rotisserrie chicken
- 8 slices sourdough bread
- 1 cup pecans, coarsely chopped and toasted
- Preheat oven to 450°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Melt 2 tablespoons butter and toss with the apples, maple syrup, chili powder, salt and pepper. Arrange apple slices on prepared baking sheet in an even layer.½ cup butter, 2 large apples, cored and sliced ¼-inch thick, 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup, ½ teaspoon chili powder, ½ teaspoon salt, ¼ teaspoon pepper
- Bake in the preheated 450°F oven for 20 minutes, or until soft and starting to brown. Set aside to cool.
- In a large frying pan, melt 1 tablespoon butter over medium heat. Add onion and toss to coat.1 sweet onion, thinly sliced
- Allow onion to cook without stirring it for 15-20 minutes or until it begins to develop a deep brown color.
- Add the apricot preserves and dijon to the onions and stir to combine. Continue to cook for 2 more minutes, stirring frequently. Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly.4 teaspoons apricot preserves, 4 teaspoons dijon mustard
- Spread butter on one side of 4 slices of bread. On the unbuttered side, top with Muenster, apples, chicken, onions, pecans and another slice of muenster. Close the sandwich with another slice of buttered bread, buttered side up. Repeat with the other 3 sandwiches.¾ pound Muenster cheese, thinly sliced, ½ pound thinly sliced rotisserrie chicken, 8 slices sourdough bread, 1 cup pecans, coarsely chopped and toasted
- Heat the panini press, cook sandwiches until bread is golden and toasted. Remove from the panini press, slice and serve.