Healthy Pan Bagnat Grilled Cheese

Today’s recipe for Healthy Pan Bagnat Grilled Cheese is one of my absolute favorites. Have you ever tried a Pan Bagnat? The name for this sandwich (pronounced pɑ̃ baˈɲa) originates from Nice, France. It consists of ingredients in a Salade Niçoise, including canned tuna, olives, anchovies, tomatoes, onions and hard-boiled eggs. I tweaked my recipe to create a healthy grilled cheese, while still using most of the traditional ingredients.

This sandwich recipe is one of my favorites in the “light and healthy” chapter of my cookbook 150 Best Grilled Cheese Sandwiches.  Place your tuna in a mixing bowl and add fresh lemon juice, vinegar, olive oil and pepper. These ingredients give it a nice, light flavor. Top the bread with fresh tomatoes and spinach leaves and some freshly grated Parmesan. Then, place in a Panini grill or large skillet to get it a little warm and toasted, and it’s fantastic!

In my cookbook, you will find grilled cheese recipes for appetizers, breakfasts, main dishes, lunch ideas, desserts and more. There is definitely options for everyone. If you’re trying to eat healthier these days, I have fifteen other recipes in this chapter with low-fat, low-carb and gluten-free options. You’ll also find low-fat and recipe lightening tips, grilled cheese making tips, sandwich timesavers and more.


Healthy Pan Bagnat Grilled Cheese

Cook Time:

20 minutes minutes

Prep Times:

10 minutes


4 servings


2 tablespoons sherry vinegar (you can use red or white wine instead)
2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
7 teaspoons olive oil, divided
1⁄4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 cans (each 7 oz) solid white tuna, packed in water, drained
1 tablespoon finely chopped red onion
1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil
8 slices sprouted or whole-grain (1⁄2-inch thick slices)
4 Roma (plum) tomatoes, thinly sliced
1 cup baby spinach leaves
4 ounces shaved Parmesan cheese


1. Preheat panini grill to medium, if using.

2. In small bowl, whisk together vinegar, lemon juice, 1 tsp of the olive oil and pepper.

3. In a medium bowl, combine tuna, red onion and basil. Stir in sherry mixture, mixing well.

4. Brush one side of each bread slice with remaining oil. Place on a work surface, oiled side down. Top 4 bread slices equally with tuna mixture, tomato, spinach and cheese. Cover with remaining bread slices, oiled side up, and press together gently.

5. Place sandwiches on a preheated panini grill or in a large skillet over medium heat and cook, turning once if using a skillet, for 3 to 4 minutes or until golden brown and cheese is melted. Serve immediately.

Excerpted from 150 Best Grilled Cheese Sandwiches by Alison Lewis © 2012 Robert Rose Inc. Reprinted with permission. All rights reserved: Not to be reprinted without publisher permission.

12 thoughts on “Healthy Pan Bagnat Grilled Cheese”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *