Aubergine & Halloumi Panini | The Best Vegetarian Grilled Sandwich

Aubergine & Halloumi Panini
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We love a good toastie here at Somebody Feed Seb. Our Aubergine Parmigiana-inspired grilled sandwich is one of our favourite lunches of all time! A real vegetarian treat, our Aubergine & Halloumi Panini features layers of rich tomato paste, squeaky salty halloumi and slightly charred aubergine rounds. We’ll show you how we make it without a panini maker as well.

Toasties were my favourite after-school snack when I was a teenager. Only back then, I had simpler tastebuds: bread, ketchup, cheese and a mandatory slice of gherkin was all I needed! Seb tells me he survived on pesto and cheese toasties during his first uni year!

These days we often make toasties to ameliorate Seb’s ‘in-between meals’ hunger. But if we’re feeling like a nice sandwich for a weekend lunch, this is the ONE we turn to. There’s nothing like salty Cypriot halloumi paired with aubergine. With the addition of some caramelised onions, this is definitely a winner!

NOTE: We don’t have a panini maker or a sandwich grill, so we make our sandwiches in a pan with another pan and some extra weight on top. We used a heavy cast-iron skillet and it works a treat every time. They come out perfect!


To Make Aubergine & Halloumi Paninis:

Start by slicing your aubergine into thin (about 1cm thick rounds. Heat 1 tbsp of oil in a large frying pan. Once hot, add the aubergine, sprinkle with a little salt (not too much, as halloumi is salty itself so you don’t want to overseason), pepper and mixed herbs, if using. Drizzle another tbsp of oil all over. Fry for about 8-10 minutes until soft and slightly charred, turning once halfway. Then remove it from the pan (reserve it for later).

Cut the halloumi into 6 slices. In a separate dry pan, add the halloumi slices and fry on both sides until browned and crispy.

Cut the panini rolls in half. Spread mayo on the bottom and tomato paste on the top half. If you like a bit of a kick in your food, use harissa paste instead of tomato paste. Lay the halloumi, then aubergine rounds (slightly overlapping), dot the caramelised onion chutney and sprinkle with the parmesan.

Heat the reserved pan. Close the sandwiches and put them in the pan. Weigh the paninis down with another heavy pan, or any pan with a couple of tins or a cast iron skillet on top. Fry for 1-2 minutes. Then flip the paninis over and repeat.

Perfect served with a green salad for a satisfying lunch!


For other lunch ideas, have a look at our recipes below:

Aubergine & Halloumi

Aubergine & Halloumi Panini | The Best Vegetarian Grilled Sandwich

We love a good toastie here at Somebody Feed Seb. Our Aubergine Parmigiana-inspired grilled is one of our favourite lunches of all time! A real vegetarian treat, our Aubergine & Halloumi Panini features layers of rich tomato (or chilli) paste, squeaky salty halloumi and slightly charred aubergine rounds. We'll show you how we make it without a panini maker as well.
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Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Total Time 25 mins
Course Lunch, Snack
Cuisine American, British, Cypriot, Italian
Servings 2 paninis
Calories 764 kcal

Ingredients
 
 

  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 small aubergine cut into 1cm thick rounds
  • ½ tsp mixed herbs optional
  • 220 g halloumi sliced into 8
  • 2 panini rolls
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste
  • 2 tbsp mayo
  • 2 tbsp red onion chutney
  • 20 g parmesan finely grated, optional

Instructions
 

  • Heat 1 tbsp of oil in a large frying pan. Once hot, add the rounds of aubergine, sprinkle with a little salt, pepper and mixed herbs, if using. Drizzle another tbsp of oil all over. Fry for about 8-10 minutes until soft and slightly charred, turning once halfway. Then remove from the pan (reserve it for later)
  • In a separate dry pan, add the halloumi slices and fry on both sides until browned and crispy.
  • Cut the panini rolls in half. Spread mayo on the bottom and tomato paste on the top half. Lay the halloumi, then aubergine rounds (slightly overlapping), dot the caramelised onion chutney and sprinkle with the parmesan.
  • Heat the reserved pan. Close the sandwiches and add them to the pan. Weigh the paninis down with another heavy pan, or simply place a couple of tins or a cast iron skillet on top or the top pan. Fry for 1-2 minutes. Then flip the paninis and repeat.
  • Perfect served with a green salad for a satisfying lunch!

Notes

NOTE: if you like things spicy, use harissa paste instead of tomato paste. It’s gorgeous!

Nutrition

Calories: 764kcalCarbohydrates: 54gProtein: 38gFat: 44gSaturated Fat: 23gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 13mgSodium: 2315mgPotassium: 789mgFiber: 9gSugar: 15gVitamin A: 786IUVitamin C: 12mgCalcium: 1369mgIron: 4mg
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Aubergine & Halloumi

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